back to article Guardian teams up with New York Times for future Snowden GCHQ coverage

Faced with a mounting backlash from UK authorities, The Guardian newspaper has announced that it will collaborate with The New York Times to release further documents detailing the activities of the UK's Government Communications Headquarters. "In a climate of intense pressure from the UK government, the Guardian decided to …

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  1. asdf

    Fourth estate

    The fourth estate may be sick and as corrupt as the other estates but they are all we have left to protect our rights. Keep the leaks dripping. Keep the issue in the news. Fight the good fight for the people. Our political parties sure as hell aren't.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

  3. Graham Marsden
    Happy

    The thick...

    ... plottens!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It appears...

      There are "Spooks" in "The Thick of It".

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Brilliant!

    Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA

    Have the NY Post post secrets on GCHQ

    Catch 22

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      But.... but...

      you can't have the Americans providing information on the Brits, and the Brits providing information on the Americans!

      That'd just be underhanded and tantamount to a confession that what you're doing is more or less illegal and should be stopped, wouldn't it?

      1. Jordan Davenport

        Re: But.... but...

        That'd just be underhanded and tantamount to a confession that what you're doing is more or less illegal and should be stopped, wouldn't it?

        I'm reserving judgment on the situation, primarily because nothing is distinctly black or white, but I would at least like to point out that there's a difference between what's ethical and what's legal. If you haven't learned anything else from this entire mess, you should at least learn this much, that laws are not inherently morally just.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: But.... but...

          I assume the AC was pointing out the irony of this arrangement, and its similarities to the US/UK arrangement to spy on each others citizens in order to sidestep laws banning domestic spying.

          These two newspapers are now doing essentially the same thing, in order to avoid laws being used to silence them.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: But.... but...

            I assume the AC was pointing out the irony of this arrangement, and its similarities to the US/UK arrangement to spy on each others citizens in order to sidestep laws banning domestic spying.

            These two newspapers are now doing essentially the same thing, in order to avoid laws being abused to silence them.

            There I fixed it for you.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: But.... but...

          I think the GPP meant to say that it would be illegal if done directly and not by the exchange of agencies. Obviously the present arrangement is to provide a legal fig leaf. It's a fair point and perhaps too subtle for you to grasp.

          What interests me is - what if a load of American privacy activists decide to come and picket GCHQ?

          1. h3

            Re: But.... but...

            When it comes to Memworth Hill you wouldn't get anywhere near.

            (Some people who I know (But don't particularly like) were up around there. To be fair they look the type of people who might do such a thing. Within a few miles they were stopped by people in full body armour with machine guns just asking them what the hell they were doing. Putting a machine gun closer and closer to their head until they cracked. They were only picking mushrooms (When wet ones were legal) which the Americans were totally uninterested in. They did look potential protesters though.)

            Dunno what would happen in Cheltenham.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: USAF Menwith Hill (not Memworth)

              Mark Thomas and friends managed to fly over the base at very low altitude in a fuel-starved hot air balloon for a 1999 TV show still available via the usual video library sources.

              He already knew what Echelon was about, as should be obvious from the first couple of minutes of the show.

              What chance a show like that getting airtime these days?

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: But.... but...

              "They did look potential protesters though."

              How evil of them, looking like protestors. As if anyone would want to protest against the actions of Our Dear Leader.

          2. Naughtyhorse

            Re: But.... but...

            what with it taking 9 hours to clear customs, most will prolly give up

        3. Evan Essence

          Re: But.... but...

          Irony detection failure.

        4. MCDewy

          Re: But.... but...

          In my opinion, that's exactly what they are doing now with each other to defeat the claims that they are spying on their own people. They aren't directly.

          GCHQ collects the data comnig ashore in the UK and passes it back to the NSA, and the NSA technically collecting information supposed to be outside the country, can then pass it to GCHQ. Quite an effective loophole. Both sides get what they want, and they haven't directly broken the law.

        5. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: But.... but...

          " If you haven't learned anything else from this entire mess, you should at least learn this much, that laws are not inherently morally just."

          Law 101 - first day, most colleges

          One of the very first things drummed into wannabe lawyers that it is NOT a justice system, it's a Legal system and the two things must never be confused.

          Some take that more to heart than others (canker & seagull, Prenda law as f'instances)

      2. jonathanb Silver badge

        Re: But.... but...

        The NSA spies on the Brits, GCHQ spies on the Yanks. They exchange intelligence. What's sauce for the goose (etc).

        1. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: But.... but...

          "The NSA spies on the Brits, GCHQ spies on the Yanks."

          And the french spy on everyone.

          It's entirely possible that the NYT could run a story and D-Notices be used to prevent them being run in the UK, but that would lead to some interesting Internet antics.

      3. JohnG Silver badge

        Re: But.... but...

        "...you can't have the Americans providing information on the Brits, and the Brits providing information on the Americans!"

        Ironically, this has long been the arrangement between the English-speaking intelligence services. Remember when Margaret Thatcher didn't trust some of her minsters and had the Canadians do the necessary spying (via Echelon). This was not illegal for the Canadians but might have presented some issues for the British intelligence services.

        Mind you, it seems the Americans can't be bothered with this arrangement and just spy on their own people regardless.

      4. dan1980

        Re: But.... but...

        Illegal?

        Probably not. One of the most worrying things is that what is being done is perfectly legal. The problem is that it is is legal based on:

        * Legislation that was passed in private

        * Continuing resolutions by publicly-elected members subjected to secrecy restrictions

        * Secret judgments made by a secret court not subject to any oversight

        So the problem is not that this behaviour is illegal, it's that the various governments have secretly voted themselves ridiculously broad powers enabling them to essentially do what they like. Further, where (in the US) they might fall foul of the fourth amendment, the have side-stepped that pesky stricture by invoking 'national security' - you can't challenge the government in the supreme court if you are never allowed to now what's going on.

        In fact, legally, you can't ever challenge the legality of the system. In other words, even the government has acted illegally, it is still illegal to try to stop that behaviour.

    2. Frumious Bandersnatch Silver badge

      re: Brilliant!

      Having UK report on the US and vice-versa is basically what the spooks have been doing for years. No sir, say the yanks, we don't spy on our people. The brits say likewise. Only they conveniently forget to mention that their other half does the spying on their behalf. Turnabout is fair play, I say!

      Also, not sure about that editor. When he says "The Independent was not leaked or ‘duped’ into publishing today's front page story by the Government" you'd think that he'd be able to construct a sentence better. The "by the Government" part could be glommed into the sentence to mean either "today's front page story by the Government" or "The Independent was not [leaked or] ‘duped’ by the Government". Just sloppiness (as engendered, no doubt, by it being a twitter post) or something else? Probably the former, but it's still one of those "things that make you go hmmm".

      1. Shades

        Re: re: Brilliant!

        Frumious Bandersnatch wrote:

        Also, not sure about that editor. When he says "The Independent was not leaked or ‘duped’ into publishing today's front page story by the Government" you'd think that he'd be able to construct a sentence better. The "by the Government" part could be glommed into the sentence to mean either "today's front page story by the Government" or "The Independent was not [leaked or] ‘duped’ by the Government". Just sloppiness (as engendered, no doubt, by it being a twitter post) or something else? Probably the former, but it's still one of those "things that make you go hmmm".
        I'm glad I'm not the only one to have thought exactly the same thing. Although I'm inclined to believe he's actually telling the truth; The story wasn't leaked and they weren't duped because it actually came from government and they know it. What he didn't say is that they weren't threatened to publish it perhaps by a visit from the same guys that paid the Guardian a little "friendly" visit. This is complete conjecture of course but nothing about this whole affair would surprise me any more!

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Big Brother

      @AC 23:41 - >"Brilliant! Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA. Have the NY Post post secrets on GCHQ. Catch 22"

      ==========================================

      Putin must be laughing his butt off. You know - when he's not stripping down to his underwear and wrestling with alligators, sharks, or tigers.

      1. Marketing Hack Silver badge
        Coat

        @Andy Prough

        I doubt that's true. Everyone knows that Putin underwear wrestles simultaneously with alligators, sharks AND tigers!

        (Icon is actually pic of Putin getting ready for his next bout!)

      2. Vociferous

        > Putin must be laughing his butt off

        I very much doubt that. Putin is no fan of freedom of the press, and while he may get som joy from seeing the US and UK squirm, the only possible outcome of this is increased freedom of the press, and russians wondering if their own government is up to something similar (hint: they are).

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA. Have the NY Post post secrets on GCHQ"

      The irony, it is delicious.

      1. Danny 14

        Re: "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA. Have the NY Post post secrets on GCHQ"

        Putin might be a twat but hes not a spineless bag of lies like our "coalition". And indeed hes probably loving the diversion from his own internal issues.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: Danny 14 Re: "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA....."

          ".....hes not a spineless bag of lies...." Hmmmm, so I take it you approve of Pootie's alleged preference for just having troublesome journos murdered then?

          1. Sandtitz Silver badge

            Re: Danny 14 "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA....."

            Matt, the keyword is alleged.

            1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
              Facepalm

              Re: Sand-in-her-bitz Re: Danny 14 "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA....."

              "Matt, the keyword is alleged." Yeah, well I was going to call Anna Politkovskaya to ask her about that, and whether she agreed with the idea that life for journos is really "as bad" in the UK and US as in Russia, only she's not answering her phone.....

              1. Sandtitz Silver badge

                @Twat Bwyant Re: Danny 14 "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA....."

                Meanwhile you can call Ahmed Bouchik and de Menezes.

                1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                  FAIL

                  Re: Sand-in-her-bitz Re: @Twat Bwyant Danny 14 "Have the Guardian post secrets on the NSA....."

                  "Meanwhile you can call Ahmed Bouchik and de Menezes." Neither of whom were journalists. Try again, just with a hint of relevance next time.

    5. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      FAIL

      "....Have the NY Post post secrets on GCHQ...." But why would the Yanks be interested in what happens in the UK? The NYT is sinking and needs to generate readership and articles on what the UK gets up to are not going to do that. The NYT need exposes on Obambi and the NSA, not Cameron and GCHQ.

  5. Mitoo Bobsworth

    Danger already present

    "...the only things disclosed are what the public should know but that does not place any person in danger"

    Noble & wise - also a little naive.

    Factually, people have already been placed in danger - the ones who perpetuate this secret world skullduggery, and I'm guessing they won't exhibit the same moral fibre in their efforts to perpetuate it, danger being part & practice of their stock-in-trade. I'm hoping Snowden has taken multiple precautions with the distribution & stewardship of the remaining info.

    1. Alister Silver badge

      Re: Danger already present

      Interesting that the two don't quite agree:

      Snowden says: "The journalists I have worked with have, at my request, been judicious and careful in ensuring that the only things disclosed are what the public should know but that does not place any person in danger ..."

      Greenwald says: "I'm not aware of, nor subject to, any agreement that imposes any limitations of any kind on the reporting that I am doing on these documents. I would never agree to any such limitations."

      So which is it?

      1. LegalAlien
        Stop

        Re: Danger already present

        Not really. Snowden is referring to journalists' treatment of the material. Greenwald is referring to (and rebutting) an allegation abouttthe government (namely that he is subject to a an agreement with the government that restricts his ability to report). Simple really.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Danger already present

        False dichotomy. Go away, troll.

  6. Former KowloonTonger

    Re:

    "It was not immediately clear why The Guardian chose The New York Times as its partner for future disclosures about the GCHQ."

    This is absurd. The uber smug New York Times was absolutely quivering with anticipation, as they are of course well remembered as the gleeful publisher of the Pentagon Papers, of Daniel Ellsberg leak-fame. They'll be hand in glove with the equally smug Guardian [wot a name!] as self-chosen arbiters of their respective country's I.T. programs as regards public safety.

    1. Neil McAllister

      "The uber smug New York Times was absolutely quivering with anticipation, as they are of course well remembered as the gleeful publisher of the Pentagon Papers..."

      The Washington Post also published the Pentagon Papers.

    2. Vociferous

      > This is absurd. The uber smug New York Times... etc

      Yeah, you're right: both newspapers are committed to serious and -as far as humanly possible- unbiased reporting, even when that reporting puts them at odds with their governments. I understand that this seems like a quaint, even irrational, attitude to a US rightwinger.

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: Vociferous

        "....unbiased reporting...." You obviously don't know the history of the Guardian. It was formed and funded by "liberals" with the sole aim of being anti-establishmentarian and has always been left-of-center. Amusingly, given the sudden love of the Guardian shown in these forums, the Guardian was a core mover behind Tony Blair's rise to Prime Minister. It's about as unbiased as Pravda.

        The Guardian's readership has been in steady decline in the UK for decades so it's hardly surprising that they're moving to the US, where there is both a larger audience of liberals and much greater protection for lose journalism under the First Amendment.

        1. Yes Me Silver badge
          WTF?

          history of the Guardian

          " history of the Guardian. It was formed and funded by "liberals" with the sole aim of..."

          Huh? It was "formed" by the Manchester Guardian, founded in 1821, which had achieved national circulation (unlike *any* other paper from outside London), relocating to London and dropping the "Manchester". In 1821 it was indeed "liberalist" but that meant opposing government oppression such as the Peterloo Massacre. The founders were for democracy and free trade.

          It was however the first British newspaper to print the word "fuck" after Kenneth Tynan used it on live TV.

          1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
            Facepalm

            Re: Yes Me Re: history of the Guardian

            Yeah, where's the bit that whe you disagree that the Guardian has a leftist bias? Oh, you don't. Next!

            1. Bluenose

              Re: Yes Me history of the Guardian

              Leftist bias, as opposed to what? The right wing crap spouted by the Daily Mail, Telegraph, Times et al or how about the fairweather reporting of the Sun determined by which political party is currently inviting Murdoch to tea or offering him the opportunity to own more of the British Media.

              The Guardian is often to be found providing political opinions with which I find myself in conflict however, I do give it credit for taking a stance that is far more focussed on the common man than the wealthy and political elites. In this instance the Guardian has done the UK people a fair amount of good by exposing the fact that its Government and those that influence power are using technology to spy on them, gather evidence that can be used against them should they pose a threat and find's them a most untrustworthy majority.

              As my old dad used to say, the Establishment uses its power and wealth to attack the working class claiming them to be potential spies and terrorists when in fact the majority of those who betray the UK are rich or middle class. The Guardian has now provided evidence to support this.

              1. Graham Dawson Silver badge
                Coat

                @Bluenose Re: Yes Me history of the Guardian

                Denying the Graun has a left-wing bias would be like denying that the Sun has tits on page three. They may once have been anti-establishment but as things stand now they're very much part of it, considering their close relationship with the BBC.

                They are, nevertheless, performing a valuable service releasing these documents. One might question their potential willingness to do so had Labour been in power, but since Labour aren't in power the point is moot: they're releasing the information and we, as a whole, will hopefully benefit from that.

                Never let it be said I'm not fair. Though I might be somewhat unbalanced...

                Mine's the one with a copy of the Beano in the pocket.

              2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                FAIL

                Re: Bluenose Re: Yes Me history of the Guardian

                "....In this instance the Guardian has done the UK people a fair amount of good by exposing the fact that its Government and those that influence power are using technology to spy on them, gather evidence that can be used against them should they pose a threat and find's them a most untrustworthy majority....." Male bovine manure. Firstly, the Guardian exposed nothing that wasn't already well-known (you were obviously too busy wishing for The Revolution, eh, Comrade?), and secondly, the data being gathered is only being searched for those that pose a terrist threat, not left-overs from when the Berlin Wall fell. Get a clue, the Cild War is over and Communism lost, so it's about time you stopped bleating the class-war bollocks, mmmkay?

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  FAIL

                  Re: Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                  "The data being gathered is only being searched for those that pose a terrorist threat, not left-overs from when the Berlin Wall fell."

                  Yes, just terrorists. Because of course every NSA worker is a stand-up apple pie and baseball loving member of Roger Ramjet's American Eagles, nobly guarding the secrets of the nation against abuse and certainly not using PRISM data to stalk or harass any.... oh, wait:

                  http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2013/08/23/nsa-officers-sometimes-spy-on-love-interests/

                  I'm sure that's the tip of the Congressman/Senator-blackmailing, foreign intellectual property-stealing iceberg.

                  1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                    FAIL

                    Re: Andrew Fernie Re: Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                    "......I'm sure that's the tip of the Congressman/Senator-blackmailing, foreign intellectual property-stealing iceberg." From your own link: ".....The practice isn’t frequent — one official estimated a handful of cases in the last decade ....." But don't let that stop your paranoid delusions making a mountain out of a molehill. And the infrequency compares really badly with the frequency with which "The Protectirs Of Our Liberties" as you would call them (or journalists to the rest of us) were exposed as using illegal phone eavesdropping here in the UK alone (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_International_phone_hacking_scandal). Yeah, journos chasing ratings are so much more trustworthy - not!

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: Andrew Fernie Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                      "......I'm sure that's the tip of the Congressman/Senator-blackmailing, foreign intellectual property-stealing iceberg." From your own link: ".....The practice isn’t frequent — one official estimated a handful of cases in the last decade ....." But don't let that stop your paranoid delusions making a mountain out of a molehill. And the infrequency compares really badly with the frequency with which "The Protectirs Of Our Liberties" as you would call them (or journalists to the rest of us) were exposed as using illegal phone eavesdropping here in the UK alone (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_International_phone_hacking_scandal). Yeah, journos chasing ratings are so much more trustworthy - not!

                      "Protectors Of Our Liberties" as I would call them? You know absolutely nothing about what I would or would not call the press, Matt. In any case there are some major differences there and that's the fact that people are going to jail for their actions in the NI hacking scandal (not necessarily the right people, but that's another story). Nobody in the NSA or GCHQ is accountable, and they never will be as things stand.

                      It's clear the NSA is responsible for enormous abuse of illegal acquired and stored data and given the amount of evasion and lying going on over PRISM I'd automatically assume that anything they say is a lie, a lie of omission, or a diversionary half-truth. Even if I believed our nameless official and his "it was just that handful of times" spiel, they ones they've admitted to will just be the ones that got caught doing it. The fact that it's even possible demonstrates the warrantless nature of the surveillance and the lack of oversight.

                      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                        Facepalm

                        Re: Andrew Fernie Re: Andrew Fernie Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                        ".....In any case there are some major differences there and that's the fact that people are going to jail for their actions in the NI hacking scandal...." Because what they did was illegal, whereas what the NS and GCHQ are doing is legal. And there are safeguards like the FISC in place to make sure that is so.

                        "....Nobody in the NSA or GCHQ is accountable, and they never will be as things stand....." How do you know? People in either that overstep their authority are usually caught by the safeguards in place, otherwise how would you know about the few cases of NSA employees misusing the tools? There is a very good reason for their subsequent censure not to be punished with civil legal proceedings in that what they do in general needs to be kept secret more than the public needs to know about those "few in decades" cases of misuse.

                  2. Alan Brown Silver badge

                    Re: Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                    "Yes, just terrorists. Because of course every NSA worker is a stand-up apple pie and baseball loving member of Roger Ramjet's American Eagles, nobly guarding the secrets of the nation against abuse and certainly not using PRISM data to stalk or harass any.... oh, wait:"

                    And they couldn't possibly be using sniifed data to play the stockmarkets with what's effectively insider information. That'd be very naughty.

                    Just how many NSA agents/contractors seem to be living beyond their federal incomes?

                    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                      FAIL

                      Re: Alan Brown Re: Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                      "...,And they couldn't possibly be using sniifed data to play the stockmarkets with what's effectively insider information. That'd be very naughty. Just how many NSA agents/contractors seem to be living beyond their federal incomes?" Since you have no evidence of that happening all you are doing is bleating more conspiracy theories and paranoid delusions.

                2. Alan Brown Silver badge

                  Re: Bluenose Yes Me history of the Guardian

                  Go home matt, your mum's calling you in for dinner.

                  The only thing that's being done is to find an excuse to keep the US federal absurdity running. As long as there's an external bogeyman they can keep in an extended state of emergency and not go back to the peacetime situation of a small federal govt and more state autonomy.

                  This is all about keeping hold of power and has nothing to do with any actual "enemies"

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Yes Me history of the Guardian

              You appear not to know the difference between "liberal" and "left". Are you by any chance a citizen of the US? Because that's usually their problem.

              The Guardian supported New Labour - which was by postwar British standards a right wing party - and the Lib Dems in the last election. The Lib Dems are far from left wing.

              It is in fact a newspaper of the middle and upper middle classes; if you have a household income under 6 figures it is a bad idea to read the Saturday edition, full as it is of £65 a head restaurant reviews, £1500 dresses, cruise and long distance holiday adverts and the like.

              The Guardian's political position is simple; instead of being run by the 1300 (or whatever it is) families that currently run Britain, it should be run by a broader base of upper middle class people. This is a classical Liberal position, in the usual sense of widening the scope of permitted behaviour and relying less on the "traditional" beliefs of the small number of people that run the country. But the Guardian would be horrified if there was any real chance that the country would be run by the lower middle and working classes.

              The "left" consists of (a) people who believe in democracy and believe that the country should be run using the collective views of everybody (a small number) and (b) a larger group of people who believe it should be run by the representatives of the proletariat and the peasantry - i.e. union leaders, and political organisers who have identified themselves with the interests of the workers. There are books about it, but I guess you've been too busy to read them.

              The interests of Liberals and the Left are very different. A left wing government would have the staff of the Guardian up against a wall, while the staff of the Sun would be having it explained to them that they could, as usual, peddle the agenda of their new masters or they could alternatively die. The next day the Sun would publish as usual, with beautiful shop steward's daughter Tanya on Page 3 and a long editorial about how the new Government was entirely on the side of Sun readers, and, along with historical inevitability of the triumph of Marxist-Leninist doctrine, it was the Sun wot done it.

              The Independent, now...there's a definite leftish agenda starting to creep in there.

              1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
                FAIL

                Re: ribosome Re: Yes Me history of the Guardian

                "You appear not to know the difference between "liberal" and "left"....." LOL, I just bet this one comes with some really warped standard!

                "....The Guardian supported New Labour - which was by postwar British standards a right wing party....." And there we have that warping - only if your definition of the Left spectrum starts at Trotsky!

                ".....and the Lib Dems in the last election......" Because their fave Blair had been booted out of the Labour leadership by Gordon Brown.

                "....The Lib Dems are far from left wing....." The Lib Dems are mass of refugees from a number of parties, held together more by a desperation for power than any shared political viewpoint. As just one example, Ming Campbell looks like a reject from the Glasgow unionists of old, with his "punish the rich" fanaticism, which very obviously grates with ex-Financial Times journo Nick Clegg's knowledge of the business world. Campbell was fired from being the leader of the Lib Dems as he was horrifically unelectable, whereas Clegg's is supposed to be the window-dressing to convince voters the Lib Dems have a clue. He has failed almost as badly as Campbell.

                "....It is in fact a newspaper of the middle and upper middle classes...." It is the fashion rag of the trendy "socialist", typical of the Islington crowd, the type that wore a Che Guevera t-shirt at college whilst studying politics/law/media-studies, without actually having a clue what Che did or stood for. They usually like to lecture all around them on how they should be living in a hair shirt whilst enjoying a consumer lifestyle replete with luxury trimmings. They are the type that drives a hybrid Chelsea tractor because they think Al Gore was right.

                ".....The "left" consists of (a) people who believe in democracy....." LMAO! All Lefties pay lip service to democracy, but the first thing they do when they get power is start curtailing the freedoms of others. Even "right-wing" Blair. Nu(t) Labour was riddled with Lefties that talked democracy but were very quick to decide the people were simply too stupid to make decisions for themselves. And Deadhead Ed Milliband is even worse as he is the unions' choice, their puppet, beholden to them by the ridiculously archaic and undemocratic block vote. The Left wouldn't know democracy if it bit them on the collective arse.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      They also sat on documents relating to Bush's shenanigans unlike the pending election had passed and he was re-eelected.

      1. Vociferous

        No doubt they did, they sometimes take the "unbiased" thing too far and avoid reporting things which might influence elections.

        There was a lot of that going on during the 2004 election. My favorite is that the Democrats had a "gentleman's agreement" with the republicans that they'd not press the issue of how the Bush administration had pressured CIA into fabricating evidence to support the Iraq war, and in return the republicans would agree to a full inquiry after the election. It goes without saying that as soon as Bush had won he reneged on that deal (and presumably burnt all evidence). Bush's complicity in the forging of evidence for the Iraq war has never been investigated, and in all probability never will.

  7. This post has been deleted by its author

  8. Irony Deficient

    Who provided them, since Snowden himself did not?

    If I were to write some fiction based on the known facts so far, I might weave a tale around the owner of The Independent having once worked for the KGB.

    1. Marketing Hack Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Who provided them, since Snowden himself did not?

      The whole "Snowden leaked material to the independent" could also be a cover for another leaker with info on the gchq. Someone who has seen what has happened to snowden and doesn't want to live in exile, but wants more of the story to come out.

    2. Forget It
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Who provided them, since Snowden himself did not?

      May be the Independent did some earlier spying on the Guardian (basement whatever)

      and are proving the point, post-hoc, that there really was a security risk until the GCHQ thugs

      saw the MacBook + disks done to death.

      I doubt it but the spin is possible.

      PS:

      Which film was it (Carry On?? ) where the servile thug picked up the phone and said in a Neanderthal voice "Intelligence here"

      ?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Who provided them, since Snowden himself did not?

      Except that said owner is in the bad books of the Russian government, who are unlikely to be passing him stuff.

    4. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: Irony Deficient Re: Who provided them, since Snowden himself did not?

      "If I were to write some fiction based on the known facts so far, I might weave a tale around the owner of The Independent having once worked for the KGB." I think a much simpler explanation would be that, apart from Snowjob and Greenwald, the other party with access to the docs has been Laura Poitras. Maybe she just thought the leaks weren't moving at the right pace and passed one to a contact at the Independent.

    5. Naughtyhorse
      Happy

      owner of The Independent having once worked for the KGB.

      That would be Brett Straub then

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perhaps Saint Edward's a liar. Im sure it doesn't fit with most of your narratives about the situation, but consider it. I know I certainly wouldn't be surprised.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Sounds like the superstring theory of leakage.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    damage limitation

    it has started....

    we were told by fisa not to spy and we stopped..... just got my alanis morisette cd out

    Chelsea.... lets detract from the real story

    Miranda.... data mule?

    if it looks like bullshit, smells like bullshit....

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Big Brother

      Re: damage limitation

      The next operation will be an attack on Syria in response to the "Assad kills his own people using chemical weapons, so the President has to do something" meme (yet another "Radio Gleiwitz" type show). That should cause minds to wander.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: damage limitation - Syrian chemical weapons.

        Given the ingredients in the exhaust from a lot of rockets, I do wonder how many people might be killed by launching them from ground level in a densely populated area. Things that can release stuff like CO and HF when they take off can have unpleasant side effects on the ground.

        1. Vociferous

          Re: damage limitation - Syrian chemical weapons.

          The biggest health hazard of launching rockets in that area of the world is without doubt the retaliatory Israeli airstrikes.

        2. JimC

          Re: damage limitation - Syrian chemical weapons.

          I also wonder how easy it is to distinguish a chemical weapons attack from a conventional shell or two landing in a storage warehouse or factory, or even a straightforward industrial accident?!

          Imagine if Bhopal had happened on the middle of some sort of military incident..

    2. Dave Bell

      Re: damage limitation

      I was sceptical when the Chelsea Manning story came out, because that is really a good way to get political support for clemency, if you're in the USA. Then various people I knew, with a less sheltered life than I have had, started pointing out the clues which supported it.

      But it would be rather unprofessional not to have stopped David Miranda, even though I seriously doubt anyone would be silly enough to have had him carrying Snowden data. Are the Moscow Rules fiction or not? They are at least an echo of truth, and anyone working with Snowden should be assuming they are in enemy territory. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moscow_Rules

      That doesn't stop anyone being stupid, on either side, and the Miranda affair does fit with a hope of stupidity.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: damage limitation

        I know a former civil servant who resigned over arms for Iraq. For years afterwards MI5 would visit him periodically and try to put the frighteners on him in case he felt like revealing anything, and each time he would explain that the goon was acting illegally, and did he know it?

        Not everyone in the secret services is an Oxbridge graduate, and (sadly) ,Nick Griffin was at Downing. Simple thuggery can never be ruled out.

        1. Yes Me Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Griffin

          "(sadly) ,Nick Griffin was at Downing."

          Of course. That's why the College coat of arms has a griffin segreant:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Downing_Crest.svg

  11. Vociferous

    "Prior restraint"

    Yeah, hm.... That concept of "prior restraint" is pretty pliable, and US courts extremely biased in favor of the government. During the Bush era, US newspapers were barred from reporting about cases where innocent people had been "extraordinary rendition"d to torture or murder, e.g. Canadian citizen Maher Arar who was kidnapped by the US and sent to Syria for torture because his name was similar to that of a terrorist.

    Unlike some other similar cases, Maher Arar survived the ordeal, but still have received no compensation from the USA and is banned from suing for compensation on the grounds that it would expose US secrets.

    Then again, while the Obama administration hasn't exactly turned out to be champions of transparency and free speech, it's not nearly as secretive and oppressive as the Bush administration, so perhaps they'll let Snowden leaks be published.

    1. JimC

      Re: "Prior restraint"

      > Bush administration/ Obama administration

      Which consist, of course, of 90% plus of the same people in the same jobs...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Prior restraint"

      " it's not nearly as secretive and oppressive as the Bush administration, so perhaps they'll let Snowden leaks be published."

      you high or something? Barry is Bush without the charm. Nothing has changed, the administration is not "better" in any way whatsoever. The only difference seems to be that the media is willing to let this thug get away with it because he's not the previous thug.

  12. Peter Fairbrother 1

    Lot of foolishness and puffery.

    I haven't heard the Independent claiming they have had sight or have copies of the Snowden documents, just that "information on its activities was contained in the leaked documents obtained from the NSA by Edward Snowden".

    However I expect it's all just some sharp-eyed reporter on the Independent repeating claims from an article in the Guardian on 21 Jun: http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2013/jun/21/legal-loopholes-gchq-spy-world which mentions the GCHQ support station in Cyprus (Ayios Nikolaos Station), and says they tap cables etc.

    As that earlier Guardian article is at least partly based on the Snowden documents, I suppose the Independent isn't lying when it says their article is too.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sooner or later...

    ...Snowden will get whacked and all the media hype will die down. Snowden like ASSange craves media attention.

  14. Benjol

    I just wonder how Snowden can be 'securely' communicating from inside Russia...

  15. DF118

    Matt Bryant

    I can only assume I was wrong, as until now I was pretty sure he was one of the few not prone to childish outbursts and name calling, then he goes and explodes that notion with the us and them drivel he's posting in this thread.

    1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: DF118 Re: Matt Bryant

      "......the us and them drivel he's posting in this thread." Which I note you are unable to counter. Surely, if it is "drivel", it should be quite easy for you to disprove, or is it that you got all shrieky because you don't like what was posted but know you can't counter it?

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