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Snowden Seeks International Help Against US Espionage Charges

Soulskill posted about 10 months ago | from the who-you-gonna-call?! dept.

Censorship 351

An anonymous reader writes "Edward Snowden is calling for international help to persuade the U.S. to drop its espionage charges against him. Snowden said he would like to testify before the U.S. Congress about National Security Agency surveillance and may be willing to help German officials investigate alleged U.S. spying in Germany. Snowden is quoted as saying that the U.S. government 'continues to treat dissent as defection, and seeks to criminalize political speech with felony charges that provide no defense.' He continues, 'I am confident that with the support of the international community, the government of the United States will abandon this harmful behavior.'"

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Abandon their harmful behavior? (5, Funny)

NoKaOi (1415755) | about 10 months ago | (#45306297)

He continues, 'I am confident that with the support of the international community, the government of the United States will abandon this harmful behavior."

Has he even read the stuff he leaked?

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306421)

Beat me to it. Add on a side of, "what in the history of America makes him believe that?"

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306753)

So we all agree then that our governance is broken?

Can anyone yet come up with anything better than Metagovernment [metagovernment.org] ?

It is a long, difficult road, but open source, collaborative governance (NOT majority rule), is our only hope for freedom.

Or do you have a better idea?

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307445)

Yes, he knows very well that the criminals cannot call his bluff -- and he wins yet another hand in the PR game.
He is a truly brilliant player !

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (2)

Midnight_Falcon (2432802) | about 10 months ago | (#45306459)

Maybe he should go work for the UN. They've been trying to get the US government to abandon various forms of harmful behavior for a while.

This has worked out with the US ignoring the UN/working around them whenever enough member states disagree with them, and going through the UN when it is politically expedient and success is likely.

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (1)

Austrian Anarchy (3010653) | about 10 months ago | (#45306627)

He continues, 'I am confident that with the support of the international community, the government of the United States will abandon this harmful behavior."

Has he even read the stuff he leaked?

Check with the Russian help desk [go.com] for an interview.

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (4, Insightful)

deathcloset (626704) | about 10 months ago | (#45306635)

He continues, 'I am confident that with the support of the international community, the government of the United States will abandon this harmful behavior."

Has he even read the stuff he leaked?

Probably. And he lived in the country from which he leaked it. I think his attitude is actually quite heartening. I wonder if, like me, when he thinks of the United States he thinks not only of the abstract bureaucratic entity and its questionable activities, but that he thinks of the actual people that entity consists of and is made by. You know; his friends, family, neighbors, shopkeepers, etc. He probably thinks that most people would drop these charges and move on, and he may be right. But entities, yes, they don't drop charges. I'm not trying to oppose your point, but I think his optimism is reasonably warranted.

If your tire gets a leak, you shouldn't waste time or energy on punishing the nail - you should fix the tire and drive more carefully and maybe avoid that road you had just gone down.

The analogy can go further, but that's as far down that road as I'm prepared to go.

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (4, Interesting)

xevioso (598654) | about 10 months ago | (#45306971)

The problem is that there are a significant amount of people in the U.S> who believe that some of the things Snowden leaked are harmful to the US.
For example, he leaked that the U.S> was spying on specific Chinese Universities, to determine how they were hacking into our military and industrial computers. Now those universities know how to be more careful. It is unlikely they will stop trying to hack into us.

The problem Snowden has is that even if he "started a conversation" about U.S. intelligence, he still leaked a number of things that could easily be found to be harmful to the U.S. Even if 98% of the things he leaked were good things for the world to know, he will ALWAYS be at risk of being charged for the 2% of the things he leaked that are genuinely bad for the world to know.

So what is that 2%? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307157)

Or was that figure just made up?

I.e. own up and say "Yes, I merely assume that there's stuff he will release like that, it could be 0%".

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (-1, Troll)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307229)

Even Russia thinks he's a douche and is hardly supporting him. What does that tell you?

He's not a hero. He's a traitor.

He would have been a hero if he leaked the NSA spying on US citizens and stopped there. Thats not what he did. He, just like Bradley Manning, just dropped every thing they could find into a news reporters hands.

The only reason the spying on the US citizens came out first is because the reporters saw it, not because of his actions.

I supported him right up until I realized he just stole anything and everything he could and spewed it to anyone willing to listen. That makes him just another attention whore who should be taken out and shot.

There was a right way to do this, he didn't even try a little bit to go that route.

Re:Abandon their harmful behavior? (5, Insightful)

alexgieg (948359) | about 10 months ago | (#45307425)

He's not a hero. He's a traitor.

Going against the petty interests of a minor group in favor of the broader interests of humanity is the kind of stuff for which one's remembered as an hero down the line, including despite one's personal faults.

He would have been a hero if he leaked the NSA spying on US citizens and stopped there.

As a non-US citizen I most certainly disagree.

Re: Abandon their harmful behavior? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307377)

Like it or not the guy is a patriot in my book, and I doubt the real bad guys are surprised by his revalations! The bad guys are mislead, but their not stupid! It's the embarrassment and highly suspect legal and constitutional issues that have the gov pissed at him! They will never drop the case, it would encourage more people to do the right thing!

He needs the help of the PROLETARIAT (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | about 10 months ago | (#45306303)

For workers revolution to smash imperialism!

Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (3, Interesting)

wjcofkc (964165) | about 10 months ago | (#45306323)

Because you have to be 35 to be elected president in the United States.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1, Insightful)

Xicor (2738029) | about 10 months ago | (#45306527)

he wouldnt get elected anyway. the us government has done too good a job of brainwashing ppl into thinking hes a terrorist, just like they do anonymous. if you ask the joe shmoe across the street about either of them, they will tell you 9/10 that they are terrorists.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (4, Insightful)

wjcofkc (964165) | about 10 months ago | (#45306609)

Your level of hopeless pessimism is in itself a sign, and possibly a symptom, of effective brainwashing.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1, Insightful)

dmbasso (1052166) | about 10 months ago | (#45306675)

Do not confuse pessimism with realism.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306863)

That can be a very fine line.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306877)

I don't know. Sounds like all the fight is out of him to me.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about 10 months ago | (#45306895)

And doubting unsupported assertions that are passed off as realism is skepticism.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306941)

There were some opinion polls that came out a while back that say otherwise. Generally, the public is supportive of Snowden and feels that what he did makes him whistleblower, not a terrorist.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45306601)

Snowden has a better chance of being elected President of the European Parliament than he does President of the United States.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (2)

gmanterry (1141623) | about 10 months ago | (#45306857)

Snowden has a better chance of being elected President of the European Parliament than he does President of the United States.

When did the U.S. swap governments with East Germany? A Republic an not survive when the government keeps data bases on all it's citizens. If the Supreme Court wasn't in the pockets of the fascists now running this country, we could have our Constitution back and become a Republic again. Presently the Executive Branch run the entire country and the other two branches are lapdogs.

Re: Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307499)

They (the govt) believe power is in the data collected, I believe they are wrong! It's not the data, but the analysis, that is where they will fail. It's hard as hell to interpret data and it shifts on a dime, assuming it was correct to begin with... Stop spying on your friends, damn! It will come to a halt when it comes out the politicians themselves are a target as well! Probably the real target!

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (2)

phayes (202222) | about 10 months ago | (#45307037)

He has a better chance of getting elected the President of Russia than either the US or the EU parliament. He's not enough of a politician for the latter two but the Russians seem to appreciate ex spooks.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307261)

Are you blind? Russia will kick his ass out if he leaks anything more about the US spy operations ... what does that tell you? He's not a hero to anyone, he's just a tool being used to further the agenda of a different set of politicians than his previous employers.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45306603)

But a Nobel Peace Prize nomination would probably embarrass the next president into pardoning him.
(or if something other than a democrat is elected), a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

With everyone in the NSA suddenly swearing on stacks of bibles that they never told Obama didly-squat
you can almost see how this is being set up to plays out.

Still, you have to wonder if he doesn't wake up dead some day of a .22 caliber aneurysm.

Re: Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307521)

If he's ever harmed, the world will rise up! That would be the dumbest move in history!

If he's harmed, we won't know until its too late. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | about 10 months ago | (#45307551)

N/T

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (5, Insightful)

sqrt(2) (786011) | about 10 months ago | (#45306651)

Yeah, because THAT'S what's keeping him from being elected. It's not that a good percentage of the country has bought into the line that he's a communist traitor who has put American lives at risk, handed over secret documents to the "enemy", and was acting out of a desire to harm the United States. None of those things are true, mind, but that's not stopping people from demanding we send SEAL Team 6 into Russia.

The anger directed toward this man was so quick to start, so widespread, and so homogenous in tone and intent that it makes me suspect an NSA influence operation using internet sockpuppet accounts, and the already completely dominated mainstream cable channels (I won't use the word "news" to describe what they are). We actually know the government does this, we even knew before the Snowden documents, so it's not that much of a stretch in my mind. But on the other hand, I know quite a few living, breathing, people who really are that intellectually retarded. They're vociferously and sincerely calling for blood. He wouldn't live to see his name on the ballot if he comes back here. Our government has spoken: he's a traitor aiding foreign powers. We kill people for that.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (3, Interesting)

wjcofkc (964165) | about 10 months ago | (#45306785)

The anger toward this man was quick to start from the government, but I have yet to meet a citizen that considers him a traitor. I know a diverse group - many and varied from so many sides of the fence it requires theoretical ultra-dimensional geometry to describe. From right to left, from city dweller to country bumpkin, all I see is a government forcing thoughts and false beliefs on the people through the news, claiming to speak for these people while the majority of them themselves will tell me otherwise. The news is not here to inform you of reality, it exists to teach you that another, fabricated and agenda ridden one exists. Don't believe it. Talk to the people yourself.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (-1, Troll)

Camel Pilot (78781) | about 10 months ago | (#45306879)

I have yet to meet a citizen that considers him a traitor...

Now you just did. Snowden is a traitor and will eventually pay...

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307451)

I don't think you know what the word "traitor" means. Upholding and supporting the founding documents that created this nation do make him a traitor to this nation. Exactly how much propaganda have you been subjected to?

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

Camel Pilot (78781) | about 10 months ago | (#45307571)

Funny all these high mighty sounding posts such as yours are always without any sort of actual specifics - please be specific next time. Contrary to the common misconception there has yet to be any proof that the NSA has consistently and routinely monitoring citizens illegally.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

cffrost (885375) | about 10 months ago | (#45307561)

I have yet to meet a citizen that considers him a traitor...

Now you just did. Snowden is a traitor [...]

He gave aid and comfort to the United States' enemies — the American people? Because he told us about the crimes being committed against us on our own dime?

Is this belief based on enjoyment of being ruled by authoritarian criminals, hatred of the US Constitution, basing your opinion on the "facts" from television, or something else? Are you a powerful criminal, such as a mob boss, who empathizes with the law-breakers drunk on the power they have over the rest of us?

[...] and will eventually pay...

He's already paid — he had to abandon his home, friends, and family in order to report serious crimes being committed against us by our government, so that we'd be able to defend ourselves, demand accountability, and try to restore the rule of law, as based on our Constitution.

By the way, you're not really a "citizen" anymore, but something more akin to a subject who's being criminally victimized by your own government — or you're in on it, or suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. Hell if I know what's going on in your head... I'm glad that I was informed about these criminal activities being committed against us using our own tax dollars, and have the self-determination and soundness of mind to put that information to use. You use it to bellyache about the messenger being a "traitor"; well, look in the mirror, buddy. If you support the criminals in power, you're closer to being a traitor than Snowden is. It seems to me you'd shit on the US Constitution because those entrusted to uphold it tell you it's the right thing to do. You should try reading it first.

There's nothing I could do to repay my debt of gratitude to Ed Snowden. Instead, what I do is I try to inform others about these ongoing crimes, tell them how they can protect themselves somewhat, and try to explain why the Democratic and Republican parties are for the most part criminal enterprises with our interests at the bottom of their agendas, so that they might find a more honest parties' candidates they might not have previously considered voting for.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | about 10 months ago | (#45307125)

I have yet to meet a citizen that considers him a traitor

Well, he does not seem to be guilty of treason in a legal sense; he did betray a special trust invested in him (by the government in this case) and is therefore a traitor in the colloquial sense.

Snowden did commit a crime and should be punished.

That said, your comments on the media manufacturing public opinion (or at least, distorting the percentage of people who agree with specific positions) are right on.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (0)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307299)

I consider him a traitor, which he is.

I was on his side right up until I realized he just dumped anything he could download. Had he targeted nothing more than the wrong doing specifically, I would still be on his side, but the fact that he dumped things that were the very reason we have the NSA for, thats when he lost my vote. Guess what, countries spy on each other, you're a moron if you don't understand this. Thats the way it works.

Had he stopped at the spying on our own citizens, he'd be something other than a traitor. But he didn't. The newspaper reporters are the ones who honed in on the domestic spying, not him.

Get a dose of reality there pal, he's a traitor from the word go. Just because he happened to dump something that the NSA does bad doesn't justify the fact that he dumped a whole bunch of shit that he shouldn't have.

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

istartedi (132515) | about 10 months ago | (#45306733)

He probably wouldn't win; but he might break the record set by Eugene V. Debs [wikipedia.org] for most votes cast for a prisoner (or in this case, person exiled due to charges) as POTUS. At least, I'm assuming it's a record. From Wikipedia:

Debs ran for president in the 1920 election while in prison in Atlanta, Georgia, at the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary. He received 919,799,[39] write-in votes (3.4%),[40] slightly less than he had won in 1912, when he received 6%, the highest number of votes for a Socialist Party presidential candidate in the U.S.[4][41] During his time in prison, Debs wrote a series of columns deeply critical of the prison system. They appeared in sanitized form in the Bell Syndicate and were published in his only book, Walls and Bars, with several added chapters. It was published posthumously.[1]

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | about 10 months ago | (#45306811)

Why do you assume that the Democratic and Republican parties would allow him to participate in their presidential election process?

Re:Too bad Snowden will only be 33 in 2016 (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307249)

Are you really that fucking stupid to think he would be a good president? You utterly fail to understand the damage he has done.

Don't do it Edward (5, Informative)

ISoldat53 (977164) | about 10 months ago | (#45306327)

Nobody in Congress is interested in protecting you. No intelligence service in the world is interested in helping you. As soon as you set foot in any country that has an extradition agreement with the US you are gone.

Re:Don't do it Edward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306481)

and once he is renditioned.. err i mean extradited and spends some time in US govt hospitality, he too would be changing his tune and sex.

Re:Don't do it Edward (-1, Flamebait)

nurb432 (527695) | about 10 months ago | (#45306887)

As it should be. Regardless of how one feels about what he has done, be it for or against, he broke the law and should have his day in court.

Re:Don't do it Edward (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307035)

As it should be. Regardless of how one feels about what he has done, be it for or against, he broke the law and should have his day in court.

Barrack Obama broke the law, and didnt got his day in court. George W. Bush broke the law and didn't got his day in court. Bill Clinton broke the law and got his day in court even though it he didn't deserve that. Personal sex life is private, nobody should be allowed to asking these questions and therefore lying about it is fine.

America is more interested in blow jobs then corruption, waste of taxes payer money, unlawful wars, secret court and execution without due process.I don't want to live on this planet any more [youtube.com] .

Re:Don't do it Edward (0)

nurb432 (527695) | about 10 months ago | (#45307381)

Barrack Obama broke the law, and didn't got his day in court.

And your point?

The Obama story isn't over yet, but he should be hauled in front of a judge too. Clinton, he lied to congress. A crime. He deserved to be removed from office. I disagree Bush broke the law. But if he had of, yes, he should be in court too.

Re:Don't do it Edward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307045)

Do you want your day in court for raping all those iittle kids? If not, why not?

A prosecution driven by greed, lies and treachery should not stand, and it definitely shouldn't be paid for with taxpayer money.

Re:Don't do it Edward (0)

nurb432 (527695) | about 10 months ago | (#45307397)

I could care less what you think about the guy, he *clearly* violated the law. You can take your stupid crap and shove it.

Re:Don't do it Edward (3, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | about 10 months ago | (#45307047)

Sorry, reporting a crime is not breaking the law, it is adhering the law and in point of fact it is a criminal act not to report witnessing a crime, accessory after the fact. Will he be able to return to the US, not for decades, all the psychopaths in power will have to be removed first. They will permanently target him as an example, they will take hostile moves against any country that harbours him and most western countries will not bother protecting him as he is not one of their own.

Re:Don't do it Edward (0)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307321)

He didn't report a crime, the news paper reporters that went through the documents and found that did.

He stole and dumped a fuckton of documents regardless of what they were about, including documents that never should have been published.

Blanket theft and dumping of documents does not a hero make.

Re:Don't do it Edward (-1, Flamebait)

nurb432 (527695) | about 10 months ago | (#45307443)

Theft and release of classified materials to unauthorized personnel are both crimes.

Want to try again?

You go, girl! (3, Insightful)

TiggertheMad (556308) | about 10 months ago | (#45306341)

Snowden should be commended for standing up to a government who has been 'caught with it's hand in the cookie jar', engaging in illegal and immoral espionage of its own people. This behavior is far more damaging to the United State's values and long term interests than anything Snowden could ever do.

I've said it before, I'll say it again: Fuck you, NSA, you filthy traitors. The constitution isn't just rules for others to follow...

Re:You go, girl! (-1, Flamebait)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45306513)

You go, girl!

The topic is Snowden, not Manning.

Re:You go, girl! (0, Flamebait)

bobbied (2522392) | about 10 months ago | (#45306921)

Snowden should be commended for standing up to a government who has been 'caught with it's hand in the cookie jar', engaging in illegal and immoral espionage of its own people.

Really? There are some *really* legal arguments that say what they are doing is NOT illegal, immoral or unethical.

Does the NSA have the *ability* to do illegal monitoring of it's own people? Sure does. But we are FAR from having proof that they have routinely monitored citizens within the borders of the USA illegally. You can put on your tinfoil hat and claim they do, but that puts you in the same class as the nutcases that think Apollo lunar landings where faked. Just remember that absolutely NOBODY has a credible claim of being wrongly prosecuted on illegally gathered evidence. Until you have such, you have no argument, at least for monitoring INSIDE the USA.

Now before you go off confused, remember that OUTSIDE the USA is legally fair game for monitoring by the NSA. They can, and DO routinely monitor things that move, create sound, radiate energy, reflect light etc. The USA courts have found that constitutional protections DO NOT EXIST on foreign soil (i.e. outside sovereign US territory) and certainly do NOT apply to non-US citizens despite how "self evident" the constitutional rights may be. The US Constitution does not apply to other countries or peoples, unless they choose to adopt it themselves. Where there is *some* legal protection for USA citizens on foreign soil, the NSA can legally monitor whatever they choose without having to get a USA court order or search warrant. If that evidence could be used to charge you with a crime, is somewhat grey legal ground, but they can collect it.

Before you go out and start claiming the NSA can't break international law or the laws of the countries they monitor in, stop and ask yourself if it matters? I for one don't care if the NSA breaks some other country's laws. Other countries are free to defend their soil and laws as they see fit and are free to conduct surveillance as they choose, so the USA is free to defend itself and gather information as we choose. I'm not bound by the laws of France (unless I'm IN France) and the French are not bound by US law, unless they are in the US, so what the NSA does on foreign soil is not subject to Constitutional restrictions.

So if you want to say the NSA "got caught", fine with me, but we have zero evidence that they are doing anything illegal on a routine basis within the USA and outside the USA anything goes. All we have is a bunch of hearsay, assumptions and conspiracy theories fed by little real evidence provided by somebody with obviously selfish motives. (Who is also a traitor of the first order, despite his claims otherwise.)

Re:You go, girl! (2)

b4upoo (166390) | about 10 months ago | (#45307115)

Snowden is a hero but he is making a mistake to expect sane behavior by the US government. Frankly we owe him a debt of gratitude but I suggest that he stay beyond the reach of US law regardless of any offers or so called agreements.

Poor, poor Ed... (1, Interesting)

pla (258480) | about 10 months ago | (#45306357)

Don't you get it?

They all do this shit, and you merely put them in the spotlight. The ones not yet caught have, of course, feigned indignation at the US, for doing what they all do. (Hmm, which ones have protested the loudest here?)

Make no mistake, though, if the US has done worse than any of its peers, it has done so only through having more opportunity, not more will or effort.

TLDR: They all want you dead for exposing the truth. Do you really think the "truth" you've exposed ends at the Canadian and Mexican borders?

Re:Poor, poor Ed... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306519)

Wow! Multiple governments are corrupt at once!? What a revolutionary idea to put forth! /sarcasm

I think he's probably aware that many more countries do such things (or at least try) than just the US. However, since he's from the US, it's no wonder that he's focusing on getting the country he lived in to improve.

Re:Poor, poor Ed... (5, Insightful)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45306731)

They all do this shit, and you merely put them in the spotlight. The ones not yet caught have, of course, feigned indignation at the US, for doing what they all do. (Hmm, which ones have protested the loudest here?)

Make no mistake, though, if the US has done worse than any of its peers, it has done so only through having more opportunity, not more will or effort.

So tired of people excusing our government's behavior just because others do it.
Others include Pol Pot, Idi Amin, 'Papa Doc' Duvalier, and Joseph Stalin. (No point in invoking Godwin here).

We keep telling ourselves we are better than that. We keep passing whistle blower protection laws.
We pretend we have a constitution and that government is Of the People, By the People, For the People.

Then invariably when government gets caught doing something its not supposed to, some useful idiot comes along and says don't worry about it, every other country does that.

Re:Poor, poor Ed... (1)

fufufang (2603203) | about 10 months ago | (#45307183)

You forgot the Stasi.

Re:Poor, poor Ed... (1)

snizzitch (976516) | about 10 months ago | (#45306919)

The U.S. people, for the most part, don't spy on the U.S. Government or its intelligence agencies. So there are some parties involved who retain the right to some valid indignation.

Re:Poor, poor Ed... (1)

Livius (318358) | about 10 months ago | (#45307199)

Make no mistake, though, if the US has done worse than any of its peers, it has done so only through having more opportunity, not more will or effort.

The US has done worse. Why is of secondary importance.

Scapegoat (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306439)

I think Snowden just realized what a scapegoat is.

You don't anger your "betters" and get away with it. You get punished, because that's what spoiled rotten children do. They punish those who make them look foolish. Scum in powerful positions are the most unjustly proud people, and the fewer people who realize that, the less they themselves are forced to realize it (and admit to themselves how utterly unworthy of merit they are).

How bad was... (5, Funny)

mschaffer (97223) | about 10 months ago | (#45306461)

How bad was his first day of work at the tech-support line?

Re:How bad was... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306697)

Probably about as bad as yours will be while delivering pizzas tonight.

Re:How bad was... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306891)

Distraught Mrs. Salnikov: I've accidentally deleted all my e-mails!

Snowden: No probs, Mrs. Salnkov. Just give me minute to login to, umm, a special backup system that's provided to our customers free of charge, and I'll get those restored to you promptly.

(attempts to login to NSA XKEYSCORE system. Fails)
(attempts to login to Booz-Allen system. Fails)
(attempts to login to Gmail directly via NSA backdoor. Fails)
(attempts to login to Mrs. Salnikov's computer. Fails.)

Snowden: Um, sorry but it seems our system is down for maintenance right now. Please try us again later.

Angry Mrs. Salnikov: (Russian expletive) You're worthless! (Hangs up)

Snowden: Oh my god, what have I done?

Re:How bad was... (0)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45307149)

How bad was his first day of work at the tech-support line?

I think the worst moment must have been when they explained to him that due to a translation error he had misunderstood the job title. The job wasn't to be a "bastard operator from hell," but to be a "poor bastard operator in hell." Nooooooooo!!

On the plus side he does have Anna Chapman [zimbio.com] teasing him about marriage on Twitter, and probably has as many vodka rage fueled tech support requests as a man could ever want.

Presidential pardon (5, Insightful)

neghvar1 (1705616) | about 10 months ago | (#45306467)

If I were US president, I'd declare a presidential pardon on all charges. I believe what he did is in the best interest of our country. Not our government, but our country.

Re:Presidential pardon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306567)

depends on what you mean by country. one could argue this puts us in a political bind. Either countries will stop working with us or they will publicily complain but allow us to continue working with them if they only get this one thing they always wanted. of course we may not like their request whatever it may be but since we want continued cooperation we will agree.

Re: Presidential pardon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306821)

Don't you need to be convicted of a crime in order to be pardoned?

Re: Presidential pardon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306991)

Nixon was pardoned without ever being convicted.

Re:Presidential pardon (0)

BitZtream (692029) | about 10 months ago | (#45307363)

... how is that in any way beneficial to the country? It doesn't change anything that happened, and he leaked far more bad than good. He didn't do a targeted leak of 'wrongs' being committed, he stole all he could and dumped it.

Even Russia thinks he's a douche and will be happy to hand him over to us if he drops anything else ... what does that tell you? Hmm? Russia doesn't even really want him ... think before you say something stupid.

Re:Presidential pardon (1)

abroadwin (1273704) | about 10 months ago | (#45307513)

You do know we're talking about Snowden here, right? The one who actually took the time to sift through and prepare the data, just sharing elements of it that really show USA wrongdoing and carefully timing it for maximum impact? Not Manning? Just what did he release that caused more bad than good? Or perhaps your definition of "bad" is "makes the US look bad even if they're violating the constitutional rights of their citizens". Just who or what do you think you're talking about, exactly?

No need to testify (-1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45306495)

Snowden seeks to set himself above the law. His actions have said all that needs to be said on his behalf outside of court. The massive document theft and leak he engaged in isn't going to be considered "dissent." He should have gone to Congress instead of fleeing. He would likely still be a free man in the US had he done so, and Congress would still be alerted to his concerns, and have an opportunity to debate them. But so far it looks like Congress still backs the intelligence agencies overall even if there may be some new restrictions in the future.

What must be worse for him is that his actions are coming back to bite him on multiple levels. Like a twilight zone episode, he managed to create in his new home what he supposedly fled from and warned about. Now it will spread.

Implementing The Snowden Open Source Intelligence Agency Architecture Toolkit

"Practically all the attention to Snowden's leaks via the Guardian have focused on the leaks through either the lens of transparency and accountability, or the lens of betrayal and danger. But there is another way to view the leaks, and that is as an Open Source milestone. Snowden's leaks have revealed the product of uncounted millions of dollars of experience and research by the governments of the US and UK into effective intelligence agency architecture, infrastructure, and methods. Now that the documents describing them are publicly available, those documents form an intelligence agency architecture toolkit that can be used to analyze and improve the intelligence operations of any group or nation that wants to use them. So far there has been at least one public announcement of a country implementing elements of the Snowden Open Source Intelligence Agency Architecture Toolkit (Snowden OSIAAT): Russia. The Russian Communications Ministry and FSB security service have paired up to produce a regulation [smh.com.au] to begin upgrading the existing SORM internal electronic intelligence system to the Snowden style standard revealed in the leaks. Previously both Germany [spiegel.de] and Finland [yle.fi] expressed interest in upgrading and expanding their internet surveillance capabilities. Snowden OSIAAT is likely to become a widely used means to increase the power and efficiency of intelligence services world wide. By the usual measures, Snowden OSIAAT appears to be another success story in the making for open source use in government."

Re:No need to testify (1)

mspohr (589790) | about 10 months ago | (#45306711)

There's a fundamental flaw in the OSIAAT.
The NSA seems to believe that they key to finding a needle in a haystack is to get a bigger haystack.
Others may try to follow this model but that would be stupid (not to say that "intelligence" agencies aren't stupid).

Re:No need to testify (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about 10 months ago | (#45306817)

The interesting property of some of the haystacks is that they are indexed, and you have an external value to match against.

I'll also point out that since one of the major trends in industry is "big data," you might think that there are both tools to deal with it, and some useful reasons for doing so. I hear data mining was all the rage in the Obama campaign, maybe some other places as well.

chaotic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306515)

Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with what Snowden did, it is clear that what he did was not legal, and should not be legal. An individual should not have the right to decide which of his government's secrets should be revealed.

In geek terms, regardless of whether it was a good or evil act, it was clearly chaotic, not lawful.

Re:chaotic (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306643)

In geek terms, regardless of whether it was a good or evil act, it was clearly chaotic, not lawful.

That's your opinion.

Simple minds do tend to embrace following rules above all else.

People who are not afraid to think for themselves understand
that on occasion it is best to break rules. I do realize that your little brain
will probably have a kernel panic at the thought of such things,
but that is how humans of the highest quality actually operate.

Re: chaotic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306843)

Humans of the lowest quality also sometimes operate this way.

Speaking of little minds ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306909)

In geek terms, regardless of whether it was a good or evil act, it was clearly chaotic, not lawful.

That's your opinion.

Simple minds do tend to embrace following rules above all else.

People who are not afraid to think for themselves understand that on occasion it is best to break rules. I do realize that your little brain will probably have a kernel panic at the thought of such things, but that is how humans of the highest quality actually operate.

Perhaps it is your mind that is the little one. Does the phrase "regardless of whether it was a good or evil act" confuse you? Do you see no relationship between "break rules" and "not lawful"?

And please, stop being a poser who drops "kernel panic" into casual conversation.

Re:chaotic (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | about 10 months ago | (#45306963)

but that is how humans of the highest quality actually operate.

Ironically, the lowest quality humans also behave that way, and on a much more regular basis.

Re:chaotic (2)

jbengt (874751) | about 10 months ago | (#45306873)

An individual should not have the right to decide which of his government's secrets should be revealed.

A government should not have the right to decide which of its policies & laws should be kept secret from its' citizens.

Really? (1, Insightful)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about 10 months ago | (#45306517)

Does Snowden really think that what he did was "dissent"? Dissent is defined as expressing an opinion. The people who participated in Occupy Wall Street dissented. They're all walking around as free men and women.

Snowden has been charged with giving classified information to a person without appropriate clearance and stealing government owned laptops. He did that stuff.

Committing a crime for what you feel are justified reasons means that you go to jail with your head held high and with people cheering for you. It doesn't mean that you get to walk free. I don't blame Snowden for running away. I wouldn't want to go to jail either. But his argument here is very weak.

Re:Really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306573)

and if you believe he will go to jail and be fine afterwards, you're just as naive as you think he is. At this point, he will be interrogated until people forget about him, or forced through conditioning to confess he made the whole thing up. He will no longer be a functioning human due to psychological warfare.

Re:Really? (2)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about 10 months ago | (#45306659)

They'll lock him up for the rest of his life- just like Bradley Manning. Why didn't Manning "confess he made the whole thing up"?

If you don't want to go to jail for releasing government secrets, then don't go to the DOD, apply for Top Secret clearance, and then voluntarily swear to follow their rules. The punishments for breaking those rules are clearly spelled out and you are reminded of them dozens of times before your clearance is approved.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307031)

The government was breaking the law in the first place. I know that the domestic spying, was not actually spying, but instead just 'collecting metadata'. But it still seems like spying to me, and they just reclassified it to avoid breaking the law, because they could.

You seem to have an awful lot of trust that secret government program, with very little oversight, would never break the law. Or if they do it is ok because it is secret and nobody will find out. That makes it ok.

Thats right it is entirely snowden's fault that the NSA sort of broke the law, because as long as it is secret it is not illegal.

   

Re:Really? (1)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about 10 months ago | (#45307303)

because as long as it is secret it is not illegal.

That's not true. There are procedures to report those crimes. I don't know of Snowden following them. If a federal judge rules that what he did was justified, then he will walk free.

Re:Really? (3, Insightful)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | about 10 months ago | (#45307485)

There are procedures to report those crimes. I don't know of Snowden following them.

He did. [techdirt.com] The result was partly what convinced him to go another way.

The other part that convinced him? What happened to the others that tried before him. [theatlantic.com]

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306663)

Look, we know the federal prison system is screwed up, but that's got nothing to with Snowden.

You want that reform, let's talk about it.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306709)

Offtopic.

Re:Really? (4, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | about 10 months ago | (#45306789)

He reported a crime.

The powers that be wrongly classified the information about the crime in order to cover it up.

There is a long history in law of recognizing that even the best intentioned laws may sometimes be wrong and that breaking them may sometimes be justified. In that long history, such justified infractions are not to be considered crimes. This is where we get such things as justifiable homicide.

I don't blame him one bit for running. He is not likely to receive justice here at this time.

Re:Really? (1)

Ralph Wiggam (22354) | about 10 months ago | (#45307019)

The powers that be wrongly classified the information about the crime in order to cover it up.

That is certainly a valid reason to release classified information. If a Federal judge agrees with that, then Snowden will walk free.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307129)

Snowden has been charged with giving classified information to a person without appropriate clearance and stealing government owned laptops.

And all the Germans that gave classified information about the Nazis were heroes to everyone else. Or were you implying that they were criminal? Are you a closet nazi?

INB4: Godwin. Godwin apply only to discussion that are not about politics. It is to be expected that all historical political system can be compared in such topic.

Re: Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307257)

I agree. Snowden did not dissent. He took action, a much stronger step. Calling it dissent diminishes it. If the argument that what he did was right and noble is to prevail, Snowden must accept the magnitude of his actions, no shy away from them.

isn't there a bit of leverage (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about 10 months ago | (#45306765)

in a couple of those dead-man-switch Gigabytes?
Don't tell me it's all, ahm... 'metadata'.

Snowden (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306875)

He is living in a dream world. The U.S. will never drop charges.All of this is on him. If he would have gone confidentially to one of his senators, he wouldn't be rotting in Russia right now. He, himself, chose to be a traitor, not a whistleblower.

Re:Snowden (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306935)

If he would have gone confidentially to one of his senators, he would have been fired immediately and then arrested for treason

TFTFY

What he did was treason, not political speech. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45306967)

All nations spy on each other, we are competing with each other, and it is as it should be. This snivveling treasonous dog by the name snowden did an enormous amount of damage to our nation. All other nations are spying on us as well to try and ensure that they have an advantage over us, in every area, we're simply smarter and better than they are at it. Why is he whining now? he doesn't like living in his new home of "free and freedom loving soviet union"? I say let hiim rot in there or even better, put a .22 in his head.

Not So Fast. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307105)

I want to be clear. I approve of Snowden's release of the NSA scooping up meta data and spying on US citizens. I do not think that he should be charged.

On the other hand, he also released information about the NSA spying on foreign countries. Countries that are and are not our allies. This, in no way represents integrity or standing up for the constitution. It's espionage pure and simple and he, absolutely, should be charged for this.

I was cheering him on until he started talking about the US hacking Chinese networks and the like. He is damaging the US and it's international standing, with these particular leaks, that does nothing for US citizen privacy concerns and does everything to hurt the US for no reason nor gain.

If you think that the US should not be spying on foreign powers, that's one thing, but if you understand that it always has and always will be a part of national security then it's hard to not agree that he is guilty of espionage.

All of this ignores the fact that he could have gone to congress. I know of several GOP members that would have loved to pin this to Obama's legacy.
Best,
~Kevin

That and $5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45307365)

will buy you a nice latte at Starbucks... :-( Edward, you are stuck in Russia or other countries willing to harbor you, until the 2nd American Revolution occurs... :-(

So many people just don't get it. (5, Insightful)

Dega704 (1454673) | about 10 months ago | (#45307505)

People who complain about him taking refuge in a country with a more oppressive government are missing the point entirely; maybe even intentionally. For years the U.S. government has put itself on a pedestal and acted as if it holds the moral high ground when it comes to the rights of it's citizens. Edward Snowden shattered that by revealing how full of crap they were. Does Russia have a worse human rights record than the U.S.? Absolutely. Does that give the U.S. the right to crap all over the 4th amendment and become a surveillance state? Hell no. Edward Snowden didn't defect to Russia and announce to the world that they are better than the U.S., he simply ended up there because he had no other choice; and he obviously would like to be able to come home. Personally, I am ticked at our government not just for violating our constitutional rights and branding whistleblowers as traitors, but for embarassing all Americans on the world stage by making us look like a bunch of hypocrits.

You do the crime, you do the time, Edward. (0)

sethstorm (512897) | about 10 months ago | (#45307525)

If you think the charges are bad, go to the nearest US Government presence and turn yourself in. Then prepare your case in court.

Manning didn't get a special deal in the military, and neither should you as a civilian for the same conduct.

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