Dear Mr. President,
Reading the NYT and most other U.S. newspapers, you’d never know that the NSA ‘harvests’ half a billion phone calls a month in Germany or that they hacked into and bugged the offices of the European Union in Washington, Brussels and the UN. You’d only learn about the latest revelations of NSA spying if you read The Guardian or Der Spiegel or if you happened to notice a passing reference buried in an article on p. A8 of today’s Times (“Ecuador Leader Says Biden Called About Asylum Request”). Nor would you know that the U.S. military has blocked access to The Guardian so our troops won’t be bothered by the inconvenient truth of the Gestapo/Stasi State government they’re killing and dying for. Nor would they know that Pfc. Bradley Manning is about to begin the 5th week of his show trial by a military kangaroo court for releasing evidence of egregious war crimes committed by the U.S. military and egregious hypocrisy and abuse of power by the U.S. government. The muzzling of the American press is nearly complete, leakers and journalists intimidated and silenced, just a few renegades like Glen Greenwald left to mop up. But there’s still 1.4 million people with Top Secret clearances and more than 1,000 systems administrators like Edward Snowden who maintain the sprawling intelligence networks and it only takes a few Snowdens who have the moral courage to blow the whistle and expose the criminality of their government—liars like Clapper, Alexander and Brennan, and apparatchiks like Shawn Turner, your spokesman for National Intelligence, who said last week that “The internet metadata collection program…was discontinued in 2011…” a statement shown to be false by an NSA document dated December 31, 2012, congratulating itself for reaching a milestone: one trillion metadata records from emails and the internet, half of it collected in 2012, a year after the ‘discontinuance’. How do you expect anyone to believe your assurances that “nobody’s listening to your phone calls,” in the face of all this evidence to the contrary? And who besides the NSA snoops knew that Germany was right up there with China as an enemy? Or that terrorists were lurking in the offices of the EU? You won’t read it in the New York Times or hear it on NBC or CBS or ABC, but I can’t wait for the next revelation in The Guardian. And according to Glen Greenwald, they’ve just begun. I hope you have the large economy size bottle of aspirin handy, Mr. President. You’re going to need it.