January 3rd, 2014

Pardon Snowden, He Blew Whistle on NSA Crimes

pardon-snowden

Ed Snowden has been demonised by some on the right as a traitor. Those on the right don’t as a rule put their trust in governments and Snowden is a patriotic, freedom loving libertarian, not a Russian or Chinese dupe, as some conservatives seem to believe. (He even donated $250 to Ron Paul’s election campaign.) His motivation was ideological and principled – it has cost him his personal freedom and his career. People who Guido would normally expect to side with the cause of liberty have focused on the medium not the message – because it was Alan Rusbridger’s Guardian that broke the story they have got their backs up. Whatever right-minded people think of the Guardian, it was disgraceful to hear Rusbridger’s patriotism questioned by a Select Committee over him publishing the Snowden story.

Ed Snowden was as the New York Times argued yesterday clearly justified in believing that the only way to blow the whistle on the blanket intelligence-gathering was to “expose it to the public and let the resulting furor do the work“, revealing what his bosses covered-up and lied to Congress about. Beyond the mass collection of phone and internet data Snowden revealed:

  • The NSA (aided and abetted by GCHQ) broke the law, and exceeded their authority, thousands of times per year.
  • The NSA (aided and abetted by GCHQ) broke into the communications links of Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook and other internet giants, allowing it to spy on hundreds of millions of user accounts. Many of those companies are now, thankfully, scrambling to install systems that the NSA cannot yet penetrate.
  • The NSA systematically undermined the basic encryption systems of the internet, making it impossible to know if sensitive banking or medical data is truly private, damaging businesses that depended on this trust. Ironically this opened back doors that could also be used by hostile intelligence agencies.
  • His leaks revealed that James Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, lied to Congress when testifying in March.
  • The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court rebuked the N.S.A. for repeatedly providing misleading information about its surveillance practices, according to a ruling made public because of the Snowden documents. One of the practices violated the Constitution, according to the chief judge of the court.
  • A federal judge ruled earlier this month that the phone-records-collection programme probably violates the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution. He called the programme “almost Orwellian” and said there was no evidence that it stopped any imminent act of terror.

When someone reveals that government officials have routinely and deliberately broken the law, that person should not face life in prison at the hands of the same government. Rick Ledgett, who leads the NSA’s task force on the Snowden leaks, told CBS News that he would consider amnesty if Snowden halted any additional leaks. President Obama should do just that, bring Snowden home. He is a hero.

Hat-tip: New York Times


233 Comments

  1. 1
    Prime Minister David Cameron says:

    Hear ! Hear !

    Like

    • 3
      Polly says:

      Well said Guido. Come over for dinner sometime.

      Like

      • 84
        Or, it's the publicity says:

        I think he likes being mentioned in the Spectator, QotD =>

        Like

      • 201
        zorro says:

        Indeed, Michael Ellis was certainly getting his knickers or stockings (probably both in fact) in a twist when going for Rusbridger before the HASC……

        Like

    • 14
      Tosh The Bosh says:

      Jesus H Christ Mr Guido, have you had a whack on the head? The most sense you have ever spoken.

      Like

    • 24
      the honourable member for Royal Witney Houstonl says:

      gad sir – couldn’t have put it better misself – but then i’m a modest chap – don’t yer know?

      Like

      • 29
        Tosh The Bosh says:

        Don’t take it too seriously though, Mr Guido is busy today trying to deflect attention from all those damming Thatcher papers that have been released. From what I hear she hated Mandela, loved cigar smoking ch!ld abusers and was prepared to give Belfast to the balaclava brigade.

        Like

        • 35
          Remember 1690? Can't say I do says:

          Who wants Belfast? I mean, seriously, how many Britons want N Ireland?

          Like

          • Anonymous says:

            @ Remember 1960. Possibly as many Brits as want the Falklands & Gibralter.

            Like

          • It was Gordons policies that caused it all along says:

            Let Salmond pay for his Ulster Scots

            Like

          • Belfast loyalist says:

            Excuse me, we are more loyal to the crown than the rest of the UK. To prove our loyalty we have to make do with kicking seven shades of shit out of the crown forces, cause they won’t let us play with the catholic’s anymore.

            Like

        • 52
          Mrs T on the right side of History says:

          Nothing damning in those papers. That the Great Lady planned for worst case scenarios is only to her credit.

          Like

        • 53
          Col. Nut says:

          Thankfully cigars are going out of fashion.

          Like

    • 38
      Psyche the Dog says:

      Well, well Guido that is a suprise arguement from you, but I doubt whether the right wing nutters will stop having a go at Snowden, and we were constantly bombarded in the press about the K.G.B. and their successor spying on this country and the our own secret intelligence agencies were doing exactly the same thing on their own people. It is time governments started to get control of their secret services and what they do, if they don’t someone in the secret services might decide to take government into their own hands. At a guess, GCHQ will be monitoring this blog and traces put out as to who the writers on this blog are, and where they are writing from, work/home/library/pub etc they have have the means to do so. What frightens governments more than anything else are the people they rule over, they trust us as much we trust them, over the past 40 odd years it has been the big money boys, they tell governments what they want, and the articles we have voted for, do exactly what they tell them eg Bliar/Brown.
      Guido, at last back to your libertarian stance?

      Like

      • 54
        Mr Annonymous says:

        What next, eh? The government will want to know how much I earn, how many children I have, what car I drive, even how much I paid for my house.

        Oh, wait a minute….

        Like

      • 100
        Technomist says:

        ‘At a guess, GCHQ will be monitoring this blog and traces put out as to who the writers on this blog are, and where they are writing from, work/home/library/pub etc they have have the means to do so.’

        And in my case, when they do they will discover an upstanding, law-abiding patriotic gentleman from a military family who regularly assists his community through voluntary work, who thinks for himself, loves this country and who can’t abide people who take the law into their own hands like some elements at GCHQ have done. They probably already know who I am: I know that because the Essex police once interviewed me about a blog post I made. (Entirely legitimately, I should say, as they were investigating a murder).

        If the silly boys in charge at GCHQ want to compound their crimes, that is their decision, but in my view it would be folly to do so. They will annoy people who understand and respect the legitimate work of the security services. It will do them no good in the long run.

        Like

        • 218
          By the way says:

          Are you the pest from Essex that considers he has the right to go round insulting and attacking people on line – then wonders why folks get more than a little upset?

          Like

      • 194
        Liberty_Central says:

        Well said Guido! The government is the enemy of all free people. Remember that the Tories are as much in favour of massive state spying as are the left. They, the police and the security servies are NOT to be trusted – all they care is expanding their powers ti help feather their nests at the expendse of the taxerpayers who pay their wages.

        Like

    • 59
      Socialism in Action says:

      Kim Jong-Un killed his ‘scum’ uncle: Dictator had him stripped naked, thrown into a cage and eaten alive by pack of dogs

      This is the reality of Owen Jones type politics

      Like

      • 74
        Anonymous says:

        Not everything is black and white – if you had a semblance of awareness, you’d grasp that libertarians transcend the out of date left v right divide and come from either side of it.

        Maybe you need to learn that it’s possible for people to hold a wide range of different views, rather than having to sign up lock stock and barrel to one set.

        Those who do so are as bad as Jones, regardless of whether they’re with or against him.

        Like

        • 95
          rick says:

          +1

          The old Left/Right divide is history. I fully support Snowden, but in most other of my opinions, the Left would consider me an extreme Right Wing ‘nutter’ (my personal favorite – ‘toy town Nazi’)

          Like

          • Bilda Berger says:

            Politics isn’t a spectrum, it’s a continuum. The extreme Left and the extreme Right blend seamlessly into one another.

            Like

          • Really ? says:

            Thats not what a continuum is, what you are describing is a circle.

            Like

          • the mystic mould with the appearance of the face of Jesus says:

            the extreme left and the extreme right do blend together and form a circle but I think not in the way that you mean. I have always considered anarchy to be between the 2 extremes.

            Like

      • 107
        Col. Nut says:

        Well, the uncle was Head of Security and as bad as or worse than the nephew. At least he made a contribution to animal welfare.

        Like

      • 205
        Bill says:

        “Kim Jong-Un killed his ‘scum’ uncle: Dictator had him stripped naked, thrown into a cage and eaten alive by pack of dogs” ====== Perhaps we could deal with Cameron and his Gidiot the same way?

        Like

    • 75
      Hacked Off says:

      Bang on Mr Fawkes. Welcome to our world.

      Like

      • 87
        I hate socialists. says:

        Snowden and Rusbridger are traitors to the West and
        should be held to account for their crimes. They have put
        a lot of people in danger . Disgusting individuals .

        Like

        • 93
          Dr Kelly's Ghost says:

          The only people put in danger by the truth being told are people who had put themselves in danger by relying on lies for their safety.

          Whatever happended to people being responsible for their own actions and choices in life?

          Like

          • Mr Annonymous says:

            In that case please go and tell Mr Kim Jong-Ill what most people in the West think about him.

            Then you will realise that saying ‘only people who tell lies are put in danger by the truth’ is a load of crap.

            Like

          • Really ? says:

            The very nature of spying is lies and deception. Are you saying that our security services should do no spying at all ? Are you also saying that you should always tell the truth under every circumstance ?

            Like

        • 111
          Traitors to the west? says:

          No, the west’s leadership (left and right) are traitors to the west.

          Like

        • 195
          Liberty_Central says:

          Get back in your box, you dupe. You are little more than a useful idiot – licking the boots of your masters (I presume you read the DM or some such rag ?). You’re not wanted here…

          Like

        • 202
          zorro says:

          Bollocks

          Like

        • 219
          By the way says:

          Despite this site having an interesting and in-depth debate, for once, there still remains the odd reactionaries that cannot see – much less understand – the need for limits and controls on the state. Cannot see the need to hold the likes of Tony (“blood on this hands”) Blair to account. Cannot see that, not just putting anyone in danger, many, many people died due to Blair’s lies. Perhaps if we had the likes Snowden or Rusbridger at that time, they might have confirmed that the case for war had been sexed up? So, far from being “traitors”, they would would have done us all a public service. Then again, are there not some that might call the likes of David Kelly a “Disgusting individuals”?

          Like

    • 85
      A Time Vortex descends on Geedo towers says:

      At nine hours and fifty nine minutes measured on the Greenwich scale of mean time, on the third day of January in the year two thousand and fourteen. Guido moved to the dark side.

      Like

    • 88
      JFK says:

      A mere pardon will not be enough. There is every chance that the ‘rogue elements’ in the military-industrial complex would have him killed if he returned to America.

      Like

    • 182
      ancientpopeye says:

      The fact that he sought and was given “sanctuary” in Russia of all places might give you a clue as to who really benefited from his disclosures.

      Like

    • 188
      Weygand says:

      Why could he not have exposed the illegal activity without revealing so much information and in such an uncontrolled fashion that he seems likely to have jeopardised the lives and of others?

      Like

    • 191
      PJ Harvey says:

      And a big thanks to Geedo for allowing me to produce his blog today.

      Like

  2. 2
    i'VE HEARD IT ALL NOW says:

    Whatever right-minded people think of the Guardian, it was disgraceful to hear Rusbridger’s patriotism questioned by a Select Committee over him publishing the Snowden story.

    Too much Sherry Geedo?

    Don’t be so naïve.

    Like

    • 31
      Ippikin says:

      I actually think that for once, Guido has kept off the sherry.

      Like

      • 60
        Anonymous says:

        Agree, he only forgot:

        The actions of the NSA (aided and abetted by GCHQ) has enabled foreign governments and terrorists access to our communications – it would not take much for Guido to follow there example and have a quick look on the internet, acquire the tools need to listen in on our MP’s just think of the scandals he could uncover :-)

        Why did GCHQ transfer TOP secret documents offshore with out ensuring they would be looked after properly if they think the Rusbridger needs to be prosecuted maybe they should start with themselves first :-)

        Like

      • 61
        Silk Cut says:

        Agree. Snowden has done just as Guido points out revealing the illegal activities of the NSA and GCHQ. These agencies have a legal framework that lets them access information as part of sanctioned operations. What they have done is simply ignore this and created a massive data collection system that they run as they see fit. Any libertarian should welcome this exposure regardless of how it has come out. Snowden it is clear is not trying to expose agents nor undermine legitimate counter terrorist operations but to stop the rot before it’s too late.

        Like

        • 129
          FFS says:

          In that case why did he give the information to the Guardian newspaper? Why not give it to say, Ron Paul, given that Ron Paul is somewhat anti-establishment?

          Seems to me he is a bit of an attention seeker, rather like that rapey Swedish chap with the fancy hair-do. I’m not convinced either of these guys have my best interests at heart. Consequently I trust them and their information no more than the government.

          Like

    • 73
      LouiseMenschFan says:

      This blog reported technical problems yesterday.

      One can only suspect someone has hacked into it and posted the above.

      Or is one of the team writing from Denver?

      Like

  3. 4
    Wise words says:

    Well done, Guido.

    Like

    • 66
      Mr Annonymous says:

      Not that anyone seems to care about figures in this emotive issue, but the explosion in data in the last 10-20 years means that the proportion of society’s data that is held by the intelligence services has almost certainly plummeted over recent years.

      Like

      • 136
        Hoss Cartwright says:

        We pay the fucking security services to gather information on our enemies. When they are tasked by government to gather information on us, they have become our enemies.

        Like

  4. 5
    PeckhamPete says:

    Well said!

    Like

  5. 6
    Lord Stansted says:

    “When someone reveals that government officials have routinely and deliberately broken the law,”

    But he didn’t. Breaking the law can only be determined by the Courts. If there is a case to be answered then those responsible should be charged. In the US as in the UK, the decision to bring charges does not lie with the Government.

    Like

    • 10
      Hung Fat says:

      But you know and I know charges will never be brought.

      Like

    • 110
      Cicero says:

      The law is broken at the time it is broken.

      What can only be determined by the courts in accordance with due process is whether there is sufficient admissible evidence to the required standard of proof of the specific guilt of a specific accused individual in the absence of lawful excuse for their conduct.

      There is a presumption during a trial that the accused is innocent until proven guilty but one can’t take that proposiiton so far as to say there is a presumption that no crime has taken place.

      Like

      • 165
        Spartacus says:

        you may be right, but b-liar changed it so you had to prove your innocence.

        Like

        • 180
          Cicero says:

          For some offences, yes.

          The one which seems to cause particular problems to the people accused of it, and the courts that hear such cases, I feel, are the laws relating to replies to the government. A commmon issue is where a request is made by the police to the owener for information relating to the identity of a driver of a vehicle. An amazing number of people are prosecuted for not replying who say they did reply but the police claim they didn’t.

          Similar issues relate to Companies House, where they fine people for late replies/filings: the public say they replied or replied in time, the government ignores them and fines them anyway.

          Like

        • 181
          Cicero says:

          For some offences, yes.

          The one which seems to cause particular problems to the people accused of it, and the courts that hear such cases, I feel, are the laws relating to replies to the government. A commmon issue is where a request is made by the police to the owener for information relating to the identity of an alleged user of a vehicle. An amazing number of people are prosecuted for not replying who say they did reply but the police claim they didn’t.

          Similar issues relate to Companies House, where they fine people for late replies/filings: the public say they replied or replied in time, the government ignores them and fines them anyway.

          Like

      • 187
        Really ? says:

        Not so,one of the purposes of a court case notwithstanding guilt or innocence is to prove beyond reasonable doubt that a crime has indeed occurred . The case does not proceed on the presumption that it has.

        Like

  6. 7
    30 years later says:

    New revelations released under the 30 year rule. Maggie was preparing to issue state of emergency during miners’ strike, and the Soviets were giving donations to the NUM!!

    News
    Politics
    Margaret Thatcher

    Thatcher had secret plan to use army at height of miners’ strike
    Papers released to the National Archives reveal that in 1984 the prime minister made preparations to use troops to move coal to power stations

    Share 881
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    inShare8
    Email

    Alan Travis, home affairs editor
    The Guardian, Friday 3 January 2014

    1984 Miners’ Strike at Orgreave
    Ranks of police face the picket line at Orgreave Coking Plant near Rotherham in June 1984. Photograph: Pa/PA Archive/Press Association Images

    Margaret Thatcher was secretly preparing to use troops and declare a state of emergency at the height of the miners’ strike – out of fear Britain was going to run out of food and grind to a halt, government papers released today reveal.

    The 1984 cabinet papers, released to the National Archives, show that Thatcher asked for contingency plans to be drawn up to use troops to move coal stocks, despite official government policy ruling out the use of service personnel. A plan involving the use of 4,500 service drivers and 1,650 tipper lorries was considered capable of moving 100 kilotonnes a day of coal to the power stations.

    Margaret Thatcher demanded urgent action after being warned by MI5 in 1984 that the Soviet Union was likely to provide funds for the miners’ union during the year-long miners’ strike, government papers released today reveal.

    In response to reading the “Box 500 report” – the colloquial term for MI5 briefing notes – on 1 November 1984, the prime minister insisted her cabinet secretary, Sir Robert Armstrong, “consider urgently whether there is any way these developments could be prevented, whether by denunciation or otherwise”. Armstrong responded that there was little the government could do and that their only hope was for a representative of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) to be detected entering the country “with a suitcase full of banknotes”.

    Like

    • 112
      Cold War says:

      I recall that many people ‘knew’ about the Soviet slush funds at the time.

      Why do you think there was so much concern about the enemy within?

      Like

    • 206
      Thatcher's Iron Stiletto says:

      Don’t ever play poker with me unless you’re prepared to be beaten.

      Like

  7. 8
    30 years later says:

    New revelations released under the 30 year rule. Maggie was preparing to issue state of emergency during miners’ strike, and the Soviets were giving donations to the NUM!!

    Margaret Thatcher was secretly preparing to use troops and declare a state of emergency at the height of the miners’ strike – out of fear Britain was going to run out of food and grind to a halt, government papers released today reveal.

    Margaret Thatcher demanded urgent action after being warned by MI5 in 1984 that the Soviet Union was likely to provide funds for the miners’ union during the year-long miners’ strike, government papers released today reveal.

    Like

    • 13
      And the Pope is Catholic says:

      And? She would have been negligent in her duty to the UK if she had not have so done.

      Like

      • 168
        sailor says:

        Quite right, but lots of people cannot see past the headline.

        Like

        • 222
          Anonymous says:

          Lucky for the Thatcher, most voters did not read-between-the-lines or were not give the full picture. Then again, following Thatcher’s advice, some could not-care-less about events outside there front door.

          Like

    • 30
      Bill d'Sarse says:

      Fail to plan, plan to fail.

      Like

      • 33
        Ippikin says:

        Looking at the Len-run Unite of today, methinks bugger all has changed!

        Like

        • 41
          Hung Fat says:

          Indeed. The unions are on the brink of ruining the country, aren’t they?

          Not something the banksters would do.

          Like

          • The Critic says:

            Both ably assisted by politicians of all persuasions

            Like

          • Anonymous says:

            If you can’t grasp that both can be toxic to the nation, you’re as dim and sheeplike are your use of the word “banksters” suggests.

            Banks loaned irresponsibly, but those who didn’t pay off their debts are more than a little responsible.

            They should never have been bailed out, and if we had an FSA that was fit for purpose, it would never have got as far as it did.

            However, use of the word “bankster” is neither big nor clever – it simply tells us all that you’re happy to denigrate thousands of hard working people due to the disgraceful behaviour of a minority of their colleagues in the same way as an ignorant thug might claim that all adherents to a particular faith want to blow everyone up, or that all people of a certain skin tone are muggers and drug dealers.

            Maybe next time you should engage your brain before speaking.

            Like

          • Anonymous says:

            But the use of the word Banksters seems more fitting now then ever. In turn, your dislike of the word seems to be that of a cheer-leader for the top people at the banks – the very folks to blame for all the problems. For the disgraceful actions of many top Banksters does little but denigrate all the thousands of hard working bank staff in the eyes of the public. So is not Banksters a telling and useful word?

            Like

    • 176
      Jack Ketch says:

      Governments and leaders prepare contingency plans–that is their job. Undoubtedly Comrades Blair, Campbell et al have arranged for a jet to be ready to take them to Uzbekistan should the Chilcott enquiry ever be published.

      Like

      • 231
        Anonymous says:

        Then again, if the UK can prevent DK highlighting the se+ed up case for war, then the US should have few problems halting the Chilcott enquiry.

        Like

  8. 9
    indeed says:

    Well said and though Guido wouldn’t admit it, I expect he’s rather jealous/approving of what the Guardian have done.

    Like

  9. 11
    Blatant discrimination against Left Handers from Posh Lucy says:

    I am looking for a right hand man or woman in Westminster.

    http://www.w4mpjobs.org/JobDetails.aspx?jobid=43550

    Like

    • 48
      Positive Left Discrimination says:

      Like

    • 166
      Every right-thinking Englishman says:

      Men or women only?
      BIGOT!

      What about bigender, trigender, pangender or other members of the pangender community?

      Like

      • 167
        Every right-thinking Englishman says:

        I apologise to readers

        I meant to write other members of the *queergender* community

        Like

  10. 12
    Tristram Hunt says:

    STAND BY! David Cameron is about to have a MEETING to sort out the weather and floods.

    Like

    • 56
      Psyche the Dog says:

      Don’t worry it is not happening, nice and sunny in Rotherham, I hope the Thames is not rising because of rainfall and coupled with a spring tide.

      Like

    • 118
      No 10 says:

      The meeting has been delayed, pending the arrival of Professor Turkey and his crack team of weather experts from their latest mission to the North Pole.

      Like

      • 132
        Non taxable pikey says:

        The BBC is loving this. One question though, where have all the expensive totty reporters gone to? Every report has a male reporter.

        Like

      • 171
        Butch Dave says:

        Professor Turkey, please note that the invitation to your team colleagues is a “plus 77 million”

        Like

  11. 15
    Ollie says:

    Has your website been hacked??

    Like

    • 25
      Anonymous says:

      That is exactly what I thought.

      Like

    • 28
      Anonymous says:

      Exactly what I was thinking.

      Like

    • 65
      Psyche the Dog says:

      Of course it has, they know who is posting here and where they are posting from, they have tapped all the communication cables but whether they do anything or not probably depends on key phrases or words they look for, all done automatically, the wonders of the digital age.

      Like

    • 68
      Anonymous says:

      Can you not grasp that people don’t have to sign up to all the criteria of a particular newspaper or ideology?

      Learn to think for yourself. Guido is bang on, and I seldom agree with the Guardian.

      If you had any regard for liberty and the rights of the individual, you’d get this. What part of them having got it right here don’t you grasp, or are you one of those people who thinks that we should sacrifice our freedoms in the name of security?

      Go on then, reply by telling me that if I have nothing to hide I have nothing to fear.

      Like

      • 124
        Anonymous says:

        You’re wasting your breath on the die hard party tribalists on here. They have a cast iron rigid ideological mindset, and nothing will change it.

        The Party is all with these clowns, country be damned.

        Like

      • 216
        To paraphrase says:

        Those who would sacrifice freedom for security deserve neither freedom nor security.

        Like

  12. 16
    wrthomson says:

    Alongside Manning deserves a Nobel Peace prize. Makes Camoron look even more moronic.

    Like

  13. 17
    'Chillaxed' Dave says:

    Looks like I can’t fool any of the people, any of the time! Just as well I’m minted :)

    Like

  14. 18
    Anonymous says:

    People are generally confused about what Snowden revealed and what it means to them personally. They just have some vague notion that someone, somewhere can read their email.

    The follow-on researchers are digging deeper and what they are starting to find is that the conspiracy theorists wet dream is reality.

    For anyone of a technical bent, this presentation from the Chaos Communication Congress earlier this week will have you unplugging all your devices.

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/12/31/nsa_weapons_catalogue_promises_pwnage_at_the_speed_of_light/

    Chances are, they know when Guido farts before he does.

    Like

  15. 19
    The British media are cunts says:

    Obama deserves a second Nobel prize, the man is a legend.

    Like

  16. 20
    Vaz welcomes new arrivals says:

    I’m shocked at what Keith Vaz has done. This is not the way to welcome Romanians into Britain.

    Like

  17. 21
    Lord Haw haw's mum says:

    We owe a great debt to Manning and Snowden on exposing our crooked governments at the risk of THEIR liberty

    Like

    • 144
      Bollox BC says:

      It’s such a good job that we’ve got wonderful men like Asshatange and Rustyberger to take all the credit why the poor sods that took all the risks end up in jail.

      Like

  18. 22
    Village Idiot says:

    …..Off topic,but,topical…..”How many of the 11,000 (approx.) people who are employed by the Environment Agency,actually build defences,clear ditches,install land drainage,because it seems they have plenty of systems to tell you,after prolonged rain,that there will be flooding in places,and,by looking at the tide timetables,they can tell you when there is a high spring tide,and tell you!
    …..Action,not fancy offices and plush 4X4′s….Get out there with a spade and clear the culverts etc!!!!

    Like

    • 82
      Psyche the Dog says:

      They are not helped by governments granting building permissons on land that for nearly 160 years has been notified on maps OS first series (1855) “land likely to flood” also due to the decline to virtually nothing of the mining industry the water table is rising.

      Like

  19. 26
    Nearly lost my breakfast ... says:

    Did you leave your keyboard unattended, Guido?

    Hero? You have to be joking!

    How many Lockerbie’s, 911′s or 7/7′s does it take for you to get the point that there are people hell-bent on destroying freedom and democracy in pursuit of there own twisted perversions.

    The heroes are those who persistently keep us all as safe as we can be. The people who do their duty to keep fanatics from destroying loved ones. It really is that simple.

    Of course Mr Snowden may or may not be a misguided fool or a spy. He fled with the help of the global standard-bearers of democracy and individual human rights – China and Russia – both countries that uphold press freedom and libertarian values?

    And of course, Guido, nobody seeking to uphold western values has lost their life as a result of the leaks – have they, Guido?

    Like

    • 45
      Do the maths says:

      About 40,000 people die in traffic accidents in America every year. More than 10,000 die from gun crime in the US each year too. That’s 50,000 “loved ones” destroyed every year in one country.

      But let’s spend billions on secret snooping networks, giant bureaucracies and make it all unaccountable too.

      Like

    • 81
      Get real says:

      Lockerbie was an inside job. Ditto 9/11. 7/7 was a genuine atrocity but, as we discovered last year, on the same day that 7/7 happened, Ed Miliband and Ed Balls were discussing Project Volvo to oust Blair. Nice people, eh?

      Like

    • 97
      Anonymous says:

      You’re a moron – Ben Franklin was bang on, but you’re probably too dim to even get the reference.

      You have no more idea as to whether the leaks have killed anyone than the rest of us, so stop parroting the MSM’s crap and get a life.

      The fact that he fled with the help of China and Russia paints the security services and their terminally thick cheerleaders like you even more poorly, if that’s possible.

      Like

      • 169
        Nearly lost my breakfast ... says:

        Really?

        Well, I can agree with much of Franklin’s ideas and I can enjoy his wit too. However in your case, as he said, we are all born ignorant but you must have worked really hard to remain stupid.

        Like

        • 207
          Anonymous says:

          Aww, bless, did the nasty moron comment hurt your ickle feelings?

          Given that your apparent unquestioning belief of whatever our political masters tell you to think, your use of that particular Ben Franklin quote is hilarious. Your lack of self awareness is so great that you are apparently completely oblivious to it.

          Well done you!

          Like

          • Nearly lost my breakfast ... says:

            Ha! It is always so amusing to read the rants of a fool – look in the mirror sunshine and you’ll see a horse’s arse. Keep your mouth shut though as what comes out of it ain’t so pretty.

            Like

    • 230
      Anonymous says:

      See that the Spin Docs are out in force tonight. For all they need do is mention the words, Lockerbie, 911 or 7/7, and any chance of fair/reasoned debate is shut down. How easy is for the power-that-be to hide there mistakes and keep us all in the dark?

      Like

  20. 27
    Ippikin says:

    Two sides to every story.

    Whilst Snowden has undoubtedly lifted the lid on some very dubious activity, he has also jeopardised the safely of various individuals in vulnerable locations and quite probably compromised national security.

    I fail to understand why his revelations could not have been better managed to achieve the former (lifting the lid) whilst protecting the national security issues by being bit more selective in releasing this stuff.

    Like

    • 83
      Banned says:

      Yes. Exactly. I also don’t trust the motivation of the Guardian for leaking documents. There are those at the Guardian who hate the West every bit as Bin Laden did.

      Like

    • 149
      Joe Public says:

      Over the months I have noticed many of the old brigade on this website have left, possibly due to the planned incursion of loony left trolls; and the deteriorating comments on the website that their activity always engenders.
      To this is added Guido’s seeming promotion of the Guardian and NYT one-sided agenda on Snowdon that they are currently prostituting in Washington for their own future safety.
      The only thing I can say is Guido could expect a friendly invite to join BBC on this matter and so get even more exposure, but at the risk of his own credibility.

      Like

      • 152
        Anonymous says:

        Well maybe the political landscape in the UK has finally started to change, and it’s no longer the moronic left-right-left-right incestuous battles between parties that are increasing irrelevant to ordinary people in the streets.

        Like

      • 160
        Ippikin says:

        You are right, but I believe the rot set in post The Sun On Sunday column.

        Like

      • 161
        Ippikin says:

        Of course we seem to lack the frequency of events such as Charlie Kennedy’s underpants and Mark Oaten’s culinary deviance.
        Whilst the bringing down of people like the unctious lair Huhne is very satisfying it simply doesn’t compare in salaciousness, so the missing missing members of the ‘family’ have probably gone to The Sport and the Sun.

        Like

  21. 34
    East India Company Wallah says:

    This country is as bad if not worse under RIPA just about every government department and local authority have the power to order electronic surveillance,at any one moment there are 400,000 legal taps in place
    I fully agree with the sentiments of your piece Guido,the government of the day has to take responsibility for the actions of the Executive
    So therefore it should keep it on a leash
    90 days detention anyone?

    Like

  22. 36
    Silent Majority says:

    Good liberal stuff. He exposed the sinister, snooping state that’s far bigger than anyone had imagined. Even ministers didn’t have a clue it was this extensive and we still don’t know how much this all costs either.

    Pardon? Yes and give him a big prize too.

    Like

  23. 39
    Fbi says:

    I have suspected my phone was hacked. I had adverts for the Royal Navy pop up on my computer on sites I use

    Watch out for Big Brother Watch.

    Like

  24. 40
    Genghiz the kahn says:

    BBC happy to report that Margaret Thatcher’s 1984 began with a visit from Jimmy Savile.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-25549596

    Like

    • 150
      Just Saying. says:

      Conveniently forgetting that the BBC protected Savile for over a decade in spite of knowing of his “strange” behaviour to children.
      Hypocrites? They don’t come any bigger than the BBC.

      Like

  25. 42
    Toasting Matilda says:

    2013 was the hottest year ever in Australia. Obviously it’s averages that matter, and you can’t derive anything from a single year, but nevertheless make of it what you will.

    Like

  26. 44
    suissebob says:

    All good libertarians would do the same, head to Moscow with a massive wad of state secrets, those Russians have been unfairly maligned, they are on the side of the people!

    Like

    • 98
      Mr Annonymous says:

      Agree – I wonder if Guido would feel the same if his office tea boy stole his financial records and published them online?

      My guess is that he would be p*ssed off.

      Like

    • 135
      Anonymous says:

      Well if you think western governments are on the side of their peoples, you are deluded.

      Hell, a number of western countries are even trying to replace their native populations. Nothing says love of your people than that!

      Like

  27. 46
    Mr Annonymous says:

    I couldn’t disagree more. You’ve lost the plot, Guido.

    Telling the world how the US and UK collects data for intelligence only serves to hand the advantage to our competitors and our enemies.

    When China and Russia keep out manoeuvring the UK in foreign affairs and consistently beat us to lucrative business contracts this will have real adverse implications for British people and I, for one, will not be thanking Mr Snowden.

    And that is before we’ve even considered how many criminals / terrorists will escape justice because of his revalations….

    Like

    • 128
      Technomist says:

      ‘beat us to lucrative business contracts’ ?

      Maybe 50 years ago when there was such a thing as ‘British industry’ that kind of rhetoric would have washed, but these days of multinationals, revolving door corruption and offshore tax havens few of us are fooled. The ‘us’ you refer to rarely benefits the normal people these agencies have been illegally wasting their time spying on.

      Like

    • 184
      Nearly lost my breakfast ... says:

      Yep, that’s right.

      Like

    • 214
      Sir Roger de Senseless says:

      I don’t believe that Snowdon’s revelations have anything to do with business one way or the other.

      If we made stuff that the rest of the world wanted to buy, at a price and a quality that they demanded, they’d buy it. It would, in fact, be hard to stop them.

      Like

  28. 50
    UK Public says:

    Completely agree.

    Like

  29. 51
    Daily Reminder of Traitor Dave's Failure says:

    How many Bulgaromas arrived yesterday Ducky Dave?

    What, you haven’t got a fucking clue? No change then.

    Like

  30. 55
    HEARDITALLSEENITALLBEFORE says:

    Rusbridger is following the in Guardian editorial traditions of Richard Willoughby Gott,remember him? a known traitor . Last seen spreading his poison at the Institute for the Study of the Americas at the University of London.

    Like

  31. 58
    Iain Duncan Smith says:

    He is a HERO. The spies and the Governments are the villains. Wake up!

    Like

  32. 62

    Glad you have said that Guido, given your original stance. It is a good example of revising one’s opinion in view of emerging data something we all have to do on occasion. Sometimes one has to make a call before all information is at hand. My call on this has been proven right. On the other hand, I supported the Conservative party for too long before I decided to make my first political move in my lifetime to UKIP. There is no shame in these changes of views and it demonstrates an open and engaged mind.

    Often these people are not very nice personally. We must leave this aside and look at the bigger picture.

    I came to the conclusion some time ago that when governments don’t want information to get out, they use “putting others in danger” as an excuse when really they could not give a fig for those they purport to protect.

    Clearly there are operational issues at time of war which must be kept confidential. But it is my opinion that there are more bodies buried in bogus secrecy than Stalin ever managed to exterminate.

    It is difficult to conceive of who could make such a decision without fear or favour as it involves so much trust. None of the current breed fit the bill – full stop.

    Like

    • 80
      Mr Annonymous says:

      A bunch of platitudes followed by a conclusion that is unrelated to your argument.

      Please explain why it is acceptable for Mr Snowden to self-appoint himself as the arbiter of what can be released to the public without putting people’s lives at risk?

      Like

      • 105
        Anonymous says:

        Because someone had to, and it happened to be him.

        No doubt you think it’s acceptable for millions of innocent people to be spied on in the name of security.

        Like

        • 115
          Mr Annonymous says:

          I’m sure you won’t mind if your GP’s secretary unilaterally decides to put all your medical information online? Or the classroom assistant in your child’s school decides to publish your Child’s school report for everyone to see? Whilst a whilstleblower in the inland revenue publishes all your income tax records for your colleagues to see?

          Like

        • 120
          Mr Annonymous says:

          P.s. ‘Because someone had to’ is a terrible argument. It literally justifies everything.

          For example:
          Q. ‘Sir, why did you punch your wife in the face?’
          A. ‘Well, someone had to’

          Like

          • Anonymous says:

            I refer you to SC’s comment just about yours at 11:43am.

            If you really believe what you just wrote, you are incredibly stupid, and I suggest you find yourself a dictionary and look up the meaning of the word “context”.

            Like

      • 121

        I would be delighted to engage you any day in a properly conducted argument but imagine you would not produce the goods anyway, given the tone of your approach.

        To your point, the rationale for this is set out in the initial piece by Guido. I am in broad agreement with its premises. Within the limited space here, I see no need to rehearse all this when you could have read it yourself.

        One thing I would add is that if this were to happen in war time, a real war, not the War on Terror type of spurious war, then Snowdon should have to expect to be shot. But we are not in such times.

        Often in life, you do not have a choice. The situation finds you. Say you came across evidence of a brutal murder which would bring the perpetrator to justice. You are morally obliged to report your discovery. You use the term self-appointed as if any such course of action is thereby wrong and it should be left for the government to discover everything. If that is so then you must be a very gullible type. Or perhaps you are being cynical?

        Maybe your RL occupation might explain your stance, if that can so be described? You would no doubt prefer government to carry on breaking the law on a massive scale without the public being the slightest aware.

        What do you do for a living?

        Like

        • 153
          Just Saying. says:

          One issue that should be considered before decision making is the timing of Snowdon’s leaks, his outlets, and his quick escape.
          That this should be done when a weak left wing Democrat President is in the White House, and the outlets are both left wing should be at least wondered at.

          Like

          • OK. But it depends upon whose decision you refer.

            My initial thought is that whilst you are correct in notional fact (interesting though that in itself is…), just about all governments are now in reality left wing. They are all far too big and wish to keep secret everything they do whilst, at the same time, masquerading as being open and informative.

            One could make a case that the likes of Snowden, bringing all this out into the open, actually may begin to increase demands for the state to roll back in the minds of folks who would never have considered that possibility before.

            This would certainly account for the huge popularity of Nigel Farage.

            Like

    • 211
      Jim says:

      Two wrongs never make a Right.
      What we are trying to defeat today is some of the worse slime Humanity has seen for a long time. You can always get your view across without having to kill anybody or not care if your information can be used to kill as you yourself are sooo important.

      Like

  33. 64
    MB. says:

    They will be calling Kim Philby et al whistleblowers next!

    Like

    • 163
      dickiebo says:

      Spot on, MB. But don’t, for gawd’s sake tell Guido. Seems like he’s been somewhere and allowed the sun to get to his head.

      Like

  34. 67
    Raptor says:

    “It was disgraceful to hear Rusbridger’s patriotism questioned…”

    Indeed. The Guardian is intensely patriotic about every country except this one — especially countries who are hostile to the United Kingdom.

    Like

  35. 69
    Irritable Sod says:

    “His leaks revealed that James Clapper Jr., the director of national intelligence, lied to Congress when testifying in March that the NSA.”

    Is there something missing from this bit? Doesn’t make sense.

    Like

  36. 71
    Whiffler says:

    Nice one Guido – bring out all the loonies.

    Or have you been cloned?

    Like

  37. 77
    Cato Street Conspirator says:

    Agree. The problem is that a lot of the people claiming to be ‘libertarians’ – particularly among posters on here – are actually right wing authoritarians who think being a libertarian is simply objecting to paying tax and hating foreigners.

    Like

    • 96
      Mr Annonymous says:

      You’re confusing libertarian with anarchist.

      Imagine a world in which the IT guy in an office published ever employee’s year-end apraisal online, or where the Finance Department intern decided to send all the company’s financial information to its competitors?

      Is that a liberal dream, or just f*cking stupid?

      Like

      • 122
        Cato Street Conspirator says:

        You’re confusing a private business with the State. If you can’t tell the difference…

        Like

      • 204
        not a libertarian says:

        you are the one who is confused, libertarianism stems out of anarchy and many libertarian thinkers advocate something very close to anarchy, at most a nightwatchman state. read a few books sometime plastic libertarians.

        Like

  38. 78
    Anonymous says:

    He’s a fucking traitor, hang the bastard.

    Like

    • 91
      +1 says:

      After he’s been tortured though. And not some water boarding jolly in North Africa or the Gulf.

      Like

    • 106
      Anonymous says:

      Just what we all need – another dickless keyboard warrior!

      Like

      • 109
        Plus Fours says:

        Or yet another anonymous Lefty without a sense of humour.

        Like

        • 209
          Anonymous says:

          Yep, because I disagree with you I must be a lefty – life isn’t as black and white as you and the rest of society’s dumbest perceive.

          The fact you still view things in terms of left and right (so out of date), tells me just what kind of person you are. Stupid, gullible, and a politician’s wet dream due to how easy to manipulate you are.

          Like

  39. 92
    wrinkled weasel says:

    And Russia, that bastion of free speech and democracy – and oh, no, they don’t snoop on people, ever, or kill them with pointed sticks and green tea – that last bastion of the free, Russia, has treated Snowdon as a hero. Or a bargaining chip.

    Get real, people. Tesco knows what you had for breakfast last week.

    Like

    • 104
      Mr Annonymous says:

      Agree – I think a large part of the problem is that people don’t realise how much data is held about them in general.

      How does Amazon know what products to suggest? How does Google Maps know where you are when you open the App? How do Sainsbury’s know what vouchers to send you? How does Google know which adverts to show you? How does LinkedIn know people that you may want to connect with?

      Because they have a sh*tl-load of frickin’ data about you!

      Like

  40. 99
    Barry Obama says:

    Michelle and I speak in Ebonics so da’ NSA don’t know what we is saying, an’ that. Sho’nuff, yessums.

    Like

  41. 103
    Anonymous says:

    Odd no one ever exposes the other side for doing worse things. Until that is done this guy s and remains a traitor.

    Like

  42. 113
    "M" says:

    Those with nothing to hide have nothing to fear.

    To find a needle in the haystack, it is first necessary to preserve the haystack.

    Provided data is used only to keep us same from terrorists, they can have it all.

    Meanwhile, Snowden has tipped off those who would fly planes into skyscrapers that we can read their communications in many ways they hadn’t appreciated. For that, he and those who aided and abetted him, will have to live with their consciences if the next atrocity is not detected in time.

    Like

    • 127
      Cato Street Conspirator says:

      ‘To find a needle in the haystack, it is first necessary to preserve the haystack.’

      And if there is no needle?

      Like

    • 130
      Up yours state stooge says:

      Complete bollox.

      You tossers won’t even control the borders.

      And you expect us to take seriously the ‘necessity’ of routine state spying on us like something out of the old DDR?

      More like it’s a case of western governments getting concerned at the growing anger of their native citizenry.

      Like

    • 179
      mraemiller says:

      “Those with nothing to hide have nothing to fear.” Francis Urqhart 1994

      Like

    • 210
      Anonymous says:

      Snowdon confirmed what millions of people already believed.

      If you’re naive enough to buy into the idea that the plane flyers you refer to weren’t already suspicious that such things were talking place, then you deserve nothing but ridicule and laughter.

      Like

  43. 117
    The Great Helmsman says:

    It doesn’t pay to speak out…

    North Korean army minister ‘executed with mortar round’ – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/northkorea/9630509/North-Korean-army-minister-executed-with-mortar-round.html

    Like

    • 155
      Just Saying says:

      It would seem that the OTT bluster coming from the new President of North Korea is to hide the fact that his armed forces are truly diminished due to his purges.
      Much like Stalin in his 1937-9 army purges, and then Hitler attacked him.

      Like

  44. 119
    The Great Helmsman says:

    It doesn’t pay to speak out…

    North Ko rean army minister ‘exe cuted with mo rtar round’ – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/northkorea/9630509/North-Korean-army-minister-executed-with-mortar-round.html

    Like

  45. 125
    Liberty is not a left-right issue says:

    When those who expose criminality are hounded as criminals, you are governed by criminals.

    Like

  46. 133
    Jay says:

    Guido – bang on the money there. Well done.

    Like

  47. 137
    FFS says:

    I’m sorry but there is a middle-ground here, and we really should be standing on it.

    In favour of Snowden:-

    1] It seems he did have information showing that intelligence agencies over-stepped their authority to collect information and knowing this is important

    Against:

    1] He really shouldn’t be giving that information out to newspapers straight away, especially foreign newspapers, that should have been a last resort. I can imagine Americans being particularly pissed off about that.

    So I conclude he did a public service, but did it in a way that maximised his hero status amongst some of the people for purely narcissistic reasons hence why he was so keen to have his name attached to it rather like Julian Assange. I conclude he is not a hero.

    It is up to Snowden to state his case in a court of law. I see no reason why he should not get a fair hearing in the US, the courts being proud of their independence. Once again, his willingness to evade a hearing suggests he is no hero. Even he knows he is on very dodgy ground and would have trouble defending himself.

    Finally, it is really high time that people realise that using the internet or indeed the public telephone system is not remotely “private”. If you want it to be truly private you would need to re-engineer the whole system from scratch. Since I work in telecoms I would be more than happy to see you all push for that, it will keep me in the money for a long time! ;-)

    Like

  48. 139
    Jimmy says:

    “Those on the right don’t as a rule put their trust in governments”

    But this one’s just so good?

    Like

  49. 141
    Hell for Leather says:

    This is well worth reading, whether one is pro- or anti-Snowden.

    “It’s time we all came to our senses about the NSA,” argues the oped:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/nsa-intelligence-gathering-programs-keep-us-safe/2014/01/02/0fd51b22-7173-11e3-8b3f-b1666705ca3b_story.html?tid=hpModule_ea22e378-b26e-11e2-bbf2-a6f9e9d79e19

    Like

    • 229
      Anonymous says:

      I don’t believe it! Some good in-depth debate and comments on this site tonight. (Well, apart from the reactionary hard-right)

      Like

  50. 145
    Nemesis says:

    Pardon Snowden!!! He’s a fucking traitor of the worst kind. Just how many secrets he’s passed to the Russians in order to stay there is anybody’s guess. A really dangerous, dirty, treacherous man. Some CIA agent should be sent to bump him off whenever possibe.

    Like

    • 226
      Anonymous says:

      Certainly nice to know that we live in the freedom-loving West. And that it was only the likes of the K-G-B that carried out cold-blooded murders for the state.

      Like

  51. 147
    Anonymous says:

    Complete pile of steaming bull-crap from Guido!

    Who the hell elected the self-publicist Snowdon to leak classified information which could endanger me and my family??

    Which bastions of freedom did the traitor scuttle off to??

    Snowdon is complete scum and showed be tried for treason and then punished

    Like

    • 225
      By the way says:

      Loads of posts, all with the same over-the-top the comments. Is the Department of Spin and Dis-information working overtime tonight? Seems to be a case of, Don’t ask questions, Don’t inform yourself – Just believe what we tell you?

      Like

  52. 151
    No Suckers Allowed says:

    Whistleblowers never get reported in the MSM unless they are useful idiots that further the agenda of insectualization and the NWO. Much of what Snowden revealed was already in the public arena from other whistleblowers years before but had not been picked up by the MSM. This is a soap opera that if you want to understand properly, you know what they say…follow the money. Next on the agenda is “commemoration” of WW1 without any analysis of who made vast profits from misery, not any discussion of the real underlying causes nor how to prevent such untold misery ever happening again. Dan Hannan eat your heart out!

    Like

  53. 157
    Potential Whistleblower. says:

    Calling Snowdon a “whistleblower” has made my job very difficult.
    Is this the reason he was so called?

    Like

  54. 158
    john in cheshire says:

    Not only should be pardoned for whatever the miscreants claim he has done, but he should be lauded and promoted as the exemplar of normal, civilised values that he clearly shows himself to be.

    Like

    • 162
      Nemesis says:

      I wonder if you’d still say that if some terrorist blows your family into bloody body parts because of his treacherous and dangerous secrets he has exposed.

      Like

      • 185
        Nearly lost my breakfast ... says:

        Correct.

        Like

      • 224
        By the way says:

        And how many families died in Iraq because ‘treacherous’ people – such weapons inspect David Kelly – could not tell the world that Tony and his mates sex-up case for war, or that there where no Weapon of Mass Distraction ? Are governments protecting us terror – or themselves from the truth?

        Like

  55. 175
    perdix says:

    Well done GCHQ. British innovation at its best!

    Like

  56. 177
    Confused.com says:

    Has this blog been hacked? Are these the thoughts of Murdoch or Guido?

    What’s the angle? I need a disco biscuit as it’s all to much to take in.

    Well done to whoever wrote it.

    Like

  57. 178
    mraemiller says:

    According to Sir David Pepper at the Iraq Inquiry our relationship with the NSA is “Based on the premise of getting as close as possible to complete sharing at all levels”.

    So whatever the wisdom of Snowden’s actions one thing is for sure – GCHQ cant wash their hands of whatever went on…

    Like

  58. 193
    sarchangelus says:

    Personally he didn’t do frigging anything.
    Surely the world knows any government agency can listen in or hack your phone whenever they want to.
    There’s really no such thing as illegal when it comes to spying. …

    All he did was state the obvious. ..

    Like

  59. 199
    Thank you, Ed Snowdon says:

    Well said, Guido, I totally agree with you.

    Like

  60. 203
    Anonymous says:

    Disillussioned
    If I remember correctly a few years ago some 17 million pounds was unaccounted for in the ministry defence budget. And it was assumed that the money was paid out to the uk jihadi’s who were caught in Afganistan.

    It was’nt paid out to them because the british government was confused to which side they were on it was to avoid bringing information out into the courts. While injured British soldiers can only dream about being given hundreds of thousands in compensation.

    And now snowden is over the next few months is going to divulge all the things these scrotes wanted to hush up. The f**ks paying millions to our enemies. This sceptred isle this edifice of shi*e

    Like

  61. 212
    Stopthewhininglefties says:

    Calling for Snowden to be pardoned is ludicrous. It is not the whistle blowing which is the issue here. It is the fact that he has released thousands of documents and threaten to release a whole load more. He and his compatriots at the NYT, Guardian, et al, may try to posit that they have been careful not to release anything which might put people who are working for our good and benefit in harm’s way. But the fact is that they do not, cannot, know what other people know. By releasing anything at all, they run the risk of giving information to those people who wish us in the West harm. Something which is innocuous to you or I could be very informative to another person in possession of additional information. The perverse irony here is that the Guardian for a long time ran a TV advertising campaign which demanded that we look at every angle of a situation before coming to a conclusion (in this case that a young man was mugging someone or not). Well practise what you preach Rushbridger.

    Snowden, Greenwald and others may put themselves on a pedestal of supreme moral indication. If they had only blown the whistle about what the security agencies were doing, they might be able to claim that pedestal as theirs, but by releasing ANY information to the public domain they made themselves traitors. What they propose is that we should allow anarchy to reign on the internet and damn the consequences; that terrorists and other criminals can play there without restraint or oversight.

    The supreme irony is that both Snowden and Greenwald are hiding away in countries which have little regard for democracy or freedom and where organised crime rules.

    Both these gentlemen, in my opinion, should spend the rest of their lives worrying about where they go next and knowing that if they ever come to the UK or go to the US or any of our allies, they will spend a very long time in prison for their troubles.

    Like

    • 223
      Anonymous says:

      The US of A – the land-of-the-free. (Just as long as don’t question the the powers-that-be in any way)

      Like

  62. 213
    ChrisL L says:

    Agreed. They should be prosecuted. The stupidity of their actions is unbelievable; they are risking our lives for the benefit of their beliefs. I think that a major problem is that security agencies cannot own up to any detailed damage for fear of revealing more. Press freedom is all well and good but they should also accept responsibility for endangering everyone. Common sense has to prevail.

    Like

  63. 217
    Osama the Nazarene says:

    The NSA systematically undermined the basic encryption systems of the internet…

    I would very much hope that the NSA (& GCHQ) can decrypt anything Al Quaeda & other bad guys and totalitarians can send across the interweb.

    What is unpardonable is that their own security is so lax that people like Snowden & Manning can get hold of such information.

    Like

  64. 232
    John says:

    You are entirely wrong about that bastard Snowdon. He has killed people. I used to enjoy reading your blog. You are now deleted forever from my favourites list. You are an arsehole of the highest order.

    Like

    • 233
      Anonymous says:

      Do you REALLY have access to evidence that Snowdon is a clear and present danger – or is all was this fake outrage aimed at shutting down any public debate? Never mind revisiting the Cold War, this tactic seems more about protecting people in high places. So would you call David K is a “bastard” (or hero) for attempting to highlight the actions of Tony and his mates?

      Happy Christmas – the (Cold) War is Over!

      Like


Media Reader

BBC: It Was Guido Wot Won It | MediaGuido
Nick Robinson’s Britain First Selfie | Metro
Endless Hypocrisy of Russell Brand | Speccie
Can Anyone Believe A Word Roy Greenslade Says? | TFA
Censorship Hashtag Campaigns Harm Free Speech | Guardian
Plebgate Trial Kicks Off | Sun
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Ralph Miliband on the English…

“The Englishman is a rabid nationalist. They are perhaps the most nationalist people in the world.”



Left on Left says:

The lefties are attacking because the panellist is a millionaire and lives in a London home worth upwards of two million. Someone had best tell them he’s called Ed Miliband.


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