'US annexed the whole world' through mass surveillance - Assange
"To a degree this is a matter of national sovereignty. The news is all flush with talk about how Russia has annexed the Crimea, but the reality is, the Five Eyes intelligence alliance, principally the United States, have annexed the whole world as a result of annexing the computer systems and communications technology that is used to run the modern world," stated Julian Assange in his keynote address at the WHD.global 2014 conference, the world's largest hosting and cloud event.
Discussing surveillance, encryption, web hosting, Assange said there is urgent need to develop autonomous national networks, otherwise, should an economic or political conflict with the US erupt, countries won't be able to protect their interests and people. "There’s simply too much leverage on nation states," he pointed out.
Assange emphasized the importance to encrypt all information and update legislation regarding privacy to boost communication security.
He also pointed out that revelations by the former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, that exposed mass surveillance by the US, forced Germany to assert leadership in Europe with renewed strength. "One of the ways to demonstrate its leadership is to demonstrate how someone else does not control you. Here we have an example of Angela Merkel and German society as a whole striving slowly to demonstrate some kind of independence in relation to the United States," Assange stressed.
In an interview with the BBC's technology programme Click Assange said that the impulse to create European internet is "quite important." However, he cautioned that, though the initiative is very good per se, we have to keep in mind that "Europe is thoroughly penetrated and thoroughly compromised and engages in dirty deals with the United States government, especially the UK and Sweden."
When asked who has the right to decide what information becomes public and what stays secret, Assange said that only people must make that decision. "We are all to judge," he emphasized. "Through our behavior, what we support, what we don't support, what we do – we decide what information enters into our human historical record," he added, reports The Whir.