Print 18 comment(s) - last by superstition.. on Nov 4 at 6:01 AM

Snowden currently faces criminal charges in the U.S. for revealing to citizens that their gov't spies on them

Would you give a job to a technical expert widely heralded as brilliant, but with no formal credentials, and a history of stealing data from his employers, which the candidate says was necessary to whistleblow on wrongdoing?

For many companies the answer would be a flat out "no", but at least one Russian firm is adopting more of a cautiously open-minded approach.  In an interview with Russia's state-owned RIA Novosti news agency, a lawyer for Edward Snowden revealed his client had obtained a position working tech support for a "major Russian website".

Edward Snowden received asylum from Russia, who has protected the leaker from extradition to the U.S., where he faces criminal charges for his unauthorized acquisition of sensitive documents during his time working as U.S. Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) administrator and U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) contractor.

Russian website
A major Russian website reportedly hired Edward Snowden -- although no one knows which one.

Mr. Snowden revealed details of the U.S. government's spying on U.S. citizens that led to the Obama administration and the U.S. intelligence agencies being caught in apparent lies several times.  Even as the intelligence community backtracked and slowly acknowledged Mr. Snowden's claims, they steadfastly have argued that Mr. Snowden is a criminal and the U.S. government needs to keep spying secret from citizens.

A former intelligence official was quoted by NBC News, stating:

Every day, they are learning how brilliant [Snowden] was.  This is why you don’t hire brilliant people for jobs like this. You hire smart people. Brilliant people get you in trouble.  The damage, on a scale of 1 to 10, is a 12.

Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden was "too smart" to hire, says one former intelligence official.  When he caught wind of massive gov't spying and corruption he blew the whistle in a responsible way when a "dumber" employee might have stayed quiet, ignorant, and obedient . [Image Source: AP]

It is explicitly unlawful for the NSA to spy on U.S. citizens, however, the NSA claims that most of its seizure of Americans' data is not unlawful because it assumes they are foreigners.  Some members of Congress have defended this viewpoint, saying it's necessary to spy on citizens to fight "terrorists" and that the NSA is simply protecting the public by finding ways to circumvent U.S. laws that restrict it from unchecked domestic spying.  

The NSA recently admitted in audits that its employees did more flagrantly break the law thousands of times a year -- in addition to the millions of times its says its seized citizens' data legally by calling U.S. citizens foreigners.  But NSA officials like exiting NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander insist that it's worth it for Americans to sacrifice some of their privacy freedoms for safety.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) disagrees, and has filed suit against the government, over what it says is a chronic history of illegal attacks on U.S. citizens' Constitutional rights.

NSA Unchained
The ACLU calls Edward Snowden a hero for fighting to protect the Constitution -- the key task all government workers are supposed to swear an oath to uphold.  [Image Source: ACLU]
A petition to pardon Edward Snowden has received 138,000 signatures on the White House's petition site  Any petition with 100,000 signatures (a target that follows to bumps in threshold) is supposed to get a response from President Obama.  However, since the petition hit that threshold in June, it has been met with silence from President Obama.

National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayde told U.S. News in an email this month, ""Response times vary.  We're not in a position to comment on the substance of a response before it has been issued.""

A similar past petition was greeted with the boiler plate response:

The President takes his constitutional power to grant clemency very seriously, and recommendations from the Department of Justice are carefully considered before decisions are made.  The White House does not comment, however, on individual pardon applications. In accordance with this policy and the We the People Terms of Participation–which explain that the White House may sometimes choose not to respond to petitions addressing certain matters—the White House declines to comment on the specific case addressed in this petition.

The Russian government and Mr. Snowden's lawyers have kept his location a secret since he was granted asylum in August, to protect him from potential assasination efforts.  However, it is thought he is somewhere in the greater Moscow area.

Source: RIA Novosti

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Good news
By roykahn on 10/31/2013 7:14:06 PM , Rating: 5
It's nice to see that Edward can continue to live a free life unlike Bradley Manning.

I'd actually be interested to see more information about how the NSA is treating its current employees and contractors and how its employment procedures have changed. Criminals don't like their crimes being exposed.

RE: Good news
By dgingerich on 11/1/2013 11:03:26 AM , Rating: 5
Bradley Manning is a traitor and did give comfort and support to the enemy. The information he stole cost many CIA assets and spies their lives, and drove many more out of their positions where they were gathering intelligence from our sworn enemies. Who knows how many plots were stopped by those people, and how many will now take place now that we don't have those assets in place. The CIA was spying on people who are hell bent on destroying us, and he damaged the work on stopping them. He deserves to be in jail.

Edward Snowden's reveal was entirely different. He showed how the government was violating our own rights, internal to the country. The only way the NSA can claim he gave any support to the enemy would be to declare the citizens of the US as enemies of the state. I support this guy, and have pushed with all my (minuscule) political muscle for a pardon for him, but the only way that is going to happen is to get a new president who actually supports the people, like Ron Paul. Ron Paul has publicly praised Edward Snowden for this. I hope he is able to come home someday.

RE: Good news
By superstition on 11/1/2013 3:26:20 PM , Rating: 1
Bradley Manning is a traitor and did give comfort and support to the enemy.

The American public, eh?

RE: Good news
By superstition on 11/1/13, Rating: 0
RE: Good news
By superstition on 11/3/2013 7:54:24 PM , Rating: 2
The information he stole cost many CIA assets and spies their lives

Don't let the truth get in the way of your propaganda.

Journalists and even some government officials have repeatedly concluded that any actual national security harm from his leaks is minimal if it exists at all.

RE: Good news
By Cypherdude1 on 11/4/2013 3:52:23 AM , Rating: 3
We have not heard about all the spying occurring in the USA on USA citizens. What we haven't heard yet is the other half of the illegal spying on our phones, emails, bank accounts and CC accounts by private firms such as our media companies.

We already know about a single newspaper in the UK spying on UK citizens. We have not yet heard about illegal spying on USA citizens by our large media conglomerates. Eventually it will come out. When it does, it will be explosive.

RE: Good news
By superstition on 11/4/2013 6:01:23 AM , Rating: 2
Bradley Manning is a traitor and did give comfort and support to the enemy.

The American public, eh?

"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen

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