We need a Serpico to clean up spy agencies
RT:One argument is that Snowden exposed the existence
of a system that was designed to prevent terrorist attacks; he’s
made that known now to extremists. So surely that’s espionage,
Tony Gosling: Well, this has got nothing to do with terrorism or terrorist attacks. This system is actually designed to troll all information. Let’s think about what that means. It includes all of the communications of our politicians, our political representatives and MPs. It also includes lawyers, people who might be defending us in court. And it includes journalists. It is probably the biggest phishing operation in history…Look at what Rupert Murdoch did with the News International scandal involving phone hacking. What was happening there? Information was being garnered and then used against people. And if you’ve got everything that anyone has ever said in private, you can take down just about anybody on the political scene.
We’ve seen quite a lot of these takedowns. So that’s the real
danger here…It undermines the rule of law. And effectively,
that’s what’s been going on inside of the National Security
Agency, and probably here at [British intelligence agency] GCHQ.
All we are asking for is the rule of law. We’ve had enough of
them using these intelligence agencies, this whole thing of
national security, to cover up their own crimes. Somebody has
authorized these, and somebody has carried them out. And if they
haven’t got warrants from judges to do this surveillance then
they’ve broken the law. What we need is some kind of Serpico
[Frank Serpico was a NY cop who blew the whistle on entrenched
police corruption – Ed.] to go into these intelligence services
and clean them up, otherwise we’re heading down, as Daniel
Ellsberg was saying, the road to tyranny.
RT:Okay, the whistle has now been blown…but what’s
going to happen to Snowden do you think?
TG: Well, I would hope that there would be a movement – in
fact, it’s already happening on the internet pretty straightaway
– to protect him and look after him. [Snowden] is the latest in a
series of people. We’ve had Julian Assange, to begin with,
somebody who’s been working in the public interest exposing
criminality and international war crimes, now incarcerated in
London. Bradley Manning’s trial is just starting and, of course,
Snowden is just the latest in this link. And I would imagine
there will be attempts to protect him by the general public in
the West. Certainly, he’s been working in our interest, making
sure our taxpayers’ money is not misused by these intelligence
RT:Well, his biggest worry now is that nothing is going to change, despite all this.
TG: There are many politicians, lawyers, journalists and ordinary citizens across the West who want to see our intelligence services clear their act up. Because this is no good. We can’t have them simply able to break the law, and basically crying wolf: “National security, national security, we’re not going to allow the police in here.” We need the police to go into these agencies and ask question; if necessary, arrest intelligence officers who have been involved in this. But the key is to find out who authorized this in the first place, and…unless we send those people to jail, we are really in a dangerous situation where we could be living in what is effectively a technocracy, and that’s to say that democracy is out the window, those that own and control the technology that surrounds us, this surveillance technology, will be able to take down anybody, blacken the name of anybody they wish to.
This is really a mixture of an Orwellian state, that was talked
about by George Orwell…and also [former US President Dwight]
Eisenhower warned us that the military-industrial complex could
get on top and it seems most of our politicians, and many of our
journalists in the West, are on the back foot.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.