On Wednesday, June 5th, The Guardian published an article revealing the US government’s secret court order which “requires Verizon on an ‘ongoing, daily basis’ to give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems.” More leaks followed, as the Washington Post disclosed classified NSA documents that expose extensive governmental internet surveillance.
Then, on June 9th, a surprising thing happened: Edward Snowden, a former NSA contractor who had left for Hong Kong in May, came forward as the source of the leaks.
Snowden has since left Hong Kong for Russia, as both domestic and international media continue to weigh the pros and cons of his decisions. Sampsonia Way presents a roundup on the coverage of the Snowden case.
NSA Whistleblower Edward Snowden
The Guardian, June 9
“I think that the public is owed an explanation of the motivations behind the people who make these disclosures that are outside the democratic model… I am willing to go on the record to defend the authenticity of them (the leaked government documents), and to say: I didn’t change these, I didn’t modify the story. This is the truth. This is what happened. You decide whether we should be doing this.” Read Here.
The Solitary Leaker
The New York Times, June 10
“He betrayed the privacy of us all. If federal security agencies can’t do vast data sweeps, they will inevitably revert to the older, more intrusive eavesdropping methods.” Read Here.
Edward Snowden could strain to qualify for asylum under international law
Washington Post, June 10
“Snowden’s best case could be to claim membership in a persecuted social group.” Read Here.
Why Edward Snowden is a Hero
The New Yorker, June 10
He has performed a great public service that more than outweighs any breach of trust he may have committed.” Read Here.
Edward Snowden is No Hero
The New Yorker, June 10
“The question, of course, is whether the government can function when all of its employees (and contractors) can take it upon themselves to sabotage the programs they don’t like.” Read Here.
“Whistleblowers,” An American Tradition of Civic Informants
Le Monde, June 10
“These are not mere tattlers, because their motivations are of higher morality, rather, they are civic informants, needing to make public the deterioration of society, to reveal information that has been kept secret.” Read Here.
El País, one of Spain’s most widely read newspapers, gathers ongoing news of Snowden and the revealed “cyber espionage” of the U.S. Read Here.
NSA Whistleblower: ‘I do not expect to see home again’
Spiegel International, June 10
“The debate that Snowden hoped to initiate has revealed that the US’s virtual surveillance network is nearly all-encompassing — and that citizens are powerless against it.” Read Here.
Daniel Ellsberg on Edward Snowden: ‘He made the right choice’
Telegraph, June 12
Daniel Ellsberg, who, in 1971, disclosed the ‘Pentagon Papers’ to the The New York Times and revealed decades of U.S. involvement in Vietnam, lends his support to Edward Snowden.
FBI confirms ex-cia contractor Edward Snowden is under criminal investigation
ABC, June 14
Snowden is a “subject of an ongoing criminal investigation,” but not yet formally charged. Read Here.
Edward Snowden: US has been hacking Hong Kong and China for years
South China Morning Post, June 14
“If true, Snowden’s allegations lend credence to China’s longstanding position that it is as much a victim of hacking as a perpetrator.” Read Here.
Extradition could take months
CBS, June 14
Hong Kong will be hesitant to extradite on basis of severe punishment: “U.S. officials have therefore been considering lighter charges, including theft of government property and misuse of a government computer.” Read Here.
Snowden gains support from Hong Kong protestors
The Guardian, June 15
Edward Snowden: NSA whistleblower answers readers questions
The Guardian, June 17
“This disclosure provides Obama an opportunity to appeal for a return to sanity, constitutional policy, and the rule of law rather than men. He still has plenty of time to go down in history as the President who looked into the abyss and stepped back, rather than leaping forward into it.” –Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden Charged With Espionage Over NSA Leaks
Huffington Post, June 21
“The charges are the government’s first step in what could be a long legal battle to return Snowden from Hong Kong and try him in a U.S. court.” Read Here.
Edward Snowden leaves Hong Kong for Moscow
The Guardian, June 23
“Hong Kong’s decision to allow him to leave comes a day after the US sought to turn up the pressure on the territory to hand him over.” Read Here.
Snowden’s whereabouts unknown as Russia defies U.S. pressure
Reuters, June 24
Everyone is wondering where Snowden will go next. Russia denies contact with the leak and reacts to expectations from the U.S. Read Here.
New NSA leaks show how US is bugging its European allies
The Guardian, June 30
“One document lists 38 embassies and missions, describing them as “targets”. It details an extraordinary range of spying methods used against each target, from bugs implanted in electronic communications gear to taps into cables to the collection of transmissions with specialised antennae.” Read Here.
Edward Snowden Interview: The NSA and Its Willing Helpers
Spiegel International, July 8
An interview of Edward Snowden, led by Laura Poitras and Jacob Appelbaum, which had been conducted via encrypted emails prior to Snowden’s emergence from anonymity, reveals the extensive partnership between the NSA and other cooperating countries. Read Here.
Snowden weighs asylum offers
CNN, July 8
Bolivia and Venezuela have offered him asylum, Nicaragua considers his case, and Snowden remains in transit at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport. Read Here.