Know all ye by these presents that William Binney is hereby honored with the traditional Sam Adams Corner-Brightener Candlestick Holder, in symbolic recognition of Mr. Binney’s courage in shining light into dark places.
Bill Binney represents the patriotic side of a duel between two unequal adversaries: an exceedingly powerful and ruthless state and Bill, an official who would not break his solemn oath to defend its Constitution. Like Tom Drake and Ed Snowden, he was determined to preserve his integrity, his privacy, and his personal honor.
On both sides of the Atlantic we hear the mantra: “After 9/11/2001 EVERYTHING CHANGED;” just like “everything changed” after the burning of the Reichstag on 2/27/1933. That event led many Germans into what the writer Sebastian Haffner called “sheepish submissiveness” — with disastrous consequences.
As a young German lawyer in Berlin at the time, Haffner wrote in his diary one day after the Reichstag fire that Germans had suffered a nervous breakdown. “No one saw anything out of the ordinary in the fact that, from now on, one’s telephone would be tapped, one’s letters opened, and one’s desk might be broken into.”
What was missing, wrote Haffner, was “a solid inner kernel that cannot be shaken by external pressures and forces, something noble and steely, a reserve of pride, principle, and dignity to be drawn on in the hour or trial.”
We are grateful that these traits were NOT missing in Bill Binney. Nor were they missing in Edward Snowden, whose patriotic risk-taking opened the way for Bill and his colleagues to expose the collect-it-all fanatics and the damage they do to privacy everywhere.
What Ed Snowden called “turnkey tyranny” can still be prevented. But this can only happen, if patriots like Bill Binney can jolt enough people out of “sheepish submissiveness.” Goethe understood this 200 years ago when he warned, “No one is more a slave than he who thinks himself free, but is not.”
“Niemand ist mehr Sklave, als der sich für frei hält, ohne es zu sein*.
Presented this 22nd day of January 2015 in Berlin by admirers of the example set by the late CIA analyst, Sam Adams.
RT’s film of SAAII Award Ceremony in Berlin on January 22 honoring William Binney.
William Binney, former technical director of the NSA turned whistleblower, last night received the Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence.
The ceremony in Berlin featured a powerful line-up of fellow whistleblowers and former intelligence officers, who honoured Binney for “shining light into the darkest of corners of secret government and corporate power”.
Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower who won the Sam Adams Award in 2013, joined the event via video link from Moscow, to congratulate and thank Binney. “Without Bill Binney, there would be no Edward Snowden,” he said. (Read more.)
“Whistleblower sind keine Helden, sie sind Menschen wie du und ich!” – Awardverleihung & Videointerview
von Florian Gilberg am 24. Januar 2015, 14:22 in Überwachung / 1 Kommentar
Edward Snowden beim Sam Adams Award 2015Am Donnerstagabend wurde in Berlin der ehemalige technische Direktor der NSA, William “Bill” Binney, mit dem Sam Adams Award ausgezeichnet. Vor Ort war zusätzlich zu dem Who-is-Who der Whistleblower”szene” auch die Aktivistin und Snowden-Begleiterin Sarah Harrison. (See more.)
(Interview on January 22, 2015 of SAAII awardee William Binney and other participants Thomas Drake, Jesselyn Radack and Coleen Rowley.)
Last night in Berlin, squished into an overpacked awards ceremony, I enjoyed – if that’s the word for it – two hours of chilling warnings about the future of western democracy. I was at the Sam Adams Award for integrity in intelligence, held this year in a freezing cold Berlin, and won by the former Technical Director of the NSA, William Binney.
Binney is probably the most senior intelligence whistleblower in recent history. To give you an idea of his seniority – he designed most of the programmes that Edward Snowden leaked details about. So when William Binney talks about the dangers of mass surveillance, it pays to listen. It’s a bit like hearing Josef Goebbels talk about the risks of propaganda. The guy knows his stuff. (More here.)