Glenn Greenwald

'I Have Been to the Darkest Corners of Government, and What They Fear is Light'

To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up to receive the latest updates from TomDispatch.com  here.This essay is a shortened and adapted version of Chapter 1 of Glenn Greenwald’s new book, No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Security State, and appears at TomDispatch.com with the kind permission of Metropolitan Books.

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Glenn Greenwald: The Explosive Day We Revealed Edward Snowden's Identity to the World

On Thursday 6 June 2013, our fifth day in Hong Kong, I went to Edward Snowden's hotel room and he immediately said he had news that was "a bit alarming". An internet-connected security device at the home he shared with his longtime girlfriend in Hawaii had detected that two people from the NSA – a human-resources person and an NSA "police officer" – had come to their house searching for him.

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Obama's NSA 'Reforms' Are Little More Than a PR Attempt to Mollify the Public

In response to political scandal and public outrage, official Washington repeatedly uses the same well-worn tactic. It is the one that has been hauled out over decades in response to many of America's most significant political scandals. Predictably, it is the same one that shaped President Obama's much-heralded Friday speech to announce his proposals for "reforming" the National Security Agency in the wake of seven months of intense worldwide controversy.

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Glenn Greenwald and NY Times' Bill Keller Do Battle Over the Hidden Bias in Corporate News

Editor's Note: Former New York Times reporter David Cay Johnston interviewed Greenwald for Newsweek in an interview filled with powerful quotes and insights about the future of media in a digital era. "Glenn Greenwald, the lawyer-turned-journalist-turned-global headline for his reporting on leaked NSA documents, says there is about to be a revolution that will radically change how news organizations cover governments and other big institutions." 

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Goodbye Free Press? As Europe Erupts Over US Spying, NSA Chief Says Government Must Stop the Media

The most under-discussed aspect of the NSA story has long been its international scope. That all changed this week as both Germany and France exploded with anger over new revelations about pervasive NSAsurveillance on their population and democratically elected leaders.

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Glenn Greenwald: The Death Spiral of Establishment Journalism

Like many people, I've spent years writing and speaking about the lethal power-subservient pathologies plaguing establishment journalism in the west. But this morning, I feel a bit like all of that was wasted time and energy, because this new column by career British journalist Chris Blackhurst - an executive with and, until a few months ago, the editor of the UK daily calling itself "The Independent" - contains a headline that says everything that needs to be said about the sickly state of establishment journalism:

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Obama's Attacks on Journalists are Worst Since Nixon

It's hardly news that the Obama administration is intensely and, in many respects, unprecedentedly hostile toward the news-gathering process. Even the most Obama-friendly journals have warned of what they call "Obama's war on whistleblowers". James Goodale, the former general counsel of the New York Times during its epic fights with the Nixon administration, recently observed that "President Obama wants to criminalize the reporting of national security information" and added: "President Obama will surely pass President Richard Nixon as the worst president ever on issues of national security and press freedom."

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NBC Host's Terrible Iran Propoganda

There is ample reason for skepticism that anything substantial will change in Iran-US relations, beginning with the fact that numerous US political and media figures are vested in the narrative that Iran is an evil threat whose desire for a peaceful resolution must not be trusted (and some hard-line factions in Iran are similarly vested in ongoing conflict). Whatever one's views are on the prospects for improving relations, thefirst direct communications in more than 30 years between the leaders of those two countries is a historically significant event.

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Weird: America's Top Surveillance Czar Had a Star Trek Room Build in His 'Information Dominance Center'

It has been previously reported that the mentality of NSA chief Gen. Keith Alexander is captured by his motto "Collect it All". It's a get-everything approach he pioneered first when aimed at an enemy population in the middle of a war zone in Iraq, one he has now imported onto US soil, aimed at the domestic population and everyone else.

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Secret Deal Allows NSA to Share Americans' Data With Israel

The National Security Agency routinely shares raw intelligence data with Israel without first sifting it to remove information about US citizens, a top-secret document provided to the Guardian by whistleblower Edward Snowden reveals.

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Snowden's Latest Major Leak: The NSA’s Secret Campaign to Crack, Undermine Internet Security

US and British intelligence agencies have successfully cracked much of the online encryption relied upon by hundreds of millions of people to protect the privacy of their personal data, online transactions and emails, according to top-secret documents revealed by former contractor Edward Snowden.

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Glenn Greenwald: Detaining My Partner Was a Failed Attempt at Intimidation

At 6:30 am Sunday my time - 5:30 am on the East Coast of the US - I received a telephone call from someone who identified himself as a "security official at Heathrow airport." He told me that my partner, David Miranda, had been "detained" at the London airport "under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act of 2000."

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Glenn Greenwald: Why Do Mainstream Journalists Worship Military Officials?

In 2006, the New York Times won the Pulitzer Prize for having revealed that the NSA was eavesdropping on Americans without warrants. The reason that was a scandal was because it was illegal under a 30-year-old law that made it a felony, punishable by up to 5 years in prison for each offense, to eavesdrop on Americans without those warrants. Although both the Bush and Obama DOJs ultimately prevented final adjudication by raising claims of secrecy and standing, and the "Look Forward, Not Backward (for powerful elites)" Obama DOJ refused to prosecute the responsible officials, all three federal judges to rule on the substance found that domestic spying to be unconstitutional and in violation of the statute.

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Glenn Greenwald: Americans Are Now More Worried About Civil Liberties Abuses Than Terrorism

Numerous polls taken since our reporting on previously secret NSAactivities first began have strongly suggested major public opinion shifts in how NSA surveillance and privacy are viewed. But a new comprehensive poll released over the weekend weekend by Pew Research provides the most compelling evidence yet of how stark the shift is.

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Democratic Establishment Unmasked as Cheerleaders for NSA Spying

One of the worst myths Democratic partisans love to tell themselves - and everyone else - is that the GOP refuses to support President Obama no matter what he does. Like its close cousin - the massively deceitful inside-DC grievance that the two parties refuse to cooperate on anything - it's hard to overstate how false this Democratic myth is. When it comes to foreign policy, war, assassinations, drones, surveillance, secrecy, and civil liberties, President Obama's most stalwart, enthusiastic defenders are often found among the most radical precincts of the Republican Party.

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Glenn Greenwald: The Crux of the NSA Story in One Phrase: "Collect It All"

The Washington Post this morning has a long profile of Gen. Keith Alexander, director the NSA, and it highlights the crux - the heart and soul - of the NSA stories, the reason Edward Snowden sacrificed his liberty to come forward, and the obvious focal point for any responsible or half-way serious journalists covering this story. It helpfully includes that crux right in the headline, in a single phrase:

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Watch: Glenn Greenwald Delivers the Hard Truth About Spying... On Fox and Friends

This is probably some of the best content ever on Fox News. Glenn Greenwald hardly lets the interviewer get a word in in edgewise, which is probably just as well. Watch the video below: 

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Glenn Greenwald: Top Officials Are Lying to Our Faces About Government Spying

The NSA revelations continue to expose far more than just the ongoing operations of that sprawling and unaccountable spying agency. Let's examine what we have learned this week about the US political and media class and then certain EU leaders.

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Smeared and Threatened: Glenn Greenwald on the Personal Side of Taking on the NSA

When I made the choice to report aggressively on top-secret NSAprograms, I knew that I would inevitably be the target of all sorts of personal attacks and smears. You don't challenge the most powerful state on earth and expect to do so without being attacked. As a superb Guardian editorial noted today: "Those who leak official information will often be denounced, prosecuted or smeared. The more serious the leak, the fiercer the pursuit and the greater the punishment."

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Edward Snowden Q and A: "The US Government Destroyed Any Possibility of a Fair Trial at Home"

It is the interview the world's media organisations have been chasing for more than a week, but instead Edward Snowden is giving Guardian readers the exclusive.

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Meet the Whistleblower Responsible for the Massive NSA Leak

The individual responsible for one of the most significant leaks in US political history is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of the defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Snowden has been working at the National Security Agency for the last four years as an employee of various outside contractors, including Booz Allen and Dell.

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Glenn Greenwald: How the Marriage Equality Movement Is Uprooting Centuries of Religious and Social Dogma

The US Supreme Court this morning is hearing oral argument in two cases challenging the constitutionality of laws that discriminate against same-sex couples. It is expected that the Court will at least strike down the Defense of Marriage Act, as multiple lower courts have done, on the ground that it denies equal government benefits to same-sex couples (such as immigration rights). Over the past two weeks, numerous national Democratic politicians, led by Hillary Clinton and joined by other centrist to conservative senators, announced that they have changed their minds and now support marriage equality, a move tellingly perceived as an attempt to get on "the right side of history". All of that was preceded by a reliably right-wing GOP Senator, Rob Portman, doing the same by citing his gay son. Marriage equality is a position the US president and his party formally endorse, and polls continue to show dramatic increases in public support to the point where it is now a position affirmed by a large majority of Americans. It's conventional wisdom that national gay marriage is inevitable; the tipping point has clearly been reached.

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Why Noam Chomsky Is the Subject of Relentless Attacks by Corporate Media and Establishment 'Intellectuals'

One very common tactic for enforcing political orthodoxies is to malign the character, "style" and even mental health of those who challenge them. The most extreme version of this wasan old Soviet favorite: to declare political dissidents mentally ill and put them in hospitals. In the US, those who take even the tiniest steps outside of political convention are instantly decreed "crazy", as happened to the 2002 anti-war version of Howard Dean and the current iteration of Ron Paul (in most cases, what is actually "crazy" are the political orthodoxiesthis tactic seeks to shield from challenge).

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Glenn Greenwald: Meet the Journalist Rotting in Prison for Crossing the FBI

Aaron's Swartz's suicide in January triggered waves of indignation, and rightly so. He faced multiple felony counts and years in prison for what were, at worst, trivial transgressions of law. But his prosecution revealed the excess of both anti-hacking criminal statutes, particularly the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), and the fixation of federal prosecutors on severely punishing all forms of activism that challenge the power of the government and related entities to control the flow of information on the internet. Part of what drove the intense reaction to Swartz's death was how sympathetic of a figure he was, but as noted by Orin Kerr, a former federal prosecutor in the DOJ's computer crimes unit and now a law professor at GWU, what was done to Swartz is anything but unusual, and the reaction to his death will be meaningful only if channeled to protest other similar cases of prosecutorial abuse:

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Glenn Greenwald: Remember When Obama Vowed to Protect Whistleblowers?

When Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, his pledges of openness and transparency were not ancillary to his campaign but central to it. Herepeatedly denounced the Bush administration as "one of the most secretive administrations in our nation's history", saying that "it is no coincidence" that such a secrecy-obsessed presidency "has favored special interests and pursued policies that could not stand up to the sunlight." He vowed: "as president, I'm going to change that." In a widely heralded 2007 speech on transparency, he actually claimed that this value shaped his life purpose:

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The NY Times and Obama Officials Collaborate to Prosecute a US Citizen After He Was Executed

The New York Times and the Obama administration have created a disturbing collaborative pattern that asserted itself again on Sunday with the paper's long article purporting to describe the events leading up to the execution by the CIA of US citizen Anwar Awlaki. Time and again, the Obama administration shrouds what it does with complete secrecy, and then uses that secrecy to avoid judicial review of its actions and/or compelled statutory disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act. "Oh, we're so sorry", says the Obama DOJ, "but we cannot have courts deciding if what we did is legal, nor ordering us to disclose information under FOIA, because these programs are so very secret that any disclosure would seriously jeopardize national security."

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Glenn Greenwald: Why the Obama Administration's Persecution of Bradley Manning Should Terrify Us All

The following is a Democracy Now! interview with Glenn Greenwald on the terrifying persecution of Bradley Manning. 

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Bradley Manning: The Face of Heroism

In December, 2011, I wrote an Op-Ed in the Guardian arguing that if Bradley Manning did what he is accused of doing, then he is a consummate hero, and deserves a medal and our collective gratitude, not decades in prison. At his court-martial proceeding this afternoon in Fort Meade, Manning, as the Guaridan's Ed Pilkington reports, pleaded guilty to having been the source of the most significant leaks to WikiLeaks. He also pleaded not guilty to 12 of the 22 counts, including the most serious - the capital offense of "aiding and abetting the enemy", which could send him to prison for life - on the ground that nothing he did was intended to nor did it result in harm to US national security. The US government will now almost certainly proceed with its attempt to prosecute him on those remaining counts.

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Obama Officials Refuse to Say If They Believe They Can Assassinate American Citizens on US Soil

The Justice Department "white paper" purporting to authorize Obama's power to extrajudicially execute US citizens was leaked three weeks ago. Since then, the administration - including the president himself and his nominee to lead the CIA, John Brennan - has been repeatedly asked whether this authority extends to US soil, i.e., whether the president has the right to execute US citizens on US soil without charges. In each instance, they have refused to answer.

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Glenn Greenwald: How Can Anyone Still Believe That America Is the Greatest Country on Earth?

Last week, North Korea tested a nuclear weapon, and the US - the country with the world's largest stockpile of that weapon and the only one in history to use it - led the condemnation (US allies with large nuclear stockpiles, such as Britain and Israel, vocally joined in). Responding to unnamed commentators who apparently noted this contradiction, National Review's Charles Cooke voiced these two assertions:

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Lawmakers Threaten Funding of Brooklyn College for Hosting Event on Campaign Against Israel

The Israel-Palestine conflict is one of many issues often sparking controversy on college campuses. But in what could be a first, a showdown over a public event featuring a Palestinian author and a Jewish-American professor is leading to threats of one school losing its funding. It’s happening right here in New York City.

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