A Good American
He is known as America’s best codebreaker and Bill Binney is still shocked every time he sees footage of the Twin Towers burning. Then he explains what preceded that. How, as a smart mathematician, he eavesdropped on the Russians during the Cold War and went on to form a small team at the NSA that found a solution to the digital data explosion the agency was overwhelmed by. A solution the NSA’s directors ignored, enabling - so say Binney and former staff - the 9/11 terrorists to do their worst.
A Good American reveals itself as a stylishly visualised documentary thriller that is at least as disturbing as Edward Snowden’s story. More than computers and data, this is about arrogance, morals and privacy. Binney, now a whistleblower, resigned after 9/11 and is still angered by the fact that the NSA ran roughshod over the values he upheld.