A tiny revelation from James Bamford's compelling new profile of Edward Snowden in Wired: One day an intelligence officer told him that TAO—a division of NSA hackers—had attempted in 2012 to remotely install an exploit in one of the core routers at a major Internet service provider in Syria, which was in the midst of a prolonged civil war. This would have given the NSA access to email and other Internet traffic from much of the country. But something went wrong, and the router was bricked instead—rendered totally inoperable. The failure of this router caused Syria to suddenly lose all connection to the Internet—although the public didn't know [...]
Just six days after Times reporter Anthony Shadid died in Syria, Sunday Times reporter Marie Colvin was killed, along with photographer Remi Ochlik, when a building used as a media center in Homs was shelled. Also killed: a prominent citizen journalist. Here is Colvin's recent report from Syria, given after the most recent three weeks of the non-stop government bombing. According to the BBC, Colvin was actually the only British newspaper journalist in Homs. Here is her speech on war reporting from 2010. Similar to the bombing of the media, doctors and nurses are being targeted by the government. Now reporters are [...]
Things in Libya are… God, this is depressing. But we've apparently done great damage to Gaddafi's Bab al-Azizya compound! Take that, books and files! Worry not, Lindsey Graham and John McCain are out agitating for us to just assassinate Gaddafi. (I'm pretty sure that's what "cut the head of the snake off" means.) You know: the American way.
Elsewhere? Much worse! Apparently government troops are firing on protesters in Yemen today, and, after the horrific weekend in Syria, "Syrian troops and tanks have entered the city of Deraa, where the protests against the Assad regime began last month. Troops reportedly opened fire randomly on people and [...]
Because independent journalists are not allowed to move about freely in Syria, news outlets are depending on reports from people such as [Omar] Shakir and on information collected by international human rights groups to offer a picture of what's happening inside Syria—where, according to the United Nations, government forces have killed more than 5,000 people in the nearly 12 months since protests against the regime began.
—As the U.S. closes its embassy and Russia blocks a U.N. resolution condemning the Syrian president, Syrian blogger Shakir spoke to Morning Edition's Renee Montagne today about the assault on Homs: "'I just want [Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov] to [...]