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Guardian Ignores MI5 Warnings, Vows To 'Publish More Snowden Leaks'

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the from-bad-to-worse dept.

Government 301

dryriver writes in with news that a new round of Snowden leaks may be on the way. "Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger says he plans to publish more revelations from Edward Snowden despite MI5 warning that such disclosures cause enormous damage. Mr Rusbridger insisted the paper was right to publish files leaked by the US intelligence analyst and had helped to prompt a necessary and overdue debate. Mr Rusbridger said more stories would be published in the future as the leaked documents were 'slowly and responsibly' worked through. His comments come after criticism from the new head of MI5, Andrew Parker. Making public the 'reach and limits' of intelligence-gathering techniques gave terrorists the advantage, he said. He warned that terrorists now had tens of thousands of means of communication 'through e-mail, IP telephony, in-game communication, social networking, chat rooms, anonymising services and a myriad of mobile apps'. Mr Parker said it was vital for MI5 to retain the capability to access such information if it was to protect the country. "

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Dope (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089875)

I'm guessing that what he is doing doesn't violate law there. That said, I think it is unethical to continue releasing the data.

Wasn't part of the Putin/Snowden agreement that he wouldn't release any more data? Guess that was just more useless fluff.

Re:Dope (5, Informative)

durrr (1316311) | about a year ago | (#45089915)

I think the guardian got all his stuff in a batch file, they're just going through it slowly, the man himself is not releasing anything new.

Re: Dope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090067)

But why announce their intent to publish? Just publish already!

Re: Dope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090301)

What part of "responsibly" don't you understand?

And then you bitch about putting lives at risk. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090465)

Just like you did with Assange and Manning.

Re:Dope (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089917)

Snowden isn't releasing any more data - he did it once when he handed everything over to the reporter.

Re:Dope (1)

Cigarra (652458) | about a year ago | (#45089927)

What if he did release everything (to The Guardian / Greenwald / Poitras / etc) already?

Re:Dope (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089939)

Snowden isn't releasing anything. He passed all the data to Greenwald long time, before agreeing not to release anything else.

Why do you think it unethical? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090137)

"Wasn't part of the Putin/Snowden agreement that he wouldn't release any more data?"

Wasn't this released information before then?

Wouldn't you be able to say rather than ask if you had proof of what the agreement made actually was?

PS Wasn't part of the agreement to uphold the constitution against enemies foreign and domestic?

Re:Dope (5, Informative)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45090211)

unethical to continue releasing the data? []
The data exists outside Russia. No new data is been released from Russia.
Other interesting comments [] [] and []

Re:Dope (5, Insightful)

dc29A (636871) | about a year ago | (#45090575)

That said, I think it is unethical to continue releasing the data

And spying on Brazilian companies in the name of fighting terrorism is all good?

Liars, liars, pants on fire (5, Insightful)

HansKloss (665474) | about a year ago | (#45089899)

I'm so tired of using "terrorist" argument and then, when we give them what they want, they turn around and use new powers on own citizens or to oppress members of minor political parties.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (5, Funny)

MickyTheIdiot (1032226) | about a year ago | (#45089923)

Well, "terrorist" is becoming as generic as calling someone an asshole.

You took the last bear claw, you terririst!

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1, Insightful)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45090179)

I see that occurring on Slashdot, along with various claims of "everyone's a terrorist" for some reason or another generally involving disingenuous rhetoric. As a rule I don't see that from government. They seem to be a bit clearer about its meaning.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090255)

Such as when you become a registered sexual offender because you pissed on a tree on night.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45090621)

Your post give a hint of the right answer: a "registered sex offender" is .... a registered sex offender, not a terrorist.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090307)

Hey look, Mr. Bootlicker is back to defend fascist regimes again.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (2, Insightful)

geminidomino (614729) | about a year ago | (#45090317)

As a rule I don't see that from government. They seem to be a bit clearer about its meaning.

I guess that might be considered true, since the government feels that the rules don't apply to them, and that "rule" would be no exception. Or you're ignorant of/ignoring the fact that these endless "anti-terrorist" laws are used more often in the clusterfuck that we call "the war on drugs" than against actual terrorists. And that we've already displayed that the government is happy to bypass the law entirely against "actual" terrorists, even if they're citizens, without even pretending or "plausible deniability" anymore.

Yeah... "As a rule", your observation here seems pretty divorced from reality.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45090601)

I guess that might be considered true,...

... your observation here seems pretty divorced from reality.

Make up your mind, it's either true or it isn't. The police and investigative agencies may use some of the powers they are granted by antiterrorism legislation for investigating other crimes,* but that doesn't mean the criminals they are investigating are then necessarily terrorist.

* You should be clear that terrorist groups often resort to ordinary criminal activity to fund themselves. Examples include bank robbery, kidnapping, extortion, smuggling, and so on. The terrorist group Hezbollah has hundreds of people involved with crime in the US to help provide funding. Cigarette smuggling [] (.pdf) is a common means.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

dave420 (699308) | about a year ago | (#45090581)

Hardly. The US government in particular has tried to describe acts as terrorism without understanding the motives of the perpetrator(s), which is impossible to do as an act of terrorism is only terrorism if the motive is to coerce people. So no.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (4, Insightful)

Soluzar (1957050) | about a year ago | (#45090737)

They're very clear on one point. They are entirely clear that fanning the flames of hysteria regarding terrorism will allow them to get away with whatever they want. Including spying on private communications between people who are not and never will be accused of any crime. I don't want them reading my intimate communications with my loved ones. I don't want them reading my flippant communications with my friends. I don't want them reading anything. I don't want them to put my life under a microscope.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089925)

"I have here in my hand a list of 205—a list of names that were made known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping policy in the State Department."

                                    Joe McCarthy, February 9, 1950

Some things don't change.

Huge Difference (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090035)

I too have been sick of the fear mongering propaganda complex that has overtaken our society in the past several years.

However, there is an enormous gulf between McCarthyism and the terrorist threat. No commies blew up airplanes and buildings. No commies went on shooting sprees in malls. No commies set off car bombs in crowded markets. The pink menace wasn't really very menacing at all. It was a false accusation.

Terrorists are real. Terrorist individuals and organizations commit atrocities on a near daily basis and regularly and publicly vow to kill large segments of the population or entire nations. Terrorism, unlike communism in the U.S., is a real threat that must not be ignored. But, that doesn't excuse these governments from using it as the go-to excuse for justifying every infringement of rights and nefarious activity, from banning nail clippers to the brave new world.

Re:Huge Difference (4, Insightful)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about a year ago | (#45090099)

Terrorism is not a real threat, at least not in and of itself. The terrorists we concern ourselves with and that our intelligence agencies are often outwitted by are mostly complete morons who can't even blow things up. Even if we had a 9/11 scale event every year, it wouldn't even register as a top cause of lives lost.

Re:Huge Difference (5, Interesting)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#45090467)

Or economic damage done. If these things were dealt with rationally. Look at countries with a real terrorist problem or that used to have one. They are all still there, including Northern Ireland, Spain, Germany, etc. And they are still there even with the authorities in some of them acting terminally stupid and adding 10000% damage on top of what the terrorists did.

The threat of terrorism is not relevant. The threat of people being scared into irrationality by claims of "terrorism" from governments is severe. The threat of "countermeasures" to terrorism by governments is severe. Establishment of police- and surveillance-states is a few orders of magnitude more problematic that terrorism could ever be. And that is what is clearly going on. One would think people in the west have learned something from the things that happened last century. Apparently not.

Re:Huge Difference (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090613)

Terrorism is not a real threat, at least not in and of itself. The terrorists we concern ourselves with and that our intelligence agencies are often outwitted by are mostly complete morons who can't even blow things up. Even if we had a 9/11 scale event every year, it wouldn't even register as a top cause of lives lost.

Or they are complete morons who can't even blow things up, until the FBI steps in with some undercover agents and 'guides' them on what stuff to buy and how to put it together, plans a 'target' with them, and then arrests them the day before the 'attack' for being a terrorist and building a bomb - which the moron couldn't have done without FBI help. (A little research will come up with a number of 'thwarted terrorists' who were 'created' by the FBI in just this way).

Re:Huge Difference (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about a year ago | (#45090159)

Look up the first red scare and the communist activities in the US circa 1919. You sre correct that in recent times, comunist have not done anything violent in the US but rhat wasn't always the case.

Not that this detracts from your point or anything. It is just a little perspective.

Re:Huge Difference (4, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | about a year ago | (#45090403)

Well to put that in perspective, the Russian Intelligence Services already have a complete copy and the Chinese Intelligence Services also have a complete copy, so who exactly are they keeping it secret from. Well, we all know that, the voting public who will be outraged at the invasion of privacy. The financial sector who will be deeply disturbed by global insider trading schemes. Many countries, some of which are meant to be allies of the countries doing the most spying. Terrorist not so much, unless they are starting up some new terminology vote-terrorists those that vote against government who support insane 1984 Orwellian scams. Voters who know too much and most be prevented from contacting other voters, voters unafraid to express their opinions and the very worst of all voters who actively vote against the dictates of the military industrial complex, evil vote-terrorists all over the place.

Re:Huge Difference (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090209)

Except you're more likely to die falling down your stairs at home then ever being subject to a terrorist attack. The threat is largely manufactured and overblown.

Re:Huge Difference (1)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#45090399)

Terrorism is real in the sense that you read about it in the news occasionally. It does not do any relevant damage. (9/11 was a fluke die to terminal incompetence of the US FBI and TLAs, and a lot of luck on the side of the perpetrators. Still, its damage was quite limited, especially compared to the damage done as "response" to it.) In addition, all this spying, surveillance, erosion of liberties, etc. does not prevent terrorism at all! Maybe that is not the goal, and the basically irrelevant terrorist "threat" is only a convenient pretext swallowed whole and without reflection on actual numbers by people like you?

Re:Huge Difference (5, Insightful)

wertigon (1204486) | about a year ago | (#45090643)

Terrorists are real.

So are bathtubs [] , so are stairs and so are traffic accidents, all which cause more lives lost than terrorists.

Any death other than the one of old age is terrible. Accidents happen that cause people to suffer for quite a while before dying. Some people have lost their lives in earthquakes - literally buried alive, waiting days for a rescue that never come. Other people die in house fires in the most horrible agony you might imagine. Therefore, Terrorists do not frighten me any more than an earthquake would.

Oh, sure. Terrorists are horrible people, hell-bent on violating the worst crimes of war possible. They are no stranger to detonating a nuclear bomb in the middle of any decently sized american city. Does that thought scare me? Yes, a bit. But does it make me cower in fear under my bed? No sir. I'm not afraid of these terrorists, because I know that if I'm afraid of them, then I'll always be afraid. The Terrorists have won.

I put my faith in the state to protect me as much as possible from these terrorists, as well as protect my liberties as best can. Unfortunately this paralyzing fear of terrorists have made the state erode my liberties without actually protecting me from terrorists. Therefore, I oppose those changes.

It's not about being stupid or brave. It's about not letting a bunch of jackasses control my life. And as long as I draw breath, they won't.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090271)

The Communist Party USA, CPUSA, was an instrument of the USSR, this was proven by declassified documents as well as Soviet archives. The CPUSA was involved in espionage as well as underground supporters that pushed US policy towards a more favorable approach of the USSR.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1, Interesting)

miletus (552448) | about a year ago | (#45090573)

So they were doing something like what AIPAC does today, with widespread support from both political parties?

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (5, Insightful)

Spottywot (1910658) | about a year ago | (#45090007)

Especially when they quote bullshit for the reason, i.e. Britain faced one or more terrorist attack per year since 2000 and will continue to do so [] . Now that means that there have been 13-26 attacks according to his figures and we haven't heard of one of them? I remember when the UK really was under the threat of terrorist attacks from the IRA, and though a lot of things were kept secret for obvious reasons during that time, when the security forces scored a major victory or prevented an attack you knew about it. Are they seriously saying that 7/7/2005 was 'the one that got away', and they haven't told us about the others because of secrecy? Just one for an example?

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (2)

somersault (912633) | about a year ago | (#45090055)

Just one? Okay [] .

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Spottywot (1910658) | about a year ago | (#45090383)

Well done, they thwarted that one good and proper. I'm talking about one that was stopped by MI5 or GCHQ. Such as this one [] , stopped by security forces in Northern Ireland. Try again.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090625)

How about when they get it horribly wrong:

Like in the case of Jean Charles de Menezes []

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Stolpskott (2422670) | about a year ago | (#45090339)

Britain has been facing the constant threat of terrorist attacks since the 1970's, right up until the early years of the 21st century, thanks to the terrorist elements of the Irish Republican Army and other Irish Republican splinter groups. Bombings happened, but even without the all-pervasive intelligence gathering apparatus that is apparently now necessary to track every "terrorist", the British Security Services still did a pretty good job of foiling most of the attacks.

I say most, not all, and I am not arguing that increased surveillance would not have prevented more attacks and saved more lives. Indeed, the extreme prevalence of CCTV cameras in UK is probably in large part a reaction to the bombings by the IRA et al.

But it seems to me that because the Irish problems did not adversely affect the US, it was less of a threat. Now that the US has a terrorist threat pointed its way, all-inclusive surveillance becomes the order of the day and the Brits are jumping on the bandwagon.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Pino Grigio (2232472) | about a year ago | (#45090389)

Are you asking us which secret-that-nobody-knows-about terrorist attacks were thwarted by MI5? By definition that question is unanswerable. Besides, this is lunacy. The UK is covered in video cameras. Yet people are whining about GCHQ aggregating their Facebook and Twitter feeds, as if people go online and use social media in order to be somehow private citizens? A better target for the Guardian is the surveillance society in general, not MI5; it's council busy-bodies snooping with town centre cameras and things like that, not what the intelligence services are getting up to.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#45090545)

A better target for the Guardian is the surveillance society in general, not MI5; it's council busy-bodies snooping with town centre cameras and things like that, not what the intelligence services are getting up to.

Why not both?

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#45090579)

Because constructing false dilemmas is more fun.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090733)

Someone is still going to have to clarify for me... some 'terrorists' blew up a couple buildings in the US killing some 3000 people. Ok. .. in response, the US invaded two countries - including one under the 'guise' of having "WMD's" (remember those 'chemical weapons trailers?) that we never found, after killing at *least* 100,000 people and dumping depleted uranium shells around leading to thousands of children born with some chilling birth defects (if they survive at all). Meanwhile they've bombed Libya, are threatening Syria while giving aid to the 'rebels' that consist in a large part of the same 'terrorist' groups that caused/backed 9/11, are killing people in Somalia and a number of other African nations... ... who is the 'terrorist' again? Who is causing more death and destruction around the planet?

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090075)

I hear most domestic terrorists nowadays live in houses and apartments. So by the same logic used to justify their current surveillance the government should be entitled to break into our homes without warrant.

If we complain about it we're really just aiding terrorism.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090283)

When your loved one has to jump to his death from the 100th floor of a building cause it's just been targeted by a suicidal airline, don't ask why no one knew anything in advance.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#45090373)

9/11 happened because Dubya's administration ignored the intelligence they were given not because no one knew about it. They were too concerned about invading Iraq to avenge his daddy to care about the warnings.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#45090491)

And for anyone who is still ignorant of this fact this [] has a great story about it.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

sumdumass (711423) | about a year ago | (#45090677)

Wow- just wow. You sure are deranged an revising history in order to support some ideology that can't otherwise survive.

First, all to so called intel we had did not say anything specific enough to identify 9/11 nor the date or times it would happen without the hindsight if it actually happening. Second, if iraq were as you said, then we would have invaded right after 9/11- 2001, not wait two and a half years to make a bunch of statements before invading on a separate war resolution in 2003. If it were as you stated, we would have simply went in after the authorization for use of force for Afghanistan and said our bad, we made a mistake when the rest of the world called us on it. Instead, a separate case was made, it relied mostly on the same intel that previous presidents an thier supporters used, the same intel the rest of the world had, and outside France who had secrete oil deals which leveraged UN sanctions to make them lucrative, the rest of the world either thought iraq was contained and invasion was premature or that certain pieces of inteligence were creditable enough for sanctions but not invasion at the start of the war.

You are out of touch with reality here.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090437)

Then simply move to North Korea where you can have a nice oppressive government that will make sure to keep you under constant surveillance to keep you "safe".

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (2)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#45090367)

Indeed. And to add insult to the lie, they do not even manage to do anything about what little terrorism is actually there.

However, I agree that "tremendous damage" is being done, namely to society by concerted efforts to establish a police- and surveillance-state. We had that in Europe in the last century and it took about 80 million dead to deal with it because it was not stopped at the onset. These people are extremely dangerous and need to be stopped. At this time, it may still be possible to do that in a democratic fashion, but only if the voters wake up.

Re:Liars, liars, pants on fire (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090375)

I'm so tired of using "terrorist" argument and then, when we give them what they want, they turn around and use new powers on own citizens or to oppress members of minor political parties.

That's because the government does not care about terrorists, they are more afraid that their own people will find out about all their dirty dealings. Look at Wikileaks, the dirt they released had little to do with terrorists, rather it was the smoke-filled back room dealings between corrupt governments and corporations brought to light. And yet the government has called Assange a terrorist and there have been government officials publicly screaming he be killed at any cost for daring to embarrass the rich. Snowden is no different, his data shows the utter contempt our government has for its own laws and Constitution. I'm actually surprised he hasn't had a fatal car accident yet.

Moses (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089907)


u tell me?

I will, if I can. Let me however note that in the same question
you join two things which are not the same.

How so? he asked.

Why, I said, you join physicians and judges. Now the most skilful
physicians are those who, from their youth upwards, have combined
with the knowledge of their art the greatest experience of disease;
they had better not be robust in health, and should have had
all manner of diseases in their own persons. For the body,
as I conceive, is not the instrument

Grumpy Cat says GOOD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089919)


You do or you don't want the terrorists to know? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089921)

So Mr Parker lists all those methods then says he wishes to retain access to them... doesn't that kind of tell the terrorists everything he's worried the leaks are??

Re:You do or you don't want the terrorists to know (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#45090021)

So Mr Parker lists all those methods then says he wishes to retain access to them... doesn't that kind of tell the terrorists everything he's worried the leaks are??

that's not the point. the point is that currently many of these god hating terrorists don't even know they're terrorists! if they're told that they're terrorists and under surveillance they might move their communications off gmail! can't let that happen!

Re:You do or you don't want the terrorists to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090083)

You do realise that the poster boy terrorist are extremist religious types... they love God, but their concept of God, if you are calling them terrorists for hating your god then you are as much a terrorist as they are.

Re:You do or you don't want the terrorists to know (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#45090345)

You do realize they were joking and being sarcastic...

Oh wait, this is Slashdot so you're likely a social retard with no sense of humor.

Re:You do or you don't want the terrorists to know (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090393)

Equally possibly, here on Slashdot, you're not as funny as you think you are.

Re:You do or you don't want the terrorists to know (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | about a year ago | (#45090453)

Where did I ever claim I was being funny?

Correct (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089929)

Sadly they're both right.

Think of the children!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45089933)

Won't somebody think of the children and stop publishing these facts about us abusing our powers, it hurts our children to find out about it, and I'm pretty sure there is a terroist watching.

What about the old tried and true... (2)

smarkham01 (896668) | about a year ago | (#45089949)

All of the spy types could meet at Rick's Cafe. Of course Sam won't be there to play that tune, but you can't have everything now, can you? The best alternative might be to have forms of communication directed to a spy central where censors review it for "National Secrets" then pass it on or arrest you!

Grauniad (3, Funny)

loccohombre (148009) | about a year ago | (#45089959)

On teh upstart none will byable to hunderstand nethig publishd in their neway

MI5 got it wrong (4, Interesting)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about a year ago | (#45089971)

Security through secrecy = no security.

Also, the Snowden leaks mostly show that it's more honest citizens than terrorists who should be concerned about ubiquitous surveillance. Cue 1984 references...

In a sense, Bin Laden got what he wanted: he didn't want to hurt western societies directly, he wanted to get western societies to collapse into dictatorships by giving the initial push (9/11) that would allow mostly-democratic governments to slowly turn nasty with a good reason.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#45090057)

well security might mean also getting away with murder and for that secrecy is pretty useful..

Re:MI5 got it wrong (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090157)

Secrecy is required for some types of security. You probably don't want to hear that. You probably want to continue to bury your head in the sand while others put their lives on the line for your security. Snowden is a traitor. He sold not just a handful of 'secrets' that exposed some so-called moonbat conspiracy. He indiscriminately sold tens of thousands of documents without knowing what's in them.

Snowden is a traitor.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45090299)

He did not sell them, the fun part is who is helping 'review' aspects in some parts of the world before publication :) []
You get differences []
Or the Tor is not unsafe message vs: []
The "others put their lives on the line for your security" is a nice talking point but most states do put effort into their revolutionaries, freedom fighters, mercenaries and faith based teams.
Handlers always knew what signals intelligence offers and the "junk" equipment offered on the world market and work with what they have.
Why would the internet, banking, web 2.0 be any different?

Re:MI5 got it wrong (1)

geminidomino (614729) | about a year ago | (#45090363)

Snowden is a traitor

"You chucklefucks keep using that word. I do not think it means what the fuck you think it means." - Inigo Fuckin' Montoya

Re:MI5 got it wrong (1)

atgaaa (1869296) | about a year ago | (#45090477)

The problem with a secret, is there is no way to know that it remains secret.

MI5 didn't get it wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090291)

You're just confused and taking the fools bait to think they are implying security through secrecy. They're already on an entire different level and sure as hell aren't going to say outright their real reasoning.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090315)

No. Bin Laden wanted to hurt western societies so they wouldn't have any influence in the middle east where he could then overthrow the weaker governments and recreate the Caliphate with himself as the Caliph. It had nothing to do with our democracy.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45090483)

Bin Laden didn't want Western societies to become ordinary dictatorships, he wanted them to become nations ruled by Muslims living under Islamic Sharia law. With the demographic implosion underway in Europe among native Europeans, the continuing import of vast numbers of immigrants that reject Western values, and religious conversion among native Europeans, it would be hasty to rule out that possibility in 100-200 years. There may be real trouble brewing in as little as 50 years since so many countries are hovering around the birthrate of 1.3 children per woman, which will halve an existing population in that time. While native Europeans are on a self-chosen road towards extinction (you can only halve a population so many times), natives continue to arrive.

Security through secrecy = no security.

You seem to be misapplying the idea of "Security through obscurity [] ". As a principle of analysis in system security engineering or encryption algorithms its fine, but it has limited scope. Encryption algorithms that rely on obscurity for their protective power aren't strong enough. But even good encryption algorithms depend on you keeping your password secret. So no, there are many things that rely upon some measure of security through secrecy for their protection. That is a common means of protecting various national security matters. If you still don't believe it, then you should have no problem posting your real name, birth date, social insurance number, driver's license number, bank account numbers, and PINs.

MI5 is more right than you are.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (2)

dave420 (699308) | about a year ago | (#45090699)

No, OBL wanted the US to stop funding Israel and to stop dicking around in the affairs of Muslim nations the world over. Which is a rather obvious reaction to the dicking around the US has done in those countries, and the mountains of aid it gives Israel to continue its occupation and subjugation. Why do you keep on peddling these nonsensical claims? I hate to use such a cliché to highlight your behaviour, but you really do sound like a talking head on Fox News. Seriously. It's embarrassing, as you are clearly intelligent and capable of learning about the world for yourself, but for whatever reason (be it fear, ignorance, nationalism, or a thousand others), you seem reluctant to do so. Are you so set in your ways that learning the institutions you seem to support are not what they purport to be is a perceived death sentence to your very being? It's truly perplexing.

Re:MI5 got it wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090611)

False. Security through secrecy is still security. I have a password, but it's secret, and you don't know it. Therefore, it's secure. When the password stops being a secret, it stops being secure. Almost all security require something to be secret. Off-hand, I can't really think of any security that doesn't.

Honest citizens have relatively nothing to fear about surveillance. Such surveillance may be creepy, unnecessary, and even illegal, but there's no real negative consequences. I wouldn't want someone looking watching me use the restroom, but if the video cameras were set up to catch the person flushing cherry bombs down the toilet, I wouldn't buy the argument that honest bathroomers should be more concerned than the ones with cherry bombs. Your logic is twisted. An argument can be made whether it's okay to monitor the bathroom habits of 10,000 innocent people for every 1 criminal, but the innocent people have nothing to fear (especially compared to the criminals for which the program exists). The personal information of innocent people won't be used against them and isn't being shared. Except in the cases of abuse of power, only the criminals will get human eyes watching them. Computers are crunching the numbers and correlating the habits of the innocent people to determine whether they warrant a closer look.

Bin Laden didn't get what he wanted, nor was he heavily involved in 9/11. He lacked the resources and capacity to really be much more than a guy that knew about (and from what I understand, okayed) the plan. He didn't set out to disrupt Western society, because that's not how he operated. To a larger extent, it's still not how they operate, as evidenced by the mall shootings. They understand terrorism and have trouble understanding or integrating into our society. That makes it awfully difficult for them to disrupt our society in a meaningful way. Opportunists, on the other hand, have been more than willing to spread fear and capitalize on the attacks to strip our rights away in ways the terrorists couldn't imagine. It's not fair to give that credit to the terrorists though. Programs like recording all domestic phone calls were in place before 9/11, and Bin Laden had little to do with that other than to justify it.

Good things have come from those programs (including stopping similar attacks). Obviously, it's now well known that the information gathered went well beyond terrorism, but information on such crimes weren't shared with the federal enforcement agencies -- including rapes, murders, etc. If the government knew which conversations and people were involved with terrorism, they wouldn't have needed the programs. Of course they were gathering information that was unneeded, it's how they mapped the network of contacts and determined where they needed to focus. And for better or worse, even though "eyes" were watching everything, the government's actions were limited to terrorism activities only. All sorts of criminal activities and bad stuff were ignored, much to the anger of organizations like the FBI, who knew that the NSA had valuable information that could "save lives," but were repeatedly denied whey they requested information from the NSA. I guess that aspect of the Snowden leaks doesn't warrant as much news coverage. The NSA drew a line in the sand right at terrorism, and most people think that they went too far. But did they? The NSA knew about people growing, distributing, and using illegal marijuana. Should the NSA have released information about that? Should the NSA have released information about serial murderers? How about single murders? How about against missing children and child rape?

Speaking only for myself, Some of the questions are easily answered "of course not!" However, when it comes to the question of child rape, and knowing that the NSA refused to release any information on anything that wasn't specifically tied to terrorism, I question whether they went too far. Would it have been so hard to give an anonymous tip to the FBI? "At this address you might find a missing child that's getting raped 10-15 times a day by her captor." Maybe their surveillance (or at least information learned from it) didn't go far enough? I don't know, but the NSA drew a line in the sand at terrorism and stood buy it.

I won't go so far as to say that what the NSA did was good, and it was probably far from legal. But when you consider that it did prevent future attacks, and considerable restraint was shown for anything learned that wasn't explicitly terroristic in nature, it's far from a black-and-white issue. Would America be better or safer if the NSA programs weren't in place? I don't think so. Does that make it okay? I don't know. That's one for the philosophers among us.

Hey Bro! (5, Funny)

FilmedInNoir (1392323) | about a year ago | (#45089979)

T1: RU rdy for the big boob
T2: Wat? lol
T1: Bomb stupid spell chk
T2: Tot Bro got packback rdy
T1: YOLO for Allah!
T1: Rmbr, post pic or it didn't happen!

Is it like that? Do terrorists txtmsg each other like teenagers?

enormous damage - but to what? (4, Insightful)

rvw (755107) | about a year ago | (#45089993)

despite MI5 warning that such disclosures cause enormous damage to their image


Enormous damage ? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090003)

Causes damage ? Sorry for having a different point of view but uncovering the disgusting acts of espionage on the population is a public service showing us how our free world is being transformed by the crooks and criminals we elected. The ones that should be jailed are the officials that led us down this path. They do not want to protect us , they want to protect their asses from being landed in a cold cell.
They are NOT working in our interrest, they are working against the People trying to get a better grip on our lives making us better slaves for our masters.
Fuck em . Publish all you got , get those bastards in jail or execute them. If some of them happen to get killed , so be it , they have waged a war on the People and they knew that the path they led us on was a dangerous one.

let em deal with their mess , i got no pity whatsoever.

Damage to their careers (5, Insightful)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about a year ago | (#45090005)

I can't imagine the number of careers being destroyed with each leak. I suspect that in the healthier democracies the very organizations doing this spying will be largely dismantled. The real question, that should not be answered by anyone in the spying business, is whether these revelations are resulting in a greater good?

Quite simply the people behind the curtain have long had an attitude of the end justifies the means, so now in exposing them they are getting a taste of their own medicine. The other core pillar of the spying business is that information is power; well by exposing the spies themselves we give power back to the people of the various democracies in question.

But what really boils my butt is that any foreign spy or "actor" who was using any electronic system without assuming that they were being monitored is a fool. And anyone that foolish probably didn't pose much of a threat. From what I gather Osama was found as they tracked the couriers who physically carried messages, which means that he was off the grid as far as his trail was concerned. But the people who do still use electronic communications were people like you and me, combined with organizations and governments who trusted the rest of the world.

So how many trade negotiations were done while the US listened in on the other side figuring out their negotiating positions, how many companies like Siemens might have had business deals or trade secrets handed over to us contractors?

But then it gets potentially worse: How many times did say a Canadian go to negotiate a trade agreement only to find that they had a recording of him and his mistress? How many times did a politician who was causing problems have a tipped off reporter show up for a rendezvous with his mistress? Or even to have the troublesome politician's election strategy handed over to his opponent? Or to have his secret PAC supporters suddenly withdraw their support?

If they are willing to lean on a company that "buys its ink by the barrel" how little reluctance would they have to twist democracy to their needs?

So my guess is that it is not the real baddies who have gone silent but the diplomats, politicians(both domestic and foreign, and large international businesses that are going silent. Personally if I ran a company like Siemens I would be locking up the communications and computer system tighter than a drum.

Re:Damage to their careers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090223)

Healthy democracies? So not any of the ones in North America or Europe who are still actively increasing funding for their own internal spy organizations, actively decrying the NSA while still working hand in hand with them?

Re:Damage to their careers (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45090521)

The "greater good" is we now know most hardware and the big brands are junk. Their coders, testers and engineers are too trusting or fake.
If an intelligence agency can get in, so can any other friendly intelligence agencies, people who where with friendly intelligence groups and now work for cash, people who can afford to hire ex intelligence agency staff, foreign front companies who can exploit weakness for national gain, crime or blackmail.
Everything you want good generational encryption for has be reduced to junk for a cheap 10 year "look" into the use of the web.
The only people who did not know where the herds of end users of the expensive US junk brands who had to upgrade version after version.
Even countries like Australia knew and their top staff would have been warned re "negotiate a trade agreement". [] [] []
The UK's message seems to be late - everybody knew via public or State sources. Historical documents or government advisors.
Like the Airlift of Evil [] or the arming of the Syrian 'freedom' fighters - even the optics of the local events was known.

Wrong optics (5, Insightful)

redelm (54142) | about a year ago | (#45090009)

The spies whine and spin it their way. If what they were doing was so innocuous, uncontroversial and even beneficial then they would be happy to be praised in the press. The fact is what they ware doing is deeply offensive to a large segment of society and they wish to hide it.

As to whether the terrs benefit or not, only the stupid ones might and they probably aren't reading. The non-stupid terrs have known about surveillence since before Echelon and adjust accordingly. They won't even infer any limits because they know the release is vetted to be incomplete.

The real effect of Snowdens releases is to confirm the tinfoil-behatted. Many fringe people have been saying much the same thing for 10+ years and been dismissed as lunatic paranoids. Now it appears they were right. Many people have egg on the face (congentially oblivious).

Re:Wrong optics (1)

asylumx (881307) | about a year ago | (#45090323)

Did it really take a lunatic to see that the gov't was doing this? Everyone (outside of slashdot) was OK with it when Bush was president and the patriot act was passed, why be so against it now? IMO Snowden didn't tell us anything we didn't already know, and I don't know why people are calling him a hero or traitor now when he hasn't really done anything good or bad.

Secrecy Through Obscurity? Really? (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about a year ago | (#45090051)

I would assume that MI5 is staffed by reasonably competent folks. If they are curious enough about viewing their philosophy at work, they only need look at the western part of Pakistan, or what I affectionately refer to as the, "Paki Bad Lands." There, Ignorance is their god.

Having followed all the leaks (5, Interesting)

Severus Snape (2376318) | about a year ago | (#45090085)

Is there anything real terrorists didn't know before that they know now? It is in the public domain the laws like The Patriot Act means the American government can go to Google and ask for the emails from whatever account they want. Of course they are going be using services out with America and her allies control. All these leaks have shown is the general public is the real enemy of the state.

Re:Having followed all the leaks (0)

discord5 (798235) | about a year ago | (#45090405)

All these leaks have shown is the general public is the real enemy of the state.

Only terrorists use the bold tag twice! GET HIM!

Re:Having followed all the leaks (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#45090631)

Just the citation needed to enrage sockpuppets and their simplistic "saving the world" rants.
Beyond that any well read person could be expected to understand what was done during WW2 to Germany/Japan encryption and later ECHELON.
All we know is the constant drive to domestic surveillance legality and desire to see a lifelong "locked box" used in US courts.
Something many in the US and UK have been attempting for decades.

Dilma Rousseff (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090089)

So, the Brazilian President is also a terrorist... I knew it

some forced perspective. (5, Insightful)

nimbius (983462) | about a year ago | (#45090091)

Its worth mentioning that heart disease, obesity, cancer, famine, smoking, natural disasters, car accidents, and domestic violence each individually kill more people yearly than "Terrorism." Bruce Schneier said it best when he noted we only deploy countermeasures against what terrorists have done, not what they will do. To imply global surveillance of every man woman and child somehow reduces what is already a very rare event is to call attention to the reason we combat terrorism at all. Namely, because Terrorism undermines very controversial foreign policies of certain governments and flies against the interests of their controlling parties. Terrorism may not stop these policies, or even slow them down. However the more terrorist activity occurs, the more the target nation begins to question everything from their elected leadership to the motivation behind the policies that trigger the events. And the events cannot be simply explained away. The best george bush could muster in defining terrorist activity was to say terrorists 'hate our freedom.' If freedom were the real concern, then 180 other nations with varying degrees of equal freedom around the world would certainly be able to confirm this.
What presidents dont say is, "terrorists hate our intrusive foreign policy that installs dictatorships, topples governments, crushes dissent, exploits and degrades the region, and prevents autonomous governance."

the snowden leaks are terrorism in that they empower citizens to actively question and criticize government. Without Snowdens facts, the government absolves itself of a slew of very important questions it would rather not have to answer as it pursues goals strategic to a small minority of its citizens at the expense of the greater good.

WOW!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090093)

More theater for the masses. More stuff the is either a) already out there, just our "media" hasn't covered it yet or b) stuff that is more infighting between the US agencies to try and steal funding. Between those two and the timing of this it sure seems like it more distractions to throw off people from the more important issues. I would like to call it "Wizard of OZ Politics"

  "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!!!" sure seems like the same as saying "most transparent administration ever!!!" now-a-days.

Enormous damage (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090097)

Enormous damage to their ability to snoop without public oversight, public consultation, or public approval of what is and isn't acceptable.

Look, we all know these intelligence agencies are doing things for the good of their respective countries, but A) it's costing an Imperial !#%!%ton of money, and B) hiding the whole operation from public scrutiny in the name of "national security" isn't acceptable. It's our money and our democracy.

Some of the things that we now know were being done are highly questionable. Pervasive surveillance of communication without warrant or with ridiculously broad blanket, perpetual warrants that make a joke out of the word "warrant"? Please. Never were we asked "Is this okay?" So, don't be surprised if we're now up in arms about it. We're having the conversation now that we should have had 10 or 20 years ago when this stuff was first being implemented without public approval, or when laws were being passed and we were (falsely) assured that the permission we were giving wouldn't be abused for other purposes or extended to other things as technology improved.

When phones were first invented, strict rules were soon passed that made it clear what was and wasn't acceptable for law enforcement to do with the information. The laws regarding other forms of communication have not been constrained to a comparable degree mainly because people have not realized until recently how much personal information could be gleaned from so little (e.g., metadata). The law needs change. We don't fricking care if it does "enormous damage" to what was becoming routine practice for security/intelligence operations. Deal with it. We, the public, are the judge of what's okay. Not you. Work within the limits we demand. If you want to make the case that you genuinely *need* this kind of access, then do so. We'll listen. But excuse us if we're a little pissed about what we weren't told about before you went ahead and did it.

THREAT not a warning (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090129)

He threatened the Guardian, it was a clear threat.

The Home Office now controls the police (which was buried in the change from SOCA to British FBI), Guardian should realize that Andrew Parker's not going to give up his illegally seized power easily and with the police under political control, he should not underestimate the man.

Look, "Internet Moderization Program" was never passed into law, neither did its latest version the snoopers charter. He is already outside the laws of Britain and he knows it. His astroturfers are all over the press, he's making threatening noises to the Guardian and Beeb and he's doing chest beating, which is not the sign of a civil servant doing his job within the law.

Be careful.

no thanks (4, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about a year ago | (#45090155)

I fear my Government more than I fear terrorists.

Re:no thanks (1)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#45090313)

I don't think the maybe 20-30 active terrorists on this planet can do any real damage. Even 9/11 was peanuts compared to the damage that is being done to civil society by the US administration alone. And 9/11 was a complete fluke, only possible because of the utter incompetence of the relevant TLAs and a lot of luck on the side of the perpetrators.

Oh, wait, the relevant TLAs are still incompetent at preventing terrorist successes. They so far have only stopped "terrorist" plots that they themselves manufactured. I wonder why that is? Maybe they are not really working on preventing terrorism at all? (Well, rhetorical question, obviously.)

Re:no thanks (1)

ElusiveJoe (1716808) | about a year ago | (#45090673)

Good citizen! Fear and obey!

Like they didn't know that already (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090229)

Mr. Parker's argument is bogus. SOP for those guys is to test the limits. They try things, see who gains attention, and who doesn't. When someone communicates in such a way that looks like a credible threat and no one investigates it they've found a communications channel. They do this all the time and already know. Same thing with airport security. While you're taking off your shoes and passing through the intimate full body scanner, Habib in the McDonalds has already slipped Achmed a box cutter (small explosive device, gun, whatever) with his bag of fries on the inside of the security checkpoint. The thing this damages the most is the intelligence community. If they were more intelligent this wouldn't be a problem.

Not publishing causes more damage (2)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#45090273)

A police-, surveillance- or totalitarian state is the most despicable and repulsive form of human organization in modern times. It does more damage than anything else, except maybe total war. What the NSA and their friends in the UK are aiming and preparing for is exactly this however, thinly veiled with a ridiculous claim of "fighting terrorism". We had these tendencies in Europe last century. Nothing was done to stop them, and it finally took two world wars and a cold war to get over them. The latter brought the human race to the brink of extinction several times.

Anything is better than something like that happening again. I really hope they publish everything and make it count.

How are the Guardian's offsite backups (2)

acb (2797) | about a year ago | (#45090451)

Hope the Guardian has good offsite backups outside the UK, and preferably a backup newsroom in, say, Reykjavik or somewhere they can use.

I can see this ending with the Met Police and special forces (under MI5 command) raiding the offices, making sure nobody takes anything out and then torching the whole place with very carefully placed thermite charges.

Echo chamber (0, Troll)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#45090519)

Slashdot is an intolerant echo chamber of hard-right American libertarian thought, which tolerates no dissent.

It's impossible to point out to you lot that a powerful state in the West holds a very thin line between civilization and chaos.

Anybody who dares to disagree is crucified.

FWIW, I think the Guardian and Snowden are terrible traitors who will end up with the blood of thousands innocents on their hands. And it WILL take the blood of innocents to show you that we abandon our strength in the face of the barbarian hordes, at our own peril.

But go right ahead. Prove me right and moderate me down into a smoking crater.

Re:Echo chamber (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45090727)

Fuck you.

Definition (1)

darrellg1 (969068) | about a year ago | (#45090665)

The definition of "terrorism" and "terrorist" shall soon be bent to include anti-govt speech, thus loss of our 1st amendment.

MI5 -- what a laugh (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about a year ago | (#45090675)

Egotistical Giraffe!

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