The proposal in this essay “In fact it is perfectly possible by the time Snowden had traveled to Moscow with Harrison, he may no longer have been in possession of the documents at all” in fact had been almost immediately established as the case in fact, when Snowden stated he was no longer in possession of any NSA documents when he’d traveled to Russia, in his Moscow interview with NBC
It is a near impossible task to try and wipe egg off someone’s face, that is, if that someone doesn’t care to acknowledge the facts, if the facts shake their foundation in reality or they are simply willfully stubborn. When egg yolk has dried on ceramic, those of you who know how to wash dishes will know to use fingernails, or risk scratches and look for the steel wool. So this analysis is going to be abrasive to the idealists in the peace movement and associated journalists concerned with social justice. And it is an attempt to pull Glenn Greenwald’s chestnuts out of the fire, before they are reduced to ashes by counter-espionage and damage control spooks. Good luck with that, is the cynical admonition to myself, because this one might get eggs thrown at me with a vengeance.
Our present story begins precisely 11 months ago, 23 June 2013, when The Guardian had reported concerning the WikiLeaks supposed (reported widely in ‘mainstream’ media) ‘legal expert’ accompanying Edward Snowden, Sarah Harrison, on Snowden’s odyssey to Moscow:
“Despite her closeness to Assange, Harrison may seem a strange choice to accompany Snowden, as unlike several people close to WikiLeaks – most notably human rights lawyer Jennifer Robinson – Harrison has no legal qualifications or background”
Yeah, that’s likely why Snowden faxed perfectly useless asylum requests all over the world from the Moscow airport, not realizing (technically speaking, such as in an embassy) he had to be standing on the territory of the nation he would wish to acquire asylum in. But it gets by far more interesting. As I’d pointed out in my piece ‘WikiLeaks & Spy Agencies‘…
“In espionage [or counter-espionage], there are three basic means of penetrating and/or using a hostile organization to one’s advantage:
1) Turning an employee through some means such as blackmail, sex, bribery or appeal to a psychological weakness such as working on someone’s conscience or ideology and convince them to become your organization’s asset (agent/traitor)
2) Placing your own officer within the organization as an employee (spy)
3) Using psychology and disinformation to convince the organization’s staff to work to your advantage and/or commit acts against its own interests (false flag/sale)
Typically there would be each of these approaches assessed individually and in various combinations and/or variants when planning an operation. WikiLeaks would be vulnerable to this on several counts”
…now, we will look at this a bit more closely in a related development of the past several days.
On 19 May, 2014, the new venture of Greenwald (among others) ‘The Intercept’ published a piece based on the Snowden NSA documents, concerning MYSTIC sub-project SOMALGET, detailing how entire nations are being prepared for TOTAL surveillance of phone traffic, inclusive of all audio conversation. The apparent ‘pilot program’ of laboratory test animals is the Bahamas and an unnamed nation (in the intercept article.)
^NSA illustration via The Intercept
Almost immediately, Julian Assange (@WikiLeaks) and Greenwald were in a ‘twitter’ spat over Greenwald with-holding the 2nd nations name, Assange claiming Greenwald’s rationale for following long established journalism protocol to protect at risk persons by with-holding information was essentially selling out. AND THEN, WikiLeaks (Assange) threatened to reveal the nation’s name, if The Intercept and Greenwald refused to do so .. and subsequently named Afghanistan. What we see here, on its face, is brilliant counter-espionage work, of a nature so serious a threat to Greenwald (and others) journalism at The Intercept, as to appear to send Greenwald to Moscow to meet with Snowden, or so rumor would have it:
^Destination Moscow (in closing remarks by hostess)
The problem with WikiLeaks naming the unnamed country? Now, the ‘mainstream’ (CIA manipulated) media can claim in full on attack on Greenwald and the others at The Intercept, these journalists have no credibility insofar as security of content concerning the NSA documents in their possession. As well, there most certainly will be assessment of possibility to link Greenwald (and others at The Intercept) to any criminal case being developed against Assange. Touche, NSA! Counter-espionage has drawn blood.
Now to the question .. how did WikiLeaks acquire the name of Afghanistan? WikiLeaks isn’t saying. But first suspicion would naturally fall on close Assange confidant Sarah Harrison who’d been with Snowden ’24/7′ for weeks while Snowden was sorting out where he might be able to safely stay (having to ultimately settle on Russia.) I believe this is the least likely scenario, however we will go there first. It’s as simple as Sarah Harrison would have stole the documents from Snowden. If that were the case, WikiLeaks has all of the Snowden NSA disclosures and they don’t dare admit they’d violated Snowden’s trust. If Greenwald is indeed in Moscow meeting with Snowden, it would go to exploring this possibility. But I doubt this is what happened, not because WikiLeaks would not have stolen the documents if they could have, but because I expect Snowden was smart enough to secure the documents throughout Sarah Harrison’s stay with him, not every possible ‘honey-pot’ or using a woman in seduction for operational purposes is going to be successful. Whether Harrison were Assange’s mole or a British intelligence agent or double agent, Snowden was not a good candidate to fall for this sort of operation when it is demonstrable Snowden’s own girlfriend had no idea what he was up to in the months and days leading up to his revelations and flight. The man is well disciplined in the rules of personal secrecy attending espionage. In fact it is perfectly possible by the time Snowden had traveled to Moscow with Harrison, he may no longer have been in possession of the documents at all. But the brilliant aspect of this, from the point of view of counter-espionage and exploiting public perception is, it will appear the documents were not secured and Greenwald & Laura Poitras can be pilloried as irresponsible and endangering the USA’s national security, inclusive of putting lives at risk, possibly to a point of building a criminal case. Meanwhile, if Greenwald had traveled to Moscow, he is barking up the wrong tree.
The more likely scenario is quite straightforward. The NSA arranged to ‘leak’ the information concerned to WikiLeaks, for clear intent of going after Greenwald and The Intercept with PsyOps, sowing distrust and misleading the principal players in a counter-operation that will be highly publicized propaganda.
So, one might ask, how can leaking the nation’s name, Afghanistan, almost certainly laundered via some CIA embed or ‘social justice’ source known to WikiLeaks, square with the USA purportedly concerned for the lives put at risk? Here is where the cynicism of evil plays in the world of spy craft; people at the top, certainly inclusive of Obama’s CIA Director John ‘Kill List‘ Brennan, NSA associates and ‘friends’ play the game of ‘trade-offs.’ The people whose lives are ‘at risk’ due to the disclosures will be relatively low level assets, easily expendable technicians. They are suddenly fodder for the greater gain of going after Greenwald and damaging The Intercept. It is actually as simple as that. If some of these technicians are killed, so much the better from the point of view at the top, that will be frosting on the cake of working to destroy (and likely pursue a frame-up with criminal charges) those persons who initially broke the Snowden story and facilitated the NSA documents release.
To Glenn & Co at The Intercept, welcome to the real world of spies.
Above Top Secret How (not) To Leak
WikiLeaks and Spy Agencies Probable information operations