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Former CIA/NSA Head: NSA Is "Infinitely" Weaker As a Result of Snowden's Leaks 572

Posted by samzenpus
from the spying-used-to-be-easy dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Huffington Post reports, 'Michael Hayden, former director of the National Security Agency, said Sunday that he used to describe leaker Edward Snowden as a "defector," ... "I think there's an English word that describes selling American secrets to another government, and I do think it's treason," Hayden said ... Some members of Congress have also ... accused him of an act of treason. Hayden said his view of Snowden has grown harsher in recent weeks after reports that Snowden is seeking asylum in Germany and Brazil in exchange for assisting their investigations into NSA programs. Hayden said the NSA is "infinitely" weaker as a result of Snowden's leaks. "This is the most serious hemorrhaging of American secrets in the history of American espionage," he said. "What Snowden is revealing ... is the plumbing," he added later. "He's revealing how we acquire this information. It will take years, if not decades, for us to return to the position that we had prior to his disclosures."' — More in the Face the Nation video and transcript, including discussion of the recent legal decisions, and segments with whistleblower Thomas Drake, Snowden legal adviser Jesselyn Radack, and Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman who recently interviewed Snowden."
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Former CIA/NSA Head: NSA Is "Infinitely" Weaker As a Result of Snowden's Leaks

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  • Boohoo (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rubypossum (693765) on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:56PM (#45819227)
    We were caught abusing the rights of the American people and the people's of many other nations. Now that we've been caught people won't trust us anymore. Fell so sorry for us!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:56PM (#45819231)

    ...and celebrate the long-term crippling of an evil agency.

    Let's also lament the fact that Snowden won't be able to return to the country he helped so much.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:57PM (#45819237)

    Unfortunately so is most of the government and the courts.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:58PM (#45819259)

    Treason is working against one's country. So the NSA has been the treasonous one.

  • So? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:58PM (#45819263)

    Still waiting for the first shred of proof that the NSA's dragnet methods do any good whatsoever. Until then: nothing of value was lost.

  • Treason huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:58PM (#45819265)

    That's funny, I consider "treating every citizen of your country as an enemy and a criminal" as treason, Mr. Hayden.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @12:58PM (#45819267)

    ... illegal and un-Constitutional activity and I do think it is "criminal" and "un-American" respectively.

  • my thoughts (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ganjadude (952775) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:00PM (#45819287) Homepage
    My thoughts on this are simple. It is in us, the people who live in the USA's best interest that this leak happened. Plain and simple the NSA has been running wild with a total disregard to the constitution. I personally want to see the NSA disbanded as they will never be taken seriously again by america, and they will never be trusted again by the rest of the world.

    Now as for doing damage that is in regards to other countries, I think the way snowden went about things was actually the best way he could have given the circumstances. He did not just dump the files, unredacted for the entire world to see and learn from. The articles and information that up until this point been released have been screened pretty well to protect numerous secrets.

    From my point of view yes Id love to see all the data, unredacted but I underrstand that would have been a disaster for a number of reasons, one of those reasons being the concern of the people who are anti snowden, they are making the argument as if the entire treasure was dumped. but it wasnt so their argument doesnt hold water. The other reason, and the oneI am more concerned with is that if he dumped it all at once, it would be much easier for our no attention span having population to forget about it and move on to the new shiny of the day, and all of that information would be for nothing.
  • by Adam Colley (3026155) <mog@kupoOPENBSD.be minus bsd> on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:02PM (#45819305)

    Indeed it's not but I'll take weakened for decades.

    The GCHQ and the NSA have been running roughshod over the people for years, it's about time they were brought to account by whatever means it takes.

    Can't believe there's even a question as to whether he, chelsea manning or ed snowden did the right thing, it's obvious they did. Governments are supposed to work for/with us, not sit there spying on us, it's like living under bloody chinese surveillance, we just didn't know it.

  • Chain of Command (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ClaraBow (212734) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:02PM (#45819313)
    If Snowden would have voiced his concerns to his immediate supervisors, he would have been silenced immediately.
  • by TheCarp (96830) <sjc@@@carpanet...net> on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:05PM (#45819331) Homepage

    I was thinking the exact same thing; then I realized, its not true, they must have just spelled infinitesimally wrong.

    Were that they were infinitely weaker, that would be wonderful.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:06PM (#45819349)

    I'm not sure that this isn't true.

    The question is whether there's anything wrong with that.

    Were the NSA meant to be doing the things that they're doing? To some degree, yes. But I'm also pretty sure they've overstepped what they're allowed to do.

    The "treason" comments are pretty far off. Someone who's committing an act of treason is doing it to benefit themselves or another country. Seeing as he had to flee his life in the US and is between countries, risking imprisonment if he ever comes back, aside from the fame he's accrued, I'm not sure how this is to his benefit.

  • Methods, not intel (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mveloso (325617) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:06PM (#45819357)

    Luckily for the NSA, the guardian hasn't said anything about specific operations or people involved. The releases have been about methods and reach, which aren't the same. The only surprises there are that the NSA was more active than most people thought.

    There's nothing in there that's mind-glowingly unbelievable, like the NSA hooked up some kind of transmitter to an eyeball and has been using that realtime video feed to monitor meetings.

    Of course, there are a few more million documents, but I'm sure the really juicy ones are being withheld.

  • NSA abusing power (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JeffOwl (2858633) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:07PM (#45819369)
    If they had not been abusing their power to conduct illegal surveillance then Snowden may not have resorted to this. Perhaps then their techniques would have remained secret and been available for legitimate purposes. Perhaps they should be looking in the mirror when placing the blame.
  • Re:Boohoo (Score:5, Insightful)

    by roman_mir (125474) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:08PM (#45819371) Homepage Journal

    I don't believe a word of the NSA traitors (that's what they are - traitors to the Constitution, thus traitors to the Republic).

    I think they are as strong as ever and their powers are growing, that's because while before Snowden they just pretended that they were an actual legal institution, now the courts will proclaim them to be legal! The system is corrupt completely and irreversibly, it will have to be replaced to be made workable again.

    The problem is not NSA, the problem is the government that no longer follows the rule of law (the Constitution, the process) the government doesn't have a process anymore, it's based on mobocracy keeping it in power, it's based on propaganda, it's based on cult of personalities, it's based on class warfare talk and thus propaganda and it's based on ability to extort money from the RULED. The problem is that the government is absolutely illegitimate, it is now a system or rulers, the mob and the rest of those who are ruled.

    Was it worth fighting against a Constitutional monarchy to end up with an authoritarian mobocracy/socialism/fascism/cronyism/Mafia?

  • What we don't see (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gregor-e (136142) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:12PM (#45819423) Homepage
    What we don't see in the Snowden revelations is any scrap of value derived from the NSA's blatant power-grab. As I understand it, the essence of NSA's defense is "but...TERRORISTS!", yet they have failed to produce any results that come even close to justifying their extraordinary usurpation of power. Even if the NSA could demonstrate real value in the data they've stolen, they would still have to justify their process for taking it from us. Last I knew, the constitution does not state "the ends justify the means".
  • Re:Boohoo (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:18PM (#45819491)

    We were caught abusing the rights of the American people and the people's of many other nations.

    Obama said recently in an interview that spying in the US was limited by laws in the US. They he added that for the rest of the world, the NSA is not limited by any laws. So I guess that means that the US doesn't care about breaking laws in other countries.

    That's a very sour thought, when you chew on the implications of that statement.

  • by Rob the Bold (788862) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:18PM (#45819493)

    Sounds to me like Hayden's just afraid that he'd be subject to arrest and prosecution if he visits wherever Snowden lands. If he'd only done nothing wrong, he'd have had nothing to hide, and nothing to fear punishment for if caught. Perhaps he shoulda thought of that sooner. Sure, someone else would have done the job if he'd quit instead of following orders, but at least he'd be guiltless (or less guilty). There's a certain irony that Hayden could be a criminal in a land where Snowden could be free -- although I doubt either one will happen.

  • by swm (171547) * <swmcd@world.std.com> on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:20PM (#45819509) Homepage

    At this point, I think we'd be better off if the NSA's efficacy were reduced to zero (infinitely weaker: 1/x -> 0). Then we could rebuild it from the ground up with proper political, legal, and operational controls.

    In fact, I suspect that the NSA retains most--if not all--of its operational capabilities.

    The NSA doesn't face any significant legal restrictions. The law allows them to do most of what they want, and they just do the rest anyway, secure in the knowledge that the courts won't(?) can't(?) shut them down.

    The NSA does have a political problem right now. It's not much of a political problem: most of the political establishment wants them to keep doing what they are doing. They wouldn't have any political problem at all if their P.R. weren't so inept. Hayden yammering about "defectors" and "treason" and "infinite weakness" is just more P.R.

  • by Kardos (1348077) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:21PM (#45819529)

    Before the leaks, they could say "it stops the turrurists", but after the leaks we know that it's stopped none (Boston is a prime example). Any half serious terrorist knows that the internet is heavily monitored and communicates covertly; now that it's public knowledge, the "but the turrurists will know our abilities" defense no longer carries weight. They can't justify using their overreaching surveillance apparatus against the general population of the world anymore. It's their defense to continue Orwellian surveillance that is infinitely weaker, nothing else has changed.

  • Re:my thoughts (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fermion (181285) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:23PM (#45819551) Homepage Journal
    Basically the problem the US has is that it is difficult to escalate this to beyond a civil matter. He was not in the military, he was not employed by the federal government, he was not a spy for a foreign power. He was a private citizen who decided to become a whistleblower. The US has rules protecting whistleblowers. For instance, if the IRS were doing some of this, and he reported it, most of the conservatives in congress would be buying him hookers and drug and throwing a parade, even if it did mean that the US governments ability to pay bills might be jeopardized.

    As far as treason is concerned, in the US that is a very narrow legal term defined by our constitution. That any high level government official would throw it around I think speaks to the lack of competency of that official. Treason is declaring war, giving aid and comfort or aligning with an enemy. Diplomatically, the US has few nation states that it claims as enemies. In fact we have a diplomatic term for them, 'rogue states', so we do not have to use the term enemy. In the current climate treason is a high bar, otherwise we would have some Generals who have been recently executed, for instance those that have somewhat decreased the ability of the navy in some parts of the world by selling secrets to foreign agents.

    In the US the governement should not function under an excess of secrecy. People like Snowden are part of that. If he is convicted of anything, the next person who wants to report an abuse of power, for instance the FEMA concentration camps being built to imprison dissidents against the coming UN World Governemnt, will be too afraid to come forward. This is clearly not in the peoples interest.

  • by stoicio (710327) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:23PM (#45819553) Journal

    " It will take years, if not decades, for us to return to the position that we had prior to his disclosures."

    First, if someone (NSA) breaks the laws of the country and gets caught, wouldn't the expectation be that they stop doing that?
    This statement indicates that the NSA doesn't get it. The expectation is that they will continue with the surveillance
    state as planned.

    Second to that, no one from the government has actually taken this statement to task. This indicates
    that it will be business as usual for the NSA and CIA no matter what the laws of the land are.

    Finally, the lack of actual caring from all quarters about this would indicate that all the elected representatives
    in government are on board, no matter what their bobbing heads say on T.V. . Apparently the law doesn't apply to employees
    of the state since no one fom the NSA has been arrested or fired.

  • Re:So? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bonehead (6382) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:23PM (#45819555)

    It wouldn't even matter if such proof existed. The means do not always justify the ends.

  • by ebno-10db (1459097) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:26PM (#45819585)

    the extremists have much better odds now with the Snowden leaks

    And you know this how, by listening to the NSA defend their vested interest? After claiming that this had stopped lots of terrorist attacks, it came out that it had actually stopped none.

    While we're at it, ordinary crime kills a lot more people in this country in terrorism. Why don't we repeal the 4th Amendment (which was written by a bunch of know radicals) and allow law enforcement to search any home they have any reason to suspect of harboring crime.

  • by ebno-10db (1459097) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:30PM (#45819629)

    We were set on this suicidal road to insecurity by a bunch of known radicals and self-admitted traitors 237 years ago. Apparently some people think it's time to rectify that situation.

  • by Rob the Bold (788862) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:30PM (#45819631)

    Nothing bad could result from a crippled intelligence system, could it?

    Sure. Bad things could happen. Hayden, and others -- including US Presidents and members of Congress -- should have thought of that before putting the system in jeopardy by committing illegal acts that might result in them getting caught when someone finally blew the whistle.

    If I robbed a bank, got caught, tried and imprisoned, my family would suffer. But that suffering would be the result of my bad decision, not the legal system that frowns on robbery, the police tracking me down and catching me, and the judge and jury who convict and incarcerate me.

  • Re:Boohoo (Score:1, Insightful)

    by mlw4428 (1029576) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:31PM (#45819661)
    Point of note: Per the US, other nation's citizens don't have rights as recognized by the United States Constitution (diplomatic policies are not "rights") and indeed US citizens don't have rights from other countries. While I disagree with the blanket spying on American citizens, I cannot and do not care about the citizens of other countries. This may be seen as selfish, but truly other nations spy on us just as much as we spy on them. The US and its allies tends to share their collective intelligence. So while people are outraged by our spying on other nations, truth be told the other nations knew and we've known about their spying on us.

    The only place that you can ever have true privacy is that place inside your head. Everywhere else, if you have something you want to remain private then use encryption that is publicly vetted or learn to live with the fact that 99% of us are totally boring, uninteresting people and no one truly gives a shit that you cheated on your wife.
  • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:32PM (#45819663)

    this is what the republicans are all pissed off about. the gave them away for free, he didn't sell anything.

    clearly, he's a socialist commie pinko bastard.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nerdfest (867930) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:37PM (#45819727)

    He made a *huge* sacrifice for *our* benefit, and I hope he eventually gets recognized for it.

  • by cusco (717999) <brian DOT bixby AT gmail DOT com> on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:37PM (#45819729)

    Odds of . . . well, what? Since the current system has not prevented a single terrier attack so far I'm not sure what "odds" have improved for them. From 0% chance of getting caught they now have a 0% chance? Since it's painfully obvious that the fundies aren't really what the scare-mongers make them out to be and the OMFG WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE rhetoric is doesn't even cause an eye blink among the populace any more I think your whole propaganda campaign is a dud.

  • Re:Boohoo (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Richy_T (111409) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:37PM (#45819731) Homepage

    They're inalienable rights. If you believe in them, everyone has them. They may not be protected by the constitution for foreigners or whatever but that doesn't mean they don't have them.

    If you don't believe in them, then you don't believe in them for anybody.

  • by Xipher (868293) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:37PM (#45819733)

    I believe this is a relevant quote from Jayne Cobb/Firefly
    "You know what the chain of command is? It's the chain I go get and beat you with until you understand who's in ruttin' command here."

  • Re:LIAR (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mrxak (727974) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:39PM (#45819751)

    It's increasingly clear that Snowden is being "handled" though. We shouldn't overlook the fact that he is a prime target for exploitation, by the Russians, by whoever ends up with him. If he does indeed go to Germany and help them defeat NSA spying in that country, well then the treason label fits.

    I don't have any problem with Snowden revealing mass surveillance on American citizens to American citizens, but spying on foreign governments is what the NSA is supposed to do. Yes, even our allies, and yes, even for economic reasons (most spying is economic in nature, and every ally spies on every ally). Snowden's reveal of spying on foreign governments and leaders, and any methods to do so, does cross a definite line. That does actually harm the US diplomatically, harms US businesses, and harms those American citizens Snowden claims to support. Snowden may be a naive idealist in over his head, or he may have been "turned" by those who are currently surrounding him.

  • Re:Boohoo (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Nyder (754090) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:39PM (#45819753) Journal

    We were caught abusing the rights of the American people and the people's of many other nations.

    Obama said recently in an interview that spying in the US was limited by laws in the US. They he added that for the rest of the world, the NSA is not limited by any laws. So I guess that means that the US doesn't care about breaking laws in other countries.

    That's a very sour thought, when you chew on the implications of that statement.

    What that means to me is that the President is saying that is okay for other countries to ignore USA laws. Like copyright and DMCA.

  • Re:Boohoo (Score:4, Insightful)

    by fortfive (1582005) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:43PM (#45819791)

    You know, if there was any reasonable evidence to suggest that NSA, CIA, or DHS practices had prevented any attacks, you might have a good point. What evidence there is seems to suggest, however, that "Intelligence" actions have made the world less pleasant for most people, including most people in the US.

    The quotes around "intelligence" allude to the fact there are many actions taken by our government's intelligence arms that have little to do with gathering or understanding information. Instead, many of the actions are about maintaining secrecy while doing their best to shape the world.

    As a US citizen, I do want the world shaped to my advantage. But according to my morals and observations, my best advantage is served when neighbors respect and appreciate me, not when they fear me.

  • by cusco (717999) <brian DOT bixby AT gmail DOT com> on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:44PM (#45819817)

    To people like Hayden "the public" **is** the enemy. They're actively at war against them.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:52PM (#45819893)

    I'm an American, and I consider him to be a hero.
    But then, I use the word 'our' to be inclusive of humankind, not some subsection thereof.

  • Re:Hero (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mrxak (727974) on Monday December 30, 2013 @01:52PM (#45819897)

    Nothing is so black and white. He may have revealed some things that will help Americans understand what policy changes need to be made, but he's also revealing information about operations the NSA is supposed to be doing, and now there's talk of him helping foreign governments in exchange for asylum. I'd say that makes him a naive idealist, at best.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by erroneus (253617) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:06PM (#45820063) Homepage

    If they are infinitely weaker, then by the math of the infinite, they must have been infinitely powerful which is not what they should be. And since they are STILL doing the things they have been doing with no indication that they have stopped or slowed down in any way, they must STILL be infinitely powewrful.

    Where an organization like that exists, we are all in danger.

  • Re:Hero (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lgw (121541) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:17PM (#45820139) Journal

    So far, there's no evidence that the NSA was doing anything of value. Sure, in theory they have a mission which might possibly be valuable were it focused the right way, maybe. Maybe. But half their mission - making info security better for Americans - is now permanently destroyed. No one in crypto circles will ever trust the NSA again: they burned that bridge and lost their ability to give back to the public sector.

    So all that's left to the NSA is SIGINT, and that's have proven worthless for asymmetric threats. Yes, it would be good to have SIGINT the next time a major nation goes to war, but at this point I'd rather it wasn't the NSA doing that. Let the NSA die, and the legitimate SIGINT role can pass on to military intelligence or some other group with no motivation to spy on US citizens, or steal secrets from foreign companies to share with US companies.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spire3661 (1038968) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:17PM (#45820145) Journal
    You are a fool. The traitors are the ones calling him a traitor. How we ever supposed to stop the NSA if no one tells on them? Make no mistake the NSA is a huge threat to Liberty in this country.
  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spire3661 (1038968) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:20PM (#45820163) Journal
    But they aren't just spying on foreign governments, they are spying on the citizenry EN MASSE. That is far beyond the NSAs mandate. Spying is a dishonorable and destructive force, i dont buy the argument that we HAVE to do it. We choose to.
  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mrchaotica (681592) * on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:29PM (#45820251)

    I don't have any problem with Snowden revealing mass surveillance on American citizens to American citizens, but spying on foreign governments is what the NSA is supposed to do.

    Well then Hayden et all should have considered that before they decided to shit where they eat!

    It is nothing more or less than the NSA's decision to act unconstitutionally that caused this.

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mrchaotica (681592) * on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:34PM (#45820307)

    2.a violation of allegiance to one's sovereign or to one's state.

    I.e., what every NSA official except Snowden has either committed or abetted, because allegiance to the United States means allegiance to its Constitution and its people, not allegiance to the bureaucracy, the President, or Congress.

  • by DRMShill (1157993) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:37PM (#45820339)

    So the American public are the enemy of the state now?

  • Re:LIAR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by icebike (68054) on Monday December 30, 2013 @02:55PM (#45820535)

    don't have any problem with Snowden revealing mass surveillance on American citizens to American citizens, but spying on foreign governments is what the NSA is supposed to do. Yes, even our allies, and yes, even for economic reasons (most spying is economic in nature, and every ally spies on every ally).

    Spying on your allies is a way to make them no longer your allies. Its as likely to drive them into other camps as it is to keep them your allies. Brazil is increasingly becoming disaffected with the US. How many more Venezuela's do we need in South America?
    Spying on Germany and Brazil heads of state is pointless excess.

    Your assertion that most spying is economic in nature is disingenuous.
    Economic spying is useless for government. Most industrial spying may be economic in nature, but it is not performed by government agents. but rather by private interests. (Unless of course you accept the Chinese government's model of state sponsored industrial espionage as a legitimate model for the US to follow).

    Who should receive the putative fruits of economic spying by the government? Private companies? Which ones? In exchange for what? Paid to who? How has that been working out for us?

  • Re:Hero (Score:5, Insightful)

    by houghi (78078) on Monday December 30, 2013 @03:04PM (#45820657)

    There is no talk about him helping governements. Germany looked into him as a witness for their own inept situation.
    Sure, if you call that 'helping a foreign country' then I hope he does not help an old lady cross the street, because that would be helping mother Russia.

    The issue is that the NSA gave him a reason to do what he did. If they would have done nothing illegal, then there would have not been an issue.

    The US people were dressed in ignorance and the NSA decided to rape the people because they were asking for it? Never blame the raped. Always blame the raper.

  • Re:Hero (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Goaway (82658) on Monday December 30, 2013 @03:11PM (#45820757) Homepage

    and now there's talk of him helping foreign governments in exchange for asylum.

    There's "talk", from the NSA itself. How very reliable.

    And the talk is about him helping Germany. You know, one of your closest allies? Maybe not pissing off your allies should have been a little bit higher on the list of priorities, and this might not have been an issue right now?

  • by cold fjord (826450) on Monday December 30, 2013 @03:12PM (#45820777)

    To all the terrorists in the world: You are all worthless, pathetic, impotent losers. Whatever cause you're fighting for is equally worthless. I insult your god(s) and or prophet(s), where applicable. Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries! Come at me bro! I dare you!

    Now, Mr. Fjord, watch a big fat load of nothing happen to me in response.

    Your profile lacks your real name, address, email address, phone number, and employer.

    If you care to post those along with an insult to the Prophet Muhummad (PBUH), we'll know you're serious.

    Who knows, you might even make the news like Drummer Rigby [cnn.com].

  • Re:LIAR (Score:2, Insightful)

    by UnknownSoldier (67820) on Monday December 30, 2013 @03:29PM (#45820953)

    > but spying on foreign governments is what the NSA is supposed to do.

    You do realize there is an option from living in fear, right?

  • by PortHaven (242123) on Monday December 30, 2013 @03:41PM (#45821107) Homepage

    It is because the United States is both too arrogant, and too heinous. When this came out and we had proof the NSA was acting beyond their capacity and had blatantly lied both to the general Congress and the Security Committee (which is authorized to hear such things). The first thing that should of been done was to have the Senate grant Snowden immunity, bring him back to the U.S. and address the issue.

    Having done so would have limited any release of material, access of foreign nations, etc.

    But everytime some dumbass Senator or former NSA/CIA/TSA/ASS head goes out and speaks about how horrible Snowden is and ignores their present actions. I become more and more and more convinced, that Snowden did what was both right and necessary. And that is by definition a hero.

  • by russotto (537200) on Monday December 30, 2013 @07:27PM (#45823365) Journal

    The NSA IS among the "really scary people". If the FSB is tapping my phone calls and internet activities, I don't have to worry about them turning anything over to various law enforcement agencies to have me thrown in jail (doesn't matter what for, there's enough laws to be sure I'm breaking some), I don't have to worry about being put on the "no-fly" list for discussing explosives, I don't have to worry about being blacklisted for jobs for whatever reason. If the NSA is doing the tapping, I do have to worry about all that.

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