Ex-NSA chief calls transparency groups, hackers next terrorists

from salon.com: Michael Hayden equates potential angry reactions to Snowden indictments to al-Qaida operations. 

The cyberscare, like the redscare or the greenscare of the ’90′s, is already under way. We’ve seen it take root with the fierce federal persecution of Aaron Swartz, the hefty charges and prison sentence facing LulzSec hacktivist Jeremy Hammond and the three-year jail sentence handed down
to Andrew “Weev” Auernheimer for pointing out and sharing a
vulnerability in AT&T’s user information network. On Tuesday, former
NSA chief Michael Hayden put it into words.

Hayden warned that
hackers, cyberactivists and transparency groups who might act in support
of NSA leaker Edward Snowden could target the U.S. government —
equating such groups and individuals to al-Qaida terrorists. Using trite
and old-fashioned descriptions of anarchists and hackers as dangerous
, Hayden said during a Washington speech Tuesday (as the Guardian reported):

and when our government grabs Edward Snowden, and brings him back here
to the United States for trial, what does this group do?” said retired
air force general Michael Hayden, who from 1999 to 2009 ran theNSA and
then the CIA, referring to “nihilists, anarchists, activists, Lulzsec,
Anonymous, twentysomethings who haven’t talked to the opposite sex in
five or six years”.

“They may want to come after the US
government, but frankly, you know, the dot-mil stuff is about the
hardest target in the United States,” Hayden said, using a shorthand for
US military networks. “So if they can’t create great harm to dot-mil,
who are they going after? Who for them are the World Trade Centers? The
World Trade Centers, as they were for al-Qaida.”

Hayden provided
his speculation during a speech on cybersecurity to a Washington group,
the Bipartisan Policy Center, in which he confessed to being
deliberately provocative.

It was under Hayden’s directorship that NSA programs designed to hoard
data and metadata on almost every online and phone communication within
and going out of the U.S. were developed.

His comments reflect the
government’s troubling attitude towards online and open-data activists:
they are prefiguratively framed as criminals and terrorists, and are
treated as such. Although no longer at the NSA’s helm, Hayden’s attitude
suggests with disturbing honesty the potential manner in which the
government will treat groups who fight for whistle-blowers like Snowden,
who risk their lives to reveal the darker side of U.S.’s nexus of

2 responses to “Ex-NSA chief calls transparency groups, hackers next terrorists”

  1. Anonymous Avatar

    There wouldn't be a need to stop cyberactivists if there was governmental transparency. Pretty simple, really.

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    Since it is the spies (CIA, NSA, etc.) that imagine and carry out events such as 9/11, to know what cyber-attacks will happen in the future, examine the plans the spies are cooking up.

Leave a Reply