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Snowden: NSA Spied On Human Rights Workers 230

Posted by Soulskill
from the also-on-non-human-rights-workers dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes: "The Guardian reports that according to Edward Snowden, the NSA has spied on the staff of prominent human rights organizations like Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. 'The NSA has specifically targeted either leaders or staff members in a number of civil and non-governmental organizations including domestically within the borders of the United States.' Snowden, addressing the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, said he did not believe the NSA was engaged in 'nightmare scenarios,' such as the active compilation of a list of homosexuals 'to round them up and send them into camps.' But he did say that the infrastructure allowing this to happen had been built.

Snowden made clear that he believed in legitimate intelligence operations but said the NSA should abandon its electronic surveillance of entire civilian populations. Instead, Snowden said, it should go back to the traditional model of eavesdropping against specific targets, such as 'North Korea, terrorists, cyber-actors, or anyone else.' Snowden also urged members of the Council of Europe to encrypt their personal communications and said that encryption, used properly, could still withstand 'brute force attacks' from powerful spy agencies and others. 'Properly implemented algorithms backed up by truly random keys of significant length all require more energy to decrypt than exists in the universe.'"
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Snowden: NSA Spied On Human Rights Workers

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  • Re:Outrage fatigue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @06:54PM (#46699785)

    No, it's because ordinary people in this country want to make sure the people in charge of protecting us are keeping track of our enemies, like these "human rights" groups. You may think I'm trolling, but this really is the way ordinary people think. Ask your parents.

  • Re:Outrage fatigue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Livius (318358) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:02PM (#46699875)

    ...this really is the way ordinary people think.

    Ordinary people are very mistaken but sadly, yes, this is the way they think.

  • Re:Hang Him High (Score:5, Insightful)

    by VortexCortex (1117377) <.VortexCortex. . ... -retrograde.com.> on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:05PM (#46699905)

    Does that dickhead talk as if he is forgiven for being a spy himself and the worst kind of spy at that? The kind that turns in his comrades and runs like hell to America's enemies for asylum..

    You mean the "enemies" that are our greatest allies in space? Look, the Nations are not the People anymore, haven't been for a long time. All that USA vs Russia shit is just rhetoric for manufacturing consent to wind up the very expensive military industrial complexes yet again. Those things don't help anyone. Talk to people from all around the world and you'll figure out that no one really wants to kill each other, we all just want to be safe and live our lives. The corporations that own the countries that use the laws of governments and religions against us are not the people of the world. All the nations are against the everyman. Snowden is an ally to the people of the world. Save all that statist "traitor" talk for the gulag.

  • Future generations (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Charliemopps (1157495) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:08PM (#46699921)

    Future generations will scarcely believe that we were here now, watching the footing for their prison be poured, and we did nothing.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:09PM (#46699927)

    Scientists are a bit naive

    Physics has been doing that kind of thing back during the big bang.

    The fact that it's coming out now doesn't change that basic fact.

    We're humans, not gods.

  • Re:Outrage fatigue (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amiga3D (567632) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:10PM (#46699941)

    Actually the main problem I see with this is how ineffective it makes the NSA. If you spy on every damn thing then there is no way you can adequately cover the important things. This wide area net makes for an incredible amount of holes which is why they suck so badly at real intelligence. We need them on point, not spying on 7 billion people.

  • by Sarten-X (1102295) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @07:52PM (#46700295) Homepage

    Okay, Slashdot. Pop quiz time. Today's topic is... security! Three questions; no time limit.

    First question: If you are a party interested in having operatives harm another nation, what is the best way to travel between your countries? Your choices are a local grocer, a privately-owned yacht, or an airline flight that someone else has paid for?

    Second question: Once your operative arrives in your target country, how will you maintain control over them and support their mission? Will you have them set up a clandestine infrastructure, or use a pre-existing organization?

    Third question: What kind of association would arouse the least suspicion when traveling to and from your home country? A large corporation, a religious faction, or an international charity?

    And a bonus round, for extra credit: Of the associations in the third question, which would spur the most outrage if your target country's government were to investigate your activities?

  • by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @08:54PM (#46700703) Homepage

    And we now have a pretty good idea of who it believes its enemy to be.

  • by Uberbah (647458) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @09:24PM (#46700885)

    Why did Obama personally intervene to keep a Yemeni journalist brutalized and imprisoned [thenation.com] for daring to report on U.S. bombings that kill innocent people? Why was an Al Jazeera office bombed [aljazeera.com] by Bush? Why does anyone think that the U.S. would hesitate to take out Snowden if it's willing to murder [wikipedia.org] 16 year olds based on who the kids father was?

  • by js3 (319268) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @09:30PM (#46700913)

    It's an intelligence agency, it spies on people. The only thing to discuss is whether it is allowed to spy on American citizens. Everyone else is fair game AFAIC

  • Re:Outrage fatigue (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Trailer Trash (60756) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @10:19PM (#46701201) Homepage

    Actually the main problem I see with this is how ineffective it makes the NSA. If you spy on every damn thing then there is no way you can adequately cover the important things. This wide area net makes for an incredible amount of holes which is why they suck so badly at real intelligence. We need them on point, not spying on 7 billion people.

    This. It's amazing - fucking amazing - that while the NSA was busy spying on Americans Putin was able to invade the Ukraine and surprise us. Like, gee, maybe listening to grandma's phone calls doesn't make us safer. Who'd a thunk it?

    I don't mind us having a spy operation. Really. But we didn't catch the Boston bomber, didn't know Putin was going to invade Crimea until he was there. What, exactly, are we paying for here?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @10:47PM (#46701399)

    Snowden has done his duty to make the world a better place. Nothing more. The world is better off knowing what the playing field is on privacy and surveillance. Where it was masked before in speculation and fear, it is now known and distrusted. You attack Snowden, because that's all you can do. You can't make any change to our problem any more than I can. You speak of what lay ahead for Snowden, because you're aware of the impotence that your role is in all of this. What's worse, is that this community thinks that's a valid line of thinking, as your linger at +5, Insightful. Congratulations for being common on an issue that is at present, probably the most concerning for the technological 21st century: where do the boundaries between the freedoms of man and state, lie? The irony here, is that it's the same problem that's been occurring with societies for the past 5000 years. And like a good fable, you, and the collective behind you, are stuck on one man. Congratulations, I say! You're post is wholly what is expected here.

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