Edward Snowded should...

Edward Snowded should...

get a ticker-tape parade!
4
13%
get a ticker-tape parade!
4
13%
not be proscecuted.
0
No votes
not be proscecuted.
0
No votes
be offered asylum in any decent country.
3
10%
be offered asylum in any decent country.
3
10%
be ignored. Water under the bridge and all that.
3
10%
be ignored. Water under the bridge and all that.
3
10%
be brought to the USA, to answer for his crimes.
3
10%
be brought to the USA, to answer for his crimes.
3
10%
be killed, the fucking traitor, if need be abroad.
2
7%
be killed, the fucking traitor, if need be abroad.
2
7%
 
Total votes: 30
...

Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby ... » Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:17 am

Glaucon wrote:
Oor wrote:I hope anyone who advocates for Snowden's prosecution or calls him an enemy dies smeared in their own faeces in a state prison.


Hmmm, those people would appear to include Barak Obama, most democrats in washington, most republicans in washington. most right-wing pundits, most high-level people in government, the brass of the US army (probably the grunts too), Downingstreet 10, and, quite possibly, the majority of Americans, though there is some shifting going on.


I'm absolutely 100% A-OK with all of the above.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby TreatRothschild » Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:33 am

Glaucon wrote:
TreatRothschild wrote:American here: I think that the information that Snowden revealed was amazing. I think he did the right thing. I think, however, that immediately running to Russia to get to Cuba was a mistake.

The right way to do it, in my opinion, was to lawyer up with huge, big name lawyers. Then go public. He was a contractor, not an Army private. If he went really public, really quickly, then it's difficult to make him disappear. It is far easier to discredit him now than it would be under the auspices I just put forward.


I do not think any of that was an option for him, really. Maybe he was a contractor, but he signed stuff that legally obliged him to keep mum. And even if he hadn't, 'cloak and dagger' laws in the USA are pretty far-reaching. Even someone who has not agreed to anything can be legally obliged to keep stuff secret.

So, the minute he went informing/betraying his country (take your pick), he would have been arrested, hot-shot lawyers or no lawyers, and probably not have been allowed any more contact with the outside world (see Manning). So, he would have needed to hand over ALL the stuff he knew in one go to reporters (the way Manning did to Assange) and trust them to reveal the relevant stuff and not to reveal the stuff that should not be revealed. He also would not have been around to tell his story, do interviews, etc, which would most likely have lessened the impact/credibilty of what he had to say.


Difference between Manning and Snowden: Manning was an active duty soldier. There are entirely different laws. The commonality between the two, however, is that they both had access to things they should not have. It worked to our advantage, however.

Being locked up, not able to say or do anything, he would not have been able to say anything in his own defence, would not have been able to bring up new stuff directly contradicted the stuff brought up by the NSA and it's champions after the first revelations came out, the way he has been doing now. He might have had a few lawyers speaking for him, but that doesn't mean that much with the public. In the eyes of most people, lawyers will say anything. After all, they speak on behalf of murderers as well.


You think I'm talking about the local lawyer down the road. No. Folks like Alan Dershowitz and Ron Kube. BIG names.

Being 'free', he has the means to elaborate on his claims, to keep the story alive, instead of it getting burried on page 7 and then forgotten about as another tiny scandal. The very FACT that he ran gave the story greater impact by itself, turning it into a spy-novel sort of thing that everyone was bound to hear about. A bit of drama really helps to make people notice something. Also, being free probably has the added benefit of not being locked up for the better part of his time on earth.
I hope he stays free. Although, Russia may not be the Nirvana he thinks it is.

I guess that the 'PR-downside' to him doing a runner is this whole patriotic thing that you US-folks have a lot of. You root for team US. And if this guy is running from team US, embarrassing it, finding help from team Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, and so forth, he is likely to be viewed as the enemy according to the logic of blind patriotism. I suspect that, if he could have, he would have gone to a less obviously anti-American country (he went to (fairly neutral, politcally) Hong Kong, and then he applied for asylum in Iceland, then in a load of other countries, that really OUGHT to grant it, given their vaunted legal principles, but which won't, because their big buddy the US will get really pissed if they were to do so). So, he had few alternatives in that regard.
Europeans have this idea that all Americans are the same. Slobbering at the mouth right wing, jingoistic morons. Under educated. Unwilling to listen. Americans have this vision of Europeans as cheese-eating surrender monkeys who's pretensions are only matched by their hubris that they, and only they, have a true idea of what is going on in the world.

Both sides are wrong. I am an American who spent much of his adolescence in Europe. While Americans do tend to be loud and brash they are good people. While Europeans do tend to be full of themselves, they are good people, too. At their core, there is not much difference. The issue comes, as it always does in human interactions, we tend to talk past each other.

I honestly believe that if he had given over his info to reporters (assuming that it would have been possible to do that without one or other secret agency intervening, given a single interview) and then have let himself get arrested, the story would not have been heard by most people in the USA. Everything he said would have been contradicted, he would have been discreted and smeared as much as possible (however 'noble' it would have been for him to give himself up) and then that would have been the end of the story, which would have gone cold pretty quickly (well, some people would be following his trial, probably, but... it would no longer be major news). He would have been convicted, and after a short while, the public would have forgotten about him completely.


Umm, he did give this information to a reporter. He gave it to The Guardian.

That is the main reason why the people in charge in the US want him so badly. Simple 'revenge' may play a part as well, and the wish to set another example too. And it is simply a matter of prestige, as well. But if they get him, the story goes cold, they think.

The interesting thing is that, while Snowden is and is likely to be continued to seen as an enemy of the nation, the debate on the things he revealed does seem to be shifting. People like Rand Paul, at the moment the most notable Star in the GOP's firmament, as well as others from the 'tea-party'/libertarian wings of that party seem be very critical of the stuff the NSA has been up to. The instinct of most typical 'traditional' republicans seems to be to consider Snowden a liberal commie traitor, but the narrative on the right is confused. Of course, most federal-level politicians in the US were fine with all this stuff, before it was public. But they always fear the opinions of the voters back home, so... there seems to be movement. I don't think this is an issue that the majority of Americans care deeply about (much easier to have them split in neat right-and-left sides to argue over gun-control, gay marraige and Obamacare), but I do think that a significant part of the smarter Americans probably DO care about the sort of stuff the NSA has been doing and planning to do a lot more of. It may not have an immediate impact on the everyday party politics, but in the long run, this issue might become a really important one, politically.

My view, of course.
By the strictest letter of the law, Edward Snowden broke his oath to keep the secrets he was entrusted with secret from all enemies, foreign and domestic. I think what he did was heroic and absolutely necessary. A great many Americans I know think the same. On both sides of the aisle. My objection isn't that he ran, it's where he ran to. He gave up secrets then ran to one of the United States' biggest adversaries.

We can, and probably will, quibble about what would have happened had he stayed and "lawyered up". You have to get out of this mindset, though, that Americans are a monolithic entity that can only think and act as a group. There are over 300 million of us. Don't be blinded by the Rush Limbaughs and Howard Sterns. By Snooki and Miley Cyrus. We are a diverse people and we think very differently from each other. The loudest voices are just that: The loudest voices. They don't speak for all of us.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby Glaucon » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:32 pm

@ Treat:

Would these really big name lawyers have taken his case?
If they did, who would pay their bills? The Guardian?
Would Snowden have been tried in an open court? I very much doubt that one.

Did Snowden not try to get asylum in 'neutral countries' at first? Iceland is hardly an enemy of the USA. Neither is Hong Kong (which has a semi-autonomous western-oriented government), even if it falls under China, now. He applied to loads of 'normal' countries, but none of them seemed to want to consider his case, mostly 'hiding' behind the fact that he would need to BE in those countries to formally apply. The reason is obvious: these countries enjoy good relations with the US, which they would not want to endanger. Especially since the US made it clear from the outset that they were going to pressure any country into handing Snowden over. Much easier to pressure your less powerful friends than your more powerful foes.

If you really think that it is a good thing that the US (and the world, after all, people like ME are the primary target of the spying, not you, unless you live abroad or they made 'a mistake') knows what has been going on and what is in the works, then I do believe you should agree with Snowden's decision to flee the US to places that would not be likely to hand him over to the USA as soon as they asked them to.

And as for my imagine of Americans: trust me, I know Americans aren't all the same. Even Russians aren't. But what matters in international relations isn't what millions of different individuals think or do, but what the leadership of a country does, and, what the overall sentiment of it's population is, in so far as it may affect what the country itself does. Right now, even if there are many that are upset about the NSA stuff and glad that Snowden informed them about it, the USA leadership (from both parties, really) didn't denounce the NSA actions, opted to declare Snowden a traitor and has been trying to get their hands on him. And the American public (as well as the US media), at the moment, seem to be either too divided or too disinterested on the topic to force a change of mind from the politicians.

Suddenly, the NSA is all over the news, as well, giving warnings about immement terror attacks here and there and 'preventing' them. How many attacks are they claiming to have prevented now? The counter is at 37, I think. I am rather skeptical about it. Maybe it is true, but the only one telling us is the NSA (and no one else can know for sure, because it is all top secret). The timing is rather suspicious.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby TreatRothschild » Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:02 am

Glaucon wrote:@ Treat:

Would these really big name lawyers have taken his case?
If they did, who would pay their bills? The Guardian?
Would Snowden have been tried in an open court? I very much doubt that one.
Both of these lawyers are known for taking cases like this. Kube might not have participated because he tends to deal with race issues. Probably pro-bono too. It gets their faces in front of the camera.

aDid Snowden not try to get asylum in 'neutral countries' at first? Iceland is hardly an enemy of the USA. Neither is Hong Kong (which has a semi-autonomous western-oriented government), even if it falls under China, now. He applied to loads of 'normal' countries, but none of them seemed to want to consider his case, mostly 'hiding' behind the fact that he would need to BE in those countries to formally apply. The reason is obvious: these countries enjoy good relations with the US, which they would not want to endanger. Especially since the US made it clear from the outset that they were going to pressure any country into handing Snowden over. Much easier to pressure your less powerful friends than your more powerful foes.
You are correct, he did try Iceland first. I sit corrected. :) China controls Hong Kong, period. Yes, it's hands off as far as commerce goes but don't be a member of Fulan Gong.

If you really think that it is a good thing that the US (and the world, after all, people like ME are the primary target of the spying, not you, unless you live abroad or they made 'a mistake') knows what has been going on and what is in the works, then I do believe you should agree with Snowden's decision to flee the US to places that would not be likely to hand him over to the USA as soon as they asked them to.
That's just it, I don't think it's a good idea. I will admit that I am less upset about NSA monitoring your e-mail than I am about them monitoring mine. Monitoring foreign communication traffic is a time honored tradition of spies everywhere. In our country, they are supposed to need a warrant before they can monitor a citizen's traffic. The cries that it's all just metadata is a distraction. Using only metadata, you can find out a whole BUNCH of things. It's the whole idea of "loose lips sink ships": Little pieces of information from many different sources gives you a pretty complete picture.

And as for my imagine of Americans: trust me, I know Americans aren't all the same. Even Russians aren't. But what matters in international relations isn't what millions of different individuals think or do, but what the leadership of a country does, and, what the overall sentiment of it's population is, in so far as it may affect what the country itself does. Right now, even if there are many that are upset about the NSA stuff and glad that Snowden informed them about it, the USA leadership (from both parties, really) didn't denounce the NSA actions, opted to declare Snowden a traitor and has been trying to get their hands on him. And the American public (as well as the US media), at the moment, seem to be either too divided or too disinterested on the topic to force a change of mind from the politicians.
And yet, you are saying this now instead of before. Before you were clumping us all together. It's disinterest, in my opinion.

Suddenly, the NSA is all over the news, as well, giving warnings about immement terror attacks here and there and 'preventing' them. How many attacks are they claiming to have prevented now? The counter is at 37, I think. I am rather skeptical about it. Maybe it is true, but the only one telling us is the NSA (and no one else can know for sure, because it is all top secret). The timing is rather suspicious.
They have, undoubtedly, blocked some attacks and 37 over the course of 12 years isn't that outlandish. I, myself, hold to Franklin's saying: "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." I would rather have the attacks than live in fear. Fear is how you control puppets. I am not a puppet.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby Anarch Allegiere » Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:28 am

There's a reason why he didn't stay in the US, or in any european country. The guy isn't an idiot.

He'd most likely end up hanged or something, with media trying to claim he commited suicide.

Over here in Belgium the government is pretty liberal and comes across as a bunch of pansies, but not too long ago there was the whole (still unsolved) issue of the "Gang of Nijvel" and a lot of people too ended up suspiciously dead in their prison cells or simply disappearing.

If you're in the loop, like Snowden, of all the secret illegal stuff your government pulls you'd probably also not be unfamiliar with governments trying to be dirty in how they'd like to clean up their biggest mess.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby TreatRothschild » Thu Aug 29, 2013 11:52 am

There's nothing that says he won't be hanged or vanish from where he is, either. That's another conversation, though.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby Danika Stenvaag » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:15 pm

obviously snowden didn't profit from this and put his life in great danger by exposing the nsa's domestic spying. i hope he finds safe asylum and a new life.

sure other governments spy on their own people, Germany, Netherlands, uk, other countries in Europe do it. but the way nsa was doing it is amazingly inefficient. it's like going fishing and casting a wide area net hundreds of kilometers in size and bringing in a catch assortment you don't really need or want and losing sight of your target fish. what happens with this shotgun approach of spying on a large segment of the population - on everybody - is you get too much data and it's that much harder to process, sort out, analyze. it overwhelms the spy agencies and it paralyzes their ability to do anything with the data when needed most. even with sophisticated software to weed out the unnecessary info, it’s too broad, too much. what happened in the past is terrorist acts happened anyways, there was just too much data and it slipped past the analysts.

any field operative would tell you, a more efficient way is when there is clear and present danger or specific need to track someone, have a faster, more efficient way to get a warrant/court order, then turn on the tracking at a focused target. go after specific targets. observe, compile, and sanitize sources as needed. analysis is much more spotlighted. when you have your sigint dead centered, your comint and elint work efficiently. you can’t do that trying to pull a black bag job on the whole country. it’s ridiculous.

what's worrisome is the nsa was supposed to be a code breaking agency aimed at foreign intelligence. the cia is supposed to be doing foreign intelligence gathering and report to the director of national intelligence. the policy repeated over and over, proclaimed publicly, was there was no domestic spying (with the exception of the right to monitor domestic military bases via contractors which doesn't really count as domestic spying on civilians. military bases are not considered domestic ground).

in a nutshell, they lied. snowden revealed that lie. the government looks foolish putting all this energy into trying to get him back. numerous times, the usa has given asylum to foreign agents. what hypocrites we are.

what's sad is most people don't lead interesting lives. none of you here on the gorums would be of much interest to the nsa, no one cares what kind of toothpaste you buy (you prolly post it on facebook anyways). but in principle, you have the right to privacy. at the very least, our intelligence agencies should have come clean and posted notices saying you are being spied upon, much like when you call a bank and you get an automated message saying your call may be monitored for quality assurances. the public should have the right to decide if they want to be spied upon domestically or not.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby TreatRothschild » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:29 pm

The way they are doing it is inefficient, yes. But they have computer cycles to spare and mulching through all this text data is pretty basic stuff. It is pure and simple data mining.

This isn't part of the discussion of right or wrong, BTW, it is computing and search algorithms.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby Danika Stenvaag » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:39 pm

right, but as i posted above, and algorithms aside, when all is said and done and raw data has been harvested and mined, you still needed analysts to prioritize what matters and what doesn't. pulling a black bag job on the country versus a specific target can lead to gridlock even with data mining. this is why it takes years, sometimes decades to analyze the stream of data coming in from archeological sites or the study of stars and galaxies.
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Re: Edward Snowded should...

Postby TreatRothschild » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:43 pm

Danika Stenvaag wrote:right, but as i posted above, and algorithms aside, when all is said and done and raw data has been harvested and mined, you still needed analysts to prioritize what matters and what doesn't. pulling a black bag job on the country versus a specific target can lead to gridlock even with data mining. this is why it takes years, sometimes decades to analyze the stream of data coming in from archeological sites or the study of stars and galaxies.

But, we are looking for very specific things in the data, not trying to make some kind of sense of ancient artifacts or radiation data coming from Cygnus.
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