Hong Kong (Yes, it really is 100% China… That country best known for its love of freedom…)
So, the White House and Department of Justice may have gotten their undeserved first “break” with regard to the NSA/Verizon story. A disgruntled CIA agent has revealed himself as the original source. Now, that’s not shocking in itself. What you can bet Administration sources will be jumping on tomorrow, however, is WHERE he revealed the information to journalists and the fact that he’s still hiding in the same spot. Where might that be? Just an innocent little backwater of a city called . . . Hong Kong, China! Now it’s true that Hong Kong is a “Special Autonomous Region” and therefore enjoys greater freedoms than the mainland PRC – although nothing compared to the actual free speech that exists (just for the sake of a totally random example – say, in Taiwan . . .) but here we have a CIA analyst openly talking about the Chinese territory as if it were the inventor of Jeffersonian democracy (full quote below). Weirder still are his chosen first lines of defense: placing pillows under his door and a red hood over his laptop “to prevent eavesdropping.” Um…. Wasn’t the entire point of this story that the NSA is capable of listening in on EVERYONE – let alone an identified rogue CIA spy – using technologies that can most likely evade hotel bedding and hoods? And, although I don’t know for sure, since China unfortunately doesn’t share its own capabilities with FrazerRice.com, if I had to guess, I’d bet they’ve probably at least advanecd to the “maid placing a small microphone on your door” level of sophistication.
Also, just to reemphasize what’s going on here: the dude specifically chose a Chinese City. Clearly there is not yet evidence to suggest he was actually working with the Chinese PSB but, for an experienced CIA agent to be making these sorts of ludicrous statements, IN CHINA, at minimum, raises some very troubling questions – And, sadly, those questions, alone, may be enough to temporarily or permanently deflect attention from the very real harm caused by our own government’s intrusion into the privacy of millions.
From The Guardian:
“He chose the city because ‘they have a spirited commitment to free speech and the right of political dissent’, and because he believed that it was one of the few places in the world that both could and would resist the dictates of the US government . . . He is deeply worried about being spied on. He lines the door of his hotel room with pillows to prevent eavesdropping. He puts a large red hood over his head and laptop when entering his passwords to prevent any hidden cameras from detecting them.”