Leaker wants public to know about secret domestic spying

An employee of a National Security Agency contractor has admitted to leaking details of a domestic surveillance program that collected phone call data on the Verizon network. Now in Hong Kong, whistleblower Edward Snowden said he was upset that the public was not apprised of the program and unable to debate the merits of spying on American citizens. (The Washington Post, June 10. 2013, by Barton Gellman and Jerry Markon)

In the meantime the Justice Department confirmed that it is launching a criminal investigation in the matter. (Reuters, June 9, 2013, by David Ingram)

Snowden presents a quandary for the Obama administration. If they press their investigation and prosecute him, it will generate of firestorm of criticism by those who think  Snowden a hero and those already upset about crackdowns on leaks. (The New York Times, June 10, 2013, by Mark Mazzetti and Michael S. Schmidt)

The ACLU said it is time for the government to reassess its secrecy in conducting warrantless surveillance on American citizens and allow checks and balances to operate. (American Civil Liberties Union, June 10, 2013, by Jameel Jaffer and Ben Wizner)

Steven Aftergood, Secrecy News, June 10. 2013 says that the current mess happened not because there were no checks in effect but because those in power did not act responsibly. The Obama administration misrepresented the spying programs to Congress and Congress itself blocked efforts to gain information about the programs. -db