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Wikileaks’ Julian Assange and Edward

Snowden: Terrorists or freedom fighters?


slides
• 1. Julian Assange and Edward Snowden- who they are- brief intro
• 2. terrorists and freedom fighters- what’s the difference (how one
man’s terrorist can be anothers freedom fighter?)
• 3. why we are not looking both of them with a single frame of
reference?
• 4. Julian assange- what he did, opinions of people considering him
terrorist, opinions of people considering him freedom fighter, our
opinion
• 4. Edward snowden- what he did, opinions of people considering him
terrorist or why terrorist, opinions of people considering him freedom
fighter or why freedom fighter, our opinion
• 5. conclusion
why we are not looking both of them with a
single frame of reference?
• Julian Asange was sharp kid who always
fought for the underdog. Assange attended  Both works towards radical transparency.
roughly 37 different schools growing up, and
was frequently homeschooled.  Edward snowden had a comfortable and
• WikiLeaks released an additional round of privileged life.
emails from the Democratic National • Motive behind leaks was to expose
Committee that indicated an effort to ‘surveillance state’
undermine Clinton's primary opponent.
• deeply uncomfortable with knowledge about
• he had been under investigation by the the U.S. surveillance that officials said they
Swedish police for allegations that included were carrying out to keep America safe.
two counts of sexual molestation
• No Political alignment accusations
• WikiLeaks makes editorial decisions like any
other media outlet. Those decisions generally • Assange is sympathetic to U.S. Libertarianism
reflect the priorities of Assange, who is a but Snowden does not has any political
determined critic of Clinton and the U.S.-led incalination
global order and argues WikiLeaks tells the
unvarnished truth about the world.
Edward Snowden
“I'm willing to sacrifice [my former life] 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”
– Edward Snowden
 Snowden leaked documents contained vast information on the NSA's domestic
surveillance practices.
 The Guardian released secret documents obtained from Snowden. In these
documents, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court implemented an order
that required Verizon to release information to the NSA on an "ongoing, daily
basis" culled from its American customers' phone activities.
 federal prosecutors charged Snowden with "theft of government Property,"
"unauthorized communication of national defense information" and "willful
communication of classified communications intelligence information to an
unauthorized person."
Why terrorist?
• There exists a “five eyes” agreement between America, Canada, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and
Australia. These countries share their data in an effort to see and understand global threats. Also, this system
is designed to leverage specific corporate partnerships around the world to gain access to high-capacity fiber
optic cables. The information Snowden revealed goes far beyond Americans having their phone calls
monitored.
• Snowden’s claim that he is focussed on supporting transparency, freedom of the press, and protection of
individual rights and democracy is belied by the protectors he has potentially chosen: China, Russia, Cuba,
Venezuela, and Ecuador. His failure to criticize these regimes suggests that his true motive throughout has
been to injure the national security of the U.S., not to advance Internet freedom and free speech.
• ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday said “What Snowden has revealed has caused irreversible and significant
damage to our country and to our allies.”
• When it comes to stopping terrorist attacks, groups that seek to harm the West also now have an advanced
understanding about USA’s capacity to stop them.
• According to a intelligence report Snowden’s disclosures have led to changes in the way that terrorists
communicate.
• Snowden’s actions have also led to terrorist groups developing new encryption technology.
• It has been considered by many that Snowden’s leaks have been a gift to terrorists.
Why freedom fighter?
• “Yes, there are laws on the books that say one thing, but that is perhaps why the pardon power exists – for
the exceptions, for the things that may seem unlawful in letters on a page but when we look at them
morally, when we look at them ethically, when we look at the results, it seems these were necessary things,
these were vital things”- Edward Snowden
• Leaks does not contained anything about the algorithms that the N.S.A. uses, the groups or individuals that
the agency targets, or the identities of U.S. agents. They didn’t contain the contents of any U.S. military
plans, or of any conversations between U.S. or foreign officials.
• Snowden uncovered questionable activities that those in power would rather have kept secret.
• He recognised the NSA’s surveillance programs for what they are: dangerous, unconstitutional activity. This
wholesale invasion of Americans’ and foreign citizens’ privacy does not contribute to USA’S security; it puts
in danger the very liberties that Americans are trying to protect.
• In the process of monitoring the communications of overseas militants and officials and the people who
communicate with them, the N.S.A. sweeps up a great deal of online data about Americans, and keeps it
locked away—seemingly forever.
• Snowden has brought to light important information that deserved to be in the public domain, while doing
no lasting harm to the national security of his country.
• Snowden also suggested that government spying fundamentally changes the balance of power between the
citizen and the state.
Our opinion
• Edward Snowden should be defended not only because his acts annoyed and
embarrassed US secret services; what he revealed is something that not only the
US but also all great powers from China to Russia, Germany to Israel are doing (to
the extent they are technologically able to do it).
• Snowden’s acts provided a factual foundation to publics suspicions of being
monitored and controlled. This lesson is global, reaching far beyond the standard
US-bashing.
• Karl Marx said that German ancien regime "only imagines that it believes in itself
and demands that the world should imagine the same thing. The actual pressure
must be made more pressing by adding to it consciousness of pressure, the
shame must be made more shameful by publicising it.“
• What government wanted was abstraction and control. To manage a cloud of
system there needs to be a monitoring system that controls its functioning, and
this system is by definition hidden from users.