Olivia Pope has an Edward Snowden Moment

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PAPAPOPEIf there is anybody out there who wonders why organizations such as B613 exist, who question what their place is in our democracy then this last episode of Scandal is your answer. Privacy ,Security & terrorism are all complex issues that the modern governments have to deal with in ways that societies of the past did not.

Pope, Snowden and all those libertarians are deluded to think that organizations like B613 are  a menace to society and that by getting rid of them the world can all hold hands and sing kumbaya or that Bin Laden, Putin or Mugabe will conform and play nice. Organizations like B613 would not exist if not for the Putins, Bin ladens, Al Shabab, Boko Haram and every other terrorist of the world did not.

One of the most iconic scenes of any movie which I believe is more relevant now than then is a scene from ‘A Few Good Men’. While I do not like the idea that someone could be listening to my conversations the reality is that we are in a time where we sometimes have to trade privacy for security.

You can’t handle the truth! Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with guns. Who’s gonna do it? You? You, utopians? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. You weep for privacy and you curse the NSA. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what the NSA knows, that privacy’s death, while tragic, probably saved lives. The NSA’s existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives! You don’t want the truth, because deep down in places you don’t talk about at parties, you want the NSA on that wall. You need the NSA on that wall. they are the backbone of a life spent defending something. The NSA should not spend all its time explaining itsself to people who rise and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that they provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it! Instead we should just say “thank you”, or pick up a weapon, and stand a post.
Adapted from Few Good Men

In America the debate this week was on the NSA practices regarding privacy and their procedures. It is naïve to think that if the NSA stopped acquiring intelligence via telephone conversations then Putin, Mugabe or Anonymous hackers would stop too. The NSA needs intelligence in order to protect its citizens. When intelligence fail then the events in Kenya happen. Every innocent human life is important to preserve

While Mr. Ruto the Kenyan Vice President was traveling around Africa in an attempt to garner votes among African countries to pull out of the International Criminal Court (ICC) the terrorists were plotting to unleash terror on Kenyans on a scale never before seen on the African continent and their carried out the devastating attack on Westgate mall. Kenya is emerging as an economic powerhouse in East Africa. Its economic growth goes beyond the traditional tourism sector for which Kenya has been known for in the past to becoming the tech giant of not just East Africa but the entire Sub-Saharan Africa region.

Kenyans have been making headways in the real estate, mobile banking and transportation networks and textiles as well. In short Kenya is moving on up in the same way that the Nigerian, Botswana are all making progress. The event in the past week of the terrorists taking siege of a shopping mall and killing over 70 people and wounding several others is a sign that terrorism has been exported from the Middle East to East Africa. The group that has taken responsibility is an offshoot of ‘al-qaida’ known as ‘al-shabaab’. This terrorist group hails from the failed state of Somalia and claims that their action is a result of Kenyan troops in Somalia. These are just excuses from those who just want an excuse to inflict pain and death upon the innocent. We of course know that Kenyan troops are in Somalia on a humanitarian effort to protect women and children in Somalia and restore law and order. These perpetrators must be brought to justice and their sympathizers punished.

Kenyans deserve to live in peace and enjoy the benefits of many more Kenyans climbing into the middle class and continuing on the path of economic growth. I certainly believe in the importance of checks and balances but in the end security trumps my need for privacy. There is only one language that terrorist understand  and its called force.

By Anna Mosi-Oa-Tunya 2014

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