The Nsa Secret Documents By Edward Snowden

2494 Words Apr 26th, 2016 10 Pages
With the release of the NSA secret documents by Edward Snowden in 2013, a once dystopian concept came to the forefront of American politics: government surveillance. Snowden unveiled the existence of PRISM, a program which allowed the US government to read massive volumes of private information shared between citizens. The government exploited legislation meant to combat terrorism in the post-September 11th era. The media’s immediate reaction in discussing the National Security Agency was to compare it with 1984’s “Big Brother.” This term, originates from the 1949 novel by George Orwell. 1984, his most well read novel has a similar system in place in which the government of Oceania knows every moment of its citizens’ lives: “‘Smith!’ screamed the shrewish voice from the telescreen. ‘6079 Smith W.! Yes, YOU! Bend lower, please! You can do better than that. You’re not trying.’” Winston, the protagonist is watched and criticized from his television as he participates in calisthenics. This particular instance shows how all reaching the surveillance is, and now the United States had something comparatively chilling. Orwell himself took inspiration from the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany’s policing of their citizens. The absolute access to information and the systematization of surveillance once only discussed in terms of other, far away governments and in novels revealed itself as reality. This revelation has changed much of the way contemporary politics is discussed. In the weeks…
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