Drake violated the Espionage Act—the 1917 statute that was used to convict Aldrich Ames, the C.I.A. officer who, in the eighties and nineties, sold U.S. intelligence to the K.G.B., enabling the Kremlin to assassinate informants.
Read more http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/05/23/110523fa_fact_mayer#ixzz1MeeTZLml
This seems somewhat heavy-handed considering the "unauthorized disclosure" was the press, and the enemy of the state is it's own employer (aka. the people).
Connecting the dots
Mark Klein, a retired AT&T communications technician, declares under oath that there is a secret room in the AT&T building he worked at. The civil class-action case of against AT&T Hepting v AT&T was dismissed:
The case was dismissed on June 3, 2009 by Judge Walker, citing retroactive legislation (section 802 of FISA) stating thatThe EFF has sued the NSA in Jewel v NSA, this case is pending and will either cite 'national security' as grounds for dismissal, or be delayed indefinitely hoping the EFF will just run out of money or crawl off and die. Maybe it's just waiting for Obama to Forge George W's signature on something signed a few years ago.
in the case of a covered civil action, the assistance alleged to have been provided by the electronic communication service provider was in connection with an intelligence activity involving communications that was authorized by the President during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, and ending on January 17, 2007; designed to detect or prevent a terrorist attack, or activities in preparation for a terrorist attack, against the United States; and the subject of a written request or directive, or a series of written requests or directives, from the Attorney General or the head of an element of the intelligence community (or the deputy of such person) to the electronic communication service provider indicating that the activity was authorized by the President; and determined to be lawful.
Thomas Drake will likely be hung drawn and quartered once his trial is finished but the documents in his case show us the things that Mark Klein did not know as he had no clearance to enter the secret rooms. The documents support Mark Klein's suspicions as to how the NSA is ensuring the public's right to privacy while collecting content that contains phone calls and internet communications that are sent un-filtered directly to the NSA's secret rooms: they aren't.
The programmer who created the NSA's software is apologizing for his programming and states that he meant it to have encrypted the data unless a court order compelled the decryption of the data.
When was the last truth the U.S. Military Industrial Complex uttered? -- This one is rhetorical, I don't think it can be answered.
But how does that affect anybody outside the U.S.?
Simply put; the internet does not have borders with the possible exception of the great firewall of China. This site I am posting to is owned by Google, a U.S. Company, who's server is probably in the U.S. also. So my traffic posting this would be running through U.S. backbones, which are probably being split into a 'secret room' somewhere.
Not that I expect the door to be broken down any second, because I am not doing presently anything wrong. But if they store the data they collect until speaking your mind has been criminalized who knows what can happen.