China: The U.S. should really explain all of this unfortunate surveillance business

posted at 8:31 am on June 17, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

At their “shirtsleeves” summit in California earlier this month, President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping made a bunch of broad, grandiose, but ultimately empty promises about “working together” on enhancing global cyber security, and while they were in agreement over the hot-button issue of denuclearizing North Korea, they didn’t substantively address the elephant in the room by discussing any hard-line rules or commitments about all of the cyber espionage going on. Obama doesn’t want to push too hard on the delicate diplomatic situation, and Xi has no desire to cede an inch on acknowledging China’s extensive and state-organized hacking operations — it is much too profitable an endeavor for them, both for commercial and government purposes.

The Chinese communist party refrained from making any direct statements on the Snowden leak case right after Snowden thumbed his nose at the U.S. last week in confirming to Chinese media that the U.S. is indeed cyberspying on targets in both Hong Kong and China (as if both countries aren’t already perfectly well aware of the other’s activities, or something), but here it comes — complete with the usual hypocritical, “we’re just a victim here!”, thinly veiled outrageous outrage. Via Reuters:

China made its first substantive comments on Monday to reports of U.S. surveillance of the Internet, demanding that Washington explain its monitoring programs to the international community.

Several nations, including U.S. allies, have reacted angrily to revelations by an ex-CIA employee over a week ago that U.S. authorities had tapped the servers of internet companies for personal data.

“We believe the United States should pay attention to the international community’s concerns and demands and give the international community the necessary explanation,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said at a daily briefing.

The Chinese government has previously not commented directly on the case, simply repeating the government’s standard line that China is one of the world’s biggest victims of hacking attacks.

(Oh yes, I’m sure that they would just love an explanation, the better to improve their own extensive international hacking and domestic surveillance operations, you know.) It’s pretty much what you’d expect — they have to say something, and they’re sticking with their general deny, deny, deny tactic — but it’s still pretty rich coming from these guys.


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Maybe they’ll settle for a beer summit.

dissent555 on June 17, 2013 at 8:36 AM

To those of you kissing Snowden’s feet and believing every word out of Glenn Greenwald’s mouth, check this out:

http://www.worldtribune.com/2013/06/16/journalist-who-interviewed-snowden-called-911-blow-to-america-a-very-good-thing/

This is whose word some of you take as gospel.

bluegill on June 17, 2013 at 8:36 AM

And Obama keeps pushing for broadband internet to all reaches of America.

“Can you hear me now?…
no?
then we are not finished…”

Electrongod on June 17, 2013 at 8:39 AM

Greenwald got a lot wrong:

http://www.zdnet.com/how-did-mainstream-media-get-the-nsa-prism-story-so-hopelessly-wrong-7000016822/

Oh, well. At least the China-supporting, Bradley Manning-admiring traitor Edward Snowden is becoming a star in Hong Kong and around the world.

bluegill on June 17, 2013 at 8:39 AM

Beer summit. Yeah, let each side get roaringly toasted, then let’s each other side’s agents ply the summiteers for teh secrets.

Sounds like your average Secret Service party to me.

dissent555 on June 17, 2013 at 8:40 AM

I, for one, am quite amused.

aryeung on June 17, 2013 at 8:41 AM

Chinese government hacks our private industries to steal technology, but America-haters around the world will ignore that and will use Snowden’s claims to further foster animosity towards the US.

bluegill on June 17, 2013 at 8:41 AM

And Obama keeps pushing for broadband internet to all reaches of America.

“Can you hear me now?…
no?
then we are not finished…”

Electrongod on June 17, 2013 at 8:39 AM

It would only be fair…

… for both the NSA and the Chinese to spy on all Americans!

aryeung on June 17, 2013 at 8:42 AM

bluegill on June 17, 2013 at 8:39 AM

But not as bad as Palin. Right,fishy?

katy the mean old lady on June 17, 2013 at 8:42 AM

….stench!…the flies and harvester ants… are on it!

KOOLAID2 on June 17, 2013 at 8:43 AM

…rinse lather…sh!t…repeat!

KOOLAID2 on June 17, 2013 at 8:44 AM

I was surprised to find out that the CIA and NSA snoop on Australians. Well, not really surprised.

Crux Australis on June 17, 2013 at 8:50 AM

China made its first substantive comments on Monday to reports of U.S. surveillance of the Internet, demanding that Washington explain its monitoring programs to the international community.

Wow you think giving China a really ugly patio bench would have garnered a few more weeks of good will.

Happy Nomad on June 17, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Just give the ChiComms the collateral (National Parks and West Coast) and be done with it.

….but ask them for our debt back if it’s not too much trouble.

PappyD61 on June 17, 2013 at 8:54 AM

China made its first substantive comments on Monday to reports of U.S. surveillance of the Internet, demanding that Washington explain its monitoring programs to the international community.

Wow you think giving China a really ugly patio bench would have garnered a few more weeks of good will.

Happy Nomad on June 17, 2013 at 8:51 AM

I don’t know why they’d be upset…Le’ Bench was a cheap knockoff made in China.

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 8:56 AM

This is all BS.

China knows what we’re doin and we know what they’re doin…

Kabuki = 歌舞伎

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 8:59 AM

Do the ChiComms make their people separate their food waste like NYC is going to make their stupid citizens do?

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/17/nyregion/bloombergs-final-recycling-frontier-food-waste.html?hp&_r=0

The residential program will initially work on a voluntary basis, but officials predict that within a few years, it will be mandatory. New Yorkers who do not separate their food scraps could be subject to fines, just as they are currently if they do not recycle plastic, paper or metal.

Under the program, residents collect food waste — like stale bread, chicken bones and potato peels — in containers the size of picnic baskets in their homes. The contents are then deposited in larger brown bins on the curb for pickup by sanitation trucks.

Residents of apartment buildings dump pails of food scraps at central collection points, most likely in the same places they put recyclable material.

It remains to be seen whether New Yorkers will embrace the program, given that some may cringe at keeping a container of potentially malodorous waste in a typically cramped urban kitchen, even if it is supposed to be emptied regularly.

In the latest 12-month period recorded, the Sanitation Department issued 75,216 summonses to home and building owners for failing to recycle. Officials expected that more summonses will be issued in the current fiscal year, because the department has redeployed personnel to recycling enforcement.

When it comes to edicts from our government masters….Are we more authoritarian than even the Chinese Communist government?

PappyD61 on June 17, 2013 at 9:00 AM

The explanation is easy. You have to break a few eggs when fundamentally transforming a country.

Basilsbest on June 17, 2013 at 9:00 AM

China did pay for it.

Flange on June 17, 2013 at 9:03 AM

Edward Snowden revealed as source of NSA leak

Chinese foreign ministry says suggestions NSA leaker Edward Snowden may have spied for China were ‘completely groundless’ – @*NN

Story metadata:
Submitted 28 mins ago from www.*nn.com by editor

canopfor on June 17, 2013 at 7:39 AM

canopfor on June 17, 2013 at 9:04 AM

It appears,Team Hopey/Changey is losing the Spy Vrs.Spy PR
Campaign!!!

canopfor on June 17, 2013 at 9:07 AM

bluegill on June 17, 2013 at 8:39 AM

But not as bad as Palin. Right,fishy?

katy the mean old lady on June 17, 2013 at 8:42 AM

The fact that Snowden has been proven somewhat unreliable has nothing to do with Palin.

I think the public had a right to know about the overly broad reach of the NSA program, however as his other “disclosures” demonstrate, the person who revealed it is not a patriot.

Basilsbest on June 17, 2013 at 9:09 AM

I don’t know why they’d be upset…Le’ Bench was a cheap knockoff made in China.

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 8:56 AM

That’s one way of ensuring the gift’s inscription in Chinese doesn’t call the President a goat or use Cantonese instead of Mandarin or something. Still a really tacky gift.

Happy Nomad on June 17, 2013 at 9:13 AM

OK, I’m no fan of Obama, the NSA snooping, or any of the other scandals, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to listen to any criticism from the Chicoms about it.

ramesees on June 17, 2013 at 9:14 AM

I think the public had a right to know about the overly broad reach of the NSA program, however as his other “disclosures” demonstrate, the person who revealed it is not a patriot.

Basilsbest on June 17, 2013 at 9:09 AM

This administration and the lying General Clapper would love for the discussion to be on the unreliable and untrustworthy nature of Snowden and not on the broad over-reach and illegality of NSA operations under the rat-eared despot.

In short, Snowden is a red herring. China’s trying to provoke the international community is sheer hypocrisy. We Americans need to keep the pressure up on what really matters- the snooping programs themselves.

Happy Nomad on June 17, 2013 at 9:16 AM

I don’t know why they’d be upset…Le’ Bench was a cheap knockoff made in China.

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 8:56 AM

That’s one way of ensuring the gift’s inscription in Chinese doesn’t call the President a goat or use Cantonese instead of Mandarin or something. Still a really tacky gift.

Happy Nomad on June 17, 2013 at 9:13 AM

Yeah…I guess the Chinese didn’t want an Ipod of Il Duce’s speeches.

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 9:19 AM

Yeah…I guess the Chinese didn’t want an Ipod of Il Dunce’s speeches.

workingclass artist on June 17, 2013 at 9:19 AM

FIFY

Flange on June 17, 2013 at 9:28 AM

thinly veiled outrageous outrage

isn’t that the msm response ……. of course, if GW was in office it would be screams of bloody murder…..

then again they really don’t have a problem with gubRmint thuggery… just so long as their guy is do’n da loot’n

roflmmfao

donabernathy on June 17, 2013 at 9:28 AM

The fact that Snowden has been proven somewhat unreliable has nothing to do with Palin.

I think the public had a right to know about the overly broad reach of the NSA program, however as his other “disclosures” demonstrate, the person who revealed it is not a patriot.

Basilsbest on June 17, 2013 at 9:09 AM

So far, I haven’t seen an actual American patriot anywhere in this mess.

Snowden pretty much falls into the Daniel Berrigan category. He objects to what was done on his own “moral” grounds, not because it violated American law or the Constitution. It’s noteworthy that he ran to HK, which even after 14 years of Chicom rule is still pretty much an “open city”. My best guess is he holed up there while figuring out where to run to for a semi-permanent safe haven. Ruling out Beijing, because they’d turn him over the The One in a heartbeat, and he knows it.

The Chinese? They’re mainly pissed that their own security services didn’t tumble to it. Which means what they most likely want is the nuts and bolts of how to do it. Count on The One to give it to them. In the name of “better relations”, the chimera we’ve been pursuing with the old men in the Forbidden City since Nixon fell off that bridge. Like The One, Tricky Dick really loved sticking it to the American people and our allies. And like The One, you could sell the man swampland in Florida with a little “social reform” window-dressing.

As for the actual perps, the only “patriotism” they feel is toward their boss, the Self-Exalted One, and their “cause”, which boils down to “making America more like Europe”. Complete to gun bans, 99% tax rates, no defense except saying, “Please, everybody, don’t hurt us, we can’t hurt you”, and pursuing “multiculturalism” and “greenness” until both destroy us.

All the while believing that they are Right, and Good, and that they will be untouched by the chaos. And can then build their Brave New World on the ruins.

I believe the correct words for people with these mindsets are “fanatics” and “idiots”.

Exactly which of them is which, you’ll have to judge for yourself.

clear ether

eon

eon on June 17, 2013 at 9:29 AM

China made its first substantive comments on Monday to reports of U.S. surveillance of the Internet, demanding that Washington explain its monitoring programs to the international community.

If you’re not spying on your friends and competitors (enemy) you’re an idiot. Or else Tuvalu.

rbj on June 17, 2013 at 9:43 AM

PappyD61 on June 17, 2013 at 9:00 AM

Boy this will be um… more money for the sanitation department. If you want a laugh read the comments. People actually think this a good idea and the right step for a green and clean NYC… I guess they forgot that food scraps are 10 out of 10 times biodegradable.

watertown on June 17, 2013 at 9:49 AM

The Chinese are just a little freaked out. They thought they were really badass hackers. There were articles in all the newspapers out them hacking this or that.

Suddenly, they’ve discovered their Kungfu is not so strong.

trigon on June 17, 2013 at 10:04 AM

China can eat shite with all the other communists like LForDie.

CW on June 17, 2013 at 10:19 AM

Point of order – Hong Kong is not a country. Even though (at least for the next 34 years or until Beijing thinks it can get away with eliminating it, whichever comes first) Hong Kong is still capitalist with a locally-elected legislature, Beijing maintains a veto power through the executive and judicial branches.

I will note the Hong Kong/mainland border is still largely closed.

Steve Eggleston on June 17, 2013 at 11:20 AM

Teh SCOAMT response – “We were just trying to be more like you, Red China. Now where did I put my Little Red Book?”

Steve Eggleston on June 17, 2013 at 11:26 AM

Steve Eggleston on June 17, 2013 at 11:20 AM

I’m sure Erika must know that, but I found the expression “in both Hong Kong and China” a bit odd.

DarkCurrent on June 17, 2013 at 11:36 AM

I would suggest that Obama doesn’t want to explain it because all of the speculation and running off on wild tangents is keeping attention focused away from IRS/EPA/State Department issues. Also, at this point the Democratic Party politburo is quite happy to throw Obama under the bus if that means saving Hillary for a 2016 run. He already has his two terms, he can’t run again. If they have to heap all the blame for everything on Obama, they can keep the focus off Hillary who simply needs to stay out of the spotlight and keep her mouth shut until she announces a Presidential run.

In other words, it would be in the interests of the DNC to portray all of these scandals as a lack of leadership by Obama and not a systemic problem with corrupt Democrat partisans who have infested our civil services and spans Presidential administrations.

At this point in time, I believe Obama is pretty well convinced there was no illegal activity with regard to NSA so he is willing to allow this to simmer and be blown into greater and greater proportion by speculation and then further speculation based on that speculation. It serves to keep attention focused away from the real scandals. AND if they finally do get around to really digging into things, they will come up with a clean bill of health. That is useful, too, because then he can say to people digging into IRS/EPA/Dept. of State “Hey, you want to go on another witch hunt? Remember what happened when you did that with NSA?”. So he can attempt to somehow paint all the Democrat chicanery in the civil services with a clean bill of health from NSA, which isn’t loaded with a bunch of partisans. You don’t get a job at NSA because you know somebody. You get a job at NSA because you are damned good at what you do and they need that skill. If you aren’t any good, you get sidelined. NSA is very technical in nature and people advance on their talent, not on how much they donated to political campaigns or if their spouse is an activist.

crosspatch on June 17, 2013 at 1:34 PM

Example of speculation based on speculation: Utah data center. First someone speculates that the entire data center is to be used for storing all communications. Then someone extrapolates from that speculation how much storage could be put in there and so on.

But what if that initial speculation is wrong? What if it isn’t for storage after all? What if it is designed as a more general purpose secure data center for use by lots of different agencies that is secured by NSA? Sure, the data center belongs to NSA, but maybe they aren’t the only ones using it. Maybe they have stuff in there that they don’t want other people getting into that belongs to a more general array of government agencies.

Then that initial speculation goes completely out the window. But because of the nature of things, they aren’t going to come right out and say exactly what it is used for or exactly what is in there no matter what it is, so this is useful at the moment for the Obama administration because every hour people debate how many angles can dance on a yottabyte is an hour they aren’t looking closer at IRS and other scandals.

crosspatch on June 17, 2013 at 1:41 PM

Angels on a yottabyte, even.

crosspatch on June 17, 2013 at 1:42 PM

Example of speculation based on speculation: Utah data center. First someone speculates that the entire data center is to be used for storing all communications. Then someone extrapolates from that speculation how much storage could be put in there and so on.

But what if that initial speculation is wrong? What if it isn’t for storage after all?

crosspatch on June 17, 2013 at 1:41 PM

According to my sources it’s to house a “Project Kumu-Honua”, some sort of breakthrough in AI.

DarkCurrent on June 17, 2013 at 1:51 PM

but it’s still pretty rich coming from these guys.

Anyway, it’s only hypocritical when the “bad guys” do it.

DarkCurrent on June 17, 2013 at 2:15 PM

China: The U.S. should really explain all of this unfortunate surveillance business

Or maybe the US keeps its mouth shut, and China kidnaps Snowden and asks him to explain, or else they lelease the lats from Loom 101.

Steve Z on June 17, 2013 at 2:54 PM

WTF. Is yottabyte the new word of the day? Never heard of it before this morning and now it’s all over. I guess we have to have a new word to say “a really, really big number of 1′s and 0′s so the NSA can keep track of us.”
/s

yesiamapirate on June 17, 2013 at 3:30 PM

It’s fun to see all the faux outrage about the Chinese hacking us and us hacking them. It’s what countries do. If the NSA spent its time doing what it was designed to do it wouldn’t be in such crap with the American people. I’m out of popcorn. Anybody seen a Boy Scout in the neighborhood?

yesiamapirate on June 17, 2013 at 3:37 PM

Btw, Vpn while still working, is not required for access to HotAir from China

DarkCurrent on June 17, 2013 at 4:27 PM

It’d be great if HotAir could get a blogger to China before 2018.

DarkCurrent on June 17, 2013 at 4:31 PM