Political asylum is a weird idea: One country gets to tell another country: We think your criminal is actually a hero and he can come live here, so buzz off. Pretty annoying if you're the country trying to get the criminal, and the U.S. is really pissed that some countries and human rights groups are helping out NSA whistleblower Ed Snowden, currently holed up in Moscow's airport, in his quest for asylum. After all, the U.S. would never think of shielding someone accused of illegally leaking another country's classified information, right?
When fugitive NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's United States passport was cancelled on June 23rd, he was left stranded in Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport. Today, Snowden announced he is seeking temporary asylum in Russia in order to plan a possible escape to Latin America. But maybe there's an easier way? Snowden now has a brand-new replacement passport, if he can get it: He has been issued a World Passport, backed by no country but good (its creators say) in nearly all of them.
The Guardian continues to expose the extent to which we are all beautiful tropical fish swimming in the electronic aquarium of the NSA's surveillance systems. According to a top-secret report by the NSA's inspector general obtained by the Guardian (presumably from Ed Snowden) the Obama Administration continued a Bush-era program that collected U.S. email records in bulk.
Where's Edward Snowden? As I write this, only a handful of people know exactly the location of the world famous NSA whistleblower, after he apparently ditched his flight from Moscow to Cuba last night. One of those people is Wikileaks founder Julian Assange. Snowden is "safe and healthy" and his "spirits are high," Assange told reporters begging for any scrap of information on a conference call this morning. It is this secret knowledge that has paradoxically thrust Assange's anti-secrecy outlet back into the media spotlight after a long period of decline. Now there's hints of another massive leak. Wikileaks is back, God help us all.