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America falls. Report of experts …

The Russian group of experts of the international initiative «Post Globalization» prepared the report «Opaque America: shadowing, repressions and closeness of the U. S. government». Boris Kagarlitsky, Vasily Koltashov and Anna Ochkina worked over it.

We provide the full text of the report prepared by known analysts who tried to answer a number of important questions:

In 2008 it seemed to many people that Barack Obama’s election as the U. S. President will open a new era for the country and other world. It was seen as the time of democratization and humanization, refusal of wars and repressions. Obama promised the voters «open government», social policy and a gap with dark heritage of republican administration. However his government appeared the most closed in the American history and didn’t go for changes. But, why the administration of democrats kept and strengthened the shadowing system? Why U. S. authorities recovered the law of 1917 «About espionage», increasing the pressure upon civil servants and the press? And why these efforts turned back a total failure?

There are the main conclusions:

1. The economic crisis put the American government in new conditions. It revealed problems of foreign and domestic policy, strengthened exhaustion of monetary resources. Barack Obama’s victory on elections became the result of this crisis, inseparable from crisis of world hegemony of the USA.

2. The society expected the changes from Obama’s administration. It saw the need of folding of aggressive foreign policy, mitigation of internal political climate to the USA and carrying out social reforms, and the main thing — creation of health system available to all. The government of democrats had to achieve economy and standard of living growth according to voters.

3. Obama’s administration didn’t meet public expectations. It was conservative, aimed, first of all, on protection of interests of the financial capital, and kept a course of the government of Bush Jr. in many respects. The authorities couldn’t recognize openly all this before million Americans, they maneuvered, keeping narrow conservative tasks that made the government of democrats one of the most hypocritical in the history of the USA.

4. The White House at Obama kept propaganda receptions of republican administration in many respects. The government interfered with natural disclosure of information, preferring the own — «independent» press. Even in the conditions of the budgetary crisis in October, 2013 Obama’s administration found 445 million dollars on its financing. As a result the government received the record number of convenient publications for 2008−2013, but couldn’t stop criticism strengthening.

5. The government tried to avoid forever inconvenient publications by means of control toughening over employees of the state. By 2013 million federal employees and contractors were obliged to watch «persons and actions connected with risks» among the colleagues on pain of punishment. It could be the criminal prosecution as the information leakage in the press «is equated to espionage».

6. Obama’s administration prolonged the Patriotic act adopted after the tragedy on September 11 in 2011, and began to apply the law «About Espionage» of 1917 forgotten by all actively. These documents became a basis for the organization of shadowing not only for working for the state, but also for journalists and also all citizens.

7. Got under suspicion in discussion with reporters of any subject recognized by the government as confidential expects investigation, up to check on the lie detector, listening of telephone conversations and reading electronic correspondence. As a result the court with possible imprisonment or «silent» dismissal is probable.

8. The press and its sources not incidentally got under special supervision as they can inform society. The desire of the government to lower level of awareness of the population, reflects Obama’s purely imitating aspiration to democratization and openness. The White House tries to keep under control the problems in economy and American society, having closed the road to original changes in the country.

9. Obama promised «open government» to the voters, but it became more closed, than former administration. Opacity, shadowing and repressions appeared the signs of the government of Obama even in a bigger measure, than the republican president. However the Americans voting for democrats also wanted to avoid such succession of events. As a result Obama is compelled again and to promise again the increase of transparency of executive power to them.

10. The USA adheres to the principles of secret diplomacy. They hide from citizens the original motives of decisions in foreign policy. While growth of economy wasn’t interrupted with crisis, the majority of inhabitants could close eyes to expensive and unclear foreign policy, but after 2008 the government should evade from an explanation of the actions more and more.

11. Control over civil servants and shadowing the press are only the part of the general supervising practice of the government. The all-hearing and all-seeing program of tracking Prism about which Edward Snowden told, is only one of 50 espionage programs of the USA. All of them collect data for uniform base. And the «hidden» budget of only sixteen intelligence services of the USA made more than 50 billion dollars that follows from the document of the NSA which has been also given Snowden to the press in reporting of 2013.

12. The growth of number of classified documents proceeded at Obama in the USA: for society the public materials which have got to the order of the authorities appeared closed even. By data for 2011 4 million Americans had access to the classified information. In the conditions of crisis of policy of the United States and acute social and economic issues the leakage of the classified information was inevitable.

13. Having sharply narrowed the channels of legal informing of society through the press about work of state machinery, having carried out a number of trials over «spies and traitors» Obama’s administration made inevitable illegal informing of society, as it was carried out by Snowden taking into account the mistakes of predecessors.

14. Obama didn’t keep many promises though had opportunity while republicans didn’t receive the majority in the lower house of the Congress. The Guantanamo prison wasn’t closed. Activity of the government didn’t become transparent though this promise was repeated not for the first time that it is possible to treat as the intention better to disguise the activity of authorities. Meetings of the head of the White House with trade-union heads had nature of imitation of cooperation and gave nothing to hired workers though labour unions financed Obama at two presidential election.

15. In 2013 there was an aggravation of crisis of political system of the USA along with the strengthening of budgetary and debt problems. Many mechanisms of its structural and ideological preservation began to break up that had the economic reasons. Protectionism growth in the USA at democrats didn’t lead to return of Keynesian regulation, and the reindustrialization focused on export showed the weaknesses. The policy of financial feed of banks sputtered out also. Revival of economy of the USA provoked the growth of problems in other countries and the return wave.

16. In the USA there is no censorship. But the government becomes higher than the people from the point of view of legal practice that it is possible to describe as crisis of existing model of democracy. The authorities were powerless against disclosure of enormous volume of inconvenient information by conscious citizens that became the result of this crisis.

17. «The American unmaskers» don’t try to do harm to the country, but seek to achieve the reporting from «open government» of Obama. Actually there was only one effective option of fight for society informing — anonymous data transmission when contact can’t be tracked any modern means.

18. Snowden struck blow from the unexpected party for the government: all system of shadowing the population of the USA and foreign citizens turned to be open. Details of secret operations of the NSA became known that allegedly have to help the fight against terrorism. Snowden didn’t begin to disappear from society, but preferred not to fall into hands of governmental bodies. Obama in reply recommended to the American people «to trust programs for data collection».

19. According to many Americans the total shadowing the citizens of the USA threatens to turn back direct invasion into their life in the future. Announced Obama’s concessions after exposures of Snowden don’t inspire big trust. The U. S. President for 2009−2013 showed that doesn’t seek for cancellation of the Patriotic act and supports for system of shadowing and repressive influence on the basis of this and other laws. Unprecedented information closeness of the authorities remains in force also.

20. The public suggests the USA to begin reforms, instead of to make amendments to «bad laws». But Obama’s administration has the conservative purposes and only renewed rhetoric. Shadowing citizens and discharge of journalists from information on work of the government are necessary for prevention of threats to system worrying the crisis. Further withdrawal of the USA from democracy is favourable also to republicans as the population isn’t ready to accept the policy of «rigid economy» according to EU sample.

21. The U. S. authorities are ready to make concessions to society on different questions from time to time. But they don’t want neither open discussion of problems of economy, nor development of a new political policy which would provide the growth of welfare of the population, fast development of production and technologies, and also revival of the social state.

1. The U. S. authorities in a vice of historical conditions

Barack Obama was elected as the U. S. President on a wave of big expectations. Society was tired of aggressive conservatism of the previous administration which accused of violation of the civil rights and aspiration to replace democratic standards of political life to authoritative. Million voters saw the person capable to change political climate in the country in the democratic president.

Power change in Washington coincided with the sharp initial stage of a world economic crisis. It strengthened the aspiration to changes. Attempts of administration of George Bush Jr. to cope with problems in economy weren’t crowned with success. The tax refund undertaken in the USA in the summer of 2008, didn’t give take-off of sales and didn’t stop deepening of crisis in the financial sphere. The president from democratic party entered the White House in the middle of exchange and bank crisis.

Society and financial elite expected the emergency decisions from the new president. Working Americans sought for restoration of a former standard of living, removal of a debt press and situation improvement with employment, banking groups wanted system stabilization, and growth on the basis of old rules. The financial capital was the leading partner of new administration, but Obama couldn’t ignore public request for changes, both in the policy sphere, and in the economy sphere. He answered them in an imitating form, without deciding to make something that could change a situation in the country considerably.

Actually by the time of arrival of democrats to the power, the USA was in political crisis. The aggressive foreign policy overloaded public finances, didn’t bear steady fruits and sharply worsened (as far as it was possible after aggression against Serbia) the reputation of the USA. Trust falling to a state policy happened among the American voters too. Economic growth in 2007 passed the peak — the mortgage began meltdown. Decrease in the real income in result was added with decrease in a consumption level in the USA that was connected with achievement by a credit bubble of the limit.

2001−2008 years were the time when Washington not only pursued the aggressive foreign policy, but also rendered the rigid ideological and sometimes and police pressure on Americans. The economic policy of the USA became more neoliberal at Bush Jr., social programs more hostile in relation to «parasitism» which were reduced for the sake of building of military expenses. The public debt increased at this time by record speed for the pre-crisis period. From 2001 to 2008 it grew up by 7 trillion dollars that was partly connected with decrease in taxes for business.

In 2008 — 2009 the new leadership of the USA didn’t expect that economic and financial problems become its invariable satellite for many years. The democratic rhetoric was considered by the authorities as means of calm of society after two terms of «crusade against terrorism» of Bush with their reduction of the civil rights the brightest embodiment of which is the Patriotic act of 2001. However in spite of the fact that the discontent with similar measures of the previous administration helped Obama to occupy the White House, he not only did attempt upon these decisions, but prolonged the Patriotic act in 2011. Shadowing the citizens by intelligence services proceeded that led later to scandal with Edward Snowden.

Prevention of a rupture of market bubbles appeared the main care of administration of Obama in 2008 — 2009. Society expected not that — not enormous subsidies to banks, and large-scale changes in interests of the majority, affected by crisis. Voters sought to receive more humane and democratic society the important part of which could be a developed and available social sphere with a victory of democrats. Especially the state of the health system, expensive and not guaranteeing medical care excited the Americans. From Obama expected the steps on overcoming of that medical crisis. It was also important, as well as economic problems of the country.

Democrats had the majority in the lower house of the Congress till 2010. But they didn’t use this advantage to changes which satisfied the society though partially. And if Obama was re-elected for the second term, it occurred not because of his progress or new promises, but because of fear of the majority of active voters before a possible victory of the republican candidate. Reform of health system wasn’t made, the huge public expenditures, and monetary issue of FRS didn’t become fundamentals of new Keynesian policy.

Reindustrialization of the USA about which the economists from Obama’s environment dreamed, went on an export way in 2010 — 2013. Not investments of the state into infrastructure on which such economists as Doug Henwood, Michael Hudson, Jeffrey Sommers, Richard Wolff, etc. insisted, not the growth of the real wage of Americans, and export of the industrial equipment, cars and accessories, and also other goods from electronics to production of light industry provided stabilization of economy of the USA. It was reached due to nationalization of losses of financial sector. However in the conditions of weakening of other economy, this modest victory of administration of Obama can’t be steady.

Million voters of Obama approached by 2014 with feeling of the deceived expectations more than once. The democratic president didn’t make the USA socially focused state. But means for the permanent help to banks at the government were. In 2011 it led to splash in a street protest and the birth on the one hand the left movement «Seize the Wall Street», and on the other hand, even before the right protest movement «Tea Party» Movement (it arose in 2009). «Tea party» found support at republicans. They strengthened the pressure upon the White House in 2012 — 2013. But it only pushed Obama to the right, instead of on a way of correction of former «mistakes».

Obama’s administration deceived also expectations of many abroad. US authorities kept a former course of predominant force though corrected it because of the exhaustion of forces made by crisis and excessive activity of the republican president a little. Obama had to recede where Bush Jr. already lost or lost an initiative. Tension in the relations with Iran didn’t develop into the military conflict in 2010 — 2013. Intervention in civil war in Libya didn’t bring clear results therefore Washington showed restraint in a similar situation with Syria.

In Egypt the people’s movement and military overthrew a pro-American regime «Brothers Muslims». It showed that the diplomatic possibilities of the USA became limited after 2008. But it was most important that external political and internal, social and economic problems connected and rendered uneven, but the invariable pressure upon Obama’s administration. Thus it couldn’t develop decision which would bring economy out of crisis on lifting as carried out more reserved, than republicans, but all the same neo-conservative policy. And improvement of a situation in the American economy due to export and restriction of import of goods (especially under influence of «shale revolution») negatively affected the world market. If in former times the American economic recovery pulled other countries for itself, so now the growth in the United States heated other economy.

Obama’s administration couldn’t recognize openly before million Americans that first of all cares of interests of the financial capital. But it also couldn’t provide overcoming of crisis so that to improve the life of workers of the USA. Together with problems which didn’t stop, and failures in foreign policy, all this made the American government one of the most hypocritical in the history. Words and actions, including infinite compromises with Republican Party, constantly dispersed. Difficult relations of executive power of the USA with the press and the people define by it.

2. Repressions and shadowing of «open government»


Obama promised the open government the American people. The press and society didn’t expect that the president will be careful of attention. In the USA didn’t expect that the White House will keep information receptions of republican administration in many respects, will begin to interfere with natural disclosure of information, will prefer own information means. They didn’t expect also aggressive prosecution of persons and the editions which have opened secret information and also introduction of programs of wide electronic surveillance, didn’t expect that higher officials will disturb the sources in structures of executive power freely to communicate with journalists. However, all these problems arose.

Free communication of the press with democratic administration — there was an illusion of the first months of finding of Obama in power. Many people were his victims. They hoped for dialogue, but instead of substantial discussion received only the general declarations. Obama by the end of the first day as the president (on January 21, 2009) signed the decrees, «ordering to governmental agencies to accelerate processing of inquiries according to the law „About Freedom of Information“ and to organize the sites of „open government“ on which the information on their activity and data collected by them» has to be published. Sites of the government became «part of the strategy perfected during presidential campaign of Obama, on Internet use for distribution of large volume of „convenient“ information and the images prepared by administration, thereby, protecting them from excess checks of the press». However the inconvenient information made the way in life by itself.

«Administration war with leaks and other attempts to take information under control take the most serious turn since Nixon’s administration». The fear of repressions captured many employees of the government and journalists when the government secretly got access to «records of calls on telephone lines and switching which more than 100 reporters of the Washington bureau of The Associated Press agency». After a series of scandals, the general prosecutor of the USA Eric Holder declared: the Ministry of Justice won’t pursue the journalists for performance of the work by them. However it is doubtful that it will remove fear of communication with the press at officials in Washington. «The person, who will get under suspicion in discussion with reporters of any subject recognized by the government as confidential, expects investigation, up to check on the lie detector, listening of telephone conversations and reading electronic correspondence. According to any „program for fight against insider“ which is obligatory in each ministry, all federal employees are obliged to watch the behaviour of the colleagues in order not to allow unauthorized disclosure of information».

Listening of conversations of staff of Associated Press news agency appeared, seemingly, the most juicy scandal connected with the press in the USA for 2013. Concerning the opened shadowing, Obama declared: «I won’t bring any apologies». According to him, leakage of information connected with national security is capable to create serious threat of life of the people, especially dressed in a military uniform. But this standard formula doesn’t explain why the authorities have to watch the work of journalists and those who communicates with them. The answer of the U. S. President doesn’t explain why it is necessary to have a lot of privacy. But Obama’s unwillingness to apologize for shadowing is quite logic.

Since 2009 to the present six employees of the government and two soldiers got under criminal prosecution under the law of 1917 «About espionage» in the USA. All of them were accused of leakage of the classified information in mass media. It is the extremely important that for almost century period of action of the law it was applied only three times.

However the issue isn’t limited with new practice of its use — investigations of information leakage are conducted with other bases. «The Ministry of Justice secretly received the judicial sanction on access and withdrawal of data on phone calls and e-mail of journalists, and one of reporters of Fox News was called as „assistant, helper or accomplice“ of the defendant accused of information leakage during judicial proceedings, pointing, thus, to possibility of his prosecution for performance of journalistic work. In other case connected with information leakage, the reporter of New York Times under the threat of imprisonment was forced to testify against the defendant».

In October, 2013 the American intelligence services admitted that consider admissible to listen to leaders of the foreign states. The statement was made under the influence of the opened facts. The wave of exposing publications overflowed the world press after Edward Snowden opened an extensive network of control telephone and an Internet traffic of Americans. It was organized by the National Security Agency (NSA) and «open» democratic president didn’t make something to take off a shadowing cap from the American society and rose in its defence.

Americans appeared a subject of broad police surveillance. But the press and its sources not incidentally got under the most attentive supervision as they can inform society. As for the U. S. Government, its unfriendliness and closeness in communication with journalists also aren’t casual. They reflect the desire to lower the level of knowledge of the population.

As a result even not classified information became in Washington less available to the press. Many journalists receive it from officials hardly as the last are afraid of prosecution. They can be accused of information leakage and threat of punishment is quite real as «open government» of Obama became more closed than Bush Jr. administration. The honoured journalist in the field of state security R. Jeffrey Smith from Center for Public Integrity, influential non-profit organization from Washington on journalistic investigations of cases of an abuse of power) notes: «Now I even worry if it is necessary to call, after all my contact can be found by phone or e-mail».

According to him, the digital trace remains always and the government can conduct the monitoring of contacts. Other journalist specializing concerning national security, Scott Shane believes that the fear cultivated in officials is a serious problem for society.

In the USA the share of secret information constantly increases. Obama didn’t interrupt this republican tradition. On the contrary his administration promoted that the gray zone between confidential and not classified information became more dangerous for «sources in the government». Spy mania became fashionable after mania of search of potential terrorists, but fears of leaks are caused in the American state tops not by it. The USA adheres to the principles of secret diplomacy. They hide from citizens original motives of decisions in foreign policy. While the growth of economy wasn’t interrupted with crisis, the majority of inhabitants could close eyes to expensive and unclear foreign policy. Many even trusted in «crusade» against Islamic terrorism — irrational, but realistic threat.

2008−2013 years changed the situation. Social and economic conditions started promoting disintegration of ideological heaps. Obama’s victory on elections appeared result of this crisis, inseparable from crisis of world hegemony of the USA. But the democratic administration wasn’t capable to reconstruct the American political system. Under social rhetoric it hid conservative aspirations that especially brightly came to light in the relation to information. Obama received Nobel Peace Prize, but he repeatedly supported military impact on other states (including Iran and Syria), and also gave the order Air Force to bomb Libya.

3. The nature of the imitated transparency

From the point of view of increased internal problems in years of crisis Obama didn’t appear the saviour of the American democracy. According to Scott Shane, «aggressive penetration of the press into activity of the government lies in the heart of the American democracy», but here the authorities have now obvious overweight over journalists. Actually information closeness and shadowing became signs of administration of Obama even in a bigger measure, than the former president. On the one hand it is connected with exposure of the authorities, but on the other — with continuity of parties in work methods.

It is indicative that during Obama’s board the prison on the island Guantanamo (where tortures concerning illegally detained suspects of terrorism of people were applied) wasn’t closed. Obama didn’t keep the election pledge: he consciously tightened the issue while control over a situation was in his hands, and then the decision on closing of prison was blocked by the Congress in 2013 when in the lower house the democrats had the majority any more.

In November, 2013 the U. S. President once again promised to close prison in Guantanamo. But this promise causes no more trust, than guarantees of openness of work of the democratic government. «It is the most closed and foolishly arranged administration about which I ever wrote», declared David E. Sanger, the veteran of The New York Times working in Washington. And it isn’t the result of only economic problems, but is generated by chaos in domestic and foreign policy of the USA. They try to preserve situation within the country whereas society needs the changes. Outside the USA more and more feels that can’t resist to aspiration of other countries to pursue more independent policy. Obama’s administration diligently tries to disguise all this.

The owner of the White House desperately maneuvers the words to avoid those sharp social and economic transformations which were waited by voters from him. The task which the American authorities face is extremely difficult. It consists that to imitate aspiration to democratization and openness, at the same time trying to keep problems under control and not to let pass to changes. In economic policy it is possible to speak about protectionism growth in the USA, but transition to Keynesian regulation for 2008−2013 didn’t happen.

Obama couldn’t «pull out the country» as the president Roosevelt. But he began a thicket to meet representatives of labour unions. One of the major meetings passed in 2012, after repeated election of the democratic president. The rhetoric changed, but except the general words he can offer labour unions a little in the sphere of social policy. The course focused on export and reindustrialization to the USA, relies on the low price of the American labour. Therefore Obama imitating openness in communication with the working organizations, can’t allow them to open discussion of policy.

Obama’s formula in the relation with labour unions and the American working class is expressed by a formula «Retreat in exchange on dialogue» whereas Roosevelt in difficult social and economic conditions of the 1930th years could offer other principle: demand and the government will concede. Approach of democrats of the XX century assumed for the concession bourgeoisie in the sphere of the labour and social law. Obama and his team continue this tendency, but only at the level of beautiful words. They understand the movement towards the desire of society, first of all, as special rhetoric. As practice shows, the president tries not to notice performances of hired workers of the USA though labour unions financed him at both presidential elections. Therefore his periodic promises to make administration more transparent can be estimated only as intention to disguise its activity better under the false availability of information.

Thus «bad behaviour» of Obama’s teams in relation to the press is not the result of incompetence, or bad education, but a natural consequence of pursued administration of policy. For realization of the approach chosen by it when the words disperse from matter knowingly, it is necessary to hold doors closed before the press.

The democratic administration achieved success in use of social networks, video records and sites for the publication of data on the activity. Also many state data necessary to consumers and the private companies are published. «Nevertheless, behind separate exceptions, such as a putting on a site whitehouse. gov of lists of visitors and the publication of separate unclassified documents on a site of Prospecting community of the USA, rather valuable to public control over activity and administration policy information doesn’t reveal almost». In response to Obama’s frequent statements for «transparency of the government» and «making information for citizens» in the American press the indignant voices sound.

Margaret Sullivan, the editor of The New York Times wrote that «it is unprecedentedly confidential administration allowing unprecedented attacks to the free press». The authorities disagree with similar criticism. By an assessment of «Committee to Protect Journalists» (CPJ) with reference to the statistics provided by the Presidential Administration, Obama «gave more interview of mass media during the first term of presidential power than his predecessors George Bush Jr. and Bill Clinton».

But more, doesn’t mean better: imitating nature of dialogue and transparency is obvious. Only exposures of Snowden (transfer of a set of classified documents to the newspapers The Washington Post and the British The Guardian) compelled administration to remove a security classification and to publish information on programs of the NSA on supervision over communication channels.

Obama didn’t try to take Snowden under protection though he made a huge contribution to increase of real transparency of the power work. According to the American experts, «fluent spy» is threatened by 20 years of prison if he returns to the USA; the death penalty isn’t going to be a subject yet. But if actions of Snowden helped many Americans to get to know about what «open government» of Obama is engaged, it doesn’t mean that society will be able to receive important information quite legally. In favour of the negative forecast there are the trials in the USA over those who opened the data to journalists which appeared the confidential.

Obama is compelled to promise society the increase of transparency of work of the administration not only because all were tired of lie of Bush Jr. time and with mistrust look at steps of executive power. According to the American constitution, the government represents the people, and it has the right to know how it works. But approach of democrats to a question of informing of the people of government activity consists in dictating to journalists the information which those will have to broadcast to the people. Not to answer questions, but in advance to dictate the answers, without reckoning with what the citizens want to know.

Working on this logic, the democratic administration tries to control not only officials, but also journalists and to punish them if there is an occasion. The new faces can be sat to jail, one of such persons is the blogger Barret Brown who is since September, 2012 there and to they promised him the term in 105 years of imprisonment. The guilt of Brown is in placement of the reference to the hacked classified document. However, the original reason of his prosecution is criticism and administration exposure. He tries to stop «open government» of Obama, understanding unattractiveness of the work, its doubtful tasks and results in the opinion of citizens.

If it is impossible to check what journalists will write, it is necessary to keep the press at arm’s length — such is the principle of administration of Obama. It seeks to block flows of important information for society and to supply much nothing with the meaning information. That who plays by these rules, picking up and without analyzing the statement of the White house, threatens nothing in the USA. They even can count on the financing, whatever difficult the situation in the state would be.

In October, 2013 the budgetary and debt crisis almost resulted to bankruptcy of the USA. The republican opposition in the Congress deprived the financing government. Despite huge monetary difficulties, Obama’s administration found means to support «independent press». For needs of Corporation of a public broadcasting 445 million dollars were provided. It had to help trust of Americans to Obama not to fall even more. According to Gallup Media, he appeared by the end of 2013 at the lowest level for the past two years: the work of the president is approved by 52%, but support him only 41% of Americans. The special attention of administration of democrats to the «free» press in the middle of the next political crisis can be treated only as necessary, providing cover. Such rate on the press which isn’t affording excessive criticism, insures the government — helps it to keep sympathies of many Americans.

But if journalists or other people touch «sore points», they can get under prosecution. The trouble is that problem questions becomes more and more in Washington. And they provoke the government to strengthening of internal shadowing.

In the USA there is no censorship. But the government all becomes higher than the people from the point of view of legal practice. It even more often punishes people for understanding of freedom of the press and the Internet as practical right. As a result the Electronic Frontier Foundation, EFF organized march in Washington in October, 2013 with the attraction requirement «to responsibility of all staff of the NSA involved in illegal shadowing citizens of the USA, and legislation reforming» that it became impossible. Obama made the work of administration even more confidential, but activity of the government led to spread about the country. The «hidden» budget only of 16 intelligence services of the USA made more than 50 billion dollars that follows from the document of the NSA given by Edward Snowden to the press in reporting 2013 year.

4. Secrets, cracks and leaks

The volume of the secret information grows in the USA as the snowball sliding from the mountain. Its increase is logical as in government institutions the information from open sources is classified even. So, among 250 000 «governmental telegrams of U. S. State department which Chelsea Manning (for that time — the private Bradley Manning) loaded on a site and transferred to Wikileaks, there were uncountable earlier published newspaper articles recognized as confidential on delivery to Washington on diplomatic channels».

«Massive supercare» of the American government can seem strange if to consider to how many people the secrets are available. According to the report of Prospecting community of the USA provided to Congress according to the law «About the Rights of Investigation», 4 million Americans by data for 2011 had access to confidential data. In the conditions of crisis of policy of the USA and acute social and economic issues the leaks were inevitable, and it is possible to be surprised only that they weren’t more.

Amendments of 2008 to the law «About Supervision of Foreign Intelligence Services» and the Patriotic act (the law «About the state secret, given rise after strange acts of terrorism on September 11) gave many secret powers to the government. Obama only continued practice of times of Bush Jr. And though exposure of the American shadowing foreign politicians compelled the United States Secretary of State John Kerry to apologize, it doesn’t cancel shadowing of Washington own allies yet. Shadowing «behind own people» not only became the norm, but also gained the development. In the conditions of crisis it couldn’t do without failure of «human factor». Arrests and tortures of foreign citizens, listening of phones, survey of personal information and e-mail, and also other «feats» of the NSA — all this disturbed not only society, but also the workers of the state.

The secret ban on free informing of the press turned back disclosure of huge number of secret sources for the USA. The authorities were powerless against the information leakages organized by conscious citizens. Snowden and others «traitors of national interests» were sure that exposure of activity of the NSA will bring benefit to society. They became the opponents of the new McCarthyism who have left ranks of the most supervising and repressive system of the USA. Many Americans supported disclosure by Snowden of information on shadowing citizens. The system of concealment of information of Obama didn’t become as a result of transparent, but enormous information and ideological holes appeared in it. And U. S. authorities don’t know how to liquidate them. Obama promises publicity to the country again. However it is very difficult to explain why «progressive president» supported shadowing and fought against freedom of information.

In the White House the journalists are often sent to an administration site. These filters for calls and letters with questions weren’t switched-off after a number of sensational leaks. Possibly, the war of the democratic government with employees of the state cooperating with the press will proceed also. «The first trial of administration of Obama of information leakage didn’t keep itself waiting long, and in April, 2009 Shamai K. Leibowitz, the specialist in the Hebrew, working on contact with FBI, is accused of transfer of the classified information on Israel to any blogger». Character of information, name of the blogger and evidence gathered by the government weren’t opened. «Leibowitz admitted the guilt in May, 2010 and was sentenced to 20 months of imprisonment for violation of the law «About espionage» 1917». This process was followed by the new trials.

In 2010 the sentence on one of two cases on violation of the law «About espionage», was pronounced at Bush’s administration. Thomas Drake from the NSA transferred to the press the data on the inefficient and expensive program of tracking accepted instead of more rational. After exposures of Snowden Drake declared that the all-hearing and all-seeing program of tracking Prism is only one of 50 espionage programs. All of them collect data for uniform base. Coming to power Obama turned back four-year court following the results of which the charge was scattered for Drake. Drake received the year of imprisonment conditionally and 240 hours of public works.

«The American unmaskers» don’t try to do harm to the country, but seek to achieve the reporting from «open government» of Obama. In turn, it is adjusted to stop any informing of the press on inconvenient questions. Not only the people who work for the state, but also journalists from whom under the threat of imprisonment the disclosure of information sources is demanded get under pressing of a consequence.

The government not necessarily runs the cases to court. The employee communicating with the press can be dismissed under other pretext.

Not always the Ministry of Justice is sent to a frontal attack. However it is shock division. In 2010 under the law «About Espionage» the charge of high treason was brought to Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, the contractual analyst from State department. Suddenly trial was pushed aside by Bradley Manning’s arrest who supplied the site Wikileaks with information. He got under guards in May, 2010.

Cruel nature of war of the USA in Iraq and Afghanistan pushed Manning to a courageous step. He downloaded from the computer of the prospecting analyst in Baghdad such number of data that was accused of the most large-scale leakage of classified documents in the history of the USA. The sentence was very severe: Manning received 35 years of prison. He became a hero for many honest Americans and will be for certain released when the political situation in the USA becomes other.

In 2011 at a meeting with the press Obama let know that doesn’t intend to soften information policy and to stop prosecutions of those who cooperates with the press. The democratic administration didn’t wish to reduce number of confidential materials. But while journalists tried to achieve from him the right not to open sources, the wind was changed. The blow which got in «all-seeing eye of Obama» was struck to the government. Snowden transferred the first materials to the press.

5. Snowden strikes back

In the USA the investigation in the matter of Snowden proceeds. It is found out that he received passwords from the colleagues — from 20 to 25 employees opened to him the access to the zone of the classified information. While in the United States there was a trial with being officer of CIA John Kiriakou who was accused for cooperation with the press and probably for disclosure of information on application of torture by water — in violation of the law «About espionage», Snowden continued to prepare the answer for «all-seeing eye». He couldn’t but notice how became nervous in the government when the lawyers concluded in Guantanamo began to look for witnesses of tortures. In March, 2013 the prisoners expressed a protest by mass long hunger strike.

Invisible clouds of information thunder-storm were condensed over the White House in 2012. Nobody in intelligence services was punished for application of tortures, and the government continued the hunting. As a result it became clear to the increasing number of Americans that the democratic president is better nothing than Bush Jr. dirtied by war crimes.

Before Snowden struck the exposing blow, the government could torpedo the press, being covered with statements for the harm done to national security. Such it appeared the arguments of the authorities when The Associated Press in the summer of 2012 reported about interception of the new explosive device of Islamic terrorists from Yemen. Obama got under fire of criticism of republicans for allegedly deliberate information leak by administration. In similar situations the Ministry of Justice always started investigations, and journalists began lost contacts in executive authorities. Shadowing accrued in the government. «In the confidential report, … which has got to the FBI director Robert S. Mueller, was said that the general inspector already was engaged in consideration of 375 incomplete cases against the staff of intelligence service».

By 2013 million federal employees and contractors were obliged to watch «persons and the actions connected with risks» among the colleagues because of pain of punishment. Criminal prosecution as information leakage in the press «equated to espionage» could become easy for them. According to Michael Hayden heading the NSA, and then CIA at Bush, expansion by Obama’s administration of a state program on fight with the insider had to «stop all contacts forever». Shadowing journalists amplified. Actually there was only one effective option of fight for society informing — anonymous data transmission when contact can’t be tracked by any modern means.

In 2012 «more than 50 American news organizations, including Association of publishers of newspapers of America, National association of workers of a broadcasting, the American society of news editors, Society of professional journalists, ABC, NBC, CNN, NPR, Gannett, McClatchy, Tribune, The New York Times and The Washington Post subscribed under the letter of committee of reporters for freedom of the press in which expressed a sharp protest» to the general prosecutor of the USA Eric Holder. They saw the threat for all American press in total check of The Associated Press and shadowing edition.

The Ministry of Justice and Obama could maneuver, while it didn’t open that shadowing in the USA gained already the general character. The government offered amendments to laws which would protect journalists and would narrow the rights of intelligence services. The press didn’t apprehend it with delight as amendments only «legalized that was at last administrations. Everything worked normally before arrival of administration of Obama». And steps «on a meeting» to society didn’t cancel new climate in the government. The authorities continued hunting on informing mass media of employees. The Ministry of Justice reserved the right for special measures in «special cases».

Snowden advising the NSA on Hawaii on behalf of Booz Allen Hamilton corporation decided to act in January, 2013. On June 5, 2013 «Guardian and The Washington Post began a series of publications of stories, documents and the photos selected from huge volume of strictly classified information which Snowden gave separately to the reporter from Post Barton Gellman and the reporter of Guardian Glenn Greenwald. Snowden contacted them through the documentary film maker Laura Poitras who removed a tape about electronic intelligence of the USA and shared some data with journalists».

Obama’s administration was shocked with exposures of Snowden. It was the blow put from an unexpected side: all system of shadowing the population of the USA and foreign citizens became opened. Details of secret operations of the NSA became known that allegedly have to help the fight against terrorism. Snowden didn’t begin to disappear from society. After the first sensational publications he acted publicly. He declared that found out immense expansion of shadowing the electronic means of communication, being «direct threat to democratic board that decided to risk the life and family». Snowden could take cover in Russia, having left Hong Kong.

Soon the British intelligence services were involved in scandal with total shadowing. In the USA and England the interception of data of Snowden that were transferred began or intended to journalists. Obama advised Snowden if he is confident in the correctness, to be in the American court and to prove it. The U. S. President declared that doesn’t consider Snowden as the patriot, but will try to achieve amending the Patriotic act though the cancellation of this odious law is waited from him many years. Obama recommended to the American people «to trust programs for data collection» and emphasized that already instructed on declassification of many data on NSA activity. Similar statements of the U. S. President didn’t increase public trust to total shadowing and him personally.

The known American journalist Barton Gellman so explained to the authorities why decided on the publication of materials of Snowden: «The congress adopts the indistinct law, and the secret court passes confidential decisions». At top of the wave which has risen in the USA of criticism of Obama administration there was a thesis that in the country everything is ready to totalitarianism. Total shadowing of citizens threatens to turn back by direct invasion into their life in the future. And if Congressmen from party of democrats can justify that knew nothing, officials of the White House should resort to difficult maneuvers.

2013 became the time of the most critical relation to NSA programs. «In July as more and more Congressmen skeptically expressed the programs of the NSA and that they knew about it, the bill which would stop implementation of programs was offered. On the twenty fourth of July before acceptance of a two-party initiative of a ban of the program of the NSA on data collection about phone calls there were no only seven voices in the House of Representatives». Obama answered it with declassification of many reports of the NSA and legal justification, the principles of realization and control of confidential reconnaissance programs.

After long-term approach to freedom of the press and the right of Americans to know on what the government work is directed, Obama went back on his word. He declared on August 9, «that wants to ask the Congress to toughen protection of private life at application of the law on the fight against terrorism, granting the right to use programs of tracking of the NSA, to add possibilities of protection of the right for private life at the closed judicial proceedings of affairs on high treason which resolve NSA programs and in which only the representatives of the state participate. He also created the council for access to data collection programs about calls, and suggests to make resolute changes already until the end of the year». However it wasn’t possible to convince society that without disclosure by Snowden of the classified information the government would take these measures.

Snowden didn’t use still all documents received by him. He keeps them in reserve. It is doubtful that compliance of the democratic president will convince him to refuse further exposures. «Obama's administration can make much more to reduce the volume of confidential data», believes the deputy adviser for national security Ben Rhodes. It seems as if the U. S. Government only rises on the road of changes. However, his many critics are convinced of insincerity of attempts to increase transparency of work of state machinery as it drops out of logic of real affairs of democrats' administration. In such situation Snowden and new, the extremely probable, unmaskers have to keep the information pressure upon the White House.

The public suggests the USA to begin reforms, instead of to make amendments to «bad laws». Problem is that Obama’s administration has the conservative purposes and only renewed rhetoric. The attempts of preservation of old financial model point to it most of all that is the result of close bows of democrats and a banking capital. Shadowing citizens and control of information are necessary to the American government for prevention of threats to system worrying crisis. Further leaving from democracy is favourable also to republicans as the population isn’t ready to accept policy of «rigid economy» on EU sample.

Unprecedented information closeness has the same reasons, as unprecedented leakages of confidential data. They are generated by inability and unwillingness of administration of Obama to give the correct answers on crisis. US authorities make only concessions to society on different questions from time to time. But they don’t want neither open discussion of problems of economy, nor development of a new political policy which would provide the growth of welfare of the population, fast development of production and technologies and also revival of the social state.

Heads of democrats deliberately missed the possibilities of deep social and economic reforms which had thanks to the former majority in the Congress. And while in the USA the road for them won’t be open, crisis won’t manage to be overcome neither in economy, nor in policy.

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Author: Post Globalization

Publication date : 05 March 2014 01:00

Source: The world and we

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