Edward Snowden’s whistleblowing case should not be the only one focused on.
Thomas Drake, a whistleblowing predecessor of Snowden, published a written testimony in the Guardian news explaining how the information that Snowden is releasing is exactly what he saw during his time working at the NSA.
In the testimony he goes on to describe his involvement in pre- and post-9/11 surveillance and how he had begun speaking out from within the agency.
Unlike Snowden, Drake took up his concerns with the unconstitutionality of the spying in accordance with the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act. Directly addressing the highest levels of the NSA and making confessions as a material witness for two 9/11 congressional investigations.
Thomas Drake claims that intelligence gathered from pre-September 11th surveillance could have prevented the terror attacks that brought down three World Trade Center skyscrapers, if the NSA would have just disclosed it with other agencies.
This information certainly was never made clear to Steven Bucci, writer for The Foundry Conservative Policy News blog, who wrote an article defending the surveillance titled, Phone Records and the NSA: Legal and Keeping America Safe.
He tries to make the argument that Americans must “understand that these programs keep us safe and allow the U.S. to adapt to the ever-changing, and very real, terrorist threat.”
Dianne Fienstein and Mike Rogers, who both occupy chairs on the Committee on Intelligence, also defend the disregard of the fourth amendment by claiming the NSA snooping keeps everyone safe.
If this were true, then there’s certainly no reason Thomas Drake would have confessed in front of two congressional investigations of 9/11 the fact that the NSA could have stopped the Twin Towers from falling.
Also, those claims make little sense when considering the fact that Drake went under the shield of the Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protection Act and directly bumped up against those running the worldwide wire taping programs at the highest levels.
The revelations of these NSA whistleblowers is without a doubt enough to force a country-wide debate on the intent of mass data gathering, and the legality of it all.
By Drake’s admissions the NSA’s only goal is to gather as much intelligence as they possibly can.
Keeping the American people safe is not exactly on their radar.
The revelations out of the German magazine Der Speigel of the bugging of EU offices and computer networks by US intelligence reinforces the arguments of those such as Drake, that the surveillance grid is being used for the advantage of a few at the exposure of everyone.
Drake’s testimony is jam-packed with information that is enough to shatter the establishment’s defensive arguments for the surveillance.
We need to hold those like Thomas Drake and Edward Snowden in high regard for standing up for the Constitution.
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