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Edward Snowden


  • Originally published 08/13/2013

    Paul Kennedy: The Great Powers, Then and Now

    Paul Kennedy is Dilworth Professor of History and director of International Security Studies at Yale University. His books include “The Rise and Fall of The Great Powers,” and, most recently, “Engineers of Victory.”So President Obama won’t have a one-on-one conference with his Russian equivalent, Vladimir Putin, at the time of the G-20 meeting in Moscow, partly because of a nondescript “leaker,” Edward Snowden — that is not good. So Chinese public opinion (however that is cooked up) seems to be ever more nationalistic these days, while Japan launches its first aircraft carrier since the Pacific War — surely also not good.So America’s National Security Agency looks as if it is spying on everyone, domestic and foreign, producing bouts of outrage — that is a bad business. So the European Union is as divided, confused, angry and leaderless as, say, the former Holy Roman Empire — this is surely not good. There’s more: Argentina is huffing and puffing about the Falklands, and Spain is huffing and puffing about Gibraltar. Not good at all.

  • Originally published 07/28/2013

    Trayvon Martin and Edward Snowden

    Could we say that within the particular imperial and racial nexus we find ourselves in, that Snowden, despite his obvious differences from Trayvon, might also share his fate?

  • Originally published 07/28/2013

    Edward Snowden vs. Robert Seldon Lady

    This, then, is our world: a single megapower has, since September 2001, been in a financing and construction frenzy to create the first global surveillance state; its torturers run free; its kidnappers serve time at liberty in this country and are rescued if they venture abroad; and its whistleblowers -- those who would let the rest of us know what “our” government is doing in our name -- are pilloried.

  • Originally published 07/18/2013

    Rebecca Solnit: A Letter to Edward Snowden

    Like Edward Snowden, Rebecca Solnit has a GED, not a high-school diploma. She lives in Silicon Valley’s shadow, in a city where billionaires race $10 million yachts and austerity is closing the community college.  Her newest book is The Faraway Nearby. Billions of us, from prime ministers to hackers, are watching a live espionage movie in which you are the protagonist and perhaps the sacrifice. Your way forward is clear to no one, least of all, I’m sure, you.I fear for you; I think of you with a heavy heart. I imagine hiding you like Anne Frank. I imagine Hollywood movie magic in which a young lookalike would swap places with you and let you flee to safety -- if there is any safety in this world of extreme rendition and extrajudicial execution by the government that you and I were born under and that you, until recently, served. I fear you may pay, if not with your death, with your life -- with a life that can have no conventional outcome anytime soon, if ever. “Truth is coming, and it cannot be stopped,” you told us, and they are trying to stop you instead.

  • Originally published 07/11/2013

    Max Boot: What the Snowden Acolytes Won't Tell You

    Max Boot is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and author of "Invisible Armies: An Epic History of Guerrilla Warfare from Ancient Times to the Present" (Liveright, 2013).'The dark night of fascism is always descending in the United States and yet lands only in Europe."That quip from Tom Wolfe is worth savoring as the U.S. prepares to celebrate the Fourth of July—and as overheated rhetoric emanates from fans of Edward Snowden, the proud thief of American secrets. Even supporters, like Sen. Rand Paul, who express discomfort with how he fled to China and Russia, nevertheless applaud Mr. Snowden for alerting Americans to a supposedly dangerous infringement of liberty from the government's monitoring of electronic communications. Mr. Snowden's more extreme acolytes credit him with stopping the rise of a new tyranny in Washington.

  • Originally published 07/09/2013

    Peter Savodnik: Moscow Is No Place for a Defector

    Peter Savodnik is a journalist in Washington, D.C. His book, The Interloper: Lee Harvey Oswald Inside the Soviet Union, will be published in November by Basic Books.Edward Snowden may not have realized it as he fled Hong Kong last month, but he was about to become part of a tradition that predates Internet metadata collection, or Wikileaks, or the National Security Agency itself: He was an American dissident heading for Russia.Now, as he nears his third week in consular limbo, the man who leaked word of the NSA’s Prism program must be feeling a tad dismayed by his reception, which has not exactly been warm or cold but somewhere, weirdly, in between. If he’d read up on the history of other Americans who wound up under the dubious protection of the Kremlin, he might not be so surprised. Whether seeking exile in a Soviet socialist paradise or merely hoping that Vladimir Putin’s hostility to Washington means you’ll be able to fly on toward Ecuador in peace, the history of Americans fleeing to Moscow is a long and unhappy one.

  • Originally published 07/01/2013

    Peter Van Buren: Edward Snowden’s Long Flight

    Peter Van Buren blew the whistle on State Department waste and mismanagement in his book We Meant Well: How I Helped Lose the Battle for the Hearts and Minds of the Iraqi People. A TomDispatch regular, he writes about current events at his blog, We Meant Well. Van Buren’s next book, Ghosts of Tom Joad, A Story of the #99Percent, is due out in March 2014.

  • Originally published 06/27/2013

    Charles Marvin, a Nineteenth-Century Edward Snowden?

    Credit: Wiki Commons.Meet the Press host David Gregory’s recent insinuation that Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald should possibly be charged with the crime of aiding and abetting whistleblower Edward Snowden in the NSA surveillance scandal is alarming for all who value protecting the principles of investigative journalism. It is made more alarming, though, by considering how closely this exchange matches a landmark case in the history of public secrecy and investigative reportage, namely the 1878 Globe scandal. A consideration of this episode in relation to Greenwald’s (and, indeed, Gregory’s) role in the ongoing NSA imbroglio should be unsettling to those who value and want to protect the freedom of the press.

  • Originally published 06/27/2013

    The Nineteenth Century British Version of Edward Snowden

    Meet the Press host David Gregory’s recent insinuation that Guardian reporter Glenn Greenwald should possibly be charged with the crime of aiding and abetting whistleblower Edward Snowden in the NSA surveillance scandal is alarming for all who value protecting the principles of investigative journalism. It is made more alarming, though, by considering how closely this exchange matches a landmark case in the history of public secrecy and investigative reportage, namely the 1878 Globe scandal. A consideration of this episode in relation to Greenwald’s (and, indeed, Gregory’s) role in the ongoing NSA imbroglio should be unsettling to those who value and want to protect the freedom of the press.

  • Originally published 06/13/2013

    Jonathan Capehart: Snowden not a "Badass" Like Harvard Alum Daniel Ellsberg

    Enough with the breathless comparisons. Edward Snowden is no Daniel Ellsberg. I know the latter has heaped praise on the former. But the high-mindedness of our present-day national-security leaker is nowhere near the gutsiness of the man who changed the course of the Vietnam War by releasing the Pentagon Papers more than 40 years ago.......If Snowden has the courage of his convictions why won’t he face the consequences of his actions here on U.S. soil in U.S. courts? Fine, he apparently has no faith in the rule of law in the United States or its courts. But why not ask the American people to decide his fate? He was fighting for us, so I thought. And this is where the comparison to Ellsberg rankles.

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