Garrett Harris 4 p.m., July 31
Area hacker releases statement on "Operation Peekaloo"
"It's simple common sense: we have to balance issues of Presidential privacy with issues of Americans' security."
Brandon Marsh (pictured), a hacker who works out of his mom's Rancho Bernardo condominium, has come forward to SD on the QT to issue some clarifying remarks on Operation Peekaloo, the program by which he listens in on the FBI, the NSA, the CIA, the Justice Department, and even the Executive Branch of the United States government. (He posts information he deems pertinent at his website, OperationPeekaloo.gov.)
"President Obama has stated that his surveillance of the American people is transparent," said Marsh. "That's true, if by 'transparent,' you mean that it can't be seen. Personally, I prefer 'invisible,' but I'm not here to argue about word choice. Frankly, I found his principled welcoming of public debate about a program that was implemented without public debate inspiring. So I'm here to say a few words about why I am conducting Operation Peekaloo."
"Look," continued Marsh. "the President has already demonstrated that he is willing to use lethal force against United States citizens whom he deems a credible threat. The FBI has already admitted to domestic drone use. And now we know that the NSA has been gathering intel on us, the American people, for years now. All without our authorization. Clearly, there are some members of the United States government who pose a genuine threat to our well-being. Monitoring their activities is simply the prudent course of action. Of course the government can keep secrets for the sake of national security. But maintaining that security - you know, our security - requires that we keep an eye on them. I mean, it's not like they're gonna let us vote on this stuff."
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