The Curious Fate of Citizen Snowden’s U.S. National Security documents Archive (www.military.com)

SpyTalk              |              By                                                   Jefferson Morley

“even weirder is the odd fate of Snowden’s archive, unmentioned by the Post, Greenwald, and the savants of Twitter. The trove of documents that Snowden stole from internal NSA networks in 2013 contains the keys to the kingdom of U.S. national security: an estimated million–plus documents about how a secretive agency, with annual budget north of $10 billion, intercepts electronic signals from every time zone (and high in the atmosphere) for the sake of surveillance, collection, decryption, and deception programs that protect and advance U.S. national defense and foreign policy goals. “

A “vast” trove of NSA files remains, with some stuff so sensitive even journalists with access don’t want to report it.

The news that Edward Snowden received Russian citizenship re-ignited the furious debate over whether the former National Security Agency contractor is a patriot or a traitor, with predictably diminishing returns.

Critics charged Snowden’s citizenship is proof he was working for the Russian government. Snowden’s admirers recalled how the techie, with a copy of the Constitution in his pocket protector, exposed the top-secret bulk data collection program that ingested personal information about the phone calls of virtually every American—a program that NSA director James Clapper at first told Congress did not exist. (“We probably should have been more transparent,” said Clapper, a master of understatement, told the Washington Post last week.)

Things quickly got personal. State Department spokesman Ned Price trolled Snowden saying he “might well” be conscripted into Russia’s war in Ukraine. That wasn’t true, said Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena, who explained to  RIA news service that President Vladimir Putin’s recent mobilization is limited to men with Russian military experience, which Snowden does not have.  One Snowden critic, in turn, implied Putin exempted Snowden from military duty in return for secret service to Mother Russia.  

Former CIA chief of staff Larry Pfeiffer also sounded the traitor theme. “Complete the process & visit your nearest US consulate to formally renounce your US citizenship,” he urged Snowden in a tweet. It’s likely he’d be detained to stand trial on espionage charges in the U.S., he suggested.  “You’ll get to see your parents and sons. On visitation days.”

Snowden, for his part, prayed for privacy, saying he was simply trying to keep his family together by enabling his wife and children to travel more easily between Russia and the United States.

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