No Place To Hide

Edward Snowden, The NSA & The Surveillance State

By Glenn Greenwald

Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden Fig.1

No Place To Hide (the short title of this book) is a first person account of the real events that took place before, during and after Edward Snowden released several National Security Agency (NSA) secret documents that showed the world the truth behind the United States of Americas (USA) government sector that proved what many had been speculating for many years and that was that the NSA was using cellphones, the internet and many other forms of electronic communication to spy on the citizens of the USA and other countries to “protect” their citizens lives from future terrorist attacks. The reason why I put the word protect in parenthesise is because there has been no confirmed evidence that the actions that the NSA performed has gained information that has been used to prevent suspected terrorist plots. And this is very reason why Edward Snowden who worked for the NSA in Hawaii for a period of time, decided to leave and release all of the documents he could gather one by one to several journalist who would cover each one as it is released. Each of these journalists have been selected by Snowden himself. And it is one of these journalists who wrote this novel.

Glenn Greenwald the author of this novel starts it off by writing about how Snowden contacted him and encouraged him to come and meet him in Hong Kong. At least this is what the first chapter is about. I decided that because I found this first chapter so interesting I would dedicate this first blog post in a series of blog posts that I will write about this novel.

I find this first chapter so interesting as Greenwald talks about the level of secrecy that Snowden wanted to keep when talking to Greenwald unless he had installed several highly encrypted pieces of software that would allow Greenwald to have a high enough level of security and privacy to allow him to communicate with Snowden in a way that would mean only those two people would be able to see the other persons messages unless someone wanted to use their computer to crack the code that broke up these messages which Greenwald says would take even computers with very high processing power for the time (and I am not talking about normal everyday personal computers but the types of computers the government would have) years to crack. And I loved reading about this part of the chapter because it made me feel like there was still a lot of technology that I was unaware of that would become very useful if I ever needed it. Although it is very unlikely that I will need to use it, it still gives me this nice feeling that I can have privacy when I communicate with someone.

Another interesting thing that I found when reading this chapter is how close Greenwald was to losing such an amazing opportunity for him so many times from him not trusting someone who wanted him to get and do all of these things without telling him why he needed it. He mentions many times that the messages he was receiving from Snowden who used a codename of Cincinnatus and gave him no lead as to what the story might be and he thought he had many other things that he knew what they were about that he had to get done so why bother with doing so many tasks for somebody who he did no know, somebody who gave him no indication of what the value for him in the end would be after having all of time in his life taken away that could have been used to do things that he knew he had to do. And I just found it quite funny at how many chances he turned down even though I understood why. However I may have only found this funny as a knew a bit about the subject of the novel. Even though it was a small amount of prior knowledge that I had I do not think that this would be funny to me if I knew absolutely nothing about the case.

Overall I found this chapter really enjoyable and I can’t wait to read more of the novel.



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