“Edward Snowden is a traitor because he promised to protect government secrets but he released them instead.”
This is undeniable logic.
But it ignores the bigger question. Why does the United States government have so many secrets?
I think I could run our entire foreign policy with one major change, one honest mission statement, and zero secrets.
The major change is that I would call all American military forces in Afghanistan, S Korea, Japan, Germany home to the United States where they belong. I would turn the Department of Defense into, you know, a defensive force.
(Jill Stein has already proposed this, by the way).
And here is my mission statement to all the peoples of the world:
“Greetings to every non-American citizen of earth! Good news. We will never invade, drone strike, or spy on you again. You can do whatever you want to whomever you want outside of our borders because it is obviously none of our business. All we ask is that you stay away from us.
Anyone who breaks this one rule and enters our borders uninvited will be killed. In the very unlikely event that your country succeeds in conquering and occupying ours, you will feel the wrath of non-stop insurrection from our millions of armed private citizens. This is America. We are eager to kill for no reason; heaven help you if you give us a reason. Good luck to all of you!”
If you think that my new American mission statement is ridiculous and terrible, then you must be reasonably pleased with the current state of affairs.
Our government invades who it wants, occupies who it wants, drops death from above on whomever it wants. And it spies on everyone.
The disappointingly mediocre Oliver Stone movie “Snowden” tells the story of a military man and young Conservative – Edward Snowden – who learned the ugly truth about the United States government.
Edward Snowden was a computer genius who quit the CIA for moral reasons. He rejoined the agency in 2009.
“Why did you change your mind?” an interviewer asks Snowden (Joseph Gordon-Levitt). “Obama,” Snowden replies wistfully. “I thought that he would change things. He didn’t.”
In his second stint working with the government, Edward Snowden learned that the NSA had brazenly expanded its data collection mandate – effectively tearing up the 4th Amendment.
The NSA had forced Verizon, AT&T and others to secretly comply with its Big Brother-esque metadata collection.
The basic concept, Oliver Stone explains, is that the NSA got a secret warrant to tap the phone calls, texts, emails, and social media pages of everyone suspected of wrong-doing – and all of their contacts. And all of their contacts’ contacts. And all of THEIR contacts’ contacts. Basically, the NSA was secretly spying on every human being with a phone or computer.
Edward Snowden concluded that this wasn’t really to combat terrorism. The War on Terror was only an excuse. The real mission of the NSA was complete social control of the citizens of earth.
“Snowden” is an important movie. But it’s no fun to watch. It’s mostly just a 2+ hour drama about a CIA man who emotionally neglects his amazing girlfriend.
In the end, I respect the point of view of people who call Edward Snowden a traitor for revealing the government’s secrets. In my opinion, though, it is our government that betrayed us by keeping all of these awful secrets to begin with.