NSA whistleblower supporters to speak on civil liberties

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Daniel Ellsberg
GUARDIAN PHOTO BY REBECCA BOWE

Famed whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg leaked the Pentagon Papers in 1971 and plans to march in the upcoming San Francisco Pride Parade to honor Bradley Manning. In an editorial published earlier today, Ellsberg lauded Edward Snowden – the 29-year-old who came forward to reveal himself as the National Security Agency whistleblower – as “a new hero” and “a patriot.”

Tomorrow, June 11, Ellsberg will speak as part of a panel talk titled “Our Vanishing Civil Liberties.” The event will also feature Birgitta Jonsdottir, an Icelandic Member of Parliament and Wikileaks supporter, who leads an organization that indicated in a statement yesterday that it would assist Snowden in seeking asylum in Iceland.

The panel talk, which will be held in Berkeley, was organized in tandem with the National Lawyers Guild of San Francisco and the Bill of Rights Defense Committee. Other speakers will include activist and author Norman Solomon, who has also called for support for Snowden, and Nadia Kayyali, Legal Fellow with the Bill of Rights Defense Committee and Executive Vice President for the National Lawyers Guild.

“The timing with these revelations is pretty fantastic,” Kayyali notes. “The real goal of this discussion is really that, for it to be a discussion,” she added.

A national coalition of privacy organizations is in the process of coming together and preparing a statement in response to the surveillance programs revealed in The Guardian (UK) and the Washington Post over the last several days, Kayyali said.

Yesterday, a statement was released by the International Modern Media Institute, co-founded by Jonsdottir to strengthen Iceland’s protections for journalists and whistleblowers.

Tonight the identity of Edward Snowden, the brave whistleblower who exposed these clandestine projects for monitoring the world’s population, was revealed in an interview, where it was implied that he has an interest in seeking asylum in Iceland,” IMMI wrote in a message apparently drafted in Reykjavík, Iceland and San Francisco.Whereas IMMI is based in Iceland, and has worked on protections of privacy, furtherance of government transparency, and the protection of whistleblowers, we feel it is our duty to offer to assist and advise Mr. Snowden to the greatest of our ability.”

Jonsdottir was targeted by the U.S. Department of Justice several years ago, when federal agents sought her Twitter account records after she supported Wikileaks as a volunteer. 

Comments

And how "brave" has Snowdon been running off to Hong Kong before outing himself?

If he was really brave he would have stayed here and faced the music. At least Manning did that.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 10, 2013 @ 3:14 pm

Why stay in a country that is as corrupt as this one has become when so many people are ex-patrioting now? Why should he risk going to prison due to the targeting of political activists and other politically incorrect outspoken individuals? Every thing is so corrupt now..... even the electronic voting machines have been corrupted.........

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 1:42 pm
Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 1:58 pm

I doubt that Snowdon was ever a patriot so he cannot be an ex patriot. Or even be an ex parrot.

He is toast though.

Posted by anon on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 2:01 pm

Glad to see that Ellsberg will be with the Bradley Manning contingent at Pride, because I know that's where I'm going to be. I'll also be attending the Trans March this year, both to show my support for the transgender community and because they actually had the guts to take a stand in honoring Bradley Manning. I'm glad that Snowden is free for the moment, and unlike "Guest", I do not see any honor in an individual subjecting themselves to a political show trial when he can still do more good work on the outside.

Posted by HeartTenderloin on Jun. 10, 2013 @ 10:54 pm

Unlike Manning and Snowdon, who are both heading for the big house for their treason, and rightly so.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 5:22 am

"Treason" - how about defending the 4th Amendment (and the rest of the Constitution) against all enemies, foreign and *domestic*? This illustrates an important distinction - between those who support the government and those who uphold the Constitution. Only the latter are true patriots.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 7:46 am

"When the people fear the government, that is tyranny. But when the government fears the people that is liberty". - Thomas Jefferson. The man ran in fear so what's that say about our government. Its obvious our government no longer fears us. Which if u know your Jefferson leads to some other radical ideas. To me its sad our government did it at all. I fell less safe now then I did waking up to watch those planes hit.u think those people were pissed then well guess what we just pissed off allies by spying on all of them. Just imagine the blow back. I would like to see snowden back in the US but with how our government is now I'd b surprised if he lived out a year on us soil.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 8:35 am

restoring States' rights and a much smaller federal government.

I suspect it is liberals who would yelp in anguish if we actually did that though.

I still think Manning and Snowdon are traitors, but it is entertaining to see the left suddenly whining about big government, when they normally are all in favour of government meddling and control.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 8:54 am

Snowden remarked to the UK Guardian that there was a difference between himself and Manning. Snowden read and reviewed all of the documents he leaked. He witheld leaking documents that would potentially harm individuals. He said Manning did none of that.

Posted by Richmondman on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 12:04 pm

of them could have carefully read each one. Nor could they necessarily known of what harm might result from it, since they themselves had incomplete knowledge.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 11, 2013 @ 12:18 pm

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