Most of the replies prior to this one are from people who know little, if anything, about America's foreign policy.
Do they know how many democratically elected governments America's CIA has overthrown, many by violent means?
Sure, Western Europe alone would not have defeated Hitler's military. He committed national suicide when he ordered the invasion of the Soviet Union.
Did America's helping to defeat Hitler entitle our CIA, in 1953, to overthrow the elected government in Iran because Iran wanted an English oil company to stop treating its Iranian employees as serfs?
Does anyone here know how many more democratically-elected governments America overthrew?
Does anyone here care?
In short, American foreign policy since WW2 has been on a collision course with Americans' civil liberties.
The events of 9/11 were a long-delayed payback.
Those who rule America have betrayed all of us and Ed Snowden deserves the highest civilian award a government of, by, and for the people can confer.
Instead, a government of, by, and for the 1% will do as it has done to other whistleblowers: destroy his career and/or imprison him.
Tom.....What you say may be true...Just remember it all depends what party is in power and what President....When one party in power makes a grave error it is true it can cause much damage...In a Democratic society we then can remove that party from office.....I never said America was perfect but I will choose America every time if given a choice on where to live....I do agree the last 14 years has not been good for American foreign policy but I believe most of the harm was done by GW Bush....The Iran Contra affair did not help the Reagan era and Vietnam was a disaster during Johnson's term....However many mistakes we have made the US is still the richest and strongest country in the world with the most freedom....Sure all citizens need to be vigilant and protest when necessary but at least our voices will be heard without a military coming to arrest us and torture us....
He made what was to me a very meaningful distinction - he said his job was to protect his country, not to protect his government. I think the world owes him a great debt of gratitude.
Well said Bertold! Wish I could have put it so succinctly.
I have mixed feelings when it comes to Snowden....Yes he divulged to us the tampering with our e-mails and telephone calls....I believe it was done for national security..with no malice intended...Yes we have freedoms given to us in the constitution but wouldn't you give just a little up if it meant the CIA or NSA caught some terrorists planning something onerous against our nation......What right does an employee with high security clearance betray the government he is working for....What does that tell future employees for the intelligence agencies, if we call Snowden a hero.....Freedom is not Free...... We have to sacrifice sometimes to keep our freedom.....Maybe Snowden's intention was good but there was a lot of classified information that he stole ,that put our nation at risk......To me he crossed the line...
I understand your feelings in this regard, and I don't disagree with them in principle. But there is also the fact that his bosses had repeatedly lied to Congress about the nature of their activities. People from Kerry on down have argued that there were other more legitimate avenues, that he could have stayed home and blown the whistle, but I don't think this claim is realistic. There's no way he would have gotten anywhere if he hadn't completely let the genie out of the bottle. Recent administrations have not been sympathetic to whistle-blowers at all.
I understand....but I still feel it was not his place to act on his own....We have a system to follow for whistle blowers..and they are supposed to be protected...Snowden took it upon himself to use his security clearance ,which not many are entrusted with, and abused it.....That is Treason......
Snowden has given several examples of previous whistleblowers with lives destroyed as a result. His point is that the whistleblower programs are nothing but lies. No change can come through that avenue. Not only can the government crush you, it can do it against it's own laws. That sends an even chillier message to anyone contemplating the exposure of misdeeds. I've read several of his interviews. While he would like to come home, he knows (and knew then) it could be the end of his life as an American. He was, and is, willing, to pay that price to advance freedom. How many of us would? How hot does the water have to get before any of us would risk treason to advance freedom?
You can see I'm a supporter of his, but only because he did not release the information in a chaotic manner. His method was part of the message. It's up to us to learn from it.
I guess only time will tell......The truth should prevail....
Future, thanks for posting. There are many more people who had similar treatment. At least he wasn't sent to a mental institution for several years as one female operative was. Snowden obviously was aware of how he would be dealt with, thus the reason he did it his way.
"... supposed to be protected" I am interested to see just how many whistleblowers have actually succeeded in producing a positive response from our government. Has anyone every been believed, protected, and then had their efforts acted on in a positive manner? Has anyone ever been rewarded for their efforts?