In the interconnected, instantaneous and byte-sized world of internet journalism, both cyber-space and real-time often bend and warp into a self-referential wormhole.
Glenn Greenwald defended his work against sharp Twitter criticism.
And one of those fascinating wormholes just opened on Twitter as super neo-journalist Glenn Greenwald and 9/11 whistleblower Sibel Edmonds exchanged a series of increasingly vitriolic and accusatory tweets over Edmonds’ latest blog on Boiling Frogs Post: BFP Breaking News–Omidyar’s PayPal Corporation Said To Be Implicated in Withheld NSA Document.
In it, Edmonds claims that Greenwald’s soon-to-be financial partner and backer—PayPal billionaire Pierre Omidyar—was, in effect, a knowing partner with NSA spying and financial data-mining efforts:
The 50,000-pages of documents obtained by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden contain extensive documentation of PayPal Corporation’s partnership and cooperation with the National Security Agency (NSA), according to three NSA veterans.
However, Edmonds also writes:
To date, no information has been released as to the extent of the working relationship and cooperation between the two entities – NSA and PayPal Corporation.
Edmonds implies that this is not a matter of there being no info regarding PayPal’s cooperation with the NSA, but more a notable, perhaps self-serving omission:
What’s more, the billionaire owner of PayPal Corporation has entered into a $250 Million business partnership with two journalists-Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras, a journalist duo who possess the entire cache of evidence provided by Edward Snowden. Despite earlier pledges by the journalists in question, only one percent (1%) of Snowden’s documents has been released.
Of course, this didn’t sit well with Greenwald and he unleashed his displeasure in a series of tweets during a sometimes painful to read “cyber-sation” with Edmonds:
Greenwald’s point is that she cannot know what is in the massive trove of Snowden documents and, therefore, is making unsubstantiated claims regarding a possible conflict of interest in his partnering with Omidyar:
Edmonds’s story does quote other notable NSA whistleblowers—William Binney and Russell Tice—on the topic of PayPal which, it should be noted, infamously cut off use of its service to fund Wikileaks after its groundbreaking efforts to shed light on government secrecy.
Although Binney does not respond to what is specifically in the Snowden docs—which makes Greenwald’s point—he does state that financial institutions have long cooperated with the NSA and expresses some concerns about Omidyar: