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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Ai Weiwei on NSA Revelations, U.S. and China

The famous and famously jailed artist writes column for The Guardian.
Even though we know governments do all kinds of things I was shocked by the information about the US surveillance operation, Prism. To me, it's abusively using government powers to interfere in individuals' privacy. This is an important moment for international society to reconsider and protect individual rights.
I lived in the United States for 12 years. This abuse of state power goes totally against my understanding of what it means to be a civilised society, and it will be shocking for me if American citizens allow this to continue. The US has a great tradition of individualism and privacy and has long been a centre for free thinking and creativity as a result.
In our experience in China, basically there is no privacy at all – that is why China is far behind the world in important respects: even though it has become so rich, it trails behind in terms of passion, imagination and creativity.
Glenn Greenwald plays a pivotal role in my book (with Kevin Gosztola) on the Bradley Manning case, just published in an updated edition.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ai Weiwei's "shock" shows he really knows very little about USA. His 12 years were long enough for him to soak up the propaganda, but apparently not enough to get a clue about the truth. I have lived in the USA for 65 years and I see PRISM as par for the course.