Snowden, Greenwald and Assange updates
Edward Snowden's whistleblowing happened six years ago. Yet blowback to his brave act is still happening.
The police in the UK are relentless in investigating journalists in connection with the case of US whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Operation Curable – the codename for the probe given to it by the anti-terrorist unit in charge – is alive and kicking even four years on, the article said.
...However, the police had no choice but to reveal that the investigation was ongoing when they last week responded to a request under the Freedom of Information Act.
It turns out that Julian Assange had very good reason to be paranoid.
Julian Assange was spied on 24 hours a day during the time that he spent at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he took refuge for seven years.
Documents, video and audio material that EL PAÍS has had access to show that a Spanish private defense and security firm named Undercover Global S. L., which was tasked with protecting the diplomatic building between 2012 and 2018, instructed its men to collect all possible information about the cyberactivist, particularly regarding his lawyers and collaborators.
...At these meetings, Assange’s legal defense strategy was discussed.
The recording equipment picked up on several secret plans drafted by Assange’s team to spirit him out of the embassy in disguise and take him to Russia or Cuba. The projects were never executed because the Australian-born activist refused, as he considered this solution “a defeat.”
Shouldn't this be against some law?
It's telling that Assange is still thinking in terms of victory and "defeat".
This is one of the reasons why I don't have a Twitter account.
Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters recently attacked Twitter for suspending the Unity4J account, which supports Julian Assange. RT reports that the account rallied support for the WikiLeaks founder, who is currently imprisoned in London, England, and could face extradition to the United States.
“Twitter, you are Big Brother, now we know it for sure, we always suspected it,” Waters said in a video he posted to Twitter. “You are an arm of the thought police. You are an arm of the forces of oppression. You wish to suppress freedom of speech, journalism, freedom of anything probably.”
Waters praised Assange as a champion of freedom of the press that has been betrayed by the United States, United Kingdom, and “all the other purveyors of imperialism.”
According to the 75-year-old, he issued his response because he believes “our world is being eroded by these f-ing arseholes, particularly Big Brother Twitter,” and suggested that he would likely be silenced for his belief in free speech.
Gawd I love Roger Waters.
Meanwhile in Brazil, Glen Greenwald is receiving daily death threats.
“My life has changed completely. What I like to do most in Rio is to walk the streets alone. I can’t do that anymore,” he said. “We had three security cameras; we had to increase them to thirty. We have armored cars and security guards 24 hours a day,” he said.
...The Washington Post wrote in its latest report a couple of days ago that Greenwald had faced pushbacks for his reporting before, but not like this. His house has transformed into a bunker, and according to the American newspaper, the public threats against Greenwald represent an early test for Brazil and Bolsonaro.
Greenwald's "crime" was exposing the corruption of the current Justice Minister, a revelation that is now gaining acceptance.
Last month, the Intercept published internal messages showing Moro, who served as a judge in the massive Lava Jato corruption scandal, colluded with prosecutors to incriminate former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio “Lula” da Silva. Lula was the frontrunner in the 2018 presidential race before being convicted and imprisoned by Judge Moro, paving the way for far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro’s victory.
Shortly after victory, Bolsonaro appointed Moro to serve as Justice Minister, giving the former judge expansive powers over the country’s legal, surveillance, and law enforcement systems.
Because the leaks undermine the legitimacy of the entire judicial process that culminated in Lula’s imprisonment, Bolsonaro’s presidential victory, and Moro’s political ascension, the revelations were not immediately accepted by some of Brazil’s leading publications. But on Friday, Veja, the country’s most widely-read conservative magazine, announced a new partnership with the Intercept in a scathing cover story condemning the justice minister for his corruption.
Veja was formerly one of Moro’s strongest supporters, making their new position especially damaging to the justice minister.
Additionally, the Intercept has partnered with Folha de São Paulo, Brazil’s biggest newspaper. The country’s rightwing Senate president, expected to be a loyal ally to Bolsonaro, condemned Moro’s actions as so unethical he would “be imprisoned” if he did not hold such a high position of power.
“The report is devastating for Moro’s reputation. Devastating for the reputation of Brazil’s legal system. And this is only just the beginning,” wrote prominent conservative journalist Reinaldo Azevedo.
Not surprisingly, the Brazilian Ministry of Justice, with a badly damaged reputation, has been tasked with uncovering dirt on the journalist that exposed its corruption.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald, whose bombshell reporting in 2013 exposed the U.S. National Security Agency’s domestic-spying program, now faces intimidation and harassment from Brazilian authorities.
The country’s federal police plan to investigate his financial records, according to a report by O Antagonista, a blog that’s described as an unofficial mouthpiece for Sergio Moro, the country’s minister of justice.
If you work for the government and have any sympathies for Snowden, Manning or Assange, then you better keep it to yourself.
There are, however, some other, more obscure reasons why clearance holders get themselves into trouble (hence why I advise actually reading the guidelines). One of those reasons is perhaps most obscure of all.
...That obscure, almost mythical Guideline is called “Guideline A”, and it corresponds with the concern enumerated as “Allegiance to the United States.”
What about someone who, for example, has expressed support on social media for those like Bradley (now “Chelsea”) Manning, Edward Snowden, or – of particular recent relevance – Julian Assange of WikiLeaks notoriety? Guideline A includes as a potentially disqualifying factor mere “sympathy” with or “encouragement of” persons who have committed or attempted to commit acts against the United States.