An example of UK’s non-free press. Journalists who participated in leaking pertinent information that a free society should be aware of–information pertaining to massive surveillance–might be punished for their work.
I suspect this is more bluff than anything else, but it’s hard to tell. The more cowardly journalists will get the message and keep their mouths shut.
In other news, American spy agencies get burned by Obama & lawmakers. Spy agencies allege that political leaders knew what they were up to; lawmakers & Obama deny it.
It’s interesting to see spy agencies and politicians battling it out publicly.
…U.S. intelligence officials said they were being blamed by the White House for conducting surveillance that was authorized under the law and utilized at the White House.
“People are furious,” said a senior intelligence official who would not be identified discussing classified information. “This is officially the White House cutting off the intelligence community.”
This is a good thing for the rest of us, of course.
NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander said in congressional testimony that reports of the US gathering information on tens of millions of phone calls in France and Spain were “completely false.”
Of course, Alexander and Clapper have both lied before, so who knows what’s true. I have to assume the possibility that everything they say is false and/or worded in such a way as to be factually true but in reality deceptive.
Some European parliamentarians and policymakers “may not have familiarity with exactly how their intelligence operations work,” Clapper said, adding that officials are often unaware of “everything” their own intelligence agencies do.
Above, explaining why European leaders are upset with the US if they do in fact engage in this sort of spying as well. This could very well be true. Perhaps leaders of European countries do not know the extent of their own surveillance state’s tentacles. These revelations could very well lead to reforms in many other countries that are complicit in their respective surveillance states.
Keith Alexander justifies the spying: “Contrasting a tally of more than 2,300 deaths overseas last year in terrorist attacks with the absence of any ‘mass casualty’ attack in the US since 9/11, he said, ‘That’s not by luck.’” Again, he’s vague, so who knows if he’s being honest here. Were there attacks that were really thwarted via metadata collection, NSA backdoors, weakened cryptography, or phone eavesdropping? I’m not convinced.