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Snowden Queries Putin On Live TV Regarding Russian Internet Surveillance

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the keep-to-the-script-now dept.

Government 396

Rambo Tribble (1273454) writes "Edward Snowden appeared on a Russian television call-in show to ask Russian President Vladimir Putin about policies of mass surveillance. The exchange has a canned quality which will likely lead to questions regarding the integrity of Snowden's actions, in the query of his host in asylum."

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Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780467)

These propaganda sessions for Putin are pre-staged so Snowden has allowed himself to be used as a "propaganda tool". Considering how freedoms are curtailed in Russia, it seriously deminishes Snowden's reputation.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Interesting)

Vadim Grinshpun (31) | about 7 months ago | (#46780505)

While true, your statement also assumes he had a choice...

Re:Useful Idiot (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780525)

He probably could have tried legal measures to implement reform if it was actually more important to him than being famous

Re:Useful Idiot (2, Funny)

ackthpt (218170) | about 7 months ago | (#46780771)

He probably could have tried legal measures to implement reform if it was actually more important to him than being famous

He wants more than fame, he wants to establish Russia as a global power, again. Problem is, his economy is mostly natural resourced exporting - which means it's pretty weak on manufacturing or services.

Re:Useful Idiot (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780905)

You seem to be talking about Putin, while gp was talking about Snowden.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

nomanisanisland (3617737) | about 7 months ago | (#46780857)

He probably could have tried legal measures to implement reform if it was actually more important to him than being famous

Really? What legal measures could he have tried while remaining in the US? He would have been arrested faster than SSD read times, and never heard from again for "national security" reasons. The government's first response was to label him a traitor - they don't let you have much freedom as a traitor, in case you didn't know. I doubt any legal measures he could have tried before being arrested as a traitor would even have been reported on by the press, again for national security reasons.

Whether you think his revelations were right or wrong, I think you'd have to agree he couldn't have truly revealed anything successfully by staying in the US.

Re:Useful Idiot (1, Insightful)

glrotate (300695) | about 7 months ago | (#46781025)

I asked my senator if he had ever called her about his concerns. She said "no."

I''m going to go out on a limb and say that he never called Ron/Rand Paul, or any other congressman that one would assume would be receptive to the sort of grievances Snowden supposedly has.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

Kremmy (793693) | about 7 months ago | (#46781103)

I'm gonna go out of my way and say that every single congress critter was in on it, right up until they realized they were being watched as well.

Re:Useful Idiot (0, Troll)

jeffmeden (135043) | about 7 months ago | (#46781169)

He probably could have tried legal measures to implement reform if it was actually more important to him than being famous

Really? What legal measures could he have tried while remaining in the US? He would have been arrested faster than SSD read times, and never heard from again for "national security" reasons. The government's first response was to label him a traitor - they don't let you have much freedom as a traitor, in case you didn't know. I doubt any legal measures he could have tried before being arrested as a traitor would even have been reported on by the press, again for national security reasons.

Whether you think his revelations were right or wrong, I think you'd have to agree he couldn't have truly revealed anything successfully by staying in the US.

The government's first response to someone who was tasked to keep secrets safe and secure, but instead rounded up many thousands of said very important, sensitive national secrets and shared them with several reporters and then gallivanted across Asia with them in tow, was to call him a traitor? Hmm. How out of line. You can't argue for a second that he didn't completely betray his duties at the NSA, the only outstanding question is whether or not his betrayal was warranted given that the secrets he shared appear to illustrate abuse of power by the NSA. Had he stayed in the US and given his evidence to trusted sources within the US, the government's reaction would have been much different. Grassroots support would have been a lot more organic and presistent, too. The "Free Snowden" crowd can't exactly picket at the Russian embassy with any effect.

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780929)

He would never have seen the sun ever again.

Re:Useful Idiot (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780609)

While true, your statement also assumes he had a choice...

Either way, it demonstrates that Snowden is a tool. Just not sure what kind...

Re:Useful Idiot (1, Insightful)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46780779)

While true, your statement also assumes he had a choice...

Either way, it demonstrates that Snowden is a tool. Just not sure what kind...

I agree, but this is no surprise. Snowden has been a tool of Putin the whole time. Why change now?

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780791)

Either way, it demonstrates that Snowden is a tool. Just not sure what kind...

Better ask your mom.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

Entropius (188861) | about 7 months ago | (#46780807)

Yep -- if the US wanted to not give Putin a propaganda tool, they could have welcomed him back home with a guarantee of safety.

We made our choice, and he took refuge in the only place he could.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about 7 months ago | (#46780963)

He chose to flee to the two countries with the BIGGEST free speech / surveillance issues in the world-- China and Russia-- after publicly blowing the whistle on much lesser instances in the US.

I mean we're throwing a fit about the NSA's capturing of "metadata". China just snorts up every bit of cell and internet data that goes in or out of any ISP or carrier, and they barely attempt to hide it. Im sure Russia is pretty close.

So yes, he had a choice, and he made it about 8 months ago, and it was a remarkably bad one.

Re:Useful Idiot (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781139)

You, are a fucking idiot. *You* have no idea what "metadata" actually is and how much more usable it is than actual data.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

N1AK (864906) | about 7 months ago | (#46781207)

I mean we're throwing a fit about the NSA's capturing of "metadata". China just snorts up every bit of cell and internet data that goes in or out of any ISP or carrier, and they barely attempt to hide it. Im sure Russia is pretty close.

What China does in surveillance of their own citizens isn't acceptable in my opinion but how is "they're even worse" a valid defence for the US which has constantly acted like it stands apart on these matters. Secondly, and something I think Americans really don't appreciate, as someone from outside both China and the US I know China would probably try and intercept my calls etc, but at least they don't pretend to be my friend while they are at it which America has been.

I'm yet to hear a good criticism of how Snowden behaved. Arguments like "he should have stayed within the system" are laughable when one considers what he already tried and the fates of others who tried, the but, but, but someone else is worse argument is relative and just shoddy misdirection. I'm incredibly grateful that he had the balls to share what he knew with the world.

Re:Useful Idiot (4, Interesting)

bigwheel (2238516) | about 7 months ago | (#46781063)

Snowden's best chance of survival is to stay in the limelight, where his keepers will risk public scrutiny if he is harmed. So, assuming that becoming a tool was Snowden's only choice, his required tool-task wasn't that bad. Just lob a softball question to Putin, and let Putin respond with propaganda. Snowden didn't have to lie or endorse anything, and it gave him the necessary renewal of his 15 minutes of fame.

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781147)

Soon his new masters will be tired of him and he will have an accident. Of course, the US will be blamed for it.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

Hadlock (143607) | about 7 months ago | (#46780557)

It's interesting what one will do when your political asylum is up for renewal.

Snowden never had integrity (-1, Troll)

TheMiddleRoad (1153113) | about 7 months ago | (#46780605)

He's a traitor and a corrupt piece of crap. He's caused more harm to world peace than even Putin. The two certainly belong together.

Re:Snowden never had integrity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780721)

Troll much?

Re:Snowden never had integrity (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780741)

LOL oh man you are so right, look how many terrorist attacks have happened since the snowden leaks eh, now that all of the NSAs spying techniques are known and now stopped. I guess the bad guys have all moved now from forming plots via gmail & twitter & facebook to secretz underground cave meetings! Snowden deserves to be somewhere better than back in the US, unfortunately, not too many places qualify for a position like that these days...

Re:Snowden never had integrity (4, Insightful)

fremsley471 (792813) | about 7 months ago | (#46781185)

To anyone who ever says that Snowden told the terrorists about bugging. The 2010 film Four Lions has a scene with the terrorist plotters using a spoof on Disney's "Club Penguin", making it the only safe method to chat to each other (it's a black comedy). Interception was so widely known, it was a joke (see Bin Laden's lack of house-hold comms).

The people who didn't suspect that electronic comms were all thoroughly bugged were the other 99.999999% of the population. They thought the 'goodies' were targeting the 'baddies'.

Re:Snowden never had integrity (0, Troll)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46780805)

He's a traitor and a corrupt piece of crap. He's caused more harm to world peace than even Putin. The two certainly belong together.

Where I agree he's a traitor... I think you ascribe him way too much power. Snowden is, at this point, just a pawn being used by Putin.

Re:Useful Idiot (2)

neumayr (819083) | about 7 months ago | (#46780677)

And the rest of the world either inclined to sell him out to the US, or not letting him immigrate in the first place.

Re:Useful Idiot (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780625)

The sessions of any western Head of State are pre-staged too. The questions are known to all parties in advance. So what is your point?

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780669)

Doesn't this call into question everything Snowden has said?
Just because the US government is doing bad things does not mean Russia hasn't gotten him to lie about or exaggerate any of them.

Re:Useful Idiot (5, Insightful)

CanHasDlY (3618887) | about 7 months ago | (#46780709)

Doesn't this call into question everything Snowden has said?

Nice try. People who make any of this about Snowden are trying to hide the fact that the government is violating the constitution and people's fundamental liberties.

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780735)

He probably was told to do it or else. I bet he can't leave the country even if he wanted to, either.

Re:Useful Idiot (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 7 months ago | (#46780749)

Snowden was probably ordering a pizza and his recorded voice was mixed and dubbed into the phone call.

In any case, everything you need to know about Putin's "Open Russia" you can tell from his control of all media.

Re:Useful Idiot (1, Insightful)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46780765)

These propaganda sessions for Putin are pre-staged so Snowden has allowed himself to be used as a "propaganda tool". C

But that is what Snowden has ALWAYS been for Putin, a propaganda tool. Why should it change now?

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780777)

Maybe if a western country, ANY western country, would offer to get him the fuck out of there, he wouldn't have to do it just to survive.

I doubt he's willing to sacrifice what remains of his life to protect the Russian people from propaganda.

Re:Useful Idiot (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780907)

This Putin interview was faker than a Jay Carney press conference, which is pretty hard to do.

Re:Useful Idiot (2)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 7 months ago | (#46781203)

These propaganda sessions for Putin are pre-staged so Snowden has allowed himself to be used as a "propaganda tool". Considering how freedoms are curtailed in Russia, it seriously deminishes Snowden's reputation.

No it doesn't.

Snowden asked a simple and direct question, as is the norm at Putin's Q&A sessions (he does them with press corps too). Putin gave a simple and direct answer. Whether you believe the answer is a lie or not, it's a question that anyone could have asked and got the same response.

Also, do you actually know these sessions are entirely pre-staged? Can you give a cite for that? Putin had to ask for help with a translation of Snowden's question, why would he make himself look linguistically weak like that if it was all pre-staged and he already knew the question was coming? Far better for him to look fluent.

Old proverb (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 7 months ago | (#46780469)

It loses a bit in the translation but essentially it says "When you're living with wolves, you better learn fast how to howl, lest they might think you're a sheep".

Re:Old proverb (3, Informative)

lgw (121541) | about 7 months ago | (#46780671)

Not to Godwin the thread, but the new government in east Ukraine is actually registering Jews right now today [usatoday.com] .

America learned once why it can't let dictators like Putin just invade their neighbors with impunity. How quickly we forgot where this all goes. It will take more than a sternly worded letter, or laughable sanctions, to stop this shit. And it must be stopped. It's on all of us, otherwise.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780725)

Screw you, warmonger. Stop trying to police the world. The only way it matters is if there's clear evidence that they're going to attack America.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780939)

Screw you, isolationist. Stop trying to hide from the world. Allies are at risk, treaties demand we offer aid if asked, and we've been serving as Europe's on-call army since VE day. Failing to assist if asked would just incentivize every civilized nation to build a hundred nukes pre-aimed at neighboring cities of importance and kept armed.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781173)

You warmongering pieces of shit can't even comprehend the fact that the US does not own the world. We should not be going to war for allies, or for anyone other than ourselves.

How does it feel to benefit the military industrial complex, and all the rich pieces of shit that make money off of your stupidity?

Screw treaties, and screw our 'allies'; they're sovereign countries, and they can try to defend themselves. Obviously, you despise freedom and love wasting money. Seriously, can't you pieces of garbage go a decade or so without trying to get us into a war? Do you really want thousands of our own people to die, and for us to waste a colossal amount of money so badly?

Opposing this nonsense is not isolationism; it's just intelligent.

Re:Old proverb (1)

lgw (121541) | about 7 months ago | (#46781121)

Screw you, warmonger. Stop trying to police the world. The only way it matters is if there's clear evidence that they're going to attack America.

Hitler had no immediate plans to attack America. Sometimes shit just gets out of hand and you have to do your part. The longer you wait, the higher the cost in lives and money when you do.

Looks like this flyer is being denied by everyone in the government now: whether or not it was sincere in the first place, the threat from basically everyone in the civilized world is the needed deterrent to stop shit like this before it gets started.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781227)

And guess what? Japan then attacked us. Preemptive warfare is *bullshit*, but warmongers love it. Can't you people go a few decades or so without trying to get us to waste more money on preemptive wars, lying to get us into wars, or trying to get everyone killed? Serious question. Unless you have clear evidence (not like the obviously bullshit evidence that Iraq had WMDs, but even if they did, they're a sovereign country like us, so that's not a reason to go to war) that they're trying to attack America, or unless they have, fuck right off.

A "civilized world" would reject preemptive wars.

Re:Old proverb (4, Informative)

mbone (558574) | about 7 months ago | (#46780759)

The man this is supposed to be from is denying it, and also denying he ever claimed the title it gives him. See this, from Kiev Jewish [evreiskiy.kiev.ua] .

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781067)

We are registering everybody as a part of the normal population statistics and our national id cards contain a biometric signature. For all that is sacred for you all, why won't anybody occupy us!?!
Putin clearly wanted to ensure continuing NATO expansion to east and strengthen its position around the Arctic Ocean. If that was not the case, well, I also thought all Russians were good at chess and common sense.

Re:Old proverb (0)

DrJimbo (594231) | about 7 months ago | (#46781195)

America learned once why it can't let dictators like Putin just invade their neighbors with impunity.

Well then maybe they should stop putting people like Putin in power. The current political system in Russia is the direct result of the disastrous neo-liberal economic policies imposed by the West after the collapse of the USSR.

Let's stop fucking up other parts of the world and then fucking them up further by using military intervention to clean up our previous fuck ups. How quickly we forget where this all goes.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781205)

Israel now has the justification to send a few brigades of the IDF there to pummel those vodka-swilling anti-Semites.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780705)

It loses a bit in the translation but essentially it says "When you're living with wolves, you better learn fast how to howl, lest they might think you're a sheep".

And when you voluntarily move in with those wolves, that's your own damn fault.

Re:Old proverb (2)

s.petry (762400) | about 7 months ago | (#46780847)

It loses a bit in the translation but essentially it says "When you're living with wolves, you better learn fast how to howl, lest they might think you're a sheep".

And when you voluntarily move in with those wolves, that's your own damn fault.

This distorts reality quite a bit. Snowden appealed to Russia as a last resort for asylum, it was not his first choice. When he made his appeal his choices were either: 1) Face death (numerous people called for him to die) or life in prison returning to the US. or 2) Attempt to have a life in a different country.

Some freedom is better than no freedom at that point.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780999)

>Snowden appealed to Russia as a last resort for asylum, it was not his first choice.

"If you can't do the time, don't do the crime."

Re:Old proverb (1)

zwede (1478355) | about 7 months ago | (#46781183)

Would have been insightful had Snowden actually committed a crime.

Re:Old proverb (2)

BiIl_the_Engineer (3618863) | about 7 months ago | (#46781229)

Are you people really so mindless that you have to appeal to laws? All Snowden did was reveal the government's wrongdoings (unconstitutional and otherwise). If you don't like that, well, maybe you should blame the government for being evil scumbags in the first place, as well as the people who voted the fuckers who allowed this in to begin with.

Re:Old proverb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781037)

And when you voluntarily move in with those wolves, that's your own damn fault.

I don't recall him having much of a choice. The EU wanted him to be outside the US for the leaks to keep coming but they also didn't want to be in the position of also denying an extradition request. China would not have allowed any leaks to the world but milked everything out of him for their own use. Only a handful of small countries seemed 1. livable for him and 2 also willing and able to resist US pressure for the foreseeable future (dictators that resist the US don't stay in power for very long). Hence his best option probably was Russia once they decided to grant him asylum after an eternity in the transit area at the airport. I've been to Russia. If you have enough wealth (i.e. can spend the same per month as an average worker in the US), you can live very nicely. The language is difficult, staying safe requires that you're a little more street wise than in the West and you have to watch your tongue in terms of politics (especially applicable to him!!!) but night life, culture, food etc. is fantastic. Not to mention the women. I was so impressed that I will go out of my way to get a Russian girl, if I can do it without any dating agency (I strongly disapprove of the mail order bride business). They're strong and independent without losing any of their femininity and they take care of their bodies and spoil their husbands in return for chivalry (which they take absolutely for granted).

Or do you have a better idea where he could've gone? Keep in mind that I'm not addressing his motivations so if you say that he shouldn't have done what he did, you've ignored my question.

wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about 7 months ago | (#46780471)

Putin is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect he would.

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1, Insightful)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 7 months ago | (#46780519)

Putin is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect he would.

Obama is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect he would.

Hillary is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect she would.

Kerry is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect he would.

I didn't say otherwise. (1)

YesIAmAScript (886271) | about 7 months ago | (#46780863)

If Obama were questioned on live TV about surveillance practices I would assume his responses were lies too.

But this is not relevant to question of the Putin/Snowden interview.

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1)

Dachannien (617929) | about 7 months ago | (#46780897)

Perhaps, but there is far more reason to think that Putin is lying, because he's been telling bald-faced lies to the entire world as recently as the past couple of weeks (concerning Ukraine). At least in the US, our politicians tell their lies in a gray area such that fact-checkers give numeric ratings to indicate just how untruthful a statement is. Putin just tells outright lies as if he believed them to be completely true and reasonable himself.

Or, phrased another way: In Soviet Russia, Putin fact-checks you!

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about 7 months ago | (#46780991)

We arent Russia, no matter how much you might try to paint it that way. None of the people you mentioned own the media, no matter how much they adore Obama. You wont be arrested for insulting or protesting Obama. You wont be arrested for reporting on his failings; there are huge websites dedicated to it.

Nice false equivalence, tho.

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781217)

Mmkay, so the OccupyWallStreet protesters and countless whistleblowers were patted on their backs and given chocolate as a reward?

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (2)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 7 months ago | (#46781223)

You wont be arrested for insulting or protesting Obama. You wont be arrested for reporting on his failings; there are huge websites dedicated to it.

Of course you will. The Obama administration has prosecuted journalists and leakers at a far higher rate than before. How is one supposed to report on his failings, if the act of revealing them triggers immediate accusations of being a traitor and guaranteed prosecution? The US based papers who reported the Snowden leaks took big risks to do so, and of course their source is now in exile ...

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1)

SpankiMonki (3493987) | about 7 months ago | (#46781209)

Since you've been modded insightful, I'm guessing there's a point in there somewhere. I just can't find it. Maybe it's age.

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780661)

Putin is under no compunction to tell the truth. And there's no reason to expect he would.

Putin can't have as bad a track record with the truth as Obama's had.

Can he?

Re:wouldn't matter if it weren't canned (1)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | about 7 months ago | (#46781007)

He might not even be lying. They don't have the hard drive space or the capability to spy on everyone. Of course he doesn't want to spy on *everyone*, just suspected muslims, dissidents, homosexuals or anyone else who might not support the Kremlin.

I would remind everyone that after the Boston Bombings the Russians were very helpful in providing all of Tsarnaev's text messages. They just "happened" to have him under surveillance. What luck!

Ugh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780473)

You forgot to use "some say" and include your speculation as a question in the headline.

Patsy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780481)

So Eric, are you enjoying your new life as a stooge for the Russians? How does it compare with being a stooge for the Americans? You had better weather and more money in Hawaii I bet.

What a loser.

Re:Patsy (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 7 months ago | (#46780533)

Who's this Eric you refer to?

Re:Patsy (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | about 7 months ago | (#46780703)

All my whistleblowers are named Eric.

SORM (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780485)

SORM is mandated to be installed in all ISPs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SORM

Re:SORM (2)

Amtrak (2430376) | about 7 months ago | (#46780651)

Yes but if you read Putin's words...

"First of all, our intelligence efforts are strictly regulated by our law," Putin said. "So how special forces can use this kind of special equipment as they intercept phone calls or follow someone online, you have to get court permission to stalk a particular person. We don't have a mass system of such interception. "

He never says that they don't collect blanket data explicitly just that they don't do it illegally and that they cannot match the abilities of the NSA.

To add to this the Wiki article on SORM [wikipedia.org] states that the equipment was mandated by Law. So technically the surveillance is legal and transparent.

The only diffrence I'm seeing here is that 1. The Russians aren't as good as surveillance as the NSA. 2. They are totally open about the fact that everything you do on he internet or over a telephone is tracked. Color me shocked...

Re:SORM (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781059)

He never says that they don't collect blanket data explicitly just that they don't do it illegally and that they cannot match the abilities of the NSA.

This. It's a non-denial denial, the same as the Clapper's. "It's legal", without defining why it's legal. The "court permission" line smacks of FISA: a rubber stamp. The part about "a mass system of interception" merely means they don't have datacenters measured in acres (er, hectares). The word "interception" is used only to modify phone calls. Email might be mass-intercepted/stored. Furthermore, the major Russian social networks and telcos are presumably as compromised with FSB moles (or partners) as Facebook/Google are compromised with NSA and FBI moles (and partners).

Nice propaganda effort, and professionally-handled, but not aimed at geeks - who will presumably see through it. Snowden knows it and hopes the viewers see through it and care. Putin knows it and knows that most of the viewers won't care even if they do see through it.

Re:SORM (3, Funny)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | about 7 months ago | (#46781215)

But the way forward is clear. Make internet surveillance legal, and a free and open society will blossom, untroubled by questions of legality

Let me be the first to say it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780487)

... but what a tool. The quintessential useful idiot, really.

Re:Let me be the first to say it... (2)

neumayr (819083) | about 7 months ago | (#46780713)

Let me guess, you're writing these lines from the comfort of your air conditioned home office?

Give the man a break, he's had more impact than close to everyone on this site will ever have. And now he's in Russian hands, who have can easily blackmail him into anything.

Putin: "If anyone tells you we spy on them" (4, Funny)

david.emery (127135) | about 7 months ago | (#46780527)

"We will hear and they will be punished!!!"

Voluntary? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780531)

I wouldn't put it past the Russians to stage such an appearance by threatening Snowden. In fact, that's the most likely scenario; Putin could hand him over to the US at any time.

Re:Voluntary? (1)

nblender (741424) | about 7 months ago | (#46780639)

Alternatively, Snowden could have information that proves Puten is lying and he's laid out a very public trap...

Though his likelihood of dying in a mysterious car accident would increase exponentially...

Re:Voluntary? (1)

gtall (79522) | about 7 months ago | (#46780841)

And how would Snowden get such information given that there's no way Putin is going to let him roam free, and why would Putin care if he's caught lying?

Re:Voluntary? (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | about 7 months ago | (#46781023)

Snowden's supposed MO is that he was willing to risk the ire of the US and throw away his cushy life because of how bad the NSA was. Now hes in bed with the Russians, and you want to say "maybe he got scared"?

Come on, hes the one who is supposedly in the know about this stuff, hes the one who chose Moscow. Youd have to be a special kind of stupid to have a security clearance, contract for the NSA, and not know how repressive Russia is.

Re:Voluntary? (5, Insightful)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | about 7 months ago | (#46781237)

He didn't choose Moscow. He chose Latin America and got stuck in Russia when the USA revoked his passport. It's the US governments fault he's now in Russia and yet they try and paint him as a traitor who ran to the Russians - yet more US hypocrisy and propaganda.

Freedom and sharing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780689)

Open source software is often made freely available at no costs to downloaders and embedders. There is little incentive for these users to pay anything for it, including for support, since the main reason to adopt this software is to not pay at all. The result is that there are few resources for testing or documenting the software and no incentive for the developers to care about the usage by others and actively develop the software outside of their own use cases.

Further aggravating the issue is the claim by activists that the software code is reviewed by millions of people as it is freely available to anyone. The fallacy of this claim resides in the lack of interest of anyone to do this. Indeed, who would review other people's code for free or for fun? Vulnerabilities such as the Heartbleed bug are always found by using and probing the software, not by reviewing the code.

OpenSSL and the Hearbleed bug is the new poster child for the failed open source movement. No one cared, no one will care. Repeat expected.

Re:Freedom and sharing (1)

BiIl_the_Engineer (3618863) | about 7 months ago | (#46780817)

since the main reason to adopt this software is to not pay at all.

The main reason for me to adopt it is so that I can know what it's doing and more easily have control over what it does.

Indeed, who would review other people's code for free or for fun?

Plenty of people. Who would make software for free or for fun? Plenty. The fact that you have to ask such questions proves your own ignorance. You think everyone is out for money, but that is not true. But there are also people who do review it for money.

And what about the fallacy of the claim that proprietary software is secure? No software is completely secure, but at least with open source, you have control over it, and you can see what it's doing, even if it's unlikely you'll spot anything. That's the real claim people are making, not that it's completely secure.

Putin actually speaks the truth (5, Interesting)

klingens (147173) | about 7 months ago | (#46780701)

But you have to read the statement carefully to understand what he says. It is true that Russia doesn't have the money to put everyone under surveillance like the US does.
So they might not do a mass surveillance like the US, instead they just put everyone interesting under direct surveillance: every Duma representative, every Oligarch, and especially everyone who is in public politicial opposition to President Putin. The NSA can't do that even when they would want to, so they simply target everyone: it's wasteful but now they can't be accused of any bias or that they target anyone they don't like.

Kim Philby II (-1, Flamebait)

hessian (467078) | about 7 months ago | (#46780719)

Snowden wasn't a whistleblower, he was a spy for the other side.

If he were a whistleblower, we would have seen revelations in the press, not a document dump to the public.

Not to mention a lack of taking several hard drives full of data to the Russians, who as events in Crimea show, haven't changed since the Soviet Era.

Re:Kim Philby II (1)

klingens (147173) | about 7 months ago | (#46780803)

It was released to the press and only to the press, notably The Guardian and the Washington Post. Where we've all seen it. Or can you point me to a tarball with all the Snowden documents, unredacted by anyone else? Can you? No, cause that doesn't exist.

Seems you should educate yourself about things before you commenting on things?

Incorrect (1)

hessian (467078) | about 7 months ago | (#46780827)

It was released to the press and only to the press

Archives of the document were on Guardian public servers when the password was mysteriously "leaked."

Seems you should educate yourself

When people speak like this, debate is dead and we're into monkeys flinging poo at each other.

Re:Kim Philby II (1)

Entropius (188861) | about 7 months ago | (#46780849)

We *did* see revelations in the press: WaPo and the Guardian know more stuff than they've published, and redact things. They won a Pulitzer recently.

Re:Kim Philby II (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780859)

If he were a whistleblower, we would have seen revelations in the press, not a document dump to the public.

Sense. This makes none.

The "press" exists to sell a product. Nothing more. Nothing less. You seem to be confused and think we live in an early 1900s-era America that never really existed.

Re:Kim Philby II (2)

CRCulver (715279) | about 7 months ago | (#46780865)

If he were a whistleblower, we would have seen revelations in the press, not a document dump to the public.

The "document dump" to the public wasn't from Snowden, it was from Greenwald and Poitras. Like a number of whistleblowers who Americans have come to praise in respect, Snowden gave these documents to journalists and asked them to redact them before release to the public. If you have any issues with how that played out, Greenwald, Poitras and other news figures involved are the ones to blame.

Not to mention a lack of taking several hard drives full of data to the Russians

Rumours circulate that most if not all of the hard drives that Snowden had with him upon his flight to Hong Kong were decoys.

Re:Kim Philby II (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 7 months ago | (#46781051)

Rumours circulate that most if not all of the hard drives that Snowden had with him upon his flight to Hong Kong were decoys.

That would be a very useful rumor to spread for a spy planning to engage in a scheme of political warfare. Truly a masterpiece.

Unfortunately it doesn't pass the smell test. Why bring all that extra equipment if you are fleeing?

Re:Kim Philby II (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780871)

What "spy" dumps their haul to the public?

Revealing that something has been stolen alerts the target. Spies don't do that deliberately.

Muddleheaded idiots around here....

The art of lying (1)

Framboise (521772) | about 7 months ago | (#46780769)

A good lier should not lie most of the time, otherwise one just needs to reverse the saying to know the truth with high probability.

On that account Obama is smarted than Putin IMHO. He does lie, but in a less systematic manner.

 

Stupid Republicans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46780773)

He already admitted this did not happen. Of course, his kind keeps spouting lies because that is what their kind does. The odd thing here though is why is /. pushing the Republican propaganda? /. has gone full on CONservative retard. This used to be a technical site, but now those Republicans are trying to make everything about politics.

Once Putin (1)

future assassin (639396) | about 7 months ago | (#46780809)

gets all the propaganda and the middle fingering towards the US he need's, Snowden is done. Putin wil probably use him as a giff to the US.

Snowden in good ol' Russia (1)

gwstuff (2067112) | about 7 months ago | (#46780889)

There's something amusing about Snowden fleeing from the US and ending up in Russia, of all the places. This video shows that he's making use of the channels of free speech there.

Even more amusing was the beginning of Putin's response "You've worked for a spy agency [NSA]. I previously worked for a spy agency [KGB]. We understand each other - we can have a professional dialog." There could have been a suppressed snicker there... and he might as well have followed by saying "you know how the real world operates. so let's not be naive here..."

More seriously:
1) Would it be bad, from Snowden's standapoint, to come back to the US after all the publicity he's got. The possibility that he might get locked up silently and they key thrown away seems remote, given the vast amount of public support he has. And if he was committed to bringing about positive change, then one would see that returning and standing trial would further that mission.
2) Would it be bad, from the US government's standpoint for him to come back? For now he and the can of problems he opened seem conveniently stashed away in Russia. So if he came back, what then?

Re:Snowden in good ol' Russia (1)

gwstuff (2067112) | about 7 months ago | (#46780921)

The text editor ate up my annotation of the above post:

[Sarcasm]This video shows that he's making use of the channels of free speech there.[/Sarcasm]

...apparently it inferred that
< sarcasm > was an HTML tag.

Re:Snowden in good ol' Russia (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781105)

then one would see that returning and standing trial would further that mission.

I'm going to guess you've never read the papers they make you sign before obtaining access to classified information. I'm also going to guess you are unaware of the relevant laws and executive orders. The trial would be quick and prison time would be a definite. No amount of fame is allowing him to escape that reality. While we could debate the morality of his actions the illegality of them isn't really a debatable topic.

Ask Vlad Anything (3, Insightful)

mbone (558574) | about 7 months ago | (#46780915)

When did Slashdot become infested with NSA apologists?

Putin does this show [mashable.com] annually. I am sure that the callers are vetted, but the questions tend to be wide-ranging, and don't really seem scripted to me. (I liked the one about buying Alaska back.) After all, it's a 4 hour show.

Now, as for Snowden, I see this as positive. State security is not talked about that much in Russia, and he brought it up. While Putin said pretty much what Obama might have said in 2010 (in other words, it's fair to doubt whether he was being truthful), it gets it out in the open, and all in all I think that is a good thing.

What would a former KGB officer... (3, Insightful)

DavidHumus (725117) | about 7 months ago | (#46780933)

...know about surveillance?

In Mother Russa... (4, Insightful)

bobbied (2522392) | about 7 months ago | (#46780965)

Even the questions you can ask are provided by the state..

OF COURSE it was scripted and likely highly edited. This is 100% propaganda aimed squarely at the west by Putin. Snowden is just being used to attract attention and shape the message. He's just a pawn in a much larger game.

Reading between the lines though, I wonder what Putin is up to. Why bother with this?

Wow... Snowden just lost me. (1, Insightful)

amosh (109566) | about 7 months ago | (#46781013)

I was really on the fence, teetering into anti-Snowden territory... but this gave me a really strong push. SO - is Snowden:

1. So blinded by his hatred for America that Russia actually seems better to him? Or
2. So stupid that he went to Russia not realizing that he'd be forced at gunpoint into becoming a tool of Putin?

Honestly, Ed - thanks for the disclosure, it was something that we really needed. But you did it for the wrong reasons, made some incredibly stupid choices, and I look forward to when you're spending the rest of your life in a tiny cell. Maybe you can share a room with Assange.

"I USED to be working for an intelligence service" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#46781109)

Heh, good one, Mr. Putin.

Oh wait, you were serious?

HAHAHAHA!!!

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