July 18th, 2013
03:34 PM ET

Former spy chief speaks out on NSA surveillance programs

Editor's note: This is one in a series of stories and opinion pieces surrounding the Aspen Security Forum currently taking place in Aspen, Colorado. Security Clearance is a media sponsor of the event, which is taking place from July 17 to 20 in Aspen, Colorado.

In an interview with CNN's Brooke Baldwin, Dennis Blair, the former Director of National Intelligence weighed in Thursday with his thoughts on the NSA surveillance programs leaked by Edward Snowden. He also gave his thoughts on the killing of civilians in drone operations overseas. Blair spoke from Aspen, Colorado where he is attending the Aspen Security Forum.

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  27. debbie ferris

    I am glad and thankful that Snowden blew the whistle!
    What blows my mind is how, with all of the data that's been collected, the bumbling security agencies couldn't catch some homemade pressure cooker wielding terrorists even when the Russians tipped off the FBI. Furthermore, they couldn't protect our Libyan embassy. One would think that with all the security encompassed by the NSA, FBI, CIA that Hillary could have had some security to protect our ambassador and fellow Americans in Libya. We were told that a spoof on Mohammed had caused this spontaneous uprising. What a bunch of bull!
    Furthermore, I didn't elect government officials to survey my data. I am not an enemy of the state. I have the first amendment and the Fourth and I get to plead the Fifth.

    July 31, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Reply
  28. Powder

    By the way is there no forum in the USA that Snowden could have used to voisce concern about NSA programs?

    July 19, 2013 at 4:50 am | Reply
  29. Powder

    No need to call People who i believe have better judgement than you ignorant fools. You obviously do not know all the facts of the case/story. What Snowden did is wrong because it is not in the interest of the USA but in the interest of those who want the USA dead and buried! There are forums to raise issues in the USA because of freedom of speech like countless before Snowden have done, those who are emotionally mature anyway. And laws about freedom are regularly debated and improved in the USA, rather than running to China and start bubbling about something that have prevented terrorist attacks in the USA.
    WHICH AMERICAN CITIZEN DID THE NSA TAKE AWAY THEIR FREEDOMS OR ABUSE BECAUSE OF THE SURVEILLANCE PROGRAMS? SUE FOR EMOTIONAL ABUSE IF ANY!!!
    The other point is, taliban,al-qaeda & other terrorist organisations have changed tactics because of Snowden and my wish is for those who say Snowden did right to be the first to taste the terrorists strike if they manage to out-manuvoure the NSA!

    July 19, 2013 at 4:43 am | Reply
  30. Alexander

    It amazes me how CNN and the mainstream media wont call people out for not answering their questions. She lets him skip the parts her question asks and jump to benefits to the intelligence community of their programs. Add to that, the one question she pushes him on is if there would be a conversation about NSA surveillance being discussed if not for Snowden? The fact is that there is a discussion, and Snowden is an irrelevant distraction that keeps the issue of surveillance out of the news coverage.

    We're looking at the government for breaking laws and invading our privacy. There is no reason these interviews should be pleasant at all for the government. Do the public the favor the media used to do and PUSH!

    July 18, 2013 at 6:52 pm | Reply
  31. George patton

    I suppose that this Dennis Blair's going to cry like a baby the Aspen Security Forum about how much "damage" the Snowden leaks did to NSA. Edward Snowden did the public a favor and only an ignorant fool would say otherwise!

    July 18, 2013 at 6:26 pm | Reply

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