Jacob Appplebaum, a transparency activist and computer savant, has been repeatedly harassed at American borders, having his laptop seized. Barrett Brown, another investigative journalist who has written for Vanity Fair, among others publications, exposed the connections between the private contracting firm HB Gary (a government contracting firm that, incidentally, proposed a plan to spy on and ruin the reputation of the Guardian’s Greenwald) and who is currently sitting in a Texas prison on trumped up FBI charges regarding his legitimate reportorial inquiry into the political collective known sometimes as Anonymous.
That’s not to mention former NSA official Thomas Drake (the Feds tried to destroys his life because he blew the whistle); Fox News reporter James Rosen (named a “co-conspirator” by Holder’s DOJ); John Kirakou, formerly in the CIA, who raised concerns about the agency’s torture program, is also in prison for leaking “harmful” (read: embarrassing) classified info; and of course Wikileaks (under U.S. financial embargo); WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (locked up in Ecuador’s London embassy) and, of course, Bradley Manning, the young, idealistic, soldier who provided the public with perhaps the most critical trove of government documents ever released.
The attitude the Obama administration has toward Manning is revealing. What do they think of him? “Fuck Bradley Manning,” as one White House official put it to me last year during the campaign.
~ from Why Democrats Love To Spy On Americans by Michael Hastings ~
The snippet above is from Michael Hastings' last column at BuzzFeed. I say last column because the 33 year old investigative reporter is dead. He died early Tuesday morning in a one vehicle car crash. According to a witness, he "saw Hastings speeding down the road in his car when it suddenly jackknifed, slammed into a tree, and burst into flames."
How often do cars on city streets crash and immediately burst into flames? What would cause a vehicle suddenly to jackknife (turn at a 90 degree angle)? Yes, it was probably nothing more than an unfortunate accident, but you've got to wonder in the current political climate. Michael Hastings was an uncompromising investigative reporter; one of the few who did not take his marching orders from the government. All I am saying is that -- in light of the manner in which the natural security state has gone after the folks listed above -- the reported strange circumstances of this accident leaves one to wonder IF it was really an accident at all.
Since the circumstances of his death are very sketchy at this time, I will be interested to see what, if anything more, is uncovered.