Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former undercover CIA employee, unmasked himself Sunday as the principal source of recent Washington Post and Guardian disclosures about top-secret National Security Agency programs.The Guardian reported:
Snowden, who has contracted for the NSA and works for the consulting firm Booze Allen Hamilton, denounced what he described as systematic surveillance of innocent citizens and said in an interview that “it’s important to send a message to government that people will not be intimidated.”
In a note accompanying the first set of documents he provided, Snowden wrote: "I understand that I will be made to suffer for my actions," but "I will be satisfied if the federation of secret law, unequal pardon and irresistible executive powers that rule the world that I love are revealed even for an instant."
Snowden worked for Carlyle Group affiliate Booz Allen Hamilton. Carlyle squarely belongs in the "irresistible executive powers that rule the world" camp. It's rich that a whistle blower came from inside the PEU camp.
WaPo added this to Snowden's motivation:
Allowing the U.S. government to intimidate its people with threats of retaliation for revealing wrongdoing is contrary to the public interest.”
Asked whether he believed his disclosures would change anything, he said: “I think they already have. Everyone, everywhere now understands how bad things have gotten— and they’re talking about it. They have the power to decide for themselves whether they are willing to sacrifice their privacy to the surveillance state.”
Snowden counts on a freedom loving country giving him asylum. That's a risky proposition in today's world. He noted this in his Guardian interview:
"They're such powerful adversaries. No one can meaningfully oppose them. If they want to get you, they'll get you in time."
Obama proved long ago his promises of freedom and justice were simply campaign talk, in hindsight drivel to drive the common man to pull the Blue lever..
Snowden cast light on the immense "architecture of oppression, that will only get worse over time." WaPo offered more details:
“It was more of a slow realization that presidents could openly lie to secure the office and then break public promises without consequence,” he said.
Snowden said President Obama hasn’t lived up to his pledges of transparency. He blamed a lack of accountability in the Bush administration for continued abuses. The White House could not immediately be reached for comment Sunday afternoon.
“It set an example that when powerful figures are suspected of wrongdoing, releasing them from the accountability of law is ‘for our own good,’” Snowden said. “That’s corrosive to the basic fairness of society.”
President Obama values loyalty over all else. Snowden's revelations will bring the full measure of retaliation from America's Government-Corporate Monstrosity. I venture the Obama Administration will use the Snowden leak to deepen spying on Americans at home.
Whistle blowers are the people's only recourse and those in power know it. That's why we've seen a War on Whistleblowers, be they governmental or corporate. Welcome to America where the messenger, especially those with ethics and a conscience, are regularly shot.
Update: Booz Allen released a statement on Snowden, saying they'd do their best to enact revenge. NYT wrote about Snowden's corporate connections with Rep. Peter King R-NY promising an investigation. "Were there warning signs? Were there issues in his background?" I.e. what can we find out that we can use against future leakers? Forbes reported on the connection as well, even providing slides of leaked information. Booz's CFO will speak June 12 at the William Blair & Co. 33rd Annual Growth Stock Conference in Chicago. WaPo's Barton Gellman shared his experience working with Snowden.and the leaker's likely fate.