June 21, 2013

"Federal prosecutors have filed a sealed criminal complaint against Edward Snowden..."

"...  and the United States has asked Hong Kong to detain him on a provisional arrest warrant, according to U.S. officials. Snowden was charged with espionage, theft and conversion of government property...."

43 comments:

Palladian said...

It would be delicious if someone leaked the sealed criminal complaint.

Achilles said...

FIERCE MORAL URGENCY!

People who support Obama at this point need to look in the mirror, digest what they see, and go jump off a high rise building.

bagoh20 said...

"Don't step on Superman's cape"

Revenant said...

I hope the irony of charging Snowden with secret crimes wasn't completely lost on the people doing so.

Revenant said...

"Don't step on Superman's cape"

TUG on Superman's cape. :)

Lem said...

Good.

Mingus Jerry said...

For those of you keeping score at home that's 7 espionage prosecutions under President Obama and 3 for all the other presidents combined.

somefeller said...

He may be guilty of espionage. And he may have exposed unconstitutional actions by the US government. The two things aren't mutually exclusive. Time and litigation will tell.

edutcher said...

I wish them luck.

I'm betting the Red Chinese aren't letting him go.

PS Will the great ACLU defend him?

They don't seem to have been too keen on helping people abused by the Choom Gang.

edutcher said...

As noted earlier, Choom defines whistleblowing as treason, but is it espionage when all you're doing is exposing the illegal excesses of a corrupt Party?

bagoh20 said...

"TUG on Superman's cape. :)"

Thanks Rev. I wonder how many people heard me sing it wrong over the years. I bet it was far less than the number who just saw me type it wrong. I just multiplied my dumbass rating by 10X. WooHooo, it's Friday, and I'm dumb as a sack of hammers! I'll be dead by Monday.

Mogget said...

It will be interesting to see how the press reacts. Althouse thought they were about to turn on Obama a week or two ago. If so, this might be a plausible place to create some distance from their former lover...

Mark O said...

Will there be a prosecution of the criminal who leaked this story?

Nixon and Obama. Nixon seems a dream to me now. Or was that Michigan?

The Drill SGT said...

somefeller said...
He may be guilty of espionage. And he may have exposed unconstitutional actions by the US government. The two things aren't mutually exclusive. Time and litigation will tell.


Whether or not one thinks that his leaks of PRISM are worthy of charges, and the associated involvement of the NYT and the WaPo, the USG would be smart to emphasize the other leaks the he made after arriving in China.

a. the cell phone content source/method of the Russians. Clearly not a US privacy issue and it's exposure harmed the US and UK on several levels, technically, intel wise and diplomatically.

b. get him back on US soil and charge him with the Chinese IP address leaks. Doing so now won't help extradition :)

Revenant said...

I just multiplied my dumbass rating by 10X

Nah.

If we'd seen you spitting into the wind, then maybe.

MadisonMan said...

Interesting that they did this late on a Friday afternoon, as if they don't want anyone to hear about it.

Revenant said...

the cell phone content source/method of the Russians.

What are you referring to? That was a bit unclear.

The Drill SGT said...

Rev, from a Shanghai paper on Tuesday.

http://www.scmp.com/news/world/article/1263530/britains-spying-claims-outrage-russia-turkey-and-south-africa

Russia, Turkey and South Africa expressed outrage on Monday over revelations that Britain and the United States spied on foreign delegates at G20 meetings in London in 2009.

The Turkish government summoned Britain’s charge d’affaires to explain a newspaper report that London put Finance Minister Mehmet Simsek under surveillance during the talks.

Moscow meanwhile expressed concern that US spies had intercepted communications made by then president Dmitry Medvedev while he was in Britain, and some Russian lawmakers warned it could harm US-Russian ties.

British Prime Minister David Cameron said he would not comment on intelligence matters, but the revelations were likely to be embarrassing as he hosts G8 leaders at a summit in Northern Ireland.

The claims are based on documents leaked by former US spy Edward Snowden, who has already invoked the ire of Washington by lifting the lid last week on a massive US internet surveillance system.

According to The Guardian newspaper, Britain’s GCHQ electronic eavesdropping agency used “ground-breaking intelligence capabilities” to monitor communications at two G20 meetings in April and September 2009.

Delegates were allegedly tricked into using specially prepared internet cafes which allowed British spies to intercept and monitor email messages and phone calls through BlackBerry devices.

GCHQ was also able to track when delegates were contacting each other and the agency targeted certain officials, including the finance minister of NATO ally Turkey.


snip... too much text

In a live question-and-answer session on The Guardian’s website on Monday, he said there were more revelations to come about the US National Security Agency’s access to internet data.

The Drill SGT said...

So Rev,

You have sources and methods, targets and the involvement of the UK all given up to foreign papers in public and god knows what to the Chinese intel in private...

This leak isn't a US privacy issue...

The Russians don't got no stinking 4th amendment rights...

Mogget said...

I am quite sure everyone knew and expected the intel gathering. All of this outrage is manufactured. I'd be interested in knowing what the Russians and Chinese tried to plant during the surveillance.

Achilles said...

It is most important to forget that the USG has been collecting millions of Americans phone data, employed thousands of analysts to read your text and call transcripts, used the IRS and FBI to suppress political enemies, and imprisoned a US citizen to support an administration lie, and sold weapons to al quaeda which were subsequently used to raze our consulate.

Quickly chant traitor traitor traitor. Don't think. Support the great leader.

Hagar said...

I just finished Condoleezza's memoir, and she pretty much seems to have assumed that anything she said other than on U.S. Gov't "secure" lines was tapped and known to her hosts.

I still have not seen a convincing story that Snowden has revealed anything not known to those in the business.

That it is highly embarrassing to our government and others may be a good thing.

And in any case, while I may have trusted the previous administration not to use these programs in nefarious ways against their fellow citizens of this country, there is no way I will trust this administration on any level; thus neither those to come.

We have an Attorney General who has long said that he will decide which laws to enforce or not to enforce (Arizona), and who signed off on swearing out a false affidavit before a Federal judge (Rosen), has stonewalled about ATF wrongdoing (Fast & Furious); a DNI who publicly states that he tells the Congress just the "least untruthful" statements, an IRS that engages in blackmail and extortion and channels confidential tax information to other federal agencies and private political campaign organizations, and on and on.

The eavesdropping programs are not going away, but they must be open to public scrutiny all the way!

Revenant said...

You have sources and methods, targets and the involvement of the UK all given up to foreign papers in public

Oh, you were just talking about the G20 spying thing. Yeah, it has nothing to do with US privacy, but it has nothing to do with US security either. I find it impossible to feel outrage one way or the other. :)

and god knows what to the Chinese intel in private

So far as you or I know he hasn't given up any intel to the Chinese in private. I can't imagine why he would, unless he needed to do so to prevent the US from extraditing him.

Of course, if the US thought he had data he could sell to the Chinese that was good enough that they'd refuse extradition... that would make it kinda silly to ask for extradition in the first place.

Robert Cook said...

"As noted earlier, Choom defines whistleblowing as treason, but is it espionage when all you're doing is exposing the illegal excesses of a corrupt Party?"

This has nothing to do with parties, and everything to do with a corrupt government unmoored from its constitutional foundation and from the rule of law. This was going on in the last Republican administration and will be going on in the next Republican administration. Our political system is broken and a mere change in which person or party occupies the White House, absent any other substantial changes, will not change a damned thing.

Revenant said...

Robert, I can't think of an occasion I've had to say this before, but: I agree with that entire comment. :)

Mark said...

No capes!

Craig said...

Isn't espionage his job description?

Achilles said...

Robert Cook said...
"As noted earlier, Choom defines whistleblowing as treason, but is it espionage when all you're doing is exposing the illegal excesses of a corrupt Party?"

This has nothing to do with parties, and everything to do with a corrupt government unmoored from its constitutional foundation and from the rule of law. This was going on in the last Republican administration and will be going on in the next Republican administration. Our political system is broken and a mere change in which person or party occupies the White House, absent any other substantial changes, will not change a damned thing.

6/21/13, 9:53 PM

Next thing you know Robert will be telling us how you can't trust the government and we need to reduce the size and scope because that is the only way to reduce the corruption in DC.

Hagar said...

Watching van Susteren last night, and it was obvious that the guys from the NSA did not really answer the questions put to them by the Congress critters.

Thus: "Can you listen tophone conversations by Americans overseas?" "No, we are not authorized to do that."

And: "Do you listen to phone conversations by Americans overseas?" "No, we do not "target."

The real answers are that they both can and do, and it is all sort of legal because of this rulemaking session they have had with the FISA court to "interpret" the legislation, so that it all depends on what the meaning of "is" is.

MadisonMan said...

@Mark, I love that movie. Edna is awesome.

bpm4532 said...

Obama supporters don't care about the irony of a secret indictment against a man whose actions have been very public, nor the reality of the massive corruption and criminal behavior of this administration that has infested ALL parts of the federal government and that is rapidly infesting the military.

They have the smugness of cult members.

Robert Cook said...

"Next thing you know Robert will be telling us how you can't trust the government and we need to reduce the size and scope because that is the only way to reduce the corruption in DC."

Definitely. Let's reduce the size of government by outlawing all corporate lobbyists and all corporate campaign donations and, in fact, all corporate money to Washington in every form: let's get corporations out of government entirely! That'll carve off probably half (if not more) of the rotting mass that is our present system.

Then, close military bases all around the world and cut military expenditures by two thirds to three fourths. Reducing our military apparatus will certainly shrink government.

Defund and eliminate the intelligence agencies. Given that much of their funding is classified and we don't know how much they spend each year, we can't know how much this will reduce government, but that this information is secret strongly implies it will reduce government by a double buttload.

With no corporate presence in Washington at all, a reduced military and its attendant bureacracy, and no more intelligence agencies, we'd have a pretty lean and mean government, more answerable to the people.

(We also need to use the corporate insecticide on the state governments and get lobbyists and corporate money out of the statehouses as well.)

Aridog said...

Robert Cook .... you cite elimination of *corporate* influence in government, several times in fact.

What about union influence, lobbying, and political contributions, using the same logic?

Did you not mention unions by simple oversight, or was that intentional? Do unions somehow represent individual members anymore than corporations represent individual stockholders?

Robert Cook said...

Given that unions represent working people, I don't object to their influence. More pertinent to your misguided fear of unions, they are a vestigial presence in our country in these waning days of our republic, and they exert ever diminishing influence in Washington or anywhere else, to the detriment of working Americans, (also a beleaguered, even endangered cohort).

Achilles said...

Robert Cook said...
Given that unions represent working people, I don't object to their influence. More pertinent to your misguided fear of unions, they are a vestigial presence in our country in these waning days of our republic, and they exert ever diminishing influence in Washington or anywhere else, to the detriment of working Americans, (also a beleaguered, even endangered cohort).

6/22/13, 11:19 AM

So you deny the negative influence of the symbiotic relationship between public sector unions and political leaders on our society?

I also note you left out breaking up the monopoly on education and the fact that over 2/3rds of our federal budget is taking money from one person and giving it to another person.

hombre said...

The DOJ has acted to ensure that the White House retains the preeminent capacity to leak sensitive material to the Obamamedia.

Robert Cook said...

"So you deny the negative influence of the symbiotic relationship between public sector unions and political leaders on our society?"

What negative influence?

(In other words, I guess, yes. While any special interest with sufficient funds and privileged access to gain undue influence can be a potential or actual danger to democracy, I don't see that unions today have such power.)

"I also note you left out breaking up the monopoly on education and the fact that over 2/3rds of our federal budget is taking money from one person and giving it to another person."

The "monopoly" you refer to darkly is "public education," a "monopoly of the people," (if actually fairly called a monopoly at all). There was a time when America's public schools provided quality education to its students, so "public education" is not by definition substandard or incapable of excellence. Rather than decry public schools as an evil perpetrated on the public by some mysterious conspiracy, one might better attempt an analysis of what's wrong with public schools and work to remedy those faults.

Of course the federal budget takes money from one person and gives it to another...how else does anything get done? The more that money is given to private interests, the less value we receive for each dollar, as the profit motive tends to pervert goals and outcomes.

Aridog said...

Robert cook said ...

... More pertinent to your misguided fear of unions ...

Now you're projecting, Robert. I have always been a supporter of trade unionism, and been a member of skilled trades union organizations.

The question was simple, and you did not answer it with anything substantial. You say unions represent working people...fine, corporations and small businesses and partnerships employ and pay working people, in fact underwrite pensions of working people in many cases.

My curiosity is why you feel one has undue and unwarranted influence while you don't the other does...actually I asked, politely, if that was oversight...and you confirmed that it was not.

Now how about an answer, with substance, why union influence is good, while corporate is bad. Your projection error was not realizing I didn't say either one was bod or good. I asked you. Identify the differences. Tell me how unions do not serve their leaderships interest in advance of any interest of the membership....and if you have ever belonged to a union to actually experience the impact?

Hagar said...

Cookie,
Trade unions are corporations.

Aridog said...

Robert cook said ...

Of course the federal budget takes money from one person and gives it to another...how else does anything get done? The more that money is given to private interests, the less value we receive for each dollar, as the profit motive tends to pervert goals and outcomes.

Robert, have you ever read OMB Circular A-76 and Circular No. A–76
Revised Supplemental Handbook
Performance of Commercial Activities...


How do commercial activities studies and findings impact "private interests" vis a vis profit motives, etc.?

Rick Caird said...

I am trying to understand how the US can file a secret complaint and then ask a foreign country to honor that secret complaint. If the Chinese came to the US and asked us to detain someone based upon their secret complaint, I am pretty sure the response would be "pound salt".

Leit Bart said...

Is using the IRS to shut down or intimidate your political opposition "conversion of government property"?

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324082604578489171510582616.html

Is using New York City's computer servers to host your personal 501(c) "conversion of government property"?

Just askin'

Hagar said...

Most likely the answer will be no answer.

This administration will give out some press releases to save face, but probably no real effort to get Snowden back to the U.S., since a trial - and it would be celebrity trial - will just get them into a ruckus with their own base, especially the under 30 crowd.

Cheney is absolutely right in what he said as far as the law goes, and Snowden had better stay out of U.S. controlled space for the rest of his born life, but that is about it, I think.

And as for the comparisons to Ames or Hansen; they gave real secrets to the Soviets, Snowden told the London Guardian, and the "secrets" apparently are mostly just secrets to us civilians - there is a difference.