Secrecy and Fear
I’ve just finished reading Peter Maass’ fine piece in the New York Times on Laura Poitras, Glenn Greenwald, and Edward Snowden. It is at once terrifying and awe inspiring. It is also a fairly accurate diagnosis of what the fear mongering of the Bush era and since has done to whatever was left of American civil liberties. Government suppression of information about its questionable true activities have reached some kind of a nadir in a long history of secrecy and coverups beginning with Vietnam, and perhaps long before then. That American citizens should be forced to go to such extreme lengths to provide the public exposure of government wrongdoing is very scary indeed. It makes me feel as though I should be investigating ways of securing myself against the kinds of intrusion that Poitras and Greenwald have been subjected to, as well as the much more severe retaliation against Snowden and Manning and who knows how many others. The brutality of war has infected all the security branches of our government, to the point at which the government itself becomes the enemy of every citizen who wishes to live in a democratic country that values the freedoms of speech, assembly, and of the press that it brags about to the world but does not practice.
And as an aside, the embassy shut downs have been called off, except for Yemen, and not one thing has happened to any of our embassies or foreign service personnel. How strange!