Sunday, June 9, 2013

Whistleblower Edward Snowden: "I have No Regrets"

Meet the defense contractor turned whistleblower on the federal government’s massive surveillance scheme 

Edward Snowden provided key information to The Guardian. He sacrificed a $200,000 job, a girlfriend and a house in Hawaii and is now hiding out in Hong Kong.

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Edward Snowden, a defense contractor, has fled to Hong Kong to avoid being caught for blowing the whistle on U.S. surveillance.

WWW.GUARDIAN.CO.UK

Edward Snowden, a defense contractor, has fled to Hong Kong to avoid being caught for blowing the whistle on U.S. surveillance.

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The whistleblower behind the leaks of top secret National Security Agency documents is a 29-year-old defense contractor now holed up in Hong Kong.
Edward Snowden left behind a $200,000 gig with Booz Allen Hamilton, a girlfriend and a home in Hawaii to alert the world to what he sees as government run amok.

RELATED: NSA: FINDER AND KEEPER OF COUNTLESS SECRETS

“I’m willing to sacrifice all of that because I can't in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building," Snowden told the Guardian.
The British newspaper broke the story last week with the revelation that the U.S. government had ordered Verizon to hand over data about all the phone calls made on its network. Follow-up reports revealed that other carriers were providing such information to the government.

RELATED: SPY PROGRAMS RAISE MANY QUESTIONS, EVEN IF LEGAL
Snowden said he chose Hong Kong because it has a “spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent.”

WWW.GUARDIAN.CO.UK

Snowden said he chose Hong Kong because it has a “spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent.”

And a subsequent Snowden leak revealed a program dubbed Prism, which allows the NSA direct access to the servers of nine major Internet companies.
Another leak revealed the stunning scale of NSA surveillance — the agency processed 3 billion pieces of intelligence in a one-month period this year.

RELATED: INTELLIGENCE CHIEF JAMES CLAPPER DEFENDS INTERNET SPYING PROGRAM

Snowden, who was raised in Elizabeth City, N.C., said he took refuge in Hong Kong in the hope that the government there will be sympathetic to his cause. He seals the doors of his hotel room with pillows, hoping to prevent eavesdropping.
He worries that the CIA could capture him and take him back to the U.S. to face charges. Other than the stress his decision will cause his family, he said he has no regrets.

RELATED: ‘NOBODY’S LISTENING TO YOUR PHONE CALLS’: OBAMA

"I don't see myself as a hero because what I'm doing is self-interested," he said. "I don't want to live in a world where there's no privacy and therefore no room for intellectual exploration and creativity."
sbrown@nydailynews.com


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