Top Leaderboard, Site wide
July 26, 2014
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
Help us grow by sharing
and liking Truthdig:
Sign up for Truthdig's Email NewsletterLike Truthdig on FacebookFollow Truthdig on TwitterSubscribe to Truthdig's RSS Feed

Newsletter

sign up to get updates






The Sixth Extinction
War of the Whales


Truthdig Bazaar
Last Dance in Havana

Last Dance in Havana

By Eugene Robinson
$19.95

PornoPower

Boots on the Ground by Dusk: My Tribute to Pat Tillman

By Mary Tillman with Narda Zacchino
Hardcover $17.13

more items

 
Ear to the Ground

Michael Hayden: Terrorists Love Gmail

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Sep 15, 2013
University of Michigan's Ford School (CC BY-ND 2.0)

Michael Hayden currently serves as a principal of a security consultancy group and teaches at George Mason University School of Public Policy.

While defending the legal basis for the NSA’s mass domestic data mining program, former NSA and CIA director Michael Hayden claimed Sunday that “Gmail is the preferred Internet service provider of terrorists worldwide,“adding: “I don’t think you’re going to see that in a Google commercial, but it’s free, it’s ubiquitous, so of course it is.”

Hayden’s speech on “the tension between security and liberty” was part of an adult education forum at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington D.C.

Asked whether the United States’ spying activities was setting a dangerous example for other nations, Hayden suggested that the American origins of the Internet justifies the NSA’s conduct. If the Web lasts another five centuries, he said, future generations may remember it “the way the Romans are remembered for their roads.”

“We built it here, and it was quintessentially American,” he said, adding that partially due to that, much of traffic goes through American servers where the government “takes a picture of it for intelligence purposes.”

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

Andrea Peterson at The Washington Post:

Hayden also conceded that the United States. “could be fairly charged with the militarization of the World Wide Web.” The NSA’s Tactical Access Operations (TAO) is reportedly charged with hacking foreign targets to steal data and monitor communications. It also reportedly develops programs that could destroy or damage foreign computers and networks using cyberattacks.

At one point, Hayden expressed a distaste for online anonymity, saying “The problem I have with the Internet is that it’s anonymous.” But he noted, there is a struggle over that issue even inside government. The issue came to a head during the Arab Spring movement when the State Department was funding technology to protect the anonymity of activists so governments could not track down or repress their voices.

“We have a very difficult time with this,” Hayden said. He then asked, “is our vision of the World Wide Web the global digital commons— at this point you should see butterflies flying here and soft background meadow-like music—or a global free fire zone?” Given that Hayden also compared the Internet to the wild west and Somalia, Hayden clearly leans toward the “global free fire zone” vision of the Internet.

Read more

More Below the Ad

Advertisement

Square, Site wide

New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.