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NSA spying has nothing to do with terrorism, Greenwald tells Amanpour

October 28th, 2013
05:04 PM ET

By Mick Krever, CNN

Spying by America’s National Security Agency does not have “anything to do with terrorism,” Glenn Greenwald, the activist journalist who broke the story, told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Monday.

“Is Angela Merkel a terrorist? Are sixty or seventy million Spanish or French citizens terrorists? Are there terrorists at Petrobras?” he asked rhetorically. “This is clearly about political power and economic espionage, and the claim that this is all about terrorism is seen around the world as what it is, which is pure deceit.”

The latest revelations of American spying involve the alleged taping of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s personal mobile phone and that the U.S. gathered data about 60 million Spanish phone calls in a single month, which comes after similar reports from France.

Greenwald, formerly of The Guardian, has been systematically publishing reports of secret American intelligence gathering since he was given a treasure trove of leaks by former intelligence officer Edward Snowden.

“It is not true that every country intercepts the personal communications of their democratically elected allies,” Greenwald told Amanpour, referring to the oft-repeated criticism put forward by true believers that “everyone does it.”

“And it’s definitely not the case that every country mass, bulk collects the communications of millions of innocent people in virtually every country in the world.”

“It’s something that the world didn’t know, and now they do know, and that’s the reason why U.S. officials are so angry,” he said. “Not because it damaged national security but because it damages their reputation and credibility around the world.”

Greenwald also rebuffed the criticism that he is recklessly putting people’s lives in danger by revealing America’s spying tactics.

He said that Snowden had asked him to be “very scrutinizing and judicious,” and that he had only made public about 200 or 250 documents out of a total of “many, many, many thousands.”

“Ever since 9/11, British and American officials have screamed terrorism over and over and over every time they get caught doing bad things they shouldn’t do,” Greenwald said. “Every terrorist who’s capable of tying their own shoes has long known that the U.S. government and the U.K. government are trying to monitor their communications in every way that they can.”

“What we revealed is that the spying system is largely devoted not to terrorists but is directed at innocent people around the world.”

Greenwald announced earlier this month that he was leaving The Guardian newspaper to join a new online journalism venture founded by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar.

“As a journalist, my question is not ‘How can I best help the U.S. government,” he told Amanpour. “My question is, ‘How do I best inform people around the world of the things they should know.’”

Far too many journalists, he said, are willing to leave their reporting at “'American officials told me yesterday.'”

“There’s no effort to investigate those claims or to find alternative voices,” he said.

The new outfit’s goal, he said, would aim to find “truly independent journalists, who don’t want to be invited to Washington cocktail parties.”

Filed under:  Christiane Amanpour • Journalism • Latest Episode
soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. giuseppefiamingo

    I'm sorry but article is in Italian

    October 28, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Reply
    • Karen

      Sicurezza nazionale un cazzo.

      October 28, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Reply
    • oreste assereto

      non si puo accedere

      October 28, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Reply
    • Thetruth

      While terrorism is far from the only reason why the NSA was spying, it won't be very correct to say the spying had nothing to do with terrorism. But there was much more to it than terrorism. Secondly, I think the young man is making the entire saga to be too personal. While I understand that his partner was harassed and he probably lost his job because of pressure to stop the leaks, I don't think he should now make it a personal fight with the US. He should look into the future and just plan the best way to sell himself. He has make his mark already and I bet whoever ordered his partners detention will be regretting it. Just my thought though

      October 28, 2013 at 7:35 pm | Reply
      • Truth Seeker

        Well, I think it all started with keeping phone records but not the actual conversation secretly in most of European countries for the fact that it will be hard for US government to get approval from other countries and secondly, US think that they are not that capable of doing this properly, then they found that they can also do to head of state by just putting their name on the watch list as this function was easy to implement in the system which is explained in an article, later on Obama knew that other heads of state calls are monitored but ignore to stop it because he didn't see any harm or someone convinced him the benefit of doing that. So in conclusion, it all started with goal of gaining more information on terrorist conversation and then someone just expanded the list. In light of this revelation, European head of states should use some sort of secure line or other country if not the US, will try to do the same thing because it is in human nature to guess other people's thought by certain means if not by all possible means. Off course, if US or any country has the capability to do this then they will certainly do it because here benefit outweighs the risk of being caught until you get caught and in this case other country got the invaluable help from Snowden.

        October 29, 2013 at 1:54 am |
      • Tokay

        It isn't personal, it is about principles. The prupose of these massive big brother/espionage activities on or in allied or befriended nations is not counter-terrorism. It purely serves to gather information for political or economic advantage. What Greenwald and his associates have done, is simply to point out the obvious: that spying on an unprecedentetd level has occurred and is still going on. Their argument that democracy itself is endangered by this should be heard.

        October 29, 2013 at 8:21 am |
      • Joseph

        Greenwald is on the Brazilian news almost weekly bragging how he is bringing down the "evil empire" and how real journalists are reporting on the tid-bits he feeds to the international media. He does not say (nor does she) why Merkel didn't make a big deal of the Chinese hacking through the entire German network infrastructure in 2007 or why France bugged Madeline Albright's phone when she was Secretary of State. Why? because it doesn't fit his vindictive little narrative. CNN, pay attention to what he is saying in Portuguese in Brazil and you will have a REAL STORY of a petty little man who is out on a personal crusade against the USA. Stop just believing whatever comes out of his mouth without fact checking it first because he is missing a LOT of facts to back up his accusations. (But we do need to get the NSA under control so we know what they are doing but that is a separate issue to Glen's overreaching...)

        October 29, 2013 at 10:56 am |
    • Mary

      IIs it too late to hope that Americans will wake up and see what is really going on?

      October 28, 2013 at 8:35 pm | Reply
      • mojacar

        America can now blackmail any head of state into compliance .this technology enables industrial espionage at the highest level to benefit corporations willing to pay for it .
        how many of these nsa guys are making fortunes by having the inside track on the stock markets?
        if snowden had impure motives his wealth would now rival bill gates

        October 29, 2013 at 11:11 am |
  2. Carlos Henrique R. de Siqueira

    A journalism lesson to Amanpour. Why it's being gained by the revelations? What kind of question is that? She seems very defensive about US interests in this issue.

    October 28, 2013 at 5:28 pm | Reply
    • rick

      That's because she does represent American interests, as does CNN. The only reason CNN is reporting on this at all, is they'll show their hand, and generally look incompetent if they pretend the story doesn't exist.

      October 28, 2013 at 5:54 pm | Reply
      • John Hillman

        Amanpour is British-Iranian. Why would she "represent" the US interests? She is a "journalist". They "represent" NO country.

        October 28, 2013 at 7:54 pm |
    • ACSH

      Greenwald is a neo-nazi stain on society. Trust nothing this tool says.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:30 pm | Reply
      • Luther Brixton

        Can you cite one single example of something he has said that was untruthful?

        Or are you simply content to make reactionary statements that underscore your lack of seriousness?

        October 28, 2013 at 8:43 pm |
      • Slim Shiva

        Silly comment. So much of what he said points to American arrogance. As a US Army Vet, it is wonderful that truth about such issues is coming to the fore. These kinds of revelations will only help America reach 'adulthood' in the family of nations. Americans aren't bad in general–it is just that power corrupts and it is difficult to live in the world when you think you need to be the policeman!

        October 28, 2013 at 9:18 pm |
      • acshiswrong

        Obvious ad hominem attack. Good job making yourself sound ignorant and not able to put up a real argument.

        October 29, 2013 at 12:34 am |
      • youvegottabekidding

        yeah a gay neo nazi...

        October 29, 2013 at 3:36 am |
      • xxcoy

        Greenwald is a typical jewish name, moron.

        November 1, 2013 at 8:12 pm |
    • ricjirs

      It's because she believes in balanced reporting. Greenwald says, “It is not true that every country intercepts the personal communications of their democratically elected allies." How about revealing his source on that? He seems to have a vendetta against the US, solely focused only on the US as if it were "the Great Satan." He reveals snippets of information and draws sweeping conclusions that no one other than NSA can confirm, and who would believe anything NSA would say if it's defensive.

      October 28, 2013 at 11:00 pm | Reply
    • cuervoblanco14

      what's more, why does she assumes that "everybody does it" (to spy) just because she uses a declaration of an US diplomat about the frenchs?
      she's like trying to justify the US "legitimacy" of spying other ppl

      November 2, 2013 at 7:58 pm | Reply
  3. The end of the US or Freedom

    Hi all just reporting from Europe for us its simple or you change or you die;)

    October 28, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Reply
  4. Lets face it a huge TERRORIST STATE CALLED US

    Lets hit some telephones of busniess men, small children and public adminsitration and governments in the US;) Lets hit some busniess secrets in the US 😉 Lets bomb some nice towns;) Lets just kill some of them and call it a peace mssion. Hey there did you got mad stupid or just trying to create a war to stimulate your economy? No way out with this type of behavior I garantee!

    October 28, 2013 at 5:49 pm | Reply
  5. mustafa

    The situation today appears to be as though God is everywhere watching u &listen to u ,,being harmful u r punished ,being good u r rewarded ,,,,we think this scientific advance will reduce terrorism activities

    October 28, 2013 at 5:57 pm | Reply
  6. MattD

    So it's all about power and economic espionage? Wow! I didn't know there are so many people important people in France and Spain, economically important or otherwise, to justify eavesdropping on 70,000,000 of them! I suspect the numbers are quite a bit less than what Greenwald is claiming, and I suspect the true motive is indeed anti-terrorism.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:06 pm | Reply
    • Luther Brixton

      You seriously believe the US government is spying on allies like Angela Merkel to stop "terrorism"?

      Out of curiosity, if you caught your neighbor rifling through your mail box and when confronted says, "I'm doing this to protect you!" – do you believe him? If not, where do you draw the line on absurd explanations for people committing criminal acts?

      Even if you are gullible enough to fall for self-evident nonsense like the US government is spying on millions of Americans to "protect them", it is STILL a crime against the 4th amendment.

      If this nation could survive much greater threats than something as incredibly minor as terrorism without eliminating our 4th amendment rights (that our founding fathers knew was important despite facing the far greater threat to this nation than "terrorism") the law needs to be enforced and the government criminal prosecuted.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:50 pm | Reply
      • Arthur K

        I'm wondering why the European governments (and Brazil, and others) don't issue criminal indictments against US officials. Many of these activities are violations of their laws.

        Or maybe instead of issuing criminal indictments and asking for extradition, they should just do it the American way, use military force to capture or kill the US officials they are targeting. And anyone who happens to be standing next to them. And anyone who might have met with them any time within the last forty years. Seems reasonable, doesn't it?

        October 29, 2013 at 2:48 am |
      • JustThinking

        To the reader below that doesn't allow comments. Because we may have helped form the ICC = International Criminal Court... But we did not sign on to it. In other words None of our Leaders can have charges brought against them except by courts in the USA. The statistics are horrible... Most of the people charges are from Africa.. I don't remember the exact number but it was in the high 90 percent. We seem to try to tell the world what to to but never hold our own accountable.

        October 29, 2013 at 10:48 am |
      • JustThinking

        ok the reader

        October 29, 2013 at 10:49 am |
  7. MattD

    Greenwald and Poitras both need a well placed bullet.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:07 pm | Reply
    • Joe B

      You and your kinds are the one that needs a bullet, and the time is coming.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:20 pm | Reply
      • JohnCRoberts

        Wow is there even a moderator looking at these comments.

        Unacceptable, both of these.

        October 28, 2013 at 7:44 pm |
      • akka69

        don't worry someone at the NSA is watching this thread...

        October 28, 2013 at 10:18 pm |
    • Elliott Carlin

      What I get from that statement is you support both of them having concealed weapons with which to defend themselves, and preferably with a bullet in the chamber-which of course would be in that instance, well placed.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:38 pm | Reply
    • ACSH

      They are horrible, but shooting them is wrong

      October 28, 2013 at 8:31 pm | Reply
  8. Elle

    How good is it that a journalist would actually go further looking for the truth!
    Finally we call what the USA has done what it actually was!
    Economic espionage and political power. For America to stay ahead of everyone else by getting information in a devious method. Shame and disgrace on the government of the USA.
    It was a tiny little person in the form of Snowden who had enough morality to say NO! This is not right.
    Your secrets are exposed, now the world knows you for what you are. Trust you will not have again.
    Now the repercussions and consequences for what you have done are rolling in.
    And yet Americans wonder why they are not liked??? Really???

    October 28, 2013 at 6:08 pm | Reply
    • marsha malone

      We don't care if you like us or not.

      October 28, 2013 at 6:11 pm | Reply
      • rmmora159

        Soon even Europe will be shutoff to American travelers. You will have to eat tacos in Tijuana for tourism.

        October 28, 2013 at 7:42 pm |
    • massms

      I don't know of any American who wonders why they're not liked or would care. Really!!!

      October 28, 2013 at 6:36 pm | Reply
    • Bob Arctor

      Not all all "Americans" are down with the actions of our "leaders", whatever "party" they claim to be a member of. We're just people, born on a certain land mass, muddling along like regular people everywhere.

      October 28, 2013 at 6:54 pm | Reply
      • Booger T

        Best comment I have seen in a long-long time. So true.

        As stupid as some of my brothers in this country are, they do not control the ultimate actions of the leaders that are elected. Those guys follow beyond rich billionaire handlers that tell them what to do. We just experience it.

        October 28, 2013 at 10:03 pm |
    • Tom in Santa Fe

      And don't forget that a lot of us Americans are descendants of Europe, that our parents, grandparents, great grandparents fled tyranny, abuse of power, and stomping on the little person. What you are so offended by is so pale in comparison as to what your (not so far) past leaders have done show that you are the ones that are arrogant. How's it feel getting twisted instead of doing the twisting?

      October 28, 2013 at 7:35 pm | Reply
  9. marsha malone

    Greenwald and SNOWED IN, along with their running mate, Assange, all have the Jesus complex. They think they are going to save the world, yea right.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:09 pm | Reply
    • yankee2

      If not them, then WHO?

      October 28, 2013 at 6:23 pm | Reply
      • ACSH

        It is wrong to compare Snowden to Greenwald Snowden was honest. Greenwald NEVER is

        October 28, 2013 at 8:33 pm |
    • massms

      Greenwald in particular is fueled by hatred and revenge because his boyfriend was refused admittance to the US way back when. He's a sick individual, desperate for attention, using a sick reason to betray his country.

      October 28, 2013 at 6:29 pm | Reply
      • Elliott Carlin

        Obama in particular is fueled by hatred and revenge because his aunt was refused permanent residency ino the US way back when. He's a sick individual, desperate for attention, using a sick reason to betray his country

        October 28, 2013 at 7:40 pm |
      • massms


        Plagiarism is indicative of low character. What's your problem...angry because they wouldn't allow your boyfriend into the country?

        October 28, 2013 at 8:21 pm |
      • HARM

        If anyone is "sick" and "needs help", it's you.

        October 28, 2013 at 8:31 pm |
      • massms


        You must be angry for the same reason Carlin is.

        October 28, 2013 at 9:28 pm |
      • Dontel Winn

        Nah, do not think so. US is shamed now all over the place because of this. Caught? Repent, PLS.

        October 29, 2013 at 10:32 am |
  10. BD

    Hey Greenwald, if you want to report the facts of a story and call it journalism, that is journalism. If you want to go on a news program and tell people what that story means and tell the readers your opinion, that is not journalism. You are the problem, not the exception.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:22 pm | Reply
    • rmmora159

      Funny comment coming from a Faux News watcher

      October 28, 2013 at 7:45 pm | Reply
  11. Jeff

    I appreciate CNN calling Greenwald an "activist journalist," because that's what he's become. They could probably just switch to "activist" pretty soon.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:25 pm | Reply
    • massms

      Traitor would be a better description.

      October 28, 2013 at 6:32 pm | Reply
      • HARM

        @massms: and "useful idiot" would be an accurate description for you.

        October 28, 2013 at 8:33 pm |
    • Elliott Carlin

      Guess you failed to recognize all of the in-breeding going on between the Administration and some of the news networks....switching jobs back and forth--man, you are blind.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:44 pm | Reply
    • rmmora159

      If you are calling CNN journalism, I have a bridge to sell you. By now, everything Greenwald said ARE facts, unless you live in former reality lala land where the US is a decent country.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:49 pm | Reply
    • massms


      Evidently, I correctly guessed why you're angry. Your resorting to name-calling is another indication of low character.

      October 28, 2013 at 9:49 pm | Reply
  12. yankee2

    Clearly, domestic spying has nothing to do with terrorism, except perhaps government terrorism against Americans. It has everything to do with world domination and totalitarian control over the American population. What better tool could a totalitarian want than detailed data on every aspect of every American's life? The future looks very bleak.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:27 pm | Reply
  13. PAtrick

    To take a slightly different approach to some of the writers here who say, shoot him or "We don't care if you don't like us".

    Why don't we turn this conversation around !
    If it had been discovered that Russia had bugged millions of phones in the US including the president, how would readers feel?
    Would it change your opinion?
    That's a test of your bias or not !
    After all Russia has "terrorist issues" too!

    What about if we make it,, (gasp!) ... Iran! They'd be the axis of evil all over again! Folks would be screaming for it to rain bombs!

    We wouldn't like it if our phones were bugged. Bugging EVERY phone does not make you safer, it's more likely to have good information lost in the noise. We are passing off "freedom" for promised safety.
    It's a poor bargain and Benjamin Franklin had a quote for that

    October 28, 2013 at 6:34 pm | Reply
    • massms

      Surely, you aren't naïve enough to think Russia, Iran and all other countries, including Germany, France, England, etc., aren't doing exactly the same thing? If Obama had any guts, he'd let them know how hypocritical they all are.

      October 28, 2013 at 6:45 pm | Reply
      • rmmora159

        The difference is that those countries are doing their spying while being heavily monitored and blocked by all means. The US was doing it behind the backs of its allies, without their knowledge. Guess what, your country is now officially in that bad guy club you just described.

        October 28, 2013 at 7:53 pm |
      • massms


        So spying is OK as long as you approve of the way it's done. ".......heavily monitored and blocked by all means"'?

        October 28, 2013 at 8:10 pm |
  14. John

    Am reading George Orwell's 1984 at the moment. He got his date a little wrong, but I think we're getting really close to it now!!

    October 28, 2013 at 6:36 pm | Reply
  15. Julian Assange

    Lesson learnt:
    NEVER TRUST American RATS!

    October 28, 2013 at 6:37 pm | Reply
  16. Nodack

    All countries spy on everyone. I would bet nobody is spied on more than the US.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:39 pm | Reply
    • rmmora159

      Most likely it wasn't, but you can count on it being spied on from now on. More juicy details coming up in the near future...

      October 28, 2013 at 7:55 pm | Reply
  17. MattD

    Simpletons always trot out Orwell to show how wily they.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:48 pm | Reply
  18. Cristiano

    Angela is not a terrorist ,but Dilma rousseff is indeed, and there is a lot of terrorist in this administration

    October 28, 2013 at 6:51 pm | Reply
  19. Triciaelaine

    One thing this is really all about is money for Grenwald, just money and nothing but money. He himself doesn't care who the NSa is doing surveillance on, it's about a story to sell.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:52 pm | Reply
    • rmmora159

      He's got the BEST story around to sell. Journalists make their living selling stories. Your point??

      October 28, 2013 at 7:56 pm | Reply
  20. jimmy

    liberals like toure on msnbc, who defend Obama 100% of the time, think it's ok to spy on angela merkel so we can know what Germany's policy on the euro is (true...he actually said that). then there are the knee-jerk reactionaries like massms who drink the kool-aid and believe everything their police state government tells them. no wonder neither the demos nor the repubs will do anything to curb this neo-roman empire police state we live in.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:52 pm | Reply
    • massms

      For something really reactionary, why don't you try to use a little punctuation so your low information brothers can read your drivel.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:27 pm | Reply
      • rmmora159

        Well punctuated rubbish is still rubbish.

        October 28, 2013 at 7:58 pm |
  21. Aussie

    It's not nice to spie on your neigbours and friends.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:56 pm | Reply
  22. MickeyOregon

    Did anyone ever really think it was about terrorism – or only terrorism? Does anyone think that the other data aggregaters e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, Google are just about an open society, or even only about commerce? Really? Knowledge is power. Information is power. Knowledge and Information in certain hands leads to control. Knowledge and Information out of one's control also affects how safe and secure one feels. The Stasi, the SS, the KGB going back through the other great bureaucracy-controlled controls such as the Austrio-Hungarian Empire, Venice, the Caliphates and Rome all knew this.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:58 pm | Reply

    Baloney. Every country does it and if they don't, they they want to and lack the resources to do it on the scale we do. Greenwald is as much of a traitor as Snowden.

    October 28, 2013 at 6:59 pm | Reply
    • Leo

      if you don't like what he is doing then move to Russia...oh wait, Russia is what we use to be and we are what they use to be, a closed, secret society that soys on their own citizens.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:07 pm | Reply
  24. John

    Keep up the good work...Glenn.....Americans....need to know how their tax money is being spent. Hard to believe how many Americans are willing to give up their 4rth Amendment Rights....just like the communist did.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:03 pm | Reply
  25. Leo

    Go get 'em Greenwald, your a true hero to speak to power, and the powerless.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:04 pm | Reply
  26. Franklin

    What a shame that proud people who think they are better than others, celebrate September 11 but forget the 26 and 29 August 1945.
    Each week more misery and rot.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:11 pm | Reply
  27. Aussie

    I can remember in 1972 the Munich Games ....When 11 Israelie men were Murdered by the PLO Arabs...Israel went after these Murder's they managed to kill 9 of these dogs..the most important leader of this group of killers was about to be brought down, until the CIA of America sabotage the hit.!!! they not only sabotage,they supported this Terrorist with money protection places to live,they went out of their way to give this killer more help than you Americans,the thing is he wasn't even a USA citizen........... WHY! WHY! WHY.....Did your goverment do this "DIRTY DEED"....Did they the CIA stoop that low to get information out of him?????.......

    October 28, 2013 at 7:16 pm | Reply
  28. Jose

    Greenwald is a true American hero, and former writer for Check them out.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:22 pm | Reply
  29. David

    Everyone craves power. The US has the the extra trait of arrogance.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:27 pm | Reply
    • Siestasis

      I don't see all you countries that are all of sudden down on the US sending back the billions of dollars we GIVE you each year to prop up your economies. When you can stand on your own two feet and pay your own bills then criticize the US.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:29 pm | Reply
      • daffersss

        Wauw, just wauw.. Is that what they tell you ?
        It almost seems like the US citizens are indroctinated by their government and media... scary stuff!

        October 29, 2013 at 11:34 am |
  30. juan

    Now lets guess who is spying on the spies.......

    October 28, 2013 at 7:28 pm | Reply
    • Aussie

      Mmmmm would that be OBAMAS mob

      October 28, 2013 at 9:59 pm | Reply
  31. Jose

    Greenwald breaks the biggest news story in 20 years, and the sycophants working at Faux News obediently attack Greenwald. They're worse than pathetic.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:33 pm | Reply
    • randy

      this is the rare exception where it's not right or left but american gov't in general. i personally have seen more support from FOX than CNN but i lean right so.... it started with Bush but it didn't end there, we need to be embarrassed and need to expect more from our elected officials. plus hate the personal attacks on GG; if you can't attack message then go after the courier. anyone who makes personal attacks should be automatically dismissed. Finally, if you say everyone else does it, well we all know how that childish argument ends. be better; expect more.

      October 28, 2013 at 7:46 pm | Reply
  32. rmmora159

    Just like Lance Armstrong, the US government and corporations will stop at nothing for selfish gains. In the end, that will be their own undoing. Truth hurts indeed, for liars and phonies.

    October 28, 2013 at 7:41 pm | Reply
  33. Elliott Carlin

    Tell an Obama-bot his hero is following in the steps of Bush/Cheney, and they'll blow a fuse. But write a story saying "Obama knew nothing about it"...and all is okay.

    Don't take the pacifier from the baby–it upsets him. lol

    October 28, 2013 at 7:46 pm | Reply
  34. bsbsbs


    October 28, 2013 at 7:58 pm | Reply
  35. rexedie

    having had some association with the intel world 40 years ago, i can say that the article makes a valid point. when it was run by the military and not private morons. people were held to a higher standard of work regrading subject matter. they were also under the rule of the military justice system which back then carried a heavier weight of integrity. its just like the people on wall st. power makes their little dck's hard. and they are some arrogant asses....

    October 28, 2013 at 8:12 pm | Reply
  36. Eddie Batista

    I think what these 2 men (Pseudo-journalist and the traitor) did is just deplorable and irresponsible. The damage caused by them, go far beyond their lame justification of “everyone has the right to know”. They don’t know what there are doing. And YES, everyone acts expecting something in return, not necessarily money or power, but just pure anarchy and destructions. That’s exactly what these 2 low-life individuals are doing.
    In the end, humanity did not move forward an inch.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:13 pm | Reply
  37. nik green

    Well Said, Glenn. You are a patriot and a hero. All those NSA sucking neo-brownshirts can go shove it.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:15 pm | Reply
  38. paul martin foreign correspondent

    Whatever the NSA di WRONG and VIOLATE the others have done much WORSE !

    To err is forgive is divine !

    Let's NOT blame ALL Americans or the over-zealous actions of the few !

    October 28, 2013 at 8:20 pm | Reply
    • Carmelina

      Your right for that.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:54 pm | Reply
  39. Alzaripov

    Instead of writing such articles where you affirm, that "NSA does not have " anything to do with terrorism". It will be more useful if you try to answer on some qestions:
    1.What is terrorism?
    2.Who are terrorists?
    3.Where are the roots of this phenomena?
    4.The aims of their struggle?
    Otherwise the struggle against terrorism and terrorists is like the hunt on lizards, catching them by their tails.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:26 pm | Reply
    • ACSH

      Terrorist target children The US has never done that. Terrorist do that. Terrorist target a market because innocent people will be there. Terrroist use schools to fire weapons at their enemies knowing the school will be damaged How stupid are you to NOT know this.

      October 28, 2013 at 8:34 pm | Reply
      • Sam

        I think his point is that Greenwald saying it has nothing to do with terrorism is unfounded.

        October 28, 2013 at 8:37 pm |
      • Robert

        The US has never done that.....My Lai.

        October 28, 2013 at 9:18 pm |
      • Aussie

        I can remember in 1972 the Munich Games ....When 11 Israelie men were Murdered by the PLO Arabs...Israel went after these Murder's they managed to kill 9 of these dogs..the most important leader of this group of killers was about to be brought down, until the CIA of America sabotage the hit.!!! they not only sabotage,they supported this Terrorist with money protection places to live,they went out of their way to give this killer more help than you Americans,the thing is he wasn't even a USA citizen........... WHY! WHY! WHY.....Did your goverment do this "DIRTY DEED"....Did they the CIA stoop that low to get information out of him?????.......This your goverment at work.??

        October 28, 2013 at 10:02 pm |
  40. Sam

    Mr Greenwald is living in a fantasy world where there is no spying, no geopolitics, no wars, no terrorism, no government, no police, no criminals, no paedophiles, no hackers and everyone loves each other and lives happily ever after.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:36 pm | Reply
  41. HARM

    Amazing how many water-carrying apologists are here for the NSA and MID.

    So exposing government law-breaking and wrong-doing now makes you a "traitor" and "sick" person. Meanwhile, participating in the government cover-ups for professional/economic gain makes you a "good journalist". Freedom is Slavery and Ignorance is Strength –Orwell was spot on.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:37 pm | Reply
  42. Sam

    People accuse the government of spying, but they don't care about internet companies like Google, eBay, Facebook or even CNN tracking their every movement online, keeping meticulous exhaustive records of everything you've done so that they can squeeze more money out of you. Or sell the info to another company.

    October 28, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Reply
  43. CommentsSF

    We need more journalist like Glenn Greenwald.

    Thank you sr. I wish more journalist were as courageous as you

    October 28, 2013 at 9:08 pm | Reply
    • shamgar50

      You're almost as clueless as the author.

      October 28, 2013 at 9:35 pm | Reply
  44. shamgar50

    Agenda • noun • a•gen• da: the underlying intentions or motives of a particular person or group

    7 Billion people, 7 Billion agendas.
    Some benign
    Some malignant
    Twisted fanaticism
    A plot grows
    A bomb will be delivered.
    At what point do you enter the chain?
    FIND IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 28, 2013 at 9:53 pm | Reply
  45. rosner927

    PLEEEEEEEASE!!! How do you find a terrorist from millions of people without filtering through phone calls and emails? NSA would be delight to know!!

    October 28, 2013 at 10:06 pm | Reply
    • Chukuchuku

      Good question

      November 1, 2013 at 9:40 am | Reply
  46. dudley

    Very sad for Americans. After the shutdown, Putin's disassembly of Kerry and Obama over Syria, Benghazi and Boston, this is yet another humiliation that Americans suffer at the hands of an incompetent administration whose supporters are little more than lick-spittles.

    The federal government is out of control with the NSA suggesting that they own all of the electronic data in the world and the Department of Homeland Security building a domestic army. Are we expecting an invasion that the world's most powerful military can't handle or a radical power grab?

    October 28, 2013 at 10:09 pm | Reply
  47. Dave

    One can argue about the merits of journalistic exposure in this case, and whether or not the revelations are harmful to national security and foreign relationships. But one thing is clearly not true, that Obama had no knowledge of these operations. Parsing things, He may not have been directly briefed on all the operational details by the NSA Director, however, he was certainly shown reports that resulted from it, and Obama is not so stupid as to not know where the information came from, his denials to the contrary not withstanding.

    October 28, 2013 at 10:16 pm | Reply
  48. P S Ramakrishna

    US & UK democracies have failed to rein in irresponsible intelligence officials who got away with any thing whatever they wanted to do. These intelligence officials along with their governments could have blackmailed citizens & their governments across the globe. Who takes the responsibility?

    October 28, 2013 at 10:50 pm | Reply
  49. rory

    US always try to fool the world what ever US does is for the world peace. US thought people around the world are stupid.

    October 28, 2013 at 11:41 pm | Reply
  50. Mark Glomski

    Vote Green Party. End the Fed.

    October 29, 2013 at 12:38 am | Reply
  51. Altee11

    Why is Greenwald only tackling the USA? It sounds like Greenwald is out to get the USA. He did say at one time that because the USA went after his boyfriend in Brazil that he would make the USA and UK pay. It sounds like he is just out to get the USA. I am concerned as a citizen at what he is doing to the country. There are other countries and non-state actors engaged in espionage for economic and other purposes. Why does Greenwald not go after them?

    October 29, 2013 at 1:06 am | Reply
    • Arthur K

      I think this sort of argument should be used by defence attorneys as well. Why are you prosecuting my client, lots of other people committed murders too. Why aren't you going after them? I think you have some grudge against my client.

      October 29, 2013 at 2:50 am | Reply
      • Altee11


        October 29, 2013 at 4:25 am |
  52. PaulL




    October 29, 2013 at 2:27 am | Reply
  53. PaulL


    October 29, 2013 at 2:30 am | Reply
  54. ed baars

    top news in the world

    October 29, 2013 at 4:46 am | Reply
  55. Tefera Worku

    Last night's ( here in the Horn it was night time) Amanpour's brief interview of this Greenwald guy was very concise and effective.He tried to present himself as the one who is on a mission to rescue journalism from its integrity crisis.Old school Journalism as is still mostly being practiced by the likes of NYT, WP, WSJ, Sunday Times,IHT, etc. from the print side and CNN, BBC, PBS, ABC,CBS,NBC, Even the relatively young one France 24, etc. from Broadcast side, is still the best tradition and practice that helps the world's public stay informed and gets warned about a brewing threat or danger, b it man made or nature caused. They send their correspondents to rough spots, danger zones where there is little comfort and not adequate protection.By so doing they bring to our screen or coffee table the next closest experience next 2 being actually there.Ignoring all of that this Greenwald guy tries 2 make the current practice of journalism all about what he branded as cozy relationship between politicians and journalists and claims that objectivity is absent there.His version of fine practice of Journalism is when the source gets interviewed by a dozen journalists flanked by lawyers infront of a dozen cameras and he gets to talk about what he got from his source to millions.A dozen vis a vis millions is being discrete and clandestine enough to keep the source confidential and that beats the Woddward- Deep throat approach.Both Gw and Snowden look maturity and wisdom challenged, publicity hungry who are looking 4 the shortest path 2 stardom.The World will be a reliably stable and secure place when the finest journalistic practice by the likes of Orgs I mentioned above,even though they are not always perfect and cant be,and continue to report write analysis and by so doing living a draft of what will be part of Mankind's History in the future.Besides today's world is 2 a dangerous place for letting all kinds of unsavory characters privy to practices or intentions they shouldn't be.I don' t think one has 2 try hard to find delusion of grandeur in greenwald and this snowden fellow.Somebody has to say 2 greenwald : u ain't A.M.Rosenthal,Bill Safire,Tony Lewis,Ted Koppel. Nick C., etc. at best u r in the minor league of journalism.A former Upstate NY Academic and Math researcher, from A.A.

    October 29, 2013 at 5:27 am | Reply
  56. marco

    Remember what the united states said about the former soviet union that an that they where spying on their own people and trying to bully other countries in their influance ,gues what the united states turned into the enemy the where trying to fight.
    in a couple of years they end up the same way broke ,corrupt and with no allies.

    congratulations with your progres

    October 29, 2013 at 8:45 am | Reply
  57. Sander

    The NSA privacy thieves are on the Sinking Ship .... and the good news? There are No lifeboats ...

    October 29, 2013 at 9:12 am | Reply
  58. Dontel Winn

    This is outrageous. I cannot believe that the US actually did this on so many ally leaders and peoples. My 2 cents are that 911 did destroy something in America's spine. As the #1 power in the world, they were used to be respected, admired, and protected. So when sth. like that scale happened to them, they were so much scared and shamed that the gov was willing to do anything, anything to stop that and take revenge on Bin Laden and co. As lon gas you are for us, you are against us. That Bush/Chenny mentality finlally got into their leaders mind. That is why we are here.

    October 29, 2013 at 10:26 am | Reply
  59. Dontel Winn

    This is outrageous. I cannot believe that the US actually did this on so many ally leaders and peoples. My 2 cents are that 911 did destroy something in America's spine. As the #1 power in the world, they were used to be respected, admired, and perfectedly protected. So when sth. like that scale happened to them, they were so much scared and shamed that the gov was willing to do anything, anything to stop that and take revenge on Bin Laden and cos. As long as you are not for us, you are against us. That Bush/Chenny mentality finlally got into their leaders mind. That is why we are here. This is so bad for US, and even worse for all the world. I have to say.

    October 29, 2013 at 10:29 am | Reply
  60. Scott Hanson

    Mr. Greenwald certainly enjoys tooting his own horn. I wonder if he has a super heros costume in his closet. He acts as though he is doing the world a favor. My question to Mr. Greenwald is if the U.S. and Britian don't provide a security program. Will he swoop in with his super hero costume and save us all? I look forward to other interviews with this super hero on your show.

    October 29, 2013 at 12:41 pm | Reply
  61. Michael Martinez

    Glenn Greenwald lives in a fantasy world where terrorists don't exist, car bombs don't go off, and Al Qaeda is not operating in more than 20 countries with a publicly stated goal of launching a world-wide jihad by 2020. He is not trained in intelligence gathering and analysis and his ridiculous interpretations of what are and are not necessary to identify and track individual operatives of Al Qaeda, its allies, and its pool of potential recruits are founded in wild-eyed conspiracy theories.

    Edward Snowden could not have chosen a more iincompetant and dangerous individual to "vet" the files he stole from the American government.

    October 29, 2013 at 1:21 pm | Reply
  62. Phillip Wynn

    Not sure if this idea posted yet, but keep in mind these revelations also reveal a staggering level of strategic incompetence at the NSA. "Hey, we need to find a needle in a haystack ... so let's add more hay!"

    October 29, 2013 at 1:49 pm | Reply
  63. Geeve

    The fact is that mass surveillance is a very blunt instrument for spotting terrorists, and planned acts of terrorism. Much better to control and monitor the storage, movement, and sale of the materials which terrorists need to use for their terrorist acts.

    October 29, 2013 at 5:55 pm | Reply
  64. Yes1fan

    So if the U.S. Military predominately enforces global energy interests, and NSA is predominately economic spying, then my guess is that the Global Plutocrats have coerced both aspects of our government, for their own purposes.

    October 29, 2013 at 11:46 pm | Reply
  65. Curious

    Whatever Greenswald is saying is pure baloney.
    He wants people to know that spying is happening, it has always been
    if he expect world without it than he is delusional.

    How do you expect people to siphon off the information which
    is critical to understand any attack. Should you go only after
    terrorist, his trainer, his master, his family , his friends or you find
    out how the communication is happening.

    When you have an information buried underneath how do you
    gather it, you have to scan it so that it can be seen from all angles.

    Ofcourse USA has been doing and it is being done since Cold War.
    A power needs to do what it has to to protect its interest otherwise
    if we go by the critique there will be no US and no US President.

    Nietzsche says
    "It is never the survival of the fittest, it is always the survival of the mightiest"
    One has to become strong and capable in order to survive.
    What US does in this is not unethical, not immoral as long as it doesn't involve US Citizens.

    All this German fancy of the World will be broken apart when terrorist attack.
    Plato said "A Civilized society has to understand the ways of the criminal in order to deal with the crime"
    How does Mr. Greenswald expect US to understand how the terrorism moves by chasing points called
    name of men. You got to be kidding Mr. Greenswald.

    Look around World is dangerous and it is held on certain beliefs and thought.
    THere are way too many people on this earth and not every one likes you.
    One needs to know because there are enemies amongst friends and friends amongst enemies.
    In Short I think it is asinine to accuse US of what its doing.
    I would be laughing if US acquiesces to the demand of these liberty centric people.

    October 30, 2013 at 5:00 am | Reply
  66. rexedie

    in reality ....information gathering was supposed to be more involved in on going war activities. such as enemy troop movement ...locations...force capability etc. not shopping mall watchers.... who want to know any and every nit picky detail of a persons habits. the who thing is out of control .... we have always maintained eyes on our political allies as well as foe. terrorism is now just a buzz word excuse to survey anything ....private contractors have to validate their they make up more crap to watch.... but it is mostly an ego based game of deceit...

    October 30, 2013 at 12:26 pm | Reply
  67. whitewidow

    State terrorism.

    October 30, 2013 at 3:09 pm | Reply
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    January 28, 2021 at 10:02 pm | Reply
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