General Keith Alexander has admitted that Edward J. Snowden’s revelations have caused “significant and irreversible damage” to the US’s national security, and that national governments and terrorist organizations now know how to get around US spying.
He seems to underestimate the real damage: The NSA revelations are but another smear against brand USA in the global psyche, having done potentially as much damage as the Middle East wars started under President George W. Bush.
Even US allies are implementing mechanisms by which to keep the US from eavesdropping.
The Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff announced Sunday that the Brazilian government would be creating its own secure email system to shield official communications from spying by the US and other countries.
“We need more security on our messages to prevent possible espionage,” Rousseff wrote in Twitter posts on Sunday. She ordered the Federal Data Processing Service, SERPRO, to design a safe email system for use throughout the federal government. The agency is currently responsible for developing secure systems for online tax returns and also creates new passports.
Rousseff had earlier condemned spying against Brazilian government agencies attributed to the United States and Canada.
“This is the first step toward extending the privacy and inviolability of official posts,” Rousseff said.
After voicing complaints against US intelligence agencies to the United Nations General Assembly last month, as well as canceling a state visit to Washington, Rousseff announced that the country would host an international conference on Internet governance in April.
Brazilian media outlets in recent months have published documents detailing how the NSA has spied on Rousseff’s official communications, her associates and state-controlled oil giant Petrobras.
Recently, Brazilian TV network Globo reported based on documents leaked by Snowden, Canada’s Communications Security Establishment (CSE) collected metadata for phone calls and emails to and from Brazil’s Ministry of Mines and Energy.
Rousseff announced last week that Brazil would host an international meeting with governments, businesses, NGOs, civil society, and academia in April 2014 on Internet governance.
The Brazilian government is looking to go as far as laying an underwater fiber optic cable directly to Europe so as to avoid routing the country’s Internet connections through the US, while legislation to force US online service providers like Facebook and Google to host information on Brazilian citizens solely in Brazilian data centers is also being considered.
General Alexander thinks this is all a big misunderstanding, and the result of mismanaged public relations on the part of the NSA.
The New York Times reported Oct. 12 that General Alexander acknowledged that the NSA had failed to respond effectively to the revelations brought forward by Edward Snowden, “the contractor who stole thousands of documents about the NSA’s most secret programs.”
“The way we’ve explained it to the American people,” he said, “has gotten them so riled up that nobody told them the facts of the program and the controls that go around it.” The disclosures, Alexander assured, had enabled adversaries such as foreign governments or terrorist organizations to learn how to avoid detection by American intelligence and had caused “significant and irreversible damage” to national security.
Of course, General Alexander won’t just come out and tell Americans the truth. The NSA totalitarian spying capabilities – the kind which the Soviets could only dream about – has nothing to do with protecting Americans and everything to do with monitoring and controlling them. That’s why we have been urging Americans to leave now. It’s only a matter of time before the currency controls are put in place, quickly followed by the closing of the borders. As it is right now, the NSA is already gathering evidence from every email, phone call and online or electronic transaction to have a SWAT team sent to your door.
The smart money is leaving now while they still can. Sign up for a subscription to the weekly TDV newsletter so you can get detailed advice on how to join them.
Anarcho-Capitalist. Libertarian. Freedom fighter against mankind’s two biggest enemies, the State and the Central Banks. Jeff Berwick is the founder of The Dollar Vigilante, CEO of TDV Media & Services and host of the popular video podcast, Anarchast. Jeff is a prominent speaker at many of the world’s freedom, investment and gold conferences as well as regularly in the media including CNBC, CNN and Fox Business.