An Ol' Broad's Ramblings
Holed up in Moscow airport for the past three weeks, Edward Snowden has only had a limited impact on the political debate about surveillance in the US that he wanted to ignite.
Yet the self-confessed National Security Agency leaker has managed to orchestrate a very different political phenomenon: the biggest bout of anti-Americanism since the Iraq war.
When he first revealed his identity a month ago while in Hong Kong, Mr Snowden used selective disclosures about US global surveillance to rally public opinion in China and Russia. Since then, he has managed to create uproar in Europe with information about the bugging of EU offices and over the past week he has created a new international stir in Latin America.
According to reports this week in the Brazilian newspaper O Globo based on documents provided by the 30-year-old former NSA contractor, the US has been using telecoms infrastructure in Brazil to absorb huge volumes of communications and to spy on governments in the region.
I’ve had several reactions to Snowden. First, naturally, I was royally pissed that my own government would spy on her citizens. You know, the ones that pay their salaries. I knew they were checking me out by the many odd visits I noticed in my stat program. And I was rather grateful someone had the cajones to step forward to inform the public just what was going on. No, I didn’t see the guy as a true hero, but I wasn’t all bent out of shape as some talking heads seemed to be, but maybe they knew something I didn’t.
However, them more I have learned, the more pissed off I am, not so much at the government, which I am, but at this kid who has put American lives in danger. From the beginning, I was a bit disturbed that he fled to China, of all places, to leak the initial information. Now he’s sitting in Russia, not exactly one of our best buds, looking for asylum so he can escape to another country that isn’t exactly on our “best bud” list. Let’s put it this way: I have “evolved” to the point I wouldn’t mind a front row seat for the execution.
I’m not naive enough to think we don’t keep tabs on other countries, even our friends. Needing to know what’s going on is paramount to American safety. However, the more I learn about the who, what, and where, I am more than a little disturbed at the actions of our government.
Honestly, I don’t give a flying flip if we’re spying on China, Russia, etc. They spy on us as well. And I’m not even all that bothered that we are keeping an eye on our allies, since, yes, they are keeping an eye on us too. We’d be downright stupid if we didn’t try to learn what is happening in countries that are being over run by Muslims, as in the case with Great Britain. Although, considering this administrations fondness for said muzzies, I’m surprised he’d even authorize such actions.
I’m a bit torn, to say the least. Yes, we need intelligence, but no, we don’t have to behave like the arrogant pricks that so much of the world believes us to be. I would like to remind those nations that the U.S. people have done more to promote liberty around the world that any other nation in the world.
The American people are the ones who step up first when there is a disaster, anywhere on the planet, and give from their hearts. We even give to those we know hate us, not because we have to, but because we care about other human beings, no matter their nationality, their government’s actions towards others, the color, the religion, their politics. We are a people who are generous to a fault.
Yes, we do elect, more or less, the jackwagons in charge, but after they are in office, we have no control over the people they appoint and are approved. Most of the time, those paying attention, are appalled at the actions of the bloated bureaucracies. But I will NOT apologize for being an American. EVER!
As for Snowden, I do believe he needs to be brought back, and put on trial for treason. Perhaps it was not his intent to put American lives in danger…I don’t know…but he has. He has committed a serious crime, and must be held accountable for his actions. If he had stayed, leaked the info about the NSA spying on our citizens, I don’t feel the crime would be as serious. But since he has shared more than too much information with the world, I see his actions as treason.
We’ve had several dangerous administrations, but this one takes the cake due to the technology we now have available. Obama can claim he didn’t know anything, which he does on a regular basis, but as the ‘leader’, it is HIS responsibility what HIS administration does, or does not do. As Truman said, “The buck stops here!”
So, yes, I am torn. Whistle blowing is one thing, treason is quite another altogether.