Former NSA contractor Snowden’s disclosures have been “cataclysmic” for the eavesdropping agency, Richard Ledgett, who leads a task force responding to the leaks, said in a rare interview at NSA’s heavily guarded Fort Meade headquarters.
In the more than hour-long interview, Ledgett acknowledged the agency had done a poor job in its initial public response to revelations of vast NSA monitoring of phone and Internet data; pledged more transparency; and said he was deeply worried about highly classified documents not yet public that are among the 1.7 million Snowden is believed to have accessed.
He also stoutly defended the NSA’s mission of tracking terrorist plots and other threats, and said its recruiting of young codebreakers, linguists and computer geeks has not been affected by the Snowden affair – even as internal morale has been.
“Any time you trust people, there is always a chance that someone will betray you,” he said.
Wow. The irony there is so dense you can cut it with a knife. It is nutrient packed and as strong tasting as Vegemite. Good stuff, that irony.