Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/10/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Snowden explains the danger the program presents to you.

Edward Snowden, the individual who blew the whistle on the National Security Agency's massive data gathering program, has revealed a number of personal details about himself, including his motives with the Guardian.

Edward Snowden.

Edward Snowden.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/10/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Snowden, whistleblower, NSA, surveillance, program, leak, classified, Obama, Bush, disappearance


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Edward Snowden is 29 years old. Just today, he disappeared from his last known location in a Hong Kong hotel. He has good reason to disappear. He is a wanted man.

Last week, Snowden disclosed to journalists whom he carefully selected, that the National Security Agency has been spying on all Americans, aggregating data about their online activity, their phone calls, and more.

Edward Snowden, until recently, lived a very comfortable life. Formerly employed by the CIA and a defense contractor, he had the opportunity to see the inner workings of one of the world's most comprehensive data mining programs.

During his time as an operative for the CIA, and later as an employee for the Booz Allen Hamilton, a defense contractor for the CIA, Snowden was able to obtain documents that revealed the extent of the domestic surveillance program.

Snowden released his identity this week, speaking to reporters and appearing on camera. He has revealed intimate details about his life, including his Social Security number, his expired diplomatic passport, and other personally identifying information.

Despite his coming out of the woodwork, he has stated that he does not want attention to be focused on him, but rather the programs that he feels are eroding privacy and freedom in the United States.

He has not sought money, nor does he seek notoriety, although he does seek asylum as he fears he may be killed or imprisoned for his disclosure. Snowden insists however, that he has done nothing wrong, and therefore he should not have to fear going public.

Snowden described his motivation saying, "I really want the focus to be on these documents and the debate which I hope this will trigger among citizens around the globe about what kind of world we want to live in. My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them."

Snowden explained what is happening and why it's dangerous to you. "Even if you're not doing anything wrong you're being watched and recorded. And the storage capability of these systems increases every year consistently by orders of magnitude to where it's getting to the point where you don't have to have done anything wrong. You simply have to eventually fall under suspicion from somebody even by a wrong call."

"Then they can use this system to go back in time and scrutinize every decision you've ever made, every friend you've ever discussed something with. And attack you on that basis to sort to derive suspicion from an innocent life and paint anyone in the context of a wrongdoer."

That's a lot of power.

According to his interview with the Guardian, Snowden made his final preparations three weeks ago. He photocopied carefully selected documents. Those documents were chosen specifically to prevent harm to individuals. They do not name specific people, but rather simply disclose the nature of the monitoring program.

According to the Guardian, Snowden has hardly left his room since arriving in Hong Kong. He has worked very diligently, leaking documents to various journalists and waiting for the news to break. He has taken many precautions to ensure his safety, and to prevent from being spied on. He always lines the crack of his door with pillows to prevent anyone from the outside hearing in, and when he logs into his computer, he covers his head and laptop with a large good to prevent any hidden cameras from seeing his password.

Snowden is aware that the most powerful secret agency in the world is looking for him. He is also keenly aware that the Chinese could arrest him to question him for information, or that the CIA could even pay off criminal gangs in Hong Kong to hunt him down and murder him. He told his interviewer, "I don't expect to see home again."

Snowden told reporters he was leaking the documents because he believes what the government is doing is wrong, and has a corrosive effect on privacy and freedom.

Snowden said he first became aware of the program when he started working for the CIA in Switzerland, under the Bush administration. He did not come forward at that time because he said he was hopeful that Obama would pull back some of the emerging policies of the Bush administration that he felt were intrusive. Instead, the Obama administration literally doubled down on Bush's policies. He witnessed things become worse, not better.

Thus disillusioned, he resolved that he would have to make the American public aware of what was being done to them, even if it meant great personal sacrifice on his behalf.

"You can't wait around for someone else to act. I had been looking for leaders, but I realized that leadership is about being the first to act," he told his interviewer.

Stone said that he believes the NSA's surveillance net will soon become irrevocable, and that "what they are doing poses an existential threat to democracy."

For Snowden, the issue is so great that he seems willing to sacrifice his comfortable life: a home in Hawaii, a girlfriend, a generous salary with benefits, and a prestigious job to expose what may be one of the greatest government infringements on personal liberty in history.

What is becoming clear, is that over the past decade, the federal government has continued to encroach on the individual liberties of Americans, in the name of safety. These surveillance programs were all launched as a response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Now, 13 years later, we see that the target of the terrorist attacks wasn't merely the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, but rather reached into the very fabric of American society itself. Our fundamental rights and freedoms have may have been undermined by a security agency and two administrations which have used fear improperly to expand power and reach to an unprecedented degree.

The terrorists may have already progressed toward one of their objectives. They have turned us against ourselves, and we now live in fear, without the consolation of even the protection of privacy.

The words of Benjamin Franklin may prove prophetic, "Any society that would give up a little agree to gain any little security will deserve neither and lose both."

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for October 2014
Peace:
That the Lord may grant peace to those parts of the world most battered by war and violence.
World Mission Day: That World Mission Day may rekindle in every believer zeal for carrying the Gospel into all the world.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Let the Battle begin. China wants to control the Internet. Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Elected secretary-general of the International Telecommunication Union, or ITU at a high-level meeting in South Korea this week, Zhao Houlin told reporters that while everyone supports the idea of freedom of speech, what constitutes censorship is open to ... continue reading


Obama's trusted senior advisor Valerie Jarrett revealed to be a key player in cover-up Watch

Image of Trusted senior advisor to the president, Valerie Jarrett, has been revealed to be a key player in the effort to cover up that Attorney General Eric Holder lied to Congress about the Fast and Furious scandal.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Trusted senior advisor to the president, Valerie Jarrett, has been revealed to be a key player in the effort to cover up that Attorney General Eric Holder lied to Congress about the Fast and Furious scandal. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Recently obtained ... continue reading


Are Ebola patients being 'disappeared?' Several sources warn 'yes' Watch

Image of What is the truth about this deadly disease and its presence in our country?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A news report published yesterday on the sensational website, "Infowars" asks if patients with Ebola are being "disappeared" to prevent panic in the United States. The claim cannot be dismissed because there are several matching reports from across the country. LOS ... continue reading


So this is how they win? Democrats caught red handed in Illinois voter fraud! Watch

Image of President Obama casting his early vote in Illinois for the 2014 midterm.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The city well known for its leftist-leaning voter corruption is at it again, after a Republican candidate found that all his votes were being handed to Democrats. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Jim Moynihan, a Republican state representative candidate, ... continue reading


Blank 'green Obamacards' - up to 34 MILLION - issued prior to promised amnesty Watch

Image of Obama's high numbers of illegal immigration

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Thirty-four million blank work permits and "green cards," which authorizes illegal immigrants to live and work in the United States are currently in the works. In the meantime, the White House prepares to issue an executive order after the November 4 midterm ... continue reading


North Carolina's Tillis stumbles during televised debate Watch

Image of While Thom Tillis has a dominant lead among whites (50 percent to Kay Hagan's 37), he is getting trounced among black voters: just seven percent are in his camp, compared with 83 percent for Hagan.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Congressional candidate State Legislature Speaker Thom Tillis stumbled badly during a televised debate with his Democratic rival Senator Kay Hagen earlier this month. During the televised debate on October 7, Tillis appeared at a loss for words when it came to ... continue reading


Houston: First Amendment Does not apply to Christian ministers? Interview with Keith Fournier Watch

Image of As at the tower of Babel, the confusion spreads until no progress is possible.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Houston officials fired a shot across the bow of Christian ministers, pastors and priests who they think may be encouraging their congregations to oppose the city's controversial "bathroom bill." The request is chilling and violates the First Amendment, but it also ... continue reading


New York law strips 34,500 law-abiding citizens of their lawful right to bear arms with ZERO due process Watch

Image of A New York law could be too restrictive and features virtually no due process.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A New York law may be infringing on the rights of many Americans and undermining mental health efforts in that state. The law, known as the Safe Act, requires, as part of its implementation, for mental health professionals to report the names of any people who could be ... continue reading


Why build a school when you can buy a senator! North Carolina race tops $100 million

Image of America is no longer for sale, it has already been bought.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The nation's most expensive Senate race in history is topping $100 million as the entire nation looks to a critical election in North Carolina. The money poured into the race reveals that elections are coming down to money and outside influencers have substantial ... continue reading


167,000 convicted criminal immigrants walk free within the United States Watch

Image of Deportations from the interior of the United States declined 34 percent this year from last.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With both Islamic State and Ebola posing an imminent threat to the United States through people entering the country illegally, it's distressing to note just how lax the nation's deportation laws have become. According to Breitbart, there remain nearly 167,000 ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ephesians 4:1-6
1 I, the prisoner in the Lord, urge you therefore to ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 24:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
1 [Psalm Of David] To Yahweh belong the earth and all ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 12:54-59
54 He said again to the crowds, 'When you see a cloud ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for October 24th, 2014 Image

St. Anthony Mary Claret
October 24: Claretian archbishop and founder. Anthony was born in Salient in ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter