Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

"If Donald Trump or anyone else wants us to take this seriously, they have to show evidence. And the fact that they have not despite the severity of this allegation, means that they're trying to make political hay—I suspect—out of something that effects all of us." (Photo: AP)

Snowden: If Trump So Concerned About Government Spying, He Should Fix It

"The problem is not, 'Oh, you know, poor Donald Trump.' You're the president"

Nadia Prupis

If President Donald Trump really cares about government spying, he should reform the National Security Agency's (NSA) mass surveillance program, NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden suggested on Tuesday.

Speaking by video link to The Intercept's Jeremy Scahill at the SXSW conference in Austin, Texas, Snowden would not validate Trump's accusation that former President Barack Obama had "tapped" the wires at Trump Towers, but said the claim—which sent the White House backpedaling—shows Trump knows how serious mass surveillance is.

"If Donald Trump or anyone else wants us to take this seriously, they have to show evidence," Snowden said. "And the fact that they have not despite the severity of this allegation, means that they're trying to make political hay—I suspect—out of something that effects all of us, which is that mass surveillance is making all of us vulnerable."

He continued:

If Donald Trump wants to take this seriously, he needs to fix the problem that everyone in America's communications are being collected right now, without a warrant, and they're going into the bucket, and they're protected by very lax internal policy regulations, and this simply is not enough.

The problem is not, 'Oh, you know, poor Donald Trump.' You're the president. You should be asking questions about, 'Why was this possible in the first place,' and, 'Why haven't I fixed it?'"

The Department of Justice (DOJ) this week asked for an extension to produce the wiretapping evidence after missing its Monday deadline with the House Intelligence Committee.

Committee chairman Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) hinted Tuesday that the panel could subpoena the DOJ if it failed to comply with the next due date.

"We have asked the department to provide us this information before the committee's open hearing scheduled for March 20. If the committee does not receive a response by then, the committee will ask for this information during the March 20 hearing and may resort to a compulsory process if our questions continue to go unanswered," he said.


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

... We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

'Bombshell': Israeli Spyware Used to Hack iPhones of US State Department Officials

Calling the Israel-based spyware maker NSO Group an "in-plain-sight national security threat," one expert warned that "a multi-agency investigation is immediately needed."

Jessica Corbett ·


US Progressive Caucus Hails Honduran Election as Chance for 'New Chapter' in Relations

"We encourage the Biden administration to use this opportunity to make a clean break with previous presidential administrations, which worked to ensure that the 2009 coup d'état succeeded."

Brett Wilkins ·


'The Facts of This Case Are So Egregious': Parents of Michigan School Shooter Charged in Killings

"There were a lot of things that could have been so simple to prevent," the Oakland County prosecutor said of the mother and father now being sought by law enforcement.

Kenny Stancil ·


Health Minister Says 'Highly Transmissible' Omicron Hitting Young Children Hard in South Africa

In South Africa's worst-affected province, children under the age of five now make up the second-largest group being admitted to hospitals.

Julia Conley ·


Groups Tell UN Food Agency to Ditch 'Toxic Alliance' With Pesticide Association

"This partnership with CropLife is in direct conflict with FAO's mandate as a U.N. institution to fulfill human rights to health, adequate food, clean water and environment, and safe working conditions."

Kenny Stancil ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo