The tale of a whistle-blower: Edward Snowden

By Terry Odenigbo

NB: This article is about a person involved in a current event. Information may change rapidly as the event progresses.

220px-Edward_SnowdenIt was Julius Caesar who said in William Shakespeare’s book “Et tu, Brute?”. And this translates “Even you Brute?”. 

Am sure the National Security Agency felt the same way Julius Caesar felt or even shoddier when Edward  leaked details of top-secret American.

The 30-year-old, Edward Joseph Snowman who is known for Revealing details of classified government surveillance program.

He is being charged for “Theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified intelligence with an unauthorized person.”

is a former technical contractor and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) employee who worked for Booz Allen Hamilton,a contractor for the National Security Agency (NSA), before leaking details of top-secret American and British government mass surveillance programs to the press.

Working primarily with Glenn Greenwald of The Guardian, which published a series of exposés based on Snowden’s disclosures in June 2013, Snowden revealed information about a variety of classified intelligence programs, including the interception of US and European telephone metadataand the PRISM and Tempora internet surveillance programs. Snowden said the leaks were an effort “to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them.”

Snowden’s alleged leaks are said to rank among the most significant breaches in the history of the NSA.Matthew M. Aid, an intelligence historian in Washington, said disclosures linked to Snowden have “confirmed longstanding suspicions that NSA’s surveillance in this country is far more intrusive than we knew. On June 14, 2013, US federal prosecutors filed a sealed complaint, made public on June 21,charging Snowden with theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified intelligence with an unauthorized person; the latter two allegations are under the Espionage Act.

Media disclosures

Snowden first made contact with documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras in January 2013. According to Poitras, Snowden chose to contact her after seeing her report on William Binney, an NSA whistleblower, in The New York Times. She is a board member of the Freedom of the Press Foundationalong with journalist Glenn Greenwald. Greenwald, reporting for The Guardian, said he had been working with Snowden since February, andBarton Gellman, writing for The Washington Post, says his first “direct contact” was on May 16. However, Gellman alleges Greenwald was only involved after the Post declined to guarantee publication of the full documents within 72 hours. Gellman says he told Snowden “we would not make any guarantee about what we published or when….Snowden replied succinctly, ‘I regret that we weren’t able to keep this project unilateral.’ Shortly afterward he made contact with Glenn Greenwald of the British newspaper The Guardian.”

Snowden communicated using encrypted email, using the codename “Verax”, meaning truth-teller in Latin. He asked not to be quoted at length for fear of identification by semantic analysis.

According to Gellman, prior to their first meeting in person, Snowden wrote, “I understand that I will be made to suffer for my actions, and that the return of this information to the public marks my end.” Snowden also told Gellman that until the articles were published, the journalists working with him would also be at risk from the United States Intelligence Community, whom Snowden said “will most certainly kill you if they think you are the single point of failure that could stop this disclosure and make them the sole owner of this information.


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