NYT Wants Clemency For ‘Whistle-Blower’ Snowden

'He has done his country a great service'

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Glenn Greenwald / Laura Poitras / The Guardian / Reuters

NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden in a still image taken from video during an interview by the Guardian in his hotel room in Hong Kong on June 6, 2013

The New York Times editorial board is calling for President Barack Obama to take mercy on former NSA contractor-turned-leaker Edward Snowden.

In an editorial published late Wednesday, the newspaper called Snowden a “whistle-blower” and said Obama should grant him clemency.

While the Times concedes that Snowden broke the law in leaking data on the NSA’s vast surveillance and data-collection programs, the paper also said that, “considering the enormous value of the information he has revealed, and the abuses he has exposed, Mr. Snowden deserves better than a life of permanent exile, fear and flight. He may have committed a crime to do so, but he has done his country a great service.”

The Guardian, the newspaper that first reported on Snowden’s leak’s leaks, went further in calling for a pardon.

Snowden, who is living in Russia under temporary asylum, was the runner-up to Pope Francis for TIME’s 2013 Person of the Year.

(MORE: NSA Reportedly Also Spying On Gamers)

71 comments
notsacredh
notsacredh

I'd prefer to see a sniper take Snowden out. He's a traitor. Pure and simple.

KellyCowan
KellyCowan

Snowden appears to need mental health care badly.


“Our children will never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves, an unrecorded, unanalyzed thought,” So he has information that the government can tell what we are thinking, and record it?


“Recently, we learned our governments working on concert have created a system of world-wide mass surveillance, watching every thing we do”  Every thing we do? LOL!!!


Is this guy a serial exaggerator or has he lost his mind? These are absurd statements that have no foundation in reality.

KarlThorkildsen
KarlThorkildsen

Reading the comments here I am quite stunned.  Unless you feel that the Constitution and Bill of Rights are obsolete documents it should be clear that what Snowden did was a huge service to every American if not every citizen of the world.  He deserves a full pardon and the highest civilian honor available in the USA.  Our rights are being trampled and many seem to think that's just fine and even support it.  You've missed the point of our way of life altogether.  What do you people believe in?

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

Wow, great job on brainlessly parroting the absurdly premised NY Times article, and on not offering any kind of critical contribution to the discussion. 

Snowden broke US law, and must stand trial.  These kinds of articles that heave sympathy upon him completely miss the point.  Regardless of his intentions, he must be held to account.

solardowork
solardowork


The World's Once
LARGEST ECONOMIC ENGINE comes to an end and our leaders did almost nothing why?
20,000 + Homeless Residents Living on the street of Detroit, Mi clearly see your change they voted for you Obama.

   50 Potential Terrorist Acts Prevented and most all could have been done without violating over 300 million American's GOD given and OUR U.S. CONSTITUTION RIGHTS TO FREEDOM. How many aided or watched and did not a thing? 
 AROUND THE WORLD MANY JOURNALIST HAVE GIVEN THEIR LIFE FOR TELLING THE WORLD THE TRUTH.   JUST ONE OF MANY MEXICO IS KILLING THE PRESS AND JOURNALIST FOR EXPOSING THE LAUNDERING OF BILLIONS. IS THIS NEXT TO HAPPEN IN THE USA?

("Press Freedom: Journalist in Mexico Killed for Reporting on Drug Cartels | Human Rights First")  (Journalist around the world are killed for Reporting on and about the bad wicked corrupt leaders, that their bad deeds out number their good deeds. Only in government for the power and money.)   True Blooded Americans fly OLD GLORY the day might come soon that it will be your last time.   ("IRAN and NORTH KOREA WE ARE GOING TO TAKE DOWN THE USA obama too late i already did it.") This may soon not be so funny, as just a cartoon.) North Korean ship caught in Panama with Military Weapons   Missiles two Mig fighter jets and more. This ship is only one of how many more that have got by?   Fort Hood the CIA and FBI Terrorism Task Force had been watching this man and knew he was a Traitor to the USA and had done acts of TREASON. Why was he not already in jail? 50 Potential Terrorist? Or aiding some?  What leader on earth would watch someone do acts of treason against his Nation and not stop them on the first or second act little lone wait till they cold heart ed Murdered many be for he put him in jail. USA Leaders if you are lost and need a role model look to Canada.   Every 9-11 they are going to try.

This 9-11-2013 the (Million Muslims March On Washington D.C.)

Only a SICK LEADER WOULD LET THEM DO THIS.

Every 9-11 they are going to try.
  September the wicked will always look to kill others Munich Germany 1972. 11 of the ISRAELI Olympic Athletes were killed by the wicked. Special Forces sent Air Mail to ten terrorist training PLO Bases in SYRIA and LEBANON in response. 200 died 11 for 200 you do the math. The wicked are at war with all that believe in Jesus Christ. Every year since they have tried or done acts of Terror every September only the real slow in the head in government do not know, to be ready each and every September. From the Religion of ? not Peace at a average rate of 3 or more atrocities are committed worldwide each day all in the name of ? islam the Religion the terrorist use.   Some will never Learn till it is too late.   The only group of wicked that kill close to this rate a year is the Drug Cartels.   Friends of Obama get away with anything right? Fort Hood Work place Bull S... cover up.   In the hearts of every True American that has ever stepped foot on a United Stated Military Base. These 13 Murdered Victims already have are Heart, and in our minds We All Know They Have Clearly Earned the PURPLE HEART ALREADY.   Some of our leaders of this One Nation Under GOD need to be on trial for TREASON.   We The People Live by are Lord GOD and "The U.S. CONSTITUTION"   NOT SOME SICK IN THE HEAD LEADERS.   "The U.S. CONSTITUTION ARTICLE III SECTION 3."   (AID OR COMFORT TO THE ENEMIES HOSTILE TO US)   (ANY ASSISTANCE RENDERED TO A FOREIGN STATE HOSTILE TO US)   (CONDUCT WHICH UNDERMINES THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA OR ARE GOVERNMENT OR ARE NATIONAL SECURITY) 100 + Billion USA TAX DOLLARS SENT TO THE Middle East Building up Muslims Terrorist Tearing down Christian Americans.  Negotiating with terrorists act of TREASON.   GIVING ARE TAX MONEY TO OTHER COUNTRIES THAT SUPPORT TERRORIST OR TERRORIST GROUPS ACT OF TREASON.     Taking down are Military by WEAKEN MILITARY READINESS YET KEEPS SENDING MANY MILLIONS OF OUR TAX MONEY TO OTHER COUNTRIES.   THIS IS OBAMA'S PLAN FOR JOBS WORKING AS HE PLANED.   MASSIVE TAX ON ALL EMPLOYERS PUTTING MILLIONS OUT OF WORK. MANY MORE EMPLOYERS CUT FULL TIMERS TO PART TIME.THE ONCE LARGEST ECONOMIC ENGINE IN THE WORLDMOTOR CITY USA SHUTDOWN   (CONDUCT WHICH UNDERMINES THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA OR ARE GOVERNMENT OR ARE NATIONAL SECURITY)   What Part of this did all Americans let anyone cut out of our hearts or are (U.S. CONSTITUTION) "The U.S. CONSTITUTION ARTICLE III SECTION 3."   MORE THEN 50 MILLION AMERICANS OUT OF WORK OR ON FOOD AID THIS YEAR 2013 and in the last 4 years that number has only gone up. And obama has now cut Food Aid to keep that number from growing. AND SOME SO CALLED U.S. LEADERS OF WHAT THE WICKED ARE GOING TO KEEP SENDING YOUR TAXES OUT OF THE COUNTRY?   Why to keep taking a piece of the pie for them self's. Too many of these so called leaders went   into office with little to nothing and leave with millions, and they think that all America is that stupid.   They must be working more for them self then for GOD and Country.

solardowork
solardowork

ACTS OF TREASON


The World Needs Now More Then Ever Leaders That Live And Lead By Our LORD's Word.
 You can not work for satan and GOD at the same time.

Satan's Helper Obama goes and plays 6 rounds of golf Aug 2013 on Martha Vineyard as Christian are slaughtered by Muslims in Egypt, In Hawaii he goes and plays golf again as Christians are slaughtered in the Middle East by Muslims at Christmas Eve Mass. This goes on every year he is in office.

(" When Injustice Becomes Law Rebellion Becomes Duty " THOMAS JEFFERSON ).

("United We Will Always Stand in GOD We Trust" George Washington and Johann Paul Schott 12/24/1776. 3:45AM)

("In GOD We Trust")
The United States of America’s Motto July 30, 1956.
King David’s Motto 3,000 years ago.

WE ALL NEED TO KEEP WATCH FOR TERRORIST NOT PATRIOTIC AMERICANS.

AROUND THE WORLD MANY HAVE GIVEN THEIR LIFE FOR TELLING THE WORLD THE TRUTH

i pray we Americans are past the1750's some wicked leaders are not. Looks like then are doing witch hunts Witch-hunt undermining those with differing view of the Wicked that work not for GOD and Country.
Was US State Department Navy SEAL Sean Smith and CIA security Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods and J. Christopher Stevens lives “Silence ed” to cover up the Billions of USA Money that some of our leaders are Laundering out of America to the wicked?

This 9-11-2013 the (Million Muslims March On Washington D.C.) is Obama giving them the keys to the White House?

So far over Two Million + and counting America's Patriotic Bikers were going to Washington D.C. THIS 9 - 11- 2013.

Obama said no to the American Patriotic Bikers not his Muslims WHY?

The World is going to Solar Energy UK has more EV  Electric Vehicles Charging Stations then gas.  Americans Wake up. Lets Stop sending your $,$$$,$$$,$$$ to the Middle East
Hollywood Star of Movies like 
"WHITE HOUSE DOWN" &  " WHITE HOUSE AGAINST ALL AMERICANS & CHRISTIANS" SORRY ITS
 "AGAINST ALL ODDS" 

" WHITE HOUSE AGAINST ALL AMERICANS & CHRISTIANS" is real life on going of our wicked in office.

(JAMES WOODS has said it best
Obama: He’s the ‘gift from HELL’)

It Will soon be the Lord's Stars that will only shine ( Daniel 12:3 )



IvanIvanovich
IvanIvanovich

In my opinion if Snowden was a smarter human he would have remained in America and faced the consequences, whether good or bad. Instead he chicken-sheet-out, defected to Russia while handing over secrets used to protect all Americans to foreign presses.  He can stay in Russia as long as the Russians are willing to entertain his childishness. I hope he never returns to America. He doesn't deserve to kiss the soil!!! The NYT is turning into nothing but communistic propaganda, not worthy of wiping one's behind with. 

JohnWilson1
JohnWilson1

Wow, The New York TImes will not be satisfied until it has lost its position at the top of the journalism hill. Years from now when we begin to access what happened to the NYT during their decline, this will be a prime example.....self-serving to say the least...and plain sad.......what's the number for NYC subscription cancellation?

johncarson.r
johncarson.r

I say pretend to grant clemancy and then Shot HIM!!

TucsonTerpFan
TucsonTerpFan

Time:  "The New York Times editorial board is calling for President Barack Obama to take mercy on former NSA contractor-turned-leaker Edward Snowden."


So, Time's writer says Snowden went from being a "contractor" to a "leaker."  Never mind that he stole classified information, place intelligence agents in danger, undermined the credibility of the country, and took refuge in a country that may "harbor some animosity" to the security of the US.  Snowden's just a "leaker." 

Now, the New York Times wants the White House to grant him clemency; it could happen. 

The New York Times, the White House, it's hard to tell them apart these days.  Both have much in common; one thing that's clearly common to both:  they both lack credibility.

normfarris4
normfarris4

I would be more sympathetic to clemency if Snowden didn't take his files to an adversarial country (Russia), then contemplate moving to Brazil, whose leader is attempting to start up an independent web, with many of the same vulnerabilities the present one has to governmental intrusion.

Whatever happened to releasing the information to say the NYT and staying in this country like a traditional whistle-blower.  Now it looks as if he was hop-scotching around the globe cutting deals with countries adversarial to the US. It sounds like espionage to me. He wants clemency? Come back here, take his lumps and make his case.

brooks36549
brooks36549

OK, Snowden - here's the deal: Turn yourself in and we'll take the DEATH PENALTY off the table. If you're a "whistle-blower", then Benedict Arnold must have been a tour guide!

DanBruce
DanBruce

The NYT editorial board has yet to apologize for aiding the Bush administration in its deceptions about Iraq. The same bad judgment seems to be on display in the Snowden affair. Perhaps they are trying to make amends for their Iraq involvement by taking the ridiculous position that a traitor who runs to Russia to spill the beans on America's security mechanisms is worthy of clemency. Still doesn't change the fact that both the NYT editorial board and Snowden are guilty of repeated stupidity.

AerinS
AerinS

Well, OF COURSE the journalistic beneficiaries of Snowden's treason want him treated well! The NYT and Guardian are just as guilty as he is, for publishing his "revelations." I hope Obama ignores their self-serving "advice." Snowden is no "whistleblower." Whistleblowers expose wrongdoing without breaking the law in order to do it. The activities Snowden "exposed" were legal, and he broke the law (committed treason) in order to "expose" them, thereby damaging the national security. If he believes his actions are so righteous, why doesn't he have the guts to face the consequences? If he won't come back to face trial, he deserves to rot in the police state of his choosing.

DeanKlovens
DeanKlovens

No he should be judged by US judicial system and not the NYT. Presidential leadership will have an adverse affect and be questioned, which already has an enormous strain.   

gawiz
gawiz

In what universe is it OK for the government to spy on its citizens like this?  Wake up lemmings or you'll soon find yourselves free-falling off the cliff of freedom.


The government's reaction to this is predictable - they got caught with their pants down and are striking out as though the man who opened the door is to blame.

destor23
destor23

Didn't anybody read Antigone?  If the law is violated, motives matter.  In this case, the motive calls for clemency if not an outright pardon.

j45ashton
j45ashton

The DOJ is charging Snowden under the Espionage Act.  Pure railroading.  Traditional conservative democrats and republicans may not like what he did, but there is no way this guy was acting as a spy nor was he seeking to give aid and comfort to an enemy.  Sheer demagoguery and vindictiveness on behalf of the administration.  

DeanKlovens
DeanKlovens

@sacredh sniper no but rendition yes; our intel agencies should earn their line item budgets and figure a way to grab him and bring him here.

andersonev123
andersonev123

@KellyCowan I believe he was referring to the fact that with today's technology everything is scanned, Google scans Gmail for profiling, Facebook are facing allegations that private messages are being scanned, profiled and passed on to advertisers.


the next step is likely wearable computing with a bit of forward thinking you can start to see what he means, not that crazy at all really and without a global concensus and regulations the Average Joe is going to become very exposed, in the years to come not just to governments but any corporate company with the capital to buy the data.


whether you believe he's a patriot or traitor is kind of irrelevant, he has undeniably put sufficient information out into the public domain to warrant a strong debate on what is acceptable/unacceptable with regards to basic human privacy rights and modern technology not just in the US but globally


and in that regard i believe he should be commended.

jmac
jmac

@KellyCowan He claimed he could spy on the President.   He indeed has delusions of grandeur.   His latest statement that the CIA doesn't even look for terrorist - they only want to spy on Americans -  is beyond amazing.  He's a nut case. 

DeanKlovens
DeanKlovens

@KarlThorkildsen Karl stop with the naivete...our rights are not being trampled..prove to us that this has occured to you!

Dizzle099
Dizzle099

@KarlThorkildsen It's also no service when you sell secrets to Russia. That's called treason. Not to mention when you give out our collection assets and what they do you impact operations on all levels. Indirectly Snowden is responsible for the killing of several U.S. Army Rangers that resulted in a mass casualty operation because Talibs altered their tactics due to information he leaked. He is no hero. He fled instead of facing fire at home. He is a coward and a greedy one at that for he fled to our biggest adversaries to spill.

jmac
jmac

@KarlThorkildsen There is no service to American when you tell the Chinese how we spy on them - as they weekly hack into our computers.  

notsacredh
notsacredh

@solardowork, well...Obama is the anti-Christ. I think it's mentioned in the Bible or at least on Fox. 

jmac
jmac

@DanBruce Like 60 minutes and the Benghazi story, I think the NY Times hasn't looked into Snowden the way they should.   Snowden is a crook who has harmed the reputation of the United States to satisfy his ego (that ego was all too eager to get a war on under Bush so he (Snowden) could spy) -  and that's from someone who pays to get the NY Times delivered to my front door.   He's a smarter O'Keefe, but just as sleazy.  The NY Times and 60 minutes are too easily swayed by the Judith Millers of the world in their quest to be 'fair and balanced'.  

j45ashton
j45ashton

@AerinS Not true.  Witness the Elsberg case.  Every time a whistleblower steps forward, that person is at risk.

gawiz
gawiz

@AerinSOften, Whistleblowers do break various laws and rules to expose things that are wrong.  The laws and rules are made to protect the violators of freedom, not the Whistleblowers.

DeanKlovens
DeanKlovens

@gawiz Hey gwiz; the only time one is being spied up is if they are planning or doing something like terrorism; I've said in the past that the common person is not important enough to have him/her spied upon because is takes too much time and money and man power to devote to lemmings.  It's your perception that is playing games with you  so check that first.

jmac
jmac

@gawiz No one is spying on citizens as metadata is being looked at for anomalies.    Where is the case?   Larry Klayman claiming the government sent emails in his name?   SNowden dumped massive American information that hurt us, and all that's come out of it is a right-=wing nut saying the government is spying on him?  Let the case begin.  



AlanMacDonald
AlanMacDonald

@gawiz 

gawiz, I would only add to your fine comment that ---- It's not a "government" but an Empire

jmac
jmac

@destor23 I agree with you, SNowden's motives matter.   He's not pure as driven snow and he has not shown any law was violated.    WHat he has done is make sure the CIA tightens it's procedures and he's put more power into the hands of the president.     Superficial changes  (PR) to satisfy the drum beat do not a hero make, especially when you consider the harm he's done.  He's a low-life crook.   I put him right up there with Judith Miller, Libby, O'Keefe, and the 60-minute Benghazi 'witness'.  

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton He fled to China and spewed info to the North China press in an interview!  He just wrote a letter to Brazil telling them if they take him in he'll spew more!   


If I were a conspiracy theory right-wing nut, I'd think the NY Times wants him back here to shut him up and find out exactly what he downloaded (which even the Guardian was having a hard time sorting through and figuring out - it was that massive a dump on how we spy on other countries and how we're looking for terrorists).  Snowden just wrote that the CIA isn't looking for terrorists.   The man's an ideological idiot.  

notsacredh
notsacredh

@DeanKlovens, I'm OK with that too. Running off to Russia and China isn't what I'd call patriotic.

jmac
jmac

@andersonev123 @KellyCowan "I believe he was referring to the fact . . . "   You don't have to decide what you "believe" he was referring to  - you can read it.   You can also read his emails.  His emails where he l-o-v-e-d war and spying under Bush.   You can also read in the South China Press the secrets he told them (he hasn't denied their coverage as he did an interview with them) and you can read his letter to Brazil.  


If nothing changes but the CIA becomes stronger and has tougher control because of his massive dump and the President becomes stronger (that has happened already) then hasn't he done a disservice?  This is under the FISA Court and the Senators in the know - where it will always be.    It will certainly be a disservice if the CIA has to pay phone companies and Google-types to keep records for five years (they can certainly abuse what they've got - I don't see the difference)  and if the CIA has to get a warrant every time they see anomalies in the phone calls going oversees.  That's a lot of calls to the Middle EAst and a lot of warrants.    If that's all you get, what did you get?  


A PR program to let you think you got something?     

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @AerinS Elsberg might not be able to recognize it, but there is a world of difference between him and Snowden. 

JohnNagel
JohnNagel

@jmac @gawiz It is well documented that the Echelon system in UK has been used to spy on global communications which are shared with the US since the 1960s.. Dont fool yourself. Your cell phone is an open mike. Everything we say on and off line is recorded.

j45ashton
j45ashton

@jmac @j45ashton Whatever he's doing at this point is irrelevant.  The question is should the DOJ be charging him under a WWI Espionage Act.  This is gross overkill that says to the world this guy cannot get a fair trial if he comes back.  By & large the legal system & gov't are ready to hang him.

jmac
jmac

@JohnNagel Everything you say is on record with the phone company.  Everything you write here is on record.    You want to  to dump government info that you picked up in a two-week job (where you took the job just to get the info) flee to China and tell them secrets and then flee to Russia - you'd better believe I can read every line you've written.    Snowden hasn't changed that.  


The fact that the phone company (or the CIA) keeps information on file of my phone calls doesn't scare me.  If the CIA abused it's power writing emails in Larry Klayman's name (!) we'll find out.   You want to bet they did?  I'll take that bet.  


In order for there to be a crime, a crime has to be committed.  

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @Dizzle099 @jmac  Daniel Ellsberg didn't flee to China, interview with the South China Press and hand them our secrets!     He didn't write to Brazil.  He also didn't hand the papers to the Guardian!    He didn't take a job for two weeks just to download!   He also graduated from High School, didn't drop out of jr college, didn't drop out of military service, and didn't get a bee in his bonnet when he lost his job of spying - that he loved until 2008.  What changed, j45ashton?  What changed in 2008?


And I'm a liberal!  Maybe you should be one too. 

j45ashton
j45ashton

@Dizzle099 @j45ashton @jmac Hard to argue with dopes like you.  By your standard Elsberg would have be guilty too even though he revealed that the administration & the generals had been lying to the public for years about Vietnam.  Do me a favor...go stick your head back into Fox News.  That;s where it belongs.

Dizzle099
Dizzle099

@j45ashton @jmac China spends vast amounts of resources to spy on us too and hack into our defense systems. They do not own the majority of our debt, the American people actually do. Look it up. China as far as foreign nations go owns the largest portion but the majority of the debt is from within the U.S. Consider China a friend? How are they a friend when they take away the jobs that American's once held through out sourcing? They benefit from all of our industry moving over to China. His intent was never the American public he sold secrets to the highest bidders. If he was solo scared he could have fled to mexico just as easily. I hear crossing into mexico is super easy. His intent was get rich by selling secrets. He did not care for all the lives of Americans he put in harms way. As a result of his leaking the Talibs altered their tactics killing several of our special operations Soldiers. He did not care for the impact it would have on that. He should get charged with aiding the enemy as well. That is the magnitude of his treason it's not only on the strategic level also on the tactical. He is a traitor.

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @jmac If I'm not a liberal then Hillary's not a liberal.  I gave her the max as I knew Obama was right of center on the economy and on health care.


j45ashton
j45ashton

@jmac @j45ashton I'm not backtracking.  You haven't proved any malicious intenti with your general accusations.  Snowden informed all of Europe too.  All general disclosure.   And rest assured, I'm not a liberal and neither are you.

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @jmac   You're the one who mentioned his "intent" as you ignore he spewed to China and is willing to talk to Brazil.  What?  Now his intent doesn't matter?   Since when does intent not matter to a court of law?   When you have to backtrack, you might have lost the argument.

j45ashton
j45ashton

@jmac @j45ashton Sure.  This guy is trying to bring the down the US.  I could care less what the NY Times says.  You're just off base.  Whatever his personal motives, there is clear reason for concern.  This is clear gov't overreach.  It needs to be pulled back.

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @jmac I've  complained about China hacking us repeatedly.  You'd better hope the CIA is looking at China.  


I'm a liberal.   Just because I'm not on board with the NY Times editorial or Digby's left of left commentary doesn't mean I can't think Snowden's a traitor.  He's definitely a defector.   And if you read his emails before he defected you'll know his intent.  

j45ashton
j45ashton

@jmac @j45ashton What part about intention do you not understand?  Interesting you consider China an enemy when they are our biggest single supplier of goods and they own well over the majority of our debt.  I'll bet you weren't complaining about China when good old Geo W kept borrowing from them ad nauseum so he would look like a complete failure at home.

jmac
jmac

@j45ashton @jmac WHat part of telling China exactly HOW we spy on them and  exactly WHO we spy on in China . . .


isn't espionage?