Thursday, November 19, 2015

Blaming Snowden for Paris massacre: "How dumb do they think people are?"

Exploiting Emotions About Paris to Blame Snowden, Distract from Actual Culprits Who Empowered ISIS - The Intercept, Glenn Greenwald:

"Whistleblowers are always accused of helping America’s enemies... So it’s of course unsurprising that ever since Edward Snowden’s whistleblowing enabled newspapers around the world to report on secretly implemented programs of mass surveillance, he has been accused by 'officials' and their various media allies of Helping The Terrorists™....

"I was a bit surprised just by how quickly and blatantly — how shamelessly — some of them jumped to exploit the emotions prompted by the carnage in France to blame Snowden: doing so literally as the bodies still lay on the streets of Paris.... But now ... credible news sites are regurgitating the claim that the Paris Terrorists were enabled by Snowden leaks — based on no evidence or specific proof of any kind, needless to say, but just the unverified, obviously self-serving assertions of government officials....

"The implicit premise of this accusation is that The Terrorists didn’t know to avoid telephones or how to use effective encryption until Snowden came along and told them. Yet we’ve been warned for years and years before Snowden that The Terrorists are so diabolical and sophisticated that they engage in all sorts of complex techniques to evade electronic surveillance....

"Any terrorist capable of tying his own shoe — let alone carrying out a significant attack — has known for decades that speaking on open telephone and internet lines was to be avoided due to U.S. surveillance.... The Snowden revelations weren’t significant because they told The Terrorists their communications were being monitored; everyone — especially The Terrorists — has known that forever. The revelations were significant because they told the world that the NSA and its allies were collecting everyone else’s internet communications and activities.

""As but one of countless examples, here’s a USA Today article from February 2001 — more than 12 years before anyone knew the name 'Edward Snowden' — warning that al Qaeda was able to 'outfox law enforcement' by hiding its communications behind sophisticated internet encryption... The Christian Science Monitor similarly reported on February 1, 2001, that 'the head of the U.S. National Security Agency has publicly complained that al Qaeda’s sophisticated use of the internet and encryption techniques have defied Western eavesdropping attempts'.... All the way back in the mid-1990s, the Clinton administration exploited the fears prompted by Timothy McVeigh’s Oklahoma City attack to demand backdoor access to all internet communications.

"How dumb do they think people are to count on them forgetting all of this, and to believe now that The Terrorists only learned to avoid telephones and use encryption once Snowden came along? Ironically, the Snowden archive itself is full of documents from NSA and its British counterpart, GCHQ, expressing deep concern that they cannot penetrate the communications of Terrorists because of how sophisticated their surveillance-avoidance methods are (obviously, those documents pre-date Snowden’s public disclosures)....

"U.S officials are eager here to demonize far more than just Snowden. They want to demonize encryption generally as well as any companies that offer it. Indeed, as these media accounts show, they’ve been trying for two decades to equate the use of encryption — anything that keeps them out of people’s private online communications — with aiding and abetting The Terrorists. It’s not just Snowden but also their own long-time Surveillance State partners — particular Apple and Google — who are now being depicted as Terrorist Lovers for enabling people to have privacy on the internet through encryption products."

"Then there’s the blame-shifting benefit. For most major terror attacks, the perpetrators were either known to Western security agencies or they had ample reason to watch them. All three perpetrators of the Charlie Hebdo massacre “were known to French authorities,” as was the thwarted train attacker in July and at least one of the Paris attackers. These agencies receive billions and billions of dollars every year and radical powers, all in the name of surveilling Bad People and stopping attacks.

"So when they fail in their ostensible duty, and people die because of that failure, it’s a natural instinct to blame others: Don’t look to us; it’s Snowden’s fault, or the fault of Apple, or the fault of journalists, or the fault of encryption designers, or anyone’s fault other than ours. If you’re a security agency after a successful Terror attack, you want everyone looking elsewhere, finding all sorts of culprits other than those responsible for stopping such attacks."

Read more: https://theintercept.com/2015/11/15/exploiting-emotions-about-paris-to-blame-snowden-distract-from-actual-culprits-who-empowered-isis/
'via Blog this'

No comments:

Post a Comment