Edward Snowden

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This summer, the fifth anniversary of Edward Snowden’s revelations about NSA surveillance passed quietly, adrift on a tide of news that now daily sweeps the ground from under our feet. It has been a long five years, and not a period marked by increased understanding, transparency, or control of our personal data. In these years, we’ve learned much more about how Big Tech was not only sharing data with the NSA but collecting vast troves of information about us for its own purposes. And we’ve started to see the strategic ends to which Big Data can be put. In that sense, we’re only beginning to comprehend the full significance of Snowden’s disclosures.…  Seguir leyendo »

The last time I saw Edward Snowden, while on assignment for The Financial Times in September, he was not holding out any great hope that President Obama would show the kind of clemency to him that he just granted to Chelsea Manning.

Of course, he would prefer to return home to the United States: It was never his intention to be stranded in Russia, his passport revoked. Although a petition to pardon Mr. Snowden has now attracted more than a million supporters, he is a realist.

I had not met Mr. Snowden in June 2013 when I was the editor of The Guardian and we broke the first revelations from the National Security Agency documents he leaked revealing the scope of modern state surveillance.…  Seguir leyendo »

This is an article from Turning Points, a magazine that explores what critical moments from this year might mean for the year ahead.

Edward J. Snowden, a former C.I.A. employee and National Security Agency contractor, leaked top-secret documents in 2013 that exposed the extent of the N.S.A.’s classified cybersecurity program, revealing that the agency was seizing the private communications records of hundreds of millions of people around the world. Mr. Snowden, who is living in asylum in Russia, is wanted in the United States on several charges, including two under the United States Espionage Act of 1917.

Speaking by video link during the Athens Democracy Forum in Greece, convened by The New York Times in September, Mr.…  Seguir leyendo »

Se acuerdan de aquel magnífico filme alemán, La vida de los otros? Teníamos el corazón en un puño y la indignación a flor de piel ante aquellos espías de la Alemania Oriental que lo controlaban todo. No sólo las conversaciones, sino hasta los actos más íntimos, para que nada quedara fuera del control del Estado. Era la profecía de George Orwell que predijo en un libro, 1984, y que evocaba los países comunistas del este de Europa. El Gran Hermano que lo controla todo, que lo sabe todo de todos, que maneja la información privilegiada hasta imbuir la cobardía absoluta.…  Seguir leyendo »

The days leading up to last Friday’s release of director Oliver Stone’s Snowden looked like one long movie trailer.

The American Civil Liberties Union and other human-right groups on Wednesday announced a campaign to win a presidential pardon for Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contract employee who leaked hundreds of thousands of its highly classified documents to journalists. The next day, the House Intelligence Committee released a bipartisan letter to the president that advised him against any pardon and claimed Snowden “caused tremendous damage to national security.”

The week before, Stone had invited me to a private screening of his movie in Washington.…  Seguir leyendo »

Edward J. Snowden, the American who has probably left the biggest mark on public policy debates during the Obama years, is today an outlaw. Mr. Snowden, a former National Security Agency contractor who disclosed to journalists secret documents detailing the United States’ mass surveillance programs, faces potential espionage charges, even though the president has acknowledged the important public debate his revelations provoked.

Mr. Snowden’s whistle-blowing prompted reactions across the government. Courts found the government wrong to use Section 215 of the Patriot Act to justify mass phone data collection. Congress replaced that law with the USA Freedom Act, improving transparency about government surveillance and limiting government power to collect certain records.…  Seguir leyendo »

Edward Snowden es el estadounidense que probablemente haya dejado la huella más profunda en el debate político durante los años del gobierno de Obama.

Snowden, quien dejó la Agencia Nacional de Seguridad tras entregar documentos secretos que detallaban los programas de vigilancia masiva de Estados Unidos a varios periodistas, se enfrenta a una acusación por espionaje aunque el propio presidente ha reconocido que sus revelaciones desataron un debate público importante.

Las filtraciones de Snowden provocaron reacciones en todos los niveles del gobierno. La justicia decidió que el gobierno no debía utilizar la Patriot Act para justificar la recopilación masiva de datos.…  Seguir leyendo »

In 2013, a dishonest man with a fabricated record in government service made a decision that did more damage to U.S. national security than any other individual in our nation’s history. His subsequent actions deeply betrayed the American people. They harmed our relationships around the world, endangered American soldiers in warzones, and reduced our allies’ collective ability to prevent terrorist attacks. That man’s name is Edward Snowden.

This week, the House Intelligence Committee released a report, two years in the making, which exposed the truth about Mr. Snowden’s character, motivations and actions. As the Chairman of the National Security Agency and Cybersecurity Subcommittee, I have worked hard to make as much information public as possible about Mr.…  Seguir leyendo »

Two years ago today, three journalists and I worked nervously in a Hong Kong hotel room, waiting to see how the world would react to the revelation that the National Security Agency had been making records of nearly every phone call in the United States. In the days that followed, those journalists and others published documents revealing that democratic governments had been monitoring the private activities of ordinary citizens who had done nothing wrong.

Within days, the United States government responded by bringing charges against me under World War I-era espionage laws. The journalists were advised by lawyers that they risked arrest or subpoena if they returned to the United States.…  Seguir leyendo »

Hace unos días fue otorgado el Premio Pulitzer a The Washington Post y The Guardianpor la publicación de material sobre el espionaje estadounidense de telecomunicaciones que entregara a esos diarios Edward Snowden, exanalista de la Agencia Nacional de Seguridad (NSA). De todas las categorías del Pulitzer, era la más preciada, aquella que recompensa los servicios prestados a la sociedad. En su refugio ruso, Snowden, sobre quien pesa acusación de espionaje y traición, pudo haber entendido la noticia como descargo que le hacían: aunque fuese indirectamente, aquel premio reconocía los servicios prestados por él a su país y al mundo.

Tres días después de la ceremonia del Pulitzer, el presidente Vladímir Putin ofreció su comparecencia televisiva anual.…  Seguir leyendo »

Ten years ago today, a man emerged from prison to be greeted by a crowd of his supporters embracing him with carnations and a crowd of his enemies drawing their fingers across their throats. He had served 18 years in prison, 11 of them in solitary confinement.

The man was Mordechai Vanunu, the whistleblower who, in 1986, came to Britain to tell the Sunday Times the story of the then secret nuclear weapons facility at Dimona in Israel. Out alone in London and disillusioned with the length of time the story seemed to be taking to reach publication, he was lured by a woman from Mossad to Italy.…  Seguir leyendo »

Edward Snowden’s removal of thousands, perhaps millions, of highly classified documents from the National Security Agency and his decision to turn them over to journalists for publication ignited a fierce debate about who and what he is. On one side are those who hail Snowden as a whistleblower, someone who, as the New York Times editorialized, “has done his country a great service.” Others regard him as a criminal or traitor. Neither this debate nor the public discussion of government secrecy and surveillance policies that Snowden’s actions sparked will be resolved anytime soon.

Snowden, meanwhile, says that his “mission’s already accomplished,” that he has given Americans a “say in how they are governed” and that he has succeeded in exposing the workings of what he has called the unbridled “surveillance state.”

But one must ask: Are Snowden’s actions in consonance with his words?…  Seguir leyendo »

Edward Snowden, the discloser of U.S. National Security Agency secrets, now has the New York Times and some other U.S. voices urging he be allowed to return to his home country. But will he be welcome? I once found myself in the same situation as he, and know something about the dilemma he faces.

I too was brought up in the post-Nurenberg belief that loyalty to one’s principles outranked loyalty to one’s nation-tribe. Wrongs and evils should be exposed, regardless. But somewhere along the line things changed. Our democratic nation-tribes were incapable of doing wrong; it was “the others” who were evil.…  Seguir leyendo »

Las sobrecogedoras noticias sobre el espionaje internacional americano han dado la vuelta al mundo. Y no podía ser menos. De que existía pesquisa secreta, vigilancia oculta, averiguación sigilosa, investigación clandestina por parte de los países más poderosos, no cabía la menor duda. Pero quizás muchos no imaginaban, no imaginábamos, la magnitud y alcance del espionaje americano. Una vez más, la regla de que todo lo que puede pasar pasa se ha cumplido a pies juntillas. Si se puede intervenir el teléfono de cualquier persona, ¿por qué no se va a poder intervenir el móvil de Merkel, Maduro o incluso del mismo Obama?…  Seguir leyendo »

Almost every day, new information is released about how American and British intelligence agencies have monitored governments, embassies and the communications of whole societies. These revelations have provided us with a deep and terrifying insight into the uncontrolled power of intelligence agencies.

They show that data collection is no longer about targeted acquisition of information to avert threats, and it’s certainly not about the dangers of “international Islamist terrorism.” After all, which terrorist is going to call or text Chancellor Angela Merkel?

All of our current knowledge about this surveillance is thanks to one man, Edward J. Snowden. Without him, Ms.…  Seguir leyendo »

La revelación de los programas de vigilancia masiva por el antiguo empleado de la CIA Edward Snowden ha suscitado acaloradas acusaciones a los Gobiernos americano y británico de invadir la privacidad de los ciudadanos y traicionar la confianza de los aliados. Sin embargo, nada de esto es muy nuevo. Lo nuevo es que haya escándalo por actividades que la mayor parte de los Estados han desarrollado durante mucho tiempo.

En la sede central de la Agencia Nacional de Seguridad (NSA), a las afueras de Washington, trabajan 35.000 personas, la mayoría matemáticos, informáticos y lingüistas. ¿Puede alguien realmente pensar que se dedican a escuchar miles de millones de llamadas telefónicas o a leer miles de millones de mensajes de texto o correo electrónico?…  Seguir leyendo »

He profesado siempre una profunda admiración a George Orwell. Mi lectura de Homenaje a Cataluña en los años sesenta del siglo que dejamos atrás me descubrió a un autor cuyo firme compromiso con la justa causa republicana durante nuestra Guerra Civil no excluía el estricto respeto a la verdad: la denuncia del acoso y eliminación del POUM por los estalinistas y de la anarquía reinante en el campo de los defensores de la legalidad. Años después cayó en mis manos 1984 con su visión premonitoria del Gran Hermano. En nombre de una programada felicidad futura, el Poder se arrogaba el control absoluto de la vida de los ciudadanos mediante la sujeción de la sociedad entera a un programa global de espionaje: una quimera ideológica que el desarrollo ilimitado de las nuevas tecnologías ha convertido en una silenciosa e inadvertida realidad.…  Seguir leyendo »

Las recientes revelaciones sobre la Agencia Nacional de Seguridad (NSA) acerca de las escuchas a políticos destacados, como a la canciller Merkel y a líderes de otros países (aliados de EE.UU.), han causado una gran indignación y siguen presentes de modo prominente en los medios de comunicación en varios países. Sin duda, la cuestión ha dañado la reputación de EE.UU., sobre todo en un país como Alemania. No tanto en el Reino Unido, que colaboró con Washington, y menos en Francia, donde prevaleció un enfoque más cínico (“todo el mundo lo hace, la diferencia es que los estadounidenses lo hacen a mucha mayor escala”).…  Seguir leyendo »

The hemorrhaging leaks by Edward Snowden — possibly aided by countries that have exploited his stolen classified information — have left the U.S. government reeling. That many media reports are inaccurate compounds the problem.

Endlessly playing defense is a poor strategy. Former National Security Agency director Bobby Inman, whose tenure ran from 1977 to 1981, recently suggested that the agency ought to “take everything you think Snowden has and get it out yourself. . . . [B]ad news doesn’t get better with age.”

Political candidates often get this sort of advice — and successful ones take it. If candidates tell voters what is likely to be said — what the context is and why your opponent is smearing you or distorting the information — they can largely inoculate themselves against unfair attacks.…  Seguir leyendo »

El espionaje al que la Agencia Nacional de Seguridad estadounidense (NSA) ha sometido a los jefes de Estado de Brasil y México es de extrema gravedad. Nada, absolutamente nada, puede justificar la escucha de llamadas telefónicas y la injerencia en correos electrónicos de presidentes de dos países amigos. Son acciones que han vulnerado la seguridad de ambos Estados y principios absolutamente fundamentales del derecho internacional. Todavía más grave es que las autoridades de EE UU hayan intentado justificar esta agresión aduciendo que estaban “protegiendo” los intereses de Brasil y de otros países.

Al irse teniendo más información sobre las acciones de la NSA ha quedado claro que en Brasil no solo se espió a la presidenta Dilma Rousseff, sino a Petrobras, nuestra compañía petrolífera, lo cual pone en cuestión que el espionaje tuviera que ver con necesidades de seguridad nacional, una pretensión ya de por sí inaceptable.…  Seguir leyendo »