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NSA leaker Edward Snowden says he didn’t take any secret files to Russia

NSA leaker Edward Snowden says he didn’t take any secret files to Russia

Edward Snowden says that he did not take any of the National Security Agency’s files with him to Russia, according to the NY Times, which says it conducted an extensive interview this month with the former NSA contractor.

From the NY Times:

Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, said in an extensive interview this month that he did not take any secret N.S.A. documents with him to Russia when he fled there in June, assuring that Russian intelligence officials could not get access to them.

Mr. Snowden said he gave all of the classified documents he had obtained to journalists he met in Hong Kong, before flying to Moscow, and did not keep any copies for himself. He did not take the files to Russia “because it wouldn’t serve the public interest,” he said.

“What would be the unique value of personally carrying another copy of the materials onward?” he added.

He also asserted that he was able to protect the documents from China’s spies because he was familiar with that nation’s intelligence abilities, saying that as an N.S.A. contractor he had targeted Chinese operations and had taught a course on Chinese cybercounterintelligence.

“There’s a zero percent chance the Russians or Chinese have received any documents,” he said.

The Times reports that Snowden said he never considered defecting while in Hong Kong or while he’s been in Russia.

Upon arriving back home Wednesday in the US after a visit with his son in Russia, Edward Snowden’s father, Lon, said that his son has more secrets to share, and that staying in Russia allows his son “to continue to push these issues forward, to make sure the true story is told.”

Read the full interview at the NY Times.


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BannedbytheGuardian | October 17, 2013 at 8:23 pm

So a High School Equivalency grad ( think Kramer in the man auction ) went on to teach US intelligence about Chinese counter intelligence methods?

What has happened to the pole dancing girlfriend?

Is there anything that is not bizarre about this story?

Bill Gates doesn’t have a college degree, either!

What Ed Snowden took were POWERPOINT presentations! Thousands of people were exposed to this stuff. Snowden, on the other hand, SAW that this should SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY!

And, in the good news department “star war” general idiot Alexander will shortly quit his job.

Unfortunately, there are too many soft landings for these lemmings.

In the order of magnitude, we also don’t know if Glenn Greenwald is sitting on a treasure trove. Or if he’s released what everyone knew … the government was into domestic spying. Why?

Well, if you asked Jesse Ventura two years ago what was up, he’d tell you a cabal. That America was going to be divided into 10 “sectors.” And, we’d have concentration camps. He said you’d recognize them because trains stopped nearby each and everyone of them! As if it were actually possible to harness the USA!

The other good news is that this didn’t blow up on Dubya’s watch. But, instead,on Obama’s. Who never had a single intention to change anything from what Bush was doing. Except, perhaps, bring himself to be in charge after the “coup?” Koo Koo.

    punfundit in reply to Carol Herman. | October 17, 2013 at 10:05 pm

    It’s actually Star Trek.

    It’s probably best we don’t ask Jesse Ventura his opinion of anything. That big crybaby decided to run away to Mexico rather than stay and fight the good fight.

    BannedbytheGuardian in reply to Carol Herman. | October 17, 2013 at 10:44 pm

    Bill did go to college – with a Sat score of 1590/1600. He spent 2 years at Harvard but left to start a company after 2 years. By the he hadbeenacomputer whizz for 7 years.

    Someone of Snowden’s background – including a flunk in the military after a few months – would not get to this level just based on geek skills.

    Something is not adding up.

Let me get this straight: The KGB can’t read The Guardian?

The jury may be out for a long time on this one. It is really hard to say honestly he is all saint or all villain. Looks to me like it’s going to depend on who is in power.

What is completely ironic about this whole mess, is that a man had to flee the “Land of the Free” to escape being persecuted for whistle-blowing on the NSA.

I am to the point where I really don’t care what happens to this entirely dysfunctional government.

I swore my Oath to a Constitution, not some would be tyrant, or his administration.

    OldNuc in reply to Paul. | October 18, 2013 at 12:25 am

    I would have to agree with Paul on this one. The U.S Government is broken and the Executive is a petty thin skinned tyrant. Everything released by Snowden so far has shined a very bright light on a previously well documented government flat out lie.

For all of the hero worship of Snowden, I am still waiting for a revelation from him that shows one instance of an American citizen having their rights violated. Just one. Go back and look at what this “gentleman” released. There aren’t any.

There is much, much hyperbole and complete misunderstanding of the material being shrieked about in the press.

The unfortunate part of it all is that it can’t be debated because it is highly classified and should be that.

My bona fides are that I’ve worked in that field for over 30 years.

If you think I or any of my colleagues gave a rat’s patootie what your emails said, then you have absolutely no conception of how big the job of catching REAL bad guys is.

    Any citizen that had their email intercepted and read had their rights violated. Now can you give one example of one terrorist threat thwarted by the NSA snooping on Americans. The examples trotted out by the govt weren’t true

      punfundit in reply to MarkS. | October 18, 2013 at 8:20 am

      Most likely he can’t give an example because most likely such an example is still classified. As it should be.

      The people who can truly put this thing to bed are the military and civilian intelligence analysts, scientists, linguists, and mathematicians who do the actual work day in and day out (which Snowden never did). But they can’t speak out because they are professionals who understand the risks to our country associated with their work, and they are sworn to secrecy for legitimate and legal reasons. They honor us with their silence and professionalism.

      Has nobody considered the possibility that Snowden hand-picked documents that fit his activist agenda? That the documents he purports to demonstrate malice are not the full story?

      Has it occurred to nobody that the laws the NSA and FBI operate under (because it’s more than just the NSA involved here) have been debated and passed by Congress after Congress since the Church Committee in 1975? Has nobody heard of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, or for that matter the Supreme Court? Does nobody remember Judge Andrew Napolitano castigating the Gorelick Wall back in 2004 during the 9/11 Commission hearings? Does nobody remember the political brouhaha a few years back during the Bush Administration when the FISA Amendment Act was debated and passed? Why the sudden outrage?

        advocatus in reply to punfundit. | October 18, 2013 at 12:17 pm

        @punfundit: Your first paragraph covers all I intended to say. I’m pleased to see what you say in the following paragraphs as well.

        Entirely too many people want to lionize Julian Assange and Edward Snowden. Many of them are foolish enough to believe whatever A&S have to say. Why would anyone with a lick of sense believe Snowden when he says he took no secret documents to Russia?

    I R A Darth Aggie in reply to NavyMustang. | October 18, 2013 at 11:38 am

    You mean like this? LOVEINT

    Oh, I guess that didn’t come from Snowden. But then again, if Snowden didn’t happen, LOVEINT wouldn’t have been admitted, and it would have been ignored or otherwise swept under the rug.

    If you don’t want to exercise your 4th amendment rights, that’s for you to decide. I’ll keep mine, thank you very much, and also EFF YOU NSA. Or as I said in a phone call last night:

    I want to give a shout out to our friends at the NSA listening in on this. Also, did you get the mercury fulminate I sent you?

“The system does not work, you have to report wrongdoing to those most responsible for it.” – Snowden on the paradox of whistle blowing “properly”