Spying scandal update

This video is called Amnesty International on Edward Snowden.

By Eric London:

Snowden denounces US campaign of threats and aggression

13 July 2013

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden met with human rights officials in Sheremetyevo airport in Moscow yesterday to consider his options for safe asylum, while the Obama administration intensified its campaign of international thuggery against the former Booz Allen Hamilton contractor.

Snowden, who has forced to seek refuge for weeks in an airport transit zone, announced that he had accepted asylum offers from Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador. He also announced that he had requested temporary asylum in Russia in order to facilitate passage to Latin America, which the US government has relentlessly blocked.

In his remarks, the young whistleblower issued a defiant defense of his actions and made a damning appraisal of the “historically disproportionate aggression” brought against him by the Obama administration.

“I believe in the principle declared at Nuremburg in 1945,” Snowden said in a statement released after meeting with human rights organizations. “Individuals have international duties which transcend the national obligations of obedience. Therefore individual citizens have the duty to violate domestic laws to prevent crimes against peace and humanity from occurring.”

“That moral decision to tell the public about spying that affects all of us has been costly, but it was the right thing to do and I have no regrets,” he added.

Snowden noted that “[t]he 4th and 5th Amendments to the Constitution of my country, Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and numerous statutes and treaties forbid such systems of massive, pervasive surveillance.” He framed the Obama administration’s relentless campaign to bully other nations with threats of retribution as an assault on democratic rights.

“Since [the revelations were made public], the government and intelligence services of the United States of America have attempted to make an example of me, a warning to all others who might speak out as I have. I have been made stateless and hounded for my act of political expression. The United States Government has placed me on no-fly lists. It demanded Hong Kong return me outside of the framework of its laws, in direct violation of the principle of non-refoulement—the law of nations. It has threatened with sanctions countries who would stand up for my human rights and the UN asylum system. It has even taken the unprecedented step of ordering military allies to ground a Latin American president’s plane in search for a political refugee.

“These dangerous escalations represent a threat not just to the dignity of Latin America, but to the basic rights shared by every person, every nation, to live free from persecution, and to seek and enjoy asylum.”

Snowden’s remarks come amidst an intensification of the US government’s attempts to imprison—and possibly kill—the young whistleblower.

With visible irritation, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said yesterday that Snowden “is not a whistleblower, he is not a human rights activist. He is wanted on a series of serious criminal charges.”

Psaki’s comments echoed those made earlier by White House Spokesman Jay Carney, who said that “Mr. Snowden is not a human rights activist or a dissident,” but rather, a criminal on-the-lam.

The mafia-boss character of the US hunt for Snowden was made clear in an account published by Wikileaks yesterday, in which a Human Rights Watch representative reportedly “had received a call from the US Ambassador to Russia [Michael McFaul], who asked her to relay to Mr. Snowden that the US Government does not categorize Mr. Snowden as a whistleblower and that he has broken United States law.”

The US government’s intensifying campaign against Snowden’s safety and right to asylum runs counter to the mass sympathy that Snowden has won from the population of the world.

Despite the mobilization of the entire political establishment against Snowden, a Quinnipiac University poll released recently revealed that 55 percent of Americans consider Snowden a whistleblower, against only 35 percent who said he is a traitor. Support for Snowden is overwhelming amongst young people, with 68 percent saying they regard him as a whistleblower.

Yet the relentless pursuit of Snowden continues.

Newly released documents show that Microsoft worked with the NSA to break the company’s own encryption, ensuring the fullest possible access for the agency to its data: here.

Angela Merkel tells Die Zeit that she stands behind the US spying in Germany and throughout the world: here.

10 thoughts on “Spying scandal update

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