Could Google and the NSA Make Whistleblowers Disappear?: What if Edward Snowden was made to disappear? No, I’m not suggesting some future CIA rendition effort or a who-killed-Snowden conspiracy theory of a disappearance, but a more ominous kind.What if everything a whistleblower had ever exposed could simply be made to go away?
What if every National Security Agency NSA document Snowden released, every interview he gave, every documented trace of a national security state careening out of control could be made to disappear in real-time? What if the very posting of such revelations could be turned into a fruitless, record-less endeavor?
Am I suggesting the plot for a novel by some twenty-first-century George Orwell? Hardly.
As we edge toward a fully digital world, such things may soon be possible, not in science fiction but in our world—and at the push of a button. In fact, the earliest prototypes of a new kind of “disappearance” are already being tested. We are closer to a shocking, dystopian reality that might once have been the stuff of futuristic novels than we imagine. Welcome to the memory hole.