How America Lost Its Secrets by Edward Jay Epstein
Edward Snowden, the Man and the Theft

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In this winter of rattled confidence in government, Epstein’s welcome reappraisal of the most destructive data breach in the history of U.S. intelligence brings nothing to mind so much as the Roman poet Juvenal’s timeless question: “Who will guard the guards themselves?”
-National Post arts

Synopsis

A groundbreaking exposé that convincingly challenges the popular image of Edward Snowden as hacker turned avenging angel, while revealing how vulnerable our national security systems have become--as exciting as any political thriller, and far more important.

After details of American government surveillance were published in 2013, Edward Snowden, formerly a subcontracted IT analyst for the NSA, became the center of an international controversy: Was he a hero, traitor, whistle-blower, spy? Was his theft legitimized by the nature of the information he exposed? When is it necessary for governmental transparency to give way to subterfuge? Edward Jay Epstein brings a lifetime of journalistic and investigative acumen to bear on these and other questions, delving into both how our secrets were taken and the man who took them. He makes clear that by outsourcing parts of our security apparatus, the government has made classified information far more vulnerable; how Snowden sought employment precisely where he could most easily gain access to the most sensitive classified material; and how, though he claims to have acted to serve his country, Snowden is treated as a prized intelligence asset in Moscow, his new home.


From the Hardcover edition.
 

About Edward Jay Epstein

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Edward Jay Epstein, who wrote the "Hollywood Economist" column for Slate, is the author of The Big Picture: Money and Power in Hollywood, as well as many other books. He has written for the Wall Street Journal, Vanity Fair, The New York Times Magazine, and The New Yorker, and he lives in New York City. His website is edwardjayepstein.com
 
Published January 17, 2017 by Knopf. 368 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Computers & Technology. Non-fiction
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National Post arts

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Reviewed by Nate Fick, Washington Post on Jan 23 2017

In this winter of rattled confidence in government, Epstein’s welcome reappraisal of the most destructive data breach in the history of U.S. intelligence brings nothing to mind so much as the Roman poet Juvenal’s timeless question: “Who will guard the guards themselves?”

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