NSA spying and the 2013 revelations of Edward Snowden

Australia: Documents prove former Labor government knew about PRISM

By Richard Phillips, 17 October 2013

Labor’s response to Edward Snowden’s revelations was to stonewall while pushing to give Australian intelligence agencies wider powers.

NSA “harvesting” electronic address books and contact lists

By Thomas Gaist, 16 October 2013

New documents released by Edward Snowden have exposed yet another aspect of the US government's vast surveillance operations.

Watchdog group issues damning report on Obama administration’s war on journalists and whistleblowers

By Thomas Gaist, 14 October 2013

A report published by the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) details the administration’s systematic intimidation of critics and reporters.

Edward Snowden and Guardian witch-hunted by UK government, MI5 and media

By Robert Stevens, 14 October 2013

The witch-hunt against Edward Snowden and the Guardian are a blatant attempt to criminalise any media coverage, even slightly critical of the spy agencies, as a part of overall plans to clamp down on press freedoms.

Canada spied on Brazil’s government as part of global commercial espionage campaign

By Keith Jones, 9 October 2013

The government is seeking to contain the fallout from the revelation, arising from documents leaked by whistleblower Ed Snowden.

New support for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden

9 October 2013

Three photojournalists and Australian actor speak out in defence of US whistleblower.

German state intelligence agency spies on journalists

By Sven Heymann, 7 October 2013

The Lower Saxony Intelligence Agency spied on journalists and deleted its files when the matter became public.

Maduro expels US officials as Venezuela’s economic crisis deepens

By Bill Van Auken, 2 October 2013

President Maduro ordered the expulsion of three US embassy officials, charging them with financing the “sabotage” of the country’s electrical system and its economy.

NSA using metadata to compile “social network diagrams” on Americans

By Thomas Gaist, 30 September 2013

Files released by Edward Snowden show that the NSA uses bulk communications metadata to generate maps of Americans’ personal associations and social interactions.

CSEC’s spying: What Canada’s elite don’t want the public to know

By Ed Patrick, 28 September 2013

The government, opposition and corporate media are determined to keep Canadians in the dark about the activities of CSEC, the Canadian counterpart and partner of the NSA.

German domestic intelligence agency supplies data to NSA

By Sven Heymann, 25 September 2013

Germany’s domestic intelligence service cooperates closely with British and American spy agencies.

Obama’s NSA review panel: An arm of the national security apparatus

By Eric London, 24 September 2013

The panel members are for the most part Democratic Party insiders with close ties to the surveillance apparatus.

“Truth will out”—Filmmaker Deepa Mehta defends Edward Snowden

By Richard Phillips, 24 September 2013

Mehta praises American whistleblowers Snowden and Manning while denouncing the US-led assault on basic democratic rights.

British artist pays tribute to Edward Snowden

By Robert Stevens, 24 September 2013

Sarah Lynn Mayhew (aka SLM) is the Manchester-based artist responsible for the street art “Truth is Coming and Cannot be Stopped,” in celebration of the US whistle-blower Edward Snowden.

FISA court releases document defending NSA bulk metadata collection

By Thomas Gaist, 21 September 2013

An opinion published by the FISA court this week argued that mass collection of telephone data does not violate the Fourth Amendment.

Citing Snowden leaks, FISA judge orders release of rulings authorizing domestic surveillance

By Thomas Gaist, 16 September 2013

A number of documents that detail the FISA court’s interpretation of Patriot Act provisions for data collection on US citizens are set for release pending government review.

“Project 6”: Joint German/US spy program

By Sven Heymann, 14 September 2013

For years the German intelligence agencies ran a secret joint operation with the CIA codenamed Project 6.

FISA records document “daily violations” by government spy agencies

By Tom Carter, 14 September 2013

FISA court records declassified on Tuesday show that government spy agencies systematically violated court orders in order to illegally access Americans’ phone data, while lying in court as to the extent of their activities.

NSA feeds raw intelligence data to Israel

By Bill Van Auken, 13 September 2013

A secret memo reveals that the NSA is funneling raw intelligence data, including information from intercepted communications of US citizens, to Israeli intelligence.

Spying on Brazilian oil company Petrobras exposed

By Bill Van Auken, 13 September 2013

Top secret documents released by ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden have exposed the agency’s spying on Brazil’s state-owned Petrobras, the fourth largest oil company in the world.

Obama administration had secret court lift restrictions on domestic spying

By Andre Damon, 9 September 2013

In 2011, a secret surveillance court authorized the NSA to obtain the content of Americans’ emails and phone calls.

Snowden documents reveal NSA operation to break encryption codes

By Jerry White, 6 September 2013

The files show how the National Security Agency spies on the world’s population, running roughshod over privacy rights.

Popular legal blog shuts down over US government spying

By Tom Carter, 4 September 2013

Law and technology blog Groklaw announced that it would close down over concerns that its emails were being accessed and monitored by the US government.

US spied on presidents of Brazil, Mexico, documents from Snowden reveal

By Tom Eley, 3 September 2013

Documents leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden reveal that the NSA specifically targeted for surveillance leaders of the two largest Latin American countries.

A letter from film producer Tony Garnett

“Edward Snowden has shone a light into the secret activities of the State”

2 September 2013

The following comment in defence of former National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden was submitted to the World Socialist Web Site by film producer and author Tony Garnett.

New Snowden revelation details vast US intelligence “black budget”

By Thomas Gaist, 31 August 2013

The secret intelligence budget summary leaked by Edward Snowden documents $52.6 billion of US government outlays to various agencies.

Facebook releases report on requests from governments for information on users

By Don Knowland, 30 August 2013

Facebook has issued a report showing tens of thousands of requests from governments around the world for information on Facebook users

Actor Matt Damon defends whistle-blower Edward Snowden

By David Walsh, 30 August 2013

Matt Damon, one of the most popular film actors currently working, told a television host last week that he supported the whistle-blower who has lifted the lid on the criminal activities of the NSA.

Britain’s Independent newspaper defends state spying apparatus

By Robert Stevens, 28 August 2013

A column by Independent columnist Kim Sengupta is a naked defence of the mass spying operations of the British government.

Canada: Opposition and media abet cover-up of state spying

By Keith Jones, 28 August 2013

By refusing to challenge its lies, half-truths and obfuscation, the opposition parties and the media have abetted the Conservative government’s cover-up of state spying on Canadians.

David Miranda’s detention and the raid on Britain’s Guardian newspaper

By Julie Hyland, 24 August 2013

Events of the last week provide chilling confirmation of the police state apparatus built up by successive British governments on the pretext of the “war on terror.”

Outgoing FBI director uses fear-mongering to defend spying programs

By Thomas Gaist, 24 August 2013

In an interview with CNN, FBI director Robert Mueller sought to justify the NSA surveillance programs by warning of new terrorist threats around the world.

Obama chooses ex-intelligence officials for “panel of experts” to review surveillance programs

By Thomas Gaist, 24 August 2013

Obama’s panel consists of individuals whose allegiance to the national security state is unquestioned.

The American “left” and Edward Snowden

By Eric London, 24 August 2013

The American “left” exposes its contempt for democratic rights in its coverage of the Snowden revelations and the response of the Obama administration.

UK public meeting in Oxford:

Defend whistleblower Edward Snowden!

The socialist answer to the assault on democratic rights

24 August 2013

The Socialist Equality Party in the UK is holding a meeting in Oxford in defence of the US whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Declassified secret rulings found NSA spying program unconstitutional

By Thomas Gaist, 22 August 2013

Declassified documents from the secret surveillance court show consistent violation of regulations governing surveillance by the NSA.

US government embedding facial recognition technology in surveillance system

By Thomas Gaist, 22 August 2013

The Department of Homeland Security's "crowd-scanning project" was tested for the first time last fall

Detention of Glenn Greenwald’s partner approved at highest levels of US and UK governments

By Thomas Gaist and Joseph Kishore, 21 August 2013

A US security official has acknowledged that a central purpose of the detention of David Miranda was to send a message to all those seeking to expose evidence of government spying programs.

Guardian editor says newspaper forced to destroy hard drives

By Thomas Gaist, 21 August 2013

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger has warned that the UK wants “to scoop up everything, to store it all, and to master the internet,” as British authorities defended the detention of David Miranda.

US prosecutors: Manning “does not deserve the mercy of a court of law”

By Eric London, 21 August 2013

Closing arguments were made in the sentencing hearings of whistleblower Bradley Manning yesterday.

The detention of David Miranda and the “war on terror”

By Joseph Kishore, 20 August 2013

The detention and interrogation of the partner of Glenn Greenwald makes clear that the build-up of police powers since 9/11 has been directed not against terrorism, but against political opposition to the reactionary policies of the ruling class.

Outcry over detention of Glenn Greenwald’s partner under terrorism legislation

By Robert Stevens, 20 August 2013

Opposition is growing internationally to the detention of David Miranda, the partner of Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald, under British counter-terrorism laws.

Obama, the secrets of the state, and the persecution of Edward Snowden

By David North, 20 August 2013

All constitutional issues are seen by Obama not as matters of legal substance but, rather, merely problems of public perception. It is not the actions of the state that need to be changed, but the perceptions of the American people.

New revelations expose fraud of congressional, court oversight of NSA spying

By Thomas Gaist, 17 August 2013

New documents published Friday by the Washington Post further expose government lies about the NSA’s mass surveillance programs.

FISA court relies on information supplied by NSA, top judge admits

By Eric London, 17 August 2013

Friday’s statement by the chief Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court judge underscores the fraudulent character of the court’s supposedly “robust” oversight of NSA spying.

German chancellor’s office declares end to NSA spying affair

By Sven Heymanns and Peter Schwarz, 17 August 2013

New evidence shows that German intelligence services collaborate with the NSA in deadly drone attacks.

Journalist Michael Hastings was investigating CIA director at time of deadly crash

By Matthew MacEgan, 16 August 2013

The widow of investigative journalist Michael Hastings confirmed that CIA Director John Brennan was the target of Hastings’ next exposé project.

Friedman of the Times demands Edward Snowden turn himself in

By Bill Van Auken, 16 August 2013

The New York Times columnist assures the former NSA contractor that the US system “will not allow an authentic whistle-blower to be unfairly punished.”

Obama assigns intelligence director to form “independent” panel on NSA surveillance

By Thomas Gaist, 15 August 2013

The fact that Obama has chosen Clapper to hand pick the members of the panel exposes as a fraud his pretense of making the programs more “transparent” and insuring against “abuses.”

Australian film directors defend Edward Snowden

By Richard Phillips, 15 August 2013

Independent filmmakers raise their voices against Washington’s witch-hunt of the former NSA contractor.

Obama’s white paper on NSA spying

By Tom Carter and Joseph Kishore, 13 August 2013

The arguments advanced by the white paper are in conflict not only with the letter of the Constitution, but its entire spirit.

FBI suspected of cyber-attack on anonymous web-hosting and email services

By Mark Blackwood, 12 August 2013

Malicious software, thought to have originated from the FBI and able to harvest private data, has been found in web sites hosted anonymously by the Freedom Hosting Company.

Lavabit email shuts down after refusing to comply with “crimes against the American people”

By Steve James, 10 August 2013

The persecution of Lavabit by the US government is undoubtedly connected to the fact that the company’s most well-known client is whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Obama’s press conference: The smiling face of a police state

By Barry Grey, 10 August 2013

At Friday’s press conference, President Barack Obama resorted to outright lies in his defense of the massive and illegal surveillance programs exposed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

NSA funds UK’s spying operations

By Robert Stevens, 10 August 2013

America’s National Security Agency has funded Britain’s intelligence gathering service to the tune of at least £100 million over the past three years.

NSA reading content of Americans’ international communications

By Thomas Gaist, 9 August 2013

Fresh revelations show that the NSA has been trolling through emails and text messages between Americans and individuals abroad, even when those individuals are not suspected of terrorist connections.

Australian lawyers and investigative journalist defend Edward Snowden

By Richard Phillips, 9 August 2013

The WSWS has received more statements supporting the former NSA whistle-blower.

Obama cancels summit, escalates tensions with Russia

By Joseph Kishore, 8 August 2013

It is the first time since the end of the Cold War that the US has canceled a publicly announced presidential meeting with leaders in Russia.

Chairman of German Pirate Party defends the secret services

By Johann Muller and Lucas Adler, 7 August 2013

The Pirate Party, founded only a few years ago on the basis of demands for transparency, data protection and privacy, is responding to the exposure of the largest surveillance machinery in human history by granting political legitimacy to the secret services.

US officials cite deadly drone strike in Yemen to defend NSA spying operations

By Thomas Gaist, 7 August 2013

In an editorial published Tuesday, the New York Times gave its stamp of approval to the terror scare, calling the decision to launch a global terror alert “reasonable” and “difficult to quarrel with.”

Obama administration officials testify at Manning sentencing

By Matthew MacEgan, 6 August 2013

The sentencing phase of the Bradley Manning court martial continued Monday with the testimony of Undersecretary of State Patrick Kennedy.

European Union seeks drone and spy satellite network

By Chris Marsden, 6 August 2013

The European Union has proposed the creation of what amounts to a pan-European equivalent to the National Security Agency, armed with a European drone programme and a spy satellite network.

One day after Russian asylum for Snowden

Obama administration launches terror scare

By Thomas Gaist, 3 August 2013

The terror scare follows more evidence of broad popular opposition to the NSA spying programs and support for Snowden.

Edward Snowden gains temporary asylum in Russia

By Thomas Gaist, 2 August 2013

The asylum grant has, predictably, provoked denunciations and threats of reprisal from US officials.

Guardian newspaper reveals wider Internet surveillance

By Andre Damon, 1 August 2013

The Guardian on Wednesday published an exposé of XKeyscore, the National Security Agency’s “widest-reaching” program for Internet spying.

Germany: Former SPD Interior Minister Otto Schily defends mass surveillance

By Christoph Dreier, 1 August 2013

In an interview with the news magazine Der Spiegel, former SPD Interior Minister Otto Schily attack critics of mass surveillance as being paranoid.

Anti-surveillance demonstrators speak to WSWS

By our reporters, 1 August 2013

In Wellington, about 1,500 people marched from Cuba Street to rally in the Parliament grounds.

Germany: PSG holds meetings in defence of Edward Snowden

By our reporters, 31 July 2013

The Socialist Equality Party (Partei für Soziale Gleichheit—PSG) held well-attended meetings in defence of Edward Snowden in Berlin, Bochum and Frankfurt.

Father of Edward Snowden issues open letter to Obama denouncing “Orwellian surveillance programs”

By Thomas Gaist, 29 July 2013

In a letter co-written with his attorney, Lon Snowden defended his son’s actions as his “civic duty” and warned Americans against the “dynamics of the Third Reich.”

Australian film director Paul Cox denounces US-led manhunt of Edward Snowden

By Richard Phillips, 29 July 2013

"That Snowden is being denounced by American politicians and the media is outrageous," Cox told the WSWS.

US pressures Russia to extradite Snowden, vowing “he will not be tortured”

By Thomas Gaist, 27 July 2013

Attorney General Eric Holder sent a letter to Moscow, asserting that Snowden has no legal basis for seeking asylum and promising not to torture or execute the leaker.

US Congress defends the methods of a police state

By Bill Van Auken, 26 July 2013

The vote to block even limited restrictions on wholesale domestic spying on the American people exposes the US Congress as a rubber stamp for a police state.

Terry Hicks defends whistleblower Edward Snowden

By Richard Phillips, 26 July 2013

Father of former Guantánamo Bay prisoner David Hicks, says Snowden is fighting to defend basic rights.

After White House intervention, House defeats constraints on domestic spying

By Thomas Gaist, 25 July 2013

An amendment to the Defense Appropriations Act of 2014, which would have barred “suspicion-less collection” of phone records, was rejected by the US House of Representatives.

Snowden remains in airport as Russian officials send mixed messages

By Eric London, 25 July 2013

A question remark continues to hang over the asylum requests of whistle-blower Edward Snowden.

Germany: Politicians and media promote a “basic right to security”

By Justus Leicht, 25 July 2013

Almost daily, the warnings of whistle-blower Edward Snowden are being confirmed by new reports showing the close collaboration between German and American intelligence agencies.

German intelligence services work closely with NSA

By Christoph Dreier, 23 July 2013

NSA documents show that the German intelligence services are among the NSA’s closest partners, spying on both foreign targets and the German people.

Parliamentary intelligence oversight body whitewashes mass surveillance by UK and US

By Julie Hyland, 23 July 2013

The UK parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee has whitewashed allegations of mass illegal spying by GCHQ and the US National Security Agency.

Sri Lankan dramatist defends Edward Snowden

23 July 2013

Dharmasiri Bandaranayke has issued a statement defending Snowden and denouncing the Obama administration’s illegal global spying operations.

Court of Appeals rules Obama administration can force journalist to testify against alleged leaker

By Eric London, 22 July 2013

In a blow to freedom of the press, an appeals court ruled Friday that New York Times journalist James Risen must testify against alleged leaker Jeffrey Sterling.

US congressmen, complicit in NSA spying, posture as critics

By Thomas Gaist, 22 July 2013

Calls by legislators to “rein in” the NSA programs are part of a calculated maneuver aiming to legitimize and further institutionalize illegal mass spying.

Canada’s Communications Security Establishment part of a secret state-within-the-state

By Ed Patrick and Keith Jones, 22 July 2013

Most Canadians had never heard of the Communications Security Establishment prior to last month’s revelation that it has been metadata mining Canadians’ electronic communications since 2005. And Canada’s elite is determined to keep it that way.

The Guardian and Edward Snowden

By Robert Stevens, 22 July 2013

Under conditions in which the US has launched a global manhunt to seize Edward Snowden, Britain’s Guardian newspaper has called for him to “answer to the law.”

US secretary of state threatens Venezuela over Snowden asylum

By Eric London, 20 July 2013

In violation of international law, John Kerry leveled a series of heavy-handed threats against Venezuela over its offer of asylum to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

German state security intimidates opposition

By Christoph Dreier, 20 July 2013

This week German police and state security officials put a young man from Griesheim under pressure because he was critical of the secret services’ surveillance methods.

US government using license plates to track movements of millions

By Eric London, 18 July 2013

An ACLU report published yesterday reveals that the American government has been using license plate readers to track the location and movement of a majority of people in the US.

NSA deputy director admits to broader spying

By Eric London and Joseph Kishore, 18 July 2013

In testimony before Congress, John Inglis acknowledged that FISA courts have given the NSA more sweeping spying powers than previously admitted.

US threatens Russia with “long-term problems” as Snowden applies for temporary asylum

By Eric London, 18 July 2013

Democrats and Republicans responded to news that whistleblower Edward Snowden formally applied for asylum in Russia with more threats.

Sri Lankan SEP holds meeting in defence of Snowden

By Sujeewa Amaranath, 18 July 2013

The Colombo public meeting unanimously adopted a resolution demanding an end to the witch-hunt against whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Australian workers and youth express support for Edward Snowden

By our correspondents, 17 July 2013

Those who spoke to the SEP were alarmed about the magnitude of the US spying and its disturbing implications for democratic rights.

Edward Snowden in limbo as US increases pressure on Russia

By Eric London, 16 July 2013

The Obama administration has escalated its international campaign against whistle-blower Edward Snowden.

German SPD and Greens defend mass surveillance

By Christoph Dreier, 16 July 2013

The SPD and the Greens accuse the government of neglecting German economic interests regarding the NSA spying affair, but support the mass surveillance of the population.

The intelligence-industrial complex

By Joseph Kishore, 15 July 2013

The American government and intelligence agencies are working closely with giant telecommunications and technology companies to violate the democratic rights of the population.

Australia: Telstra facilitates US electronic spying

By Peter Symonds, 15 July 2013

Telstra has given US intelligence and police agencies access to the backbone of international telecommunications—undersea fibre optic cables.

Snowden denounces US campaign of threats and aggression

By Eric London, 13 July 2013

Edward Snowden issued a defiant statement from Sheremetyevo airport in which he defended his actions and said he would seek temporary asylum in Russia.

Microsoft conspires with the NSA in spying on its users

By Bryan Dyne, 13 July 2013

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.

German chancellor defends Western intelligence agencies

By Stefan Steinberg, 13 July 2013

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

Journalist, artists, academics for the defense of Edward Snowden

13 July 2013

The WSWS asked numerous journalists, artists and academics if they would speak out publicly in defense of Edward Snowden.

Edward Snowden in the court of public opinion

By Joseph Kishore, 12 July 2013

The majority of Americans, including the vast majority of young people, support Edward Snowden despite his universal denunciation by the political establishment and the mass media.

NSA casts massive surveillance net over Latin America

By Bill Van Auken, 11 July 2013

Secret National Security Agency documents provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden expose a massive spying operation covering all of Latin America.