Tag Archives: Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden’s Lawyer Speaks Out

Here is an interview from Edward Snowden’s attorney.

What do you say? Edward Snowden: Patriot or Traitor?

In this video Otis Kenny of WRC speaks with Edward Snowden’s lawyer about the war on whistleblowers. WeAreChange gets an exclusive interview with one of the most influential people within the overall Snowden affair. Jesselyn Radack, a former whistleblower herself, has dedicated her life to representing whistleblowers. In this interview we learn; the difference between a whistleblower and a leaker, how to properly conduct whistle blowing, and get some updates on Edward Snowden’s well being.

Alleged Spy Snowden and Naval Yard Shooter Alexis vetted by same agency

Aaron_Alexis-FBI_ImageFormer NSA analyst Edward Snowden and the man responsible for the D.C. Naval Yard shooting, Alexis Aaron, were investigated by the same Agency.

In a statement on Thursday, USIS said that it conducted Alexis’ background check in 2007. No further information was available as USIS’ contract prohibits it from retaining information obtained in its background checks.

USIS has taken more than $400 million from the U.S. government in the past two years for its services and is under investigation by the federal government for alleged criminal violations in the performance of background checks.

British Court rules on search of Miranda property

Romana Klee (CC)

Romana Klee (CC)


David Miranda, the Brazilian man who had been working with The Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald, obtained a partial victory in British court. His property that had been seized by authorities cannot be searched, unless it is for the purpose of “national security.”

BBC News reports:

The High Court ruled the authorities could examine the seized material for the defence of national security and also to investigate whether Mr Miranda, 28, is a person who is or has been concerned with the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism.

Mr Miranda’s lawyers said he had had nine items, including his laptop, mobile phone, memory cards and DVDs, taken during the detention on Sunday.

They sought the injunction to prevent access to the data, arguing his detention was unlawful and threatened “journalistic sources whose confidential information is contained in the material seized”.

Speaking after the case, Gwendolen Morgan, from law firm Bindmans, said the injunction was a “partial victory”.

She said the government now has seven days to “prove there is a genuine threat to national security”.

Ms Morgan added she knew “very little” about the criminal investigation police revealed they were undertaking.

“We don’t know of any basis for that,” she added.

Miranda had been stopped presumably because of his association with Greenwald, and the Edward Snowden affair. It can be presumed that the British authorities had been hoping to find more Snowden documents before they were released to the public. In the wake of Miranda’s detainment, Guardian editors revealed that the British government had destroyed their hard drives. Given the nature of the information, and Snowden’s claims that the information will be released no matter what happens to him, it is unlikely that destroying hard drives or seizing property of journalists will put an end to the Snowden information releases. As for the Miranda situation, while his counsel is unaware of any reason the British government would have to prove that the is a danger to national security, time will tell what sort of case the Crown will manage to present in court.

Jabberwonky – August 11th

JabberwonkyCDNFinal

When: Sunday, August 11th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Jabberwonky on Blog Talk Radio

What:

`Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
And the mome raths outgrabe.

Whether it’s “down the rabbit hole”, or “through the looking glass”, the world of politics is often referred to in the lexicon given to us by Lewis Carroll. No matter what, those terms are resurrected when referring to something that has gone terribly wrong. And that’s what’s here on Jabberwonky…

Tonight: After a little hiatus due to vacation, it’s time to talk a little bit about how our politicians decide to spend their free time – and our tax dollars. Also, more fun with the IRS, sex and politics California-style, socialism v. fascism in America, and just how screwed up is our nation’s foreign policy and security apparatus.

Listen to internet radio with CDNews Radio on BlogTalkRadio

Edward Snowden could be bound for Venezuela

edward-snowdenToday has been a slightly confusing time for anyone paying attention to the Edward Snowden situation. He remains not quite on Russian soil, holed up in an airport hotel outside Moscow, could theoretically go to Venezuela, but apparently hasn’t made a definite decision on that. Some of the confusion was fed by Russian MP Aleksey Pushkov, who tweeted out of turn about the NSA leaker.

“Predictably, Snowden has agreed to [Venezuelan President Nicolas] Maduro’s offer of political asylum. Apparently, this option appeared most reliable to Snowden,” Pushkov, the head of the lower house’s Committee on Foreign Affairs tweeted.

However, the post was deleted from the MP’s page on the microblog just minutes after it appeared.

“Information about Snowden accepting Maduro’s offer of asylum comes from [Russian TV channel] Vesti 24 newscast at 18:00. Contact them for all questions,” Pushkov tweeted shortly afterwards.

In spite of reports that Snowden apparently accepted the offer from Venezuela, WikiLeaks claims that isn’t the case. In the flurry of coverage, there are also conjectures about the logistics of getting to Venezuela in the first place, especially since the plane carrying President Evo Morales of Bolivia was diverted just over suspicion that Snowden was on board. The U.S. has threatened that the NSA leaker must not be permitted to fly anywhere but back to the states, and it remains unclear how he could get anywhere else, with the threat of retribution hanging over any nation that permits a flight to cross their aerospace. So, Snowden still has gone from “Catch Me If You Can” to “The Terminal”, at least until he can figure out travel arrangements that won’t land him back in the U.S.

Snowden reveals western states shared information with NSA

Abode of Chaos (CC)

Abode of Chaos (CC)

The righteous indignation of European states in the wake of Edward Snowden’s release that the U.S. was spying on them isn’t as upright as it may seem. The latest revelation is that while they were being monitored, they were also benefiting from U.S. intelligence operations. While this may not seem very earth-shattering in the current atmosphere of rampant invasions of privacy worldwide, it brings up another issue – contingency plans if such operations ended up in the public eye.

As reported by AFP:

In remarks published in German, Snowden said an NSA department known as the Foreign Affairs Directorate coordinated work with foreign secret services.

The partnerships are organised so that authorities in other countries can “insulate their political leaders from the backlash” if it becomes public “how grievously they’re violating global privacy,” he said.

The interview was conducted by US cryptography expert Jacob Appelbaum and documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras using “encrypted emails shortly before Snowden became known globally for his whistleblowing”, Spiegel said.

On cooperation with Germany’s BND foreign intelligence agency, Snowden said the NSA provides “analysis tools” for data passing through Germany from regions such as the Middle East.

While there has been talk that these latest revelations about U.S. intelligence operations having a chilling effect on upcoming trade negotiations, leaders need to weigh the value of such an action. The implication at this point could be that they are upset not only about being spied on by the U.S., but also about the fact that they have plans to protect themselves from being associated directly with their own intelligence operations that involve invading the privacy of private citizens worldwide. Snowden has significantly changed the situation by releasing information that even implies that such plans exist.

Snowden remains in a Russian airport hotel, while three South American nations have suggested that they are willing to offer him asylum. Whether or not he will be able to take advantage of those offers is uncertain.

Hong Kong Responds To US Over Snowden

edward_snowdenThe government of Hong Kong has told the US it wasn’t going to stop Edward Snowden from leaving the country. From their statement, “Since the documents provided by the US Government did not fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law, the HKSAR Government has requested the US Government to provide additional information so that the Department of Justice could consider whether the US Government’s request can meet the relevant legal conditions. As the HKSAR Government has yet to have sufficient information to process the request for provisional warrant of arrest, there is no legal basis to restrict Mr Snowden from leaving Hong Kong.”

Basically, they gave the US (and the Obama Administration) the finger.

Edward Snowden Heads To Russia

edward_snowden

Update: BBC says Snowden is IN Russia.

The South China Morning Post is now reporting Edward Snowden is on his way to Moscow. No idea if this is true, but the SCMP is one of the few papers to actually talk to Snowden while he’s been holed up in Hong Kong. The Obama Administration was trying to get Snowden extradited to the US to face espionage charges, but now that could be all tossed away. Snowden isn’t expected to stay in Russia by the way, he’s supposed to be off to Iceland or Ecuador.

Of course, if Snowden is on his way to Moscow, let’s see how the US-Russia relations are doing. Ever since “flexibility,” of course.

Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor June 22nd 2013

sncl_logocdnWhen:Saturday, June 22nd, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor on Blog Talk Radio

What: Saturday nights were meant for cigars and politics.

Hear Taylor and his co-host Liz Harrison talk about everything from the past week – from politics, to news, to books, and entertainment. Whatever comes to mind, and of course, sobriety is not likely.

Tonight: In case you thought that the scandals in government were limited to the Obama Administration’s follies, think again. Taylor talks with John Ekdahl (@JohnEkdahl) from Ace of Spades HQ about Mayor Bloomberg using taxpayer dollars to run his “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” organization. How did Bloomberg manage to do this in the first place, and more importantly, how did he get caught?

Listen to internet radio with CDNews Radio on BlogTalkRadio

 

 

 


Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor June 15th 2013

sncl_logocdnWhen:Saturday, June 15th, 10pm Eastern/7pm Pacific

Where: Saturday Night Cigar Lounge with Taylor on Blog Talk Radio

What: Saturday nights were meant for cigars and politics.

Hear Taylor and his co-host Liz Harrison talk about everything from the past week – from politics, to news, to books, and entertainment. Whatever comes to mind, and of course, sobriety is not likely.

Tonight: Big, big week this week and we talk to Jackie Bodnar from FreedomWorks about it. Is Edward Snowden a hero, traitor or both? Is the US lying about what the NSA program goes? Are the companies allegedly tied to it doing the same thing?

Listen to internet radio with CDNews Radio on BlogTalkRadio

 

 

 


Untangling the web of NSA, Snowden, and PRISM

stevendepolo (CC)

stevendepolo (CC)

Arguments over the value of what Edward Snowden revealed to Glenn Greenwald of The Guardian have been out there ever since the story broke, and of course, the smearing of Snowden by official sources in government is in full swing. It is understandable that Greenwald is doing what he can to protect the integrity of his source. However, his current statements do not dispel some issues brought up by Mandy Nagy over at Legal Insurrection. If anything, the inconsistencies brought up by Nagy raise many legitimate questions that probably will need to be addressed sooner or later by Greenwald and The Guardian, presuming that there is a real desire to protect the integrity of their source, and the legitimacy of their reporting.

That is a relatively harsh way of putting another issue on the table – was The Guardian “right” to report on this in the first place? It’s a treacherous situation to report on intelligence procedures in the best of circumstances, and this case is particularly difficult to wade through, if for no other reason, because it appears that Snowden may or may not have been what he claims to have been. If Nagy is right, the big question becomes how did Snowden get the information in the first place? It is bad enough to think that someone that had been employed by the government through a contracted corporation could get this information if that person had access to it daily for years. But, it’s possible that Snowden only had real access to anything for just a few weeks, at most – taking into account training time, where it’s not unreasonable to assume he would have had limited access, regardless of his past history with the CIA. And that’s not even getting into the apparently spotted work and academic history of Snowden, that arguably should have been considered a warning sign that maybe he really wasn’t what he appeared. Given the nature of the information that he was revealing – government secrets that, by definition, can’t be verified by secondary sources – one would think that a great deal of scrutiny should be given to what should be verifiable – the life history of the source. Since it appears that Snowden’s history looks at least a little like a poorly pieced together “cover identity” from a spy novel, there should have been at least a little wariness about what the man had to say. One serious question should have been, has the CIA really taken to hiring people that had to get a GED because they couldn’t complete high school, and apparently couldn’t manage to complete a single degree in one school?

And then there is the PRISM program itself. While Palantir has a program of that name, they’ve categorically denied involvement in the NSA program of that name. Given the documentation of Palantir program, their claims appear to be true. However, that does not mean that Palantir doesn’t have hands in government intelligence gathering at all. The company specializes in data mining, management, and interpretation software, and openly states that it has clientele in government, law enforcement, the healthcare and pharmacy industries. While they tout their work against human trafficking in conjunction with Google, that doesn’t mean that their other endeavors are not worth scrutinizing. Just because they apparently are not involved in the development of NSA’s PRISM program does not mean that they are not involved in governmental data mining at all.

Snowden’s leaks to The Guardian have raised more questions than answers. The information that he has revealed still could eventually be proven to be of little value, but the fact that he had managed to hold any position in the government, or at a company that has been contracted to do security work is disturbing. It has been taken for granted that there has been some level of spying on U.S. citizens by the government since at the very least, 9/11. How far the government has gone, and continues to go, hasn’t been made any more clear by Snowden’s information. He’s merely pointed out that it probably is far more extensive than anyone had suspected previously. As for what citizens and journalists alike should be focusing on at this point is the simple fact that the government is spying on U.S. citizens. With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the breadth of information on citizens that will be available to the government will increase radically. We should be more concerned with what the government intends to do with information it gathers, either through its intelligence infrastructure, or through purely domestic agencies like the IRS. The unfortunate fact at this point is that the conspiracy theorists are at least partially right. Government has grown to the point where no citizen should assume any level of privacy in anything that they do. They should assume that the government will not restrict itself to using that information for innocuous reasons – the claims that information could be used to intimidate citizens through threats of prosecution should be considered accurate, because there is nothing in place to prevent the government from acting in that way. Politics aside, this should be a wake-up call to the public. Unfortunately, until there are verified cases of the government using information that it has gathered through the use of PRISM or any other data mining programs to prosecute citizens as a tool of intimidation, it’s more likely that apathy will continue to keep the masses silent.

Turnkey Tyranny is in place

Economic Policy Journal writes that the most important thing NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has said comes at the end of this interview. The infrastructure is now in place to bring tyranny onto the people of the United States with a simple flip of a switch. Edward Snowden calls it “turnkey tyranny.”