Edward Snowden, the NSA leaker, has been charged last week of espionage – presumably under the World War I espionage act from 1917 – and theft of government property. The U.S. has made a request to extradite him from Hongkong, where he was hiding, but the Hongkong government now let him leave the country, reportedly for Russia and then somewhere else.
Thinking about it, isn’t it ironic? The U.S. accuses Snowden of espionage, yet the NSA seems to be the biggest spy at all.Part of the spying was to hack into Chinese computers, per his revealed information. Is it a wonder that Hongkong let him go where he wants to go instead of sending him back to the U.S? Did the U.S really expect to get Snowden back to the U.S. under this circumstance?
For this reason we think the U.S. government shot itself into the foot by charging Snowden with espionage. You can argue about the other charges, which appear to have probably cause (in legal speak), but espionage seems to be far fetched. For espionage you need to have an enemy for which you spy or cooperate with. Typically that would be government of a foreign country – this was the intention of the 1917 law. But who is the enemy here? Furthermore, spying involves passing the information in a secret, inconspicuous matter to the other side. Emphasis is on inconspicuous.
Of course, it is all possible, that there is an enemy, but if there is one, it is not revealed to the public because it is classified information.
From what we know, however, there isn’t any. Snowden cooperated with journalists who in turn published the information. So are the journalists the enemy – or indirect the public for which the journalists work for?
Following that argument the public would be the enemy the NSA is spying against.
Now that is interesting.
The wire tapping of AP journalist comes into mind here. So there is some evidence here.
There is another aspect nobody has mentioned yet. It goes back to the history of the internet.
The root of the internet is ARPANET, a project of the U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. government in form of the National Science Foundation (NSF) was the driving force for further development, which eventually became the internet as we know it today. For more details check out Wikipedia – for the purpose of this article we just point out where it all started.
This is the official version.
Now, could it be, that someone along the line got the idea creating a network, and make access to them quite easy, so that everybody can join.
What a terrific idea, to lure everybody to join a network, so that we can spy on them!
Far fetched you think? Maybe. But then we don’t know what secret actions were going behind closed doors.
A brilliant strategy, anyway.
It is just that the spying collected such a vast amount of data that it’s useless because there is so much in there that bears no relevance.
We suspect the NSA knows – and has known all the time – where Snowden is and what his intentions are. It is stored somewhere on the computers. But the amount of data is just so huge that it is almost impossible to find.
Either that, or the NSA is reluctant to admit the knowledge of Snowden’s whereabouts because it would say something about much the NSA is really spying and collecting these days.