I’ve already written plenty about Snowden and Greenwald. But since they’ve recently insinuated themselves into the news in a potentially interesting manner, here we go again.
According to Greenwald:
Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist who first published the documents Snowden leaked, said in a newspaper interview published on Saturday that the U.S. government should be careful in its pursuit of the former computer analyst.
“Snowden has enough information to cause harm to the U.S. government in a single minute than any other person has ever had,” Greenwald said in an interview in Rio de Janeiro with the Argentinean daily La Nacion.
“The U.S. government should be on its knees every day begging that nothing happen to Snowden, because if something does happen to him, all the information will be revealed and it could be its worst nightmare.”
Aren’t they the brave duo.
I’m not sure whether I believe Greenwald or not. But notice that he is not alleging that this supposedly bombshell information Snowden possesses indicates any wrongdoing or overreach by the US government. Nor does it appear to necessarily involve invasions of the privacy of US citizens. The only hint the article (or Greenwald) makes at the content seems to be this:
Greenwald said in his interview with La Nacion that documents Snowden has tucked away in different parts of the world detail which U.S. spy programs capture transmissions in Latin America and how they work.
I would like to see Snowden arrested under the Espionage Act (I’ve written here and elsewhere about the ways in which he’s already violated it). But since he seems to be out of range right now, what about interrogating Greenwald, who although living outside the country now is a US citizen and does not (yet) appear to be on the run?
In this previous post I wrote about why I think that Greenwald is not protected from prosecution, either, even though he is a journalist.
If what Greenwald says is true (and I am by no means certain he is not guilty of quite a bit of hyperbole), and this information really threatens US security big time and is about to fall into the hands of countries that wish us harm, doesn’t it behoove us to find out more? After all, Greenwald is in possession of the information, too, not just Snowden. Should Greenwald and Snowden be allowed to hold the US hostage because they possess sensitive material obtained illegally, material that in this case does not even appear to involve wrongdoing on the part of the US? Is this not espionage on their part?
And remember, Snowden does not have to have actually publicized the sensitive information, he merely has to have taken it illegally. Although Greenwald is less liable if he hasn’t yet publicized it (since he didn’t take it himself), the Snowden timeline nevertheless indicates that Greenwald may have facilitated, aided, and abetted him in the taking.
Again, for those of you who still think that Snowden’s a hero because he exposed details of the NSA domestic information-gathering programs (cellphones and the like), that doesn’t appear to be the information we’re talking about here, although Greenwald has been coy enough to not say exactly what we are talking about.