Since this interview was made public in June, many in the US government, the US press, and even some liberal friends of mine have referred to Snowden as a “traitor” and as someone guilty of espionage. As many have asked, if he is a spy, who is he spying for? The American people? In that case we need more spies like Snowden to inform us about the back room deals and activities done by those who purport to represent us. Where is the transparency Obama promised? Transparency shmerecy.
Some people state that Snowden has information that might harm American operatives. Says who? An unamed representative who says Snowden has other secrets in his possession but the nature of those and any proof that he has such secrets will remain secret and he will be prosecuted by a secret court in a secret place in secret? At some point you have to say fuck secrecy.
The use of “spy” and “espionage” is Orwellian scare tactic speech. As best as I can tell so far, reading between the lines of the New York Times and other US press much as Russians used to read Pravda to distill the truth, Snowden is no spy, he is a whistleblower and should therefore have his rights respected.
No, what’s going on is that the NSA is pissed that their secret massive bugging campaign has been revealed. They knew that the public would not like having their phone calls monitored (and if you don’t mind the government monitoring your phone calls, fine, but that is a separate subject than the fact that they have been doing it without telling you they’re doing it, which is basically all that Snowden has revealed). So now the US power structure wants to make an example of Snowden by bringing down the hammer on him. He doesn’t have any information that will harm anyone. If I’m wrong I’ll eat my words. I’ll just say this, remember Vietnam and remember the Pentagon papers. Our government has done horrible wrong and illegal acts. When a whistleblower helps reveal those acts, this one being minor compared to what happened in Vietnam, he or she is a hero in my book, especially given the hatred that he or she will endure from a fawning obsequious public and the risk of solitary confinement by our new order so-called security state. These same words apply all the more to Bradley Manning, another hero who did hero work.