January 30, 2014
James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, has issued a blistering condemnation of Edward Snowden, calling the surveillance disclosures published by the Guardian and other news outlets a “perfect storm” that would endanger American lives.
Testifying before a rare and unusually raucous public session of the Senate intelligence committee that saw yet another evolution in the Obama administration’s defense of bulk domestic phone records collection, Clapper called on “Snowden and his accomplices” to return the documents the former National Security Agency contractor took, in order to minimize what he called the “profound damage that his disclosures have caused and continued to cause”.
Snowden has repeatedly said he acted alone in assembling and leaking a vast trove of information on the scope of US surveillance efforts, a conclusion also reportedly reached by the NSA’s official investigation into the Snowden leaks.
Asked if the journalists who possess leaked surveillance information counted in Clapper’s definition of an “accomplice”, Clapper spokesman Shawn Turner clarified: “Director Clapper was referring to anyone who is assisting Edward Snowden to further threaten our national security through the unauthorized disclosure of stolen documents related to lawful foreign intelligence collection programs.”
This article was posted: Thursday, January 30, 2014 at 6:51 am