Whistleblower, Leaker, Traitor, Spy by Eyal Press Traitor, hacker, high-school dropout, narcissist: Edward Snowden has been called many things since coming forward as the source who gave documents to The Guardian showing that the National Security Agency has been collecting telephone and Internet data on hundreds of millions of Americans, revelations that members of the Senate Judiciary Committee pressed the NSA to explain at a contentious hearing in Washington last week. The one thing that Snowden’s detractors have insisted he does not merit being called is a whistleblower. “I don’t look at this as being a whistleblower,” said Senator Dianne Feinstein, Chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. “Why is media using sympathetic word ‘whistleblower’ 4 Edward #Snowden, who leaked secret #NSA program?” tweeted Richard Haass, President of the Council on Foreign Relations. In fact, most journalists and editors haven’t been calling him that, instead referring to Snowden as a “leaker.”
Michael Hastings' Dangerous Mind: Journalistic Star Was Loved, Feared and Haunted - I n April, a man named Erin Walker Markland drove off a mountain road near Santa Cruz and was killed. The woman who had planned to marry him, Jordanna Thigpen , was devastated. For comfort, she turned to a man who had taken up residence next door. He had been through something similar — years before, his fiancée had been killed. Ten journalists to free from prison - Reports More on This Issue • 2013 prison census • Infographic On World Press Freedom Day, the Committee to Protect Journalists is highlighting 10 emblematic cases of journalists in prison, silenced by authorities in retaliation for their work. CPJ is calling on authorities to release these journalists, as well as all others being held in relation to their work. Bekjanov, Ghaderi, and Hai were convicted on anti-state charges, an allegation used frequently by authoritarian regimes seeking to silence critical news coverage, according to CPJ research.
40 maps that explain the world Maps can be a remarkably powerful tool for understanding the world and how it works, but they show only what you ask them to. So when we saw a post sweeping the Web titled "40 maps they didn't teach you in school," one of which happens to be a WorldViews original, I thought we might be able to contribute our own collection. Some of these are pretty nerdy, but I think they're no less fascinating and easily understandable. A majority are original to this blog, with others from a variety of sources. I've included a link for further reading on close to every one. Max Blumenthal: I knew Alterman would freak out Thousands of protesters worldwide joined in a “Day of Rage” late last week to decry Israel’s despicable Prawer Plan, a government policy (wildly underreported in this country) to destroy 35 Arab villages in the Negev desert, which will lead to the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Bedouin Israeli citizens. The plan is further vindication of Max Blumenthal’s central thesis in his new book, “Goliath: Life and Loathing in Greater Israel,” namely that Israel’s raison d’etat is the maintenance and expansion of a colonial ethnocracy — the expansion of the Jewish Israeli demographic, the containment of all others. While Israeli government policies like aggressive West Bank expansion, the Gaza occupation, the warehousing of non-Jewish Israeli Africans and the Prawer Plan fiercely bear out Blumenthal’s point, the author has, since Goliath’s publication, run the gamut of predictably fervid criticism from Israel’s attack dogs within the U.S. commentariat.
Feast Your Eyes on This Beautiful Linguistic Family Tree 552K 18.4KShare337 When linguists talk about the historical relationship between languages, they use a tree metaphor. An ancient source (say, Indo-European) has various branches (e.g., Romance, Germanic), which themselves have branches (West Germanic, North Germanic), which feed into specific languages (Swedish, Danish, Norwegian). Lessons on language families are often illustrated with a simple tree diagram that has all the information but lacks imagination. There’s no reason linguistics has to be so visually uninspiring. Minna Sundberg, creator of the webcomic Stand Still.
If No One Wants Them, Where Do We Resettle The World's Refugees? The drought in Somalia has gone from bad to worse. At least 29,000 children have died in the worst famine in 60 years. If that weren’t enough, the provisional authority governing Somalia has virtually no control outside Mogadishu (where a cholera outbreak is spreading), while Al-Shabbab insurgents controlling the southern arm of the country are both blocking aid groups from entering and preventing refugees from leaving.
Charles Bowden has died, but his voice is louder than ever As one of the original authentic journalists, he trailblazed a path for others to follow When I heard that he had passed, my eyes welled with tears. I’m of stoic Irish stock, so I don’t shed tears easily, but the news of Charles Bowden’s death (1945-2014) was not an easy thing to bear. He had been a mentor and a friend to me for a decade, and his leaving hurts. He died peacefully, in his bed at his home in Las Cruces, N.M., after complaining of persistent flu-like symptoms that started in early August, according to his long-time companion and colleague Molly Molloy, a Latin American researcher, writer and librarian at New Mexico State University. Pfizer Fights Backlash From U.K, U.S. on AstraZeneca Bid Pfizer Inc. (PFE)’s record of job cuts after acquisitions is now drawing heat from both sides of the Atlantic. U.S. and state politicians have joined their U.K. counterparts in questioning the economic impact of the drugmaker’s push to buy AstraZeneca Plc. (AZN) U.S. Senators Carl Levin and Ron Wyden are proposing legislation that would make it harder for U.S. companies to shift their legal addresses overseas to avoid U.S. taxes, a move Pfizer has proposed as part of the transaction.
The NSA and Me The tone of the answering machine message was routine, like a reminder for a dental appointment. But there was also an undercurrent of urgency. “Please call me back,” the voice said. “It’s important.” What worried me was who was calling: a senior attorney with the Justice Department’s secretive Office of Intelligence Policy and Review. By the time I hung up the payphone at a little coffee shop in Cambridge, Mass., and wandered back to my table, strewn with yellow legal pads and dog-eared documents, I had guessed what he was after: my copy of the Justice Department’s top-secret criminal file on the National Security Agency. Harvard Scientists May Have Just Solved One of the Biggest Environmental Issues of Our Time For years, researchers have been attempting to find a viable, biodegradable alternative to plastic. Plastic is all around us, in the containers we store our food and in the bottles we drink our beverages from. Our groceries and shopping purchases are all brought home in plastic bags, which have earned the distinction of being "the most ubiquitous consumer item in the world," according to the Guinness World Records.