And Then Glenn Greenwald’s Partner was Detained
According to The Guardian,
David Miranda, who lives with Glenn Greenwald, was returning from a trip to Berlin when he was stopped by officers at 8.05am and informed that he was to be questioned under schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000. The controversial law, which applies only at airports, ports and border areas, allows officers to stop, search, question and detain individuals.
The 28-year-old was held for nine hours, the maximum the law allows before officers must release or formally arrest the individual. According to official figures, most examinations under schedule 7 – over 97% – last less than an hour, and only one in 2,000 people detained are kept for more than six hours.
The fact that Miranda was returning from a a trip to visit Laura Poitras and doing so on The Guardian’s dime should only make the UK government’s actions that much more scandalous. Here was a someone doing journalistic work, for a press organization, detained by government officials for nine hours, who also had all of his digital belongings present at the time stolen by those government officials.
And yet this move seems as inept as the not nearly controversial enough grounding of the Bolivian President’s plane just a couple months ago. While that tactic might have appeared to someone, at sometime, like a calculated risk with at least some chance of actually capturing Edward Snowden and preventing the whistleblower from leaking any further information, the detention and interrogation of Miranda doesn’t appear like it could possible achieve anything beneficial to the governments involved.
In fact, the only indisputable consequence of what occurred at Heathrow Airport is that Edward Snowden, the investigations he’s aided, and the debates over privacy, surveillance, and national security he’s helped to initiate, will build up at least a little more momentum.