Posts tagged ‘secrecy’


18 October 2013

Historic Secrecy

Bernard Porter

Are British governments the most secretive in the ‘free’ world? The contrast between Downing Street’s response to the Snowden revelations and others’ suggests so. Almost every European and South American leader has expressed shock at the degree and extent of surveillance Snowden uncovered, and set in motion measures to limit or at least oversee it. There are popular movements against it. I observed one this summer in Halle – but then the East Germans have had experience of this kind of thing. In Britain there’s almost no public protest; just Hague’s assurance that ‘if you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear’ (didn’t Goebbels say something like that?), MI5 splutterings about ‘national security’ and condemnations of Snowden et al from the prime minister on down to the Daily Mail. Now we learn that British governments have been hiding our history from us, in the same spirit.