Mike Masnick
TechDirt
February 1, 2014

We’ve seen various government officials act in all sorts of bizarre ways after revelations of illegal spying on their own people (and foreigners), but none may be quite as bizarre as the response from the Canadian government, following the release late last night from the CBC (with help from Glenn Greenwald) that they’re spying on public WiFi connections.

That report had plenty of detail, including an internal presentation from the Canadian electronic spying agency, CSEC. In the Canadian Parliament today, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s parliamentary secretary, Paul Calandra, decided to respond to all of this by insisting it’s all a lie and then flat out insulting both the CBC and Glenn Greenwald.

If you can’t watch the video, here’s what he says:

Mr. Speaker, last night the CBC aired a misleading report on Canada’s signals intelligence agency, Communications Security Establishment Canada. These documents were stolen by former NSA contractor, Edward Snowden and sold to the CBC by Glenn Greenwald. Canada’s signals intelligence agency has been clear that the CBC story is incorrect, yet the CBC went ahead and published it anyway.

Here are the facts: Before the story aired, CSEC made clear that nothing in the stolen documents showed that Canadians’ communications were targeted, collected, or used, nor that travellers’ movements were tracked.

In addition, CSEC’s activities are regularly reviewed by an independent watchdog who has consistently found it has followed the law.

Why is furthering porn-spy Glenn Greenwald’s agenda and lining his Brazilian bank account more important than maintaining the public broadcaster’s journalistic integrity?

Okay. Where to start? First off, the whole idea that Greenwald “sold” the documents to the CBC is just ridiculous. Every so often we’ve seen others raise this kind if idiotic argument and it’s just silly. Greenwald — like any other freelance journalist — gets paid to do journalism. No one is paying him for the documents. They’re paying him to work as a journalist, which, you know, is what he does. The attempt to portray it as selling the documents is just a completely bogus smear.

Full article here


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