American whistleblower Edward Snowden has revealed to the world the extent of the spying operations being conducted by the Obama administration and its intelligence agencies, with the collaboration of major corporations such as Microsoft, Apple, Google, YouTube and Facebook.
The phone records, Internet activity, emails and other electronic communications of tens of millions of people, in the US and internationally, are being systematically monitored, recorded and entered into vast databases. Amid a deepening global economic crisis, this massive and illegal surveillance operation is aimed against US rivals abroad and the working class in America and globally. The financial aristocracy, terrified of the rising popular discontent over social inequality, mass unemployment and constant war, is establishing the framework for a police state.
Snowden, a 29-year-old former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor who has taken refuge in Hong Kong, faces grave dangers for his courageous actions. The Obama administration is preparing to file criminal charges and extradite him to stand trial. American politicians, both Democrat and Republican, are baying for his prosecution. The American media has joined the witch-hunt, with so-called liberal commentators denouncing him as a “traitor” and right-wing pundits calling for his execution.
The Gillard government is silent about Snowden’s exposures because the Australian state apparatus and intelligence agencies are directly involved in US spying operations and have undoubtedly accessed and used NSA information collected on Australian citizens. Just as the Labor government has aided and abetted the Obama administration’s vendetta against Julian Assange for exposing US war crimes and diplomatic intrigues, so it will collude with Washington in persecuting Snowden.
The Socialist Equality Party (SEP) calls on the working class and youth, in Australia and around the world, to defend Edward Snowden. Like Assange and alleged whistle-blower Bradley Manning, he is being persecuted for revealing the truth about the extent of the conspiracy against the democratic rights of working people. Support for him must be built up in workplaces, at universities and schools and in working-class suburbs.
The SEP meetings, which are part of our 2013 election campaign, will explain that the only social force that can defeat the threat of dictatorship is a mass political movement of the international working class, fighting for an internationalist and socialist perspective to abolish the profit system. We call on workers and youth, and all those concerned about democratic rights, to attend.
Sunday, July 7, 2 p.m.
Redfern Town Hall
73 Pitt Street, Redfern
Tickets: $3 or $2 concession
Authorised by Nick Beams, 113/55 Flemington Rd, North Melbourne VIC 3051