back to article Bolivian president's jet grounded so officials can look for Snowden

Bolivian president Evo Morales was obliged to land in Vienna en route home from attending a gas exporters' conference in Moscow over suspicions that NSA-contractor-turned-whistleblower Edward Snowden might be aboard the presidential jet. According to the BBC, Austrian officials who searched the jet have given the all-clear, …

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  1. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

    This has now officially..

    .. turned into a farce.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: This has now officially..

      Where are my trousers? The ambassador's coming to tea in a minute, and I can't find them anywhere. Oh no, that's him at the door now! I'll hide in this cupboard while he's here.

      G'Day ambassador mate! I've got the consul's trousers here, I was just borrowing them for a nice young sheila I got back there on the sofa. D'you know where he is?

      in walks a loveable policeman

      Oi! You're not allowed in here. Diplomatic immunity!

      'Ello ello ello sir, you're right. I'd better hide in the bathroom, before the ambassador spots me, and I cause a diplomatic incident.

      [probably best I don't give up my day job]

    2. Allonymous Coward

      Re: This has now officially..

      Oh no it hasn't.

    3. Euripides Pants Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: This has now officially..

      It would have been a farce if young mister Snowden was on the flight but didn't get caught because he changed his first name to Eduardo.

  2. S4qFBxkFFg
    Go

    Let's see if they make it this time:

    http://www.flightradar24.com/data/airplanes/fab-001

    1. JayBizzle
      Thumb Up

      Lady Penelope in that one? Didn't know Parker was a pilot as well

      Jeff will be happy to see her.....

      1. Richard 120
        Black Helicopters

        Stop the Pigeon

        Starring Barrack Obama as Dick Dastardly

        1. VinceH Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: Stop the Pigeon

          Psst.

          Lady Penelope was in Thunderbirds. Dick Dastardly was in a cartoon with a different Penelope - Penelope Pitstop. Hopefully, nobody will notice your continuity error, though... I won't tell anyone. That's why I'm whispering.

          1. Suricou Raven

            Re: Stop the Pigeon

            It's more complicated than that. The studio liked to reuse their popular characters in different settings: Dick and his sidekick appeared in three programs: Wacky Races, Perils of Penelope Pitstop and Stop that Pigeon. Penelope appeared in two of those, as did the Ant Hill Mob - but not appearing as the same named characters or professions.

            It could be seen the animated equivalent of the same actor appearing in many different films playing different characters, but always the same archetype. Think someone like Laurel and Hardy: They played different characters every film, but really they were always playing their own act and everyone loved them for it.

            1. Richard 120
              Stop

              Re: Stop the Pigeon

              I think I can untangle this.

              The Lady Penelope being referred to by the honourable JayBizzle is a totally different character to the Penelope Pitstop of Wacky Races fame (and The Perils of Penelope Pitstop)

              I'm assuming the association JayBizzle was making to Lady Penelope was as a result of the link to FAB-001, F.A.B. being the radio acknowldgement of the Thunderbirds pilots.

              I was making a reference to the OP defining the situation as a farce, Stop the Pigeon was a farce and I was drawing a parallel to the nature of the Pigeon (being a spy messenger) and his pursuer the repeatedly foiled Dick Dastardly. I was not building on the Thunderbirds reference.

              Now that that's all sorted out everyone else can all go back to their lives safe in the knowledge that there is someone who is anal enough to read the replies to his own posts, try to understand them, point out continuity errors or misunderstandings and how they were derived.

              Unfortunately I have to live with myself.

              1. VinceH Silver badge

                Re: Stop the Pigeon

                Ah, okay. I thought you were mistaking Lady Penelope for Penelope Pitstop - you clearly know they are different, though.

                However, @Suricou Raven:

                "It's more complicated than that. The studio liked to reuse their popular characters in different settings: Dick and his sidekick appeared in three programs: Wacky Races, Perils of Penelope Pitstop and Stop that Pigeon."

                My recollection is that Dick Dastardly didn't appear in The Perils of Penelope Pitstop - the only one in which they appeared alongside Penelope Pitstop was the Wacky Races. I'm pretty sure Penelope's nemesis in The Perils was a character called something like The Hooded Claw (who I think was the alter ego of someone she thought was a friend).

                1. H.I.T.S
                  Thumb Up

                  Re: Stop the Pigeon

                  You're right about the Hooded Claw trying to get our beloved Penelope. I could be wrong here, but I seem to recall the 'friend' was her lawyer trying to get his hand on her fortune. The Ant Hill Mob was there to protect her.

                  A quick trip to IMDB http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0173587/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1 has just confirmed the ol' marbles are basically intact for the mo.

                  What were we talking about?

                  1. VinceH Silver badge

                    Re: Stop the Pigeon

                    I dunno. Something about a pigeon not being found on a grounded jet, flown by a bloke called Parker.

  3. JayBizzle
    FAIL

    Land of the free... home of the brave

    The U.S.A. needs to get its house in order and Cameron could be seen to be a player on the world stage if he gets some balls (not the Ed kind) and says to Obama, "listen Bara me old chum, hows about not bugging everyone, yeah? Other NATO countries don't like it, especially if you don't tell them"

    There is no longer a cold war and you will not reduce the threat of Terrorism from pissing off all of your mates.

    Team America World Police.. Fuck NO!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave aka Team America World Police (OT)

      Off topic, but if someone has NOT seen "Team America" - DO, it's hilarious.

      1. Euripides Pants Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave aka Team America World Police (OT)

        Not off topic at all. Our duly elected government behaves more like the characters in that movie every day.

    2. boltar Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

      "There is no longer a cold war and you will not reduce the threat of Terrorism from pissing off all of your mates."

      You honestly think that no other country in the world spies on its supposed allies when it suits them? Where do you live , Innocent Cottage, 1 Naive Street, Dumbville?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        So? Because it's done, it should be accepted? Because it's done, it's automatically effective? You think it's right and you're fully behind the practice? You believe that freedom and democracy are meaningless words? That people who dream of making the world better should just let it go, and we should be happy to be on the path to a perfectly fascist society where your opinion does not matter a bit to your government?

        If that's what you want, as you pointed out, there are countries like that already. Why don't you emigrate there and applaud happily at their governments actions?

        1. boltar Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

          "You believe that freedom and democracy are meaningless words? "

          If it wasn't for the actions of security agencies carrying out covert operations the freedom and democracy you talk about probably wouldn't exists anymore.

          "That people who dream of making the world better should just let it go"

          Cue angelic choir and some pictures of smiling multi ethnic clip art pictures of women holding babies...

          "we should be happy to be on the path to a perfectly fascist society"

          You wouldn't know true fascism if it bit you in your deluded liberal backside. For people like you that word is a catch all term for anything you don't happen to agree with because it doesn't fit into the fluffy cuddly hippy world you naively believe we'd all live in if only The Man didn't go around doing nasty things like spying.

          Well newsflash my friend - human nature being what it is doesn't allow for that. The Man is actually keeping your backsde safe from the real enemies out there , you know, the sort who fly aircraft into a building with 3000 people in it, the one who blow up trains, bomb buses full of kids, shoot women dead if they dare to try and get an education? But hey , those are minor transgressions compared to storing emails, right?

          Grow the fuck up!

      2. PipV
        Trollface

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        'Fuck yeh'

        I can't watch the whole of Team America, reality documentary films tend to bore or upset me.

        1. WatAWorld
          Paris Hilton

          What kind of a "world cop" is the USA?

          With their bald-face mantra of "exceptionalism", they're a 1960s era "white cop in a black ghetto" type of cop.

          Do what I say or I'll beat the heck out of you with my club kind of cop.

          There a "the law is there for YOU to obey" kind of cop.

          Shock and awe ? Shock and awe at their hypocrisy !

          Paris, because she's their main ideological guru.

          1. HAL4000
            Boffin

            Re: What kind of a "world cop" is the USA?

            This kind: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UUbvM2Lyh4 (SFW)

      3. WatAWorld

        last month the US was complaining about China's spying as though nobody ever did such a thing

        There is normal spying for military security threats.

        Then there is industrial espionage.

        But then there is capturing all the internet traffic from every single citizen.

        What is the purpose? It clearly is NOT to fight terrorism.

        Looking at what they capture their motivations include:

        1. Turning over the trade secrets of EU companies (like Siemens) to US companies (like Intel and Motorola).

        2. Capturing the bargaining positions of the other side.

        3. Gathering background information on our political, military and industrial leaders with which to blackmail them.

        Yes, other countries do spying too. But the CIA includes reading over foreign newspapers in its definition of spying.

        I do not believe for a minute that Belgium is taping all the internet traffic in and out of the UK or USA.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: last month the US was complaining about China's spying as though nobody ever did such a thing

          "I do not believe for a minute that Belgium is taping all the internet traffic in and out of the UK or USA."

          Not a UKIP member, then.

          1. Suricou Raven

            Re: last month the US was complaining about China's spying as though nobody ever did such a thing

            Only because they don't have access to the fibers. The UK is probably tapping all internet traffic in and out of Belgium though. Guess where the ocean-spanning cables land.

          2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
            Pirate

            Re: ribosome Re: last month the US was complaining about China's spying...."

            <Sigh> It is really rich of Brussels to be complaining of US evesdropping given their long and secretive history of doing exactly the same if not worse (http://www.wired.com/politics/law/news/1998/12/16588)! The whole basis of the EPCIP program is that the EU will be able to "identify terror threats to critical infrastructure" (http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/justice_freedom_security/fight_against_terrorism/l33260_en.htm), and partially entails EU countries sharing data on their citizens and their communications without any form of warrant, nor oversight, and under the control of non-elected EU beureaucrats. Compared to the NSA's activities that's like comparing grand larceny to pickpocketing!

            The Fwench are not kicking up too much of a fuss as they have had their own equivalent of ECHELON for years too:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frenchelon

            Even the Swiss and the Swedes are at it:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Onyx_%28interception_system%29

            http://www.nbcnews.com/id/25252111/ns/world_news-europe/t/sweden-adopts-contentious-eavesdropping-plan/#.UdQmhKyovrQ

            Oh dear, did that info puncture a few reality bubbles?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: ribosome last month the US was complaining about China's spying...."

              Unfortunately I am a strict constructionist when it comes to markup languages, and as your <Sigh> tag was not terminated, I was unable to parse your post.

              Or in ordinary wetware language, I am programmed to ignore completely any responses from people who think it is clever to put <Sigh> at the start of their posts. It's intended to indicate casual superiority - and all you ever do when posting is try to look superior to others. But I can't find the Matt Bryant who is a specialist in international law, so until you verify your credentials your posts would seem to have no special value.

      4. JayBizzle
        Big Brother

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        Dear Boltar,

        I didn't say that no one else did it, but since the U.S.A. is currently in the focus, I focused my comment on them.

        zài jiàn

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        You haven't got it, have you? Or perhaps you only read the news through the NSA firewall.

        This is about the US spying on everybody else, and subcontracting their spying on their own citizens to the UK, so as to maintain a figleaf of legality.

        Really it's high time US citizens flooded our Government with FOI requests to find out what information it is storing on them, Yes I know they will be refused...come on guys, you can crapflood the UK Government with FOI requests until they have to agree not to cooperate any more, and the whole stinking rotten system starts to unravel.

        1. Matt Bryant Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: ribosome Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

          ".....you can crapflood the UK Government with FOI requests until they have to agree not to cooperate any more....." Please do, it will be an excellent source of income for HMG when they charge you £50 for a photocopy of a sheet saying "No information found" (https://www.gov.uk/make-a-freedom-of-information-request/how-to-make-an-foi-request).

          But, before you get your hopes up, you may want to read the FOI Act 2000 first (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/36/schedule/1) as it specificaly excludes GCHQ and chums: "....except—......any unit or part of a unit which is for the time being required by the Secretary of State to assist the Government Communications Headquarters in the exercise of its functions....."

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: ribosome Land of the free... home of the brave

            Which is why I wrote that it would be refused. I know that FOI only applies to stuff the Government doesn't care about. But presumably someone would have to send out all the emails saying why it had been refused. 300 million Americans could certainly overload the UK Government's email system.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Land of the free... home of the brave + subcontracting

          the guardian (well, you know) suggested, that it might have been a little different to the popular form of subcontracting, i.e. both parties stored data - but the data captured by the other partner, thus enabling both to claim that it was "all legal".

        3. h3

          Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

          America pays us for the spy base in North Yorkshire. They drive on the right and use dollars. (And have Disney Land like facilities). They even give you free unlimited beer after playing Rugby with them. (Junk American beer but it is free).

          The whole set up is stupid. If you are going to do something just say you are.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

            Actually I've had some microbrew there - v nice

          2. Vic

            Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

            > Junk American beer but it is free

            It's hardly novel that someone gives away piss...

            Vic.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        "You honestly think that no other country in the world spies on its supposed allies when it suits them?"

        Only William Hague is so dumb <b>he does the spying for them</b>. That's the true scandal here, that a man can be so stupid he gives them a network tap and just naively thinks they won't spy on Brits for commercial and political gains.

        Wow, when he started spouting how US protects its citizens as if Brits are US citizens (!).

        You can see the Prism leak, you can see Brit data from the filter GCHQ put in goes straight into that database, not deleted after 3 days. Did he imagine otherwise?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

      ...followed by the rapid exodus of banks from the City of London, cancellation of numerous contracts and the collapse of the £.

      Kipling was right: high levels of trade reduce the prospect of war. But he missed an essential point; that when word trade is predicated on a debt-funded currency retaining its value, the US can do what it likes because nobody dare upset the applecart. It is the old saw about you owe the bank £1000, you have a problem, you owe the bank £1billion, they have a problem.

      If the dollar falls, oil and commodity prices go haywire. So, paradoxically, nobody can afford to upset the US.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Mushroom

        Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

        ...followed by the rapid exodus of banks from

        City of London, cancellation of numerous

        contracts and the collapse of the £.

        sounds good to me, bring it on and give the US the finger.

    4. Yag
      Big Brother

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

      More like : Land of the free market... home of the brave new world.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

      That would be very nice indeed, but the only problem is Cameron and the British gov/civil service etc are the US's lapdogs. Indeed GCHQ spying is even worse as Snowden has revealed. Why do you think they denied flights to the UK for him the moment this all came out. We need a European and US Spring, and fast before it's too late.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Land of the free... home of the brave

      Yeah you don't want America as the world police until you want to intervene in another country and you realise you armed forces can't do it. Ohh we hate America but please come help us in Libya. America, rightly or wrongly, can project force. That is why they were hired by the Saudi's for the first Iraq war (no bad, being able to hire half a million troops for $35 billion)

      As for spying, yes what was going on was very wrong and some people need to be sized up for orange jumpsuits, but GCHQ is at it as well and just as much. That doesn't excuse it, but your preaching may need to be dialled down a little. Theres probably much more to come and theres going to be quite a few countries with some explaining to do so don't be so quick to attack others.

  4. Rol Silver badge

    Obama says US won't scramble jets or twist arms for Snowden

    I think the American term for that has something to do with forked tongues.

    1. g e
      Holmes

      Re: Obama says US won't scramble jets or twist arms for Snowden

      Or perhaps "Obama is an utter fucking liar"

      Which statement is easier to believe?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Obama says US won't scramble jets or twist arms for Snowden

      And he WAS true to his word. To the letter too. All they did, is "asked". And because they say so, I believe them, absolutely. They wouldn't be lying, would they?

      1. Aldous
        Trollface

        Re: Obama says US won't scramble jets or twist arms for Snowden

        He could take a lesson from the JFK playbook: " The USAF won't intercept Snowden. The CIA with their ex cuban/whoever pilots on the other hand...."

  5. J J Carter Silver badge
    Big Brother

    They could have dressed Snowden in spare inform and passed him off as cabin-crew

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      nah. He's onboard the Venezuelan presidents plane. The Bolivians were sent ahead to raise indignation, leaving the Venezuelan plane to fly home free

  6. Will Godfrey Silver badge

    More to come?

    This lot are getting spooked at the slightest whisper lately. I wonder if there is a biggie they all know about but don't want the public hearing.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: More to come?

      Snowden knows:

      The whereabouts of Lord Lucan

      The pizza joint where Elvis is currently doing the cooking

      The exact location of last year's snow

      The datacenter that has all of temps perdu on it, and the admin password

      The IP address of the Yeti webcam

      The secret hideout in Arizona where Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and Quadhafi (the real ones) live in comfortable retirement.

      The actual contract between the UK and the US governments that specifies that every UK Prime Minister is the current US President's bitch (which is why there can never be a woman President)

      The launch codes for all the Minutemen

      The combination of the bathroom immediately off of the Oval Office where US Presidents go for some quality time.

      Where to get polonium in Moscow

      He does not know:

      Who the Hell gives Michael Gove his ideas.

      1. Rampant Spaniel

        Re: More to come?

        I'm sure theres a comedy sketch in that secret hideout \ retirement home one. Wasn't there a python sketch about a bunch of Nazi leaders in a brighton b&b or am I going senile?

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