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How Snowden Did an End Run Around the NSA and the Obama Administration

Written by Gary North on June 11, 2013

Edward Snowden is now the talk of the town — and the world. His story on the NSA’s PRISM spying system has given exposure to a story that NSA expert James Bamford had exposed in 2008, but which no one in the mainstream media bothered to promote.

Snowden went to the Washington Post first, but when the Post waffled, he dropped them and went to Glenn Greenwald, a pro-civil rights lawyer who lives in Brazil and writes for The Guardian, a British newspaper/website. Greenwald wrote up the story as Snowden gave it to him, thereby scooping the world. He gets 100% credit, as does The Guardian. The Washington Post gets also-ran status.

These days, a leaker with a story can get his story out his way. There is always a journalist somewhere who will run it. If it’s in a major publication, which The Guardian is, the story will get coverage.

A leaker no longer has to do it anyone else’s way. He can do it his way.

This has put governments on the defensive. Because the Web acknowledges no borders, a story gets picked up and sent around irrespective of where it was published. The Guardian does not operate in the USA. It is not in the shadow of the U.S. government. It owes the U.S. government nothing. It is not dependent in any way on the U.S. government. So, the Administration’s spin-meisters have no leverage over The Guardian.

This is the age of the leakers. They can get their stories out to the public by doing an end run around their nation’s fearful mainstream media.

There are no more national gatekeepers. If a newspaper reporter wants a scoop, he will have to do it the leaker’s way — otherwise, he will be an also-ran.

It’s not 1974 any more. All the President’s Men was a good yarn — for 1974. Not today. Today, Woodward and Bernstein would be scooped by a dozen offshore media outlets.

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36 thoughts on “How Snowden Did an End Run Around the NSA and the Obama Administration

  1. Rabelrouser says:

    So, is Snowden the story, or is the content of what he revealed the story?
    He will be attacked and hunted, villified and used as a means to deflect the content of what is the truth of the matter. All in an effort to get the general public to forget the fact that they are being watched and tracked every moment of every day. That, deception by deflection, has become the means by which truth is washed away from the public minds and eliminated from being a reality that can and will cause them to be subjected to a "pre-approved" narrative.
    The fact of their being spyed upon, becomes irrelevent, as does the fact that any information stored can, ( and will ) be used to control their actions in the future. That they have no protection from government, and can be harrassed into compliance by those agencies now being used to control their speech and their Constitutional Rights.
    Snowden brought to light a truth that will fade because the narrative is being pushed as the agenda of a controling government, and the people remain silent because they are afraid of being treated as they know he will be. So, who really wins?

  2. Rabelrouser says:

    ANSWER: They do!

  3. What else could be learned by people willing to tell us the truth….why do they think people will cover up their lies…….illegal is illegal no matter who does it…..our government is illegal.

  4. I find it ironic how this corrupted Government that we have can leak out important info to score political points as Obama and his cronies did and that's ok but if someone like Snowden who tried to alert the American people about how our own Government is snooping on the citizens and breaking the law, not upholding the constitution then they are called traitors. I find it a double standard.. Those who in Washington who are calling for Snowden a traitor should not be re-elected. That is why our Founding Fathers created the BILL OF RIGHTS AND THE CONSTITUTION to prevent the Government from over reaching its power.

  5. Why are we so concerned with this? Will someone cause us to be spied on by tapping our phones, or reading our e-mails?
    Are we afraid the IRS will unfairly use its power to help their favorite political views? Ae we afraid the the government will start killing Americans with guns or drones? Are we afraid the the media might start telling the truth instead of repeating the talking points of thugs and liars? You should be able to see that we really need the kind of protection that the Executive and legislative branches of government is doing behind our backs.

  6. I don’t understand where Edward Snowden revealed anything new! If you have heard of the magazine “Wired” April 2012 there was a 10 page article on “The Super Spy Center” in Utah over 1,000,000 sq. ft of space for computers to spy on THE WHOLE World as it says in the article. It even shows charts of how it all comes together with the central being The Super Spy Center and getting all the data from NASA’s code breakers, data-miners, satellites, NSA etc. It shows pictures and gives a lot of information about the facility. How Verizon, and AT&T were involved in the formation of the center. A former NSA official held his thumb and forefinger close together: “We are that far from a turnkey totalitarian state.” The library carries a copy but will not let you see it it is called secured.

  7. WhatTheHeck says:

    Snowden is a HERO, he knew he was putting his life on the line by exposing the government, He put nobody but himself in physical danger, but he probley wrecked some people in governments political wellbeing.

  8. Good, thoughtful commentary, Rouser.

  9. Sorry, Don–I don't think the readership here got your satire. I pushed your score up to zero with my thumbs up.

  10. Frankly, I don't see where Snowden's going to Iceland (if it works out that way) will make him any safer. The CIA, NSA, etc. have operatives, or can put operatives, anywhere. He can be "suicided" anywhere on the globe.

  11. cbanalyst says:

    It's really disgusting that our President has sunk so low!

  12. desierasmus says:

    Congratulations, you're grasping how the "Dept of Justice" has become the "Dept of Just Us". The rest of your post, however, reveals a lot more grasping needed. So the current "bad guys" don't get re-elected, and then . . . what prevents your favorite "good guys" from becoming the new "bad guys"? If you want to have meaningful change in the governance of our polity, an improved electorate is the first step, and that's a multi-generational project, not something that will be changed by "the next election". That's not to say that throwing the current bad guys out is a totally meaningless activity… but don't expect too much even if the effort succeeds, and don't make that the highest priority.

  13. desierasmus says:

    I get the satire, which reminds me a bit of a humorous sign being sold among other "small business decoration" signs at a local summer street fair I visited last month:
    "We cheat the other guy and pass on the savings to you. Thanks for your patronage."
    That's a good summary of the "logic" behind the generally successful bribery of a larecenous-hearted electorate with their own wealth that typifies our political terrain – the illusion that voters can steal more effectively through the ballot box than they can on their own by electing more clever thieves than themselves to pilfer their neighbor's purse on their behalf. There is no honor among thieves, despite their pretense to it from time to time, but there's plenty of self-delusion in their midst.

  14. Charles17121 says:

    david , You mean Breitbarted don't you ? Or has everyone forgotten what happen to Andrew Breitbart when he said he was going to expose the fraud and usurper barack hussein obama ?

  15. desierasmus says:

    Yes, and it's amusing how some of his detractors focus on his lack of education credentials. Horrors! A high school and college DROPOUT! Who does he think he is, anyway, spilling the beans on his generous and too trustworthy security organ superiors? How could they have been such fools as to trust this obvious ner-do-well with such pathetic credentials!

    Perhaps his lack of such credentials is part of the reason he had the clarity of mind and strength of character to carefully, and judiciously blow the whistle on the apparatus of the surveillance state in such a deft manner. Many more good examples of people with the same "lack of credentials" doing significant things: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbhQ7aepvkg expanded into a book: http://antioligarch.files.wordpress.com/2012/03/j… – Thank you Ed Snowden, native of Elizabeth City, NC, who understood clearly that "no good deed goes unpunished" but went ahead and acted anyway.

  16. Jeanne Stotler says:

    MSM has been covering for Obama since before h was elected Senator, if not they would have screamed for his credentials. Now they can't admit they were wrong and go to every end to keep facts under cover. Just remember we are the Majority being led by the minority. NOW Is the time to wake up, stand up and be heard no more ice guy, no ore hiding behind good manners while those without manners trample all over our rights. We have a voice, just as those did in the 1700's, we just need to use it, FIGHT BACK , not with name calling but through the legal system, and the polls, PROTECT OUR RIGHTS , we've got lo f good people on our side, Sean Hannity, David Limbaugh, ark Levin, WIlkow, Chuch and those who work for them. STAND UP AMERICANS FIGHT FOR A NEW INDEPENDENCE.

  17. jmildred says:

    So true, so true. It took the progressive left generations to get the public "educated" (aka brainwashed) to accept their own servitude; and it will take generations to educate – using true and factual history and logic – to undo the damage. It's way to easy to blame everything on Obama, and just get rid of him. He and his cohorts are merely taking advantage of the mental state prevalent in these United States of America after one hundred years of gradual conditioning of the populace.

  18. David Jones says:

    Jesus was chasised by the fiarasies for his credentials too

  19. Zionist Israel controls DC. Israel treats the US tax payer like a whore.

  20. 1-Eddie-1 says:

    Go to whitehouse.gov and sign the petition for Edward Snowden. Mr. Snowden is a national hero on the moral front. Our government officials are the criminals that have violated our rights.

  21. The NSA has been operating since Sept. 11. Strange how all the Fox News Conservatives come out of the woodwork during Obama's Presidency and were quiet during Bush Jr.'s. Providing the private communication businesses have agreed to share their services with the government then there's no violation of the 4th Amendment.

  22. If Snowden is a Christian, he wins. You see, God is just. And no matter how the evil of the world treat you, God has a promise —–YOU WIN. Come be with Me.


  23. Rabelrouser says:

    John15: 18-19 If the world hate you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you
    If you belonged to the world, the world would treat you with affection and would love you as one of its own. But because you are not of the world ( no longer one with it) but I have chosen you out of the world, the world hates you.

    Snowden decided to take on a terrible wrong and will suffer because of it; He brought forth a truth that was being hidden for its own nefarious purposes. Should the people finally decide what is good in this matter, and not be mentally manipulated by deception of deflection, then they too will stand for a truth. But then they have to understand truth first, without that understanding they will accept any "plausable deniability / accountability" that is given to them.
    They have to have a basis of truth to know truth, without that only supposition will be their guide; and their gullible down fall.

  24. Yeah, "Just US" radical blacks and antiAmerican Islamicists. The Unions found this out way too late.

  25. Obama couldn't sink. He was all the way donw in the gutter the day he accepted Bill Ayres' offer of starting his political career with a fundraiser at the home of a radical bomber and cop-killer no different from the Boston bomers.

  26. Rabelrouser says:

    John15: 20-21 Remember that I told you,A servant is not greater than his master. If they persecuted Me, theey will persecute you: if they kept My word and obeyed My teachings, they willalso keep and obey yours.

    But they will do all this to you (inflict all this suffering upon you) because of (your bearing) My name and on My account, for they do not know or understand the One Who sent ME.

    So if we speak the truth, and take a stand for the truth, we too will face the same things that any other person who reveals the truth will suffer. Maybe this is why people are afraid to come forward, to voice their opposition to blatant travesties of the truth.
    Being attacked for speaking up is more important than suffering in silence. As the old military saying goes: When you are taking flack (return fire) you know you are on target.

  27. dennis sullivan says:

    Why is it a crime when Snowden does it but not when high government officials do the same except they keep it secret. I thought that one of the purposes of our form of government was so that they could not operate in secret. If Snowden deserves a day in prison, many in high places deserve Hell for their actions against the freedom many have died to preserve.

  28. Seymour Kleerly says:

    Conservatives are immune to hypocrisy or ignorance is bliss.

  29. Gil, you're working from an outdated irrelevant point of view. You speak as if "conservative" Faux News and "liberal" CNN are on different teams. You talk as if "liberal" Chuck Schumer and "conservative" Lindsey Graham are opponents.

    The corporate owned media, the US Congress and whoever-is-currently-sitting-in-that-big-swivel-chair-inthe-Oval-Office are ALL on the same side: the federal government against the American people.

  30. 9/11 was the biggest crisis of all: they didn't let it go to waste.

  31. ANTICRIME says:

    IT WOULD ONLY PROVE to the world that HE WAS RIGHT-ON!!!!!
    Bottom Line; when a person, like Snowden, gains HIGH PUBLICITY the forces of evil would rather use Commie-methods of DISCREADITING them rather than death, which would only create MORE BELIEVERS & FOLLOWERS!!!

  32. ANTICRIME says:

    WHAT "PRESIDENT"????????!

  33. The whole damn adminsitration is illegal shut it down!!

  34. With all these scandals why is Obama still in the driver's seat???????

  35. Yeah! He died suddenly!!

  36. Seymour Kleerly says:

    Fox News will NEVER concede a point to Liberalism.