Former US Congressman Dennis Kucinich has called for the National Security Agency to be abolished, saying that the US government agencies destroyed the idea of privacy.
“There needs to be a measure of responsibility. And if they go beyond the pale, which the NSA has, they just ought to be abolished. We don’t need the spying,” he said at the premiere of a documentary on government and corporate abuse of digital data.
“We have the CIA, the FBI, a dozen other intelligence infrastructures. Frankly - and I’m saying this with a lifetime’s experience in government here - it’s time to punch the NSA’s ticket here,” Kucinich was quoted as saying by Prison Planet on Monday.
“They’ve ruined the brand. They’ve destroyed the idea of privacy,” he added.
New documents revealed by American whistleblower Edward Snowden showed that the NSA had broken privacy rules or overstepped its legal authority thousands of times each year since 2008.
The revelation shows that the agency broke its own rules about spying on Americans.
“We need some kind of symbolic and profound approach here that says, ‘look, you’ve violated something that’s very dear to the American people - you don’t get to do that,’” Kucinich said.
“We talk about the death penalty for individuals, which I oppose, but I think there needs to be for government agencies that so broadly betray the public interest,” he added.
Snowden, who was granted temporary asylum in Russia, gave information about secret NSA spying programs that collect phone, email and other communications of American people.
The former Ohio Congressman also said, “In a just world, Snowden, we’d be having ticker tape parades for him. But that’s not what’s going to happen.”
Kucinich also spoke about Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who lied to Congress about the NSA’s spying techniques.
“Well, you know it’s illegal to lie to Congress, but everyone lies to Congress. As soon as they raise their right hand, watch out! Clapper should be held responsible, but he won’t be, because that’s the condition we’re in right now,” he said.