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Was Snowden's Heist a Foreign Espionage Operation?
WSJ ^ | May 9, 2014 | Edward Jay Epstein

Posted on 05/10/2014 7:09:22 AM PDT by nuconvert

Those who know the files he stole think he was working for a foreign power, perhaps Russia, where he now lives.

-excerpt-

The vast majority of those [stolen documents] were related to our military capabilities, operations, tactics, techniques and procedures.

...the media and Mr. Snowden's admirers have only his word as to what went on. His detractors are the people who know enough about what happened to conclude that far from being a whistleblower, Mr. Snowden was a participant in an espionage operation...

(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: espionage; russia; snowden
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1 posted on 05/10/2014 7:09:22 AM PDT by nuconvert
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Russian
Chinese or
joint Sino-Russian operation


2 posted on 05/10/2014 7:10:53 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nuconvert

I’d be interested in what Gary Aldrich might think.


3 posted on 05/10/2014 7:14:44 AM PDT by Cletus.D.Yokel (Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alterations - The Acronym explains the science.)
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To: nuconvert

I hadn’t thought necessarily that he was working for a foreign power (not discounting it) but never believed he was a “whistleblower” since he had been in contact with the reporters before he was hired! It wasn’t like this guy was working for the NSA and became disillusioned by what he saw. He was on,y there about three months, if I am recalling correctly (need a primary source on that one). He sought employment for the sole purpose of exposing secrets. The security company that gave him clearance is guilty of gross negligence, or outright malfeasance.


4 posted on 05/10/2014 7:21:49 AM PDT by Explorer89 (And now, let the wild rumpus start!!)
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To: nuconvert

Links to WSJ but you have to be a subscriber to read further ...? pish


5 posted on 05/10/2014 7:26:21 AM PDT by bboop (does not suffer fools gladly)
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To: nuconvert

My only problem with that notion is this: Snowden was aided in getting to Russia by Assange. Assange hated the American military for being anti-gay (?!) America’s government and elite loves loves loves loves loves gays. Russia: not so much. So the motives don’t work. Not that Russia wouldn’t kill to pull off the operation, but I think they just lucked out.


6 posted on 05/10/2014 7:28:00 AM PDT by dangus
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To: Explorer89

What’s his background, anyway?

Must be squeaky clean, since it’s all crickets out there and we know “they” would have blown him up (rhetorically speaking) had they found a “smidgeon” of reason.

So, they are left to just smear him to death with speculation.

This is Monica in reverse. The machine at work against him.

I think most Amercans woke up because of Snowden.


7 posted on 05/10/2014 7:33:27 AM PDT by RitaOK ( VIVA CHRISTO REY / Public education is the farm team for more Marxists coming.)
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To: bboop

Usually, a few days later, it’s available to everyone.

The basic gist is that the vastly smaller amount of so called “whistleblower” type documents were a cover for the theft of the overwhelming amount of military type documents


8 posted on 05/10/2014 7:33:59 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nuconvert

Too convenient IMO for it to be foreign involvement.

Snowden is a Obama/Hillary operative IMO.

Notice with the Boston bombing the first thing people asked was “how could we not know what the bombers were up to with all the surveillance?”.

The answer from the Obama adm., the bombing was planned only 2 days before and then the bombers “spontaneously” planned to attack NCY.

The fact what Snowden did served the purpose of supporting the Benghazi “spontaneous” lie is just too convenient for me to be a mere coincidence.


9 posted on 05/10/2014 7:35:15 AM PDT by IMR 4350
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To: Cletus.D.Yokel

Is there any way you could find out? Wouldn’t that just be very interesting?


10 posted on 05/10/2014 7:36:54 AM PDT by RitaOK ( VIVA CHRISTO REY / Public education is the farm team for more Marxists coming.)
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To: nuconvert

Regardless of his motivation, or who he was working for, a lot of the NSA’s operations on all American citizens needed to be made known to the U.S. public.


11 posted on 05/10/2014 7:38:32 AM PDT by Dr. Sivana ("I'm a Contra" -- President Ronald Reagan)
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To: dangus

” Snowden was aided in getting to Russia by Assange.”

Or so it seemed ..... maybe the Russians wanted it to appear that way so it didn’t look like they were involved


12 posted on 05/10/2014 7:40:57 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nuconvert
Two questions that were never answered:

1) Why did such a low level and relatively new employee have unfettered access to such a vast amount of highly classivied and sensitive information, and

2) Why wasn't the access of such a vast amount of data by a low level and relatively new employee ever detected and investigated?

I'll guarantee you that in almost every other business where a vast amount of sensitive information is available to employees, each database query and file transfer is logged, and excessive data transfer is flagged.

13 posted on 05/10/2014 7:42:18 AM PDT by Yo-Yo (Is the /sarc tag really necessary?)
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To: Dr. Sivana

“Regardless of his motivation, or who he was working for...”

Really? SO from now on, anyone who wants to steal military secrets, should just take a few documents that he thinks American citizens should be aware of, and it’s all just fine.


14 posted on 05/10/2014 7:44:58 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: RitaOK

I doubt I could find out. I don’t have any of those types of contacts/access to Mr. Aldrich.

My thoughts are that pointing to it as an “foreign espionage” case is CYA for just plain sloppy “spook” work and security.


15 posted on 05/10/2014 7:50:52 AM PDT by Cletus.D.Yokel (Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Alterations - The Acronym explains the science.)
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To: Yo-Yo

“Two questions that were never answered”

Or maybe they were, but the answers are carelessness, naivete, and lackadaisical attitude. Unfortunately, seems to be a lot of ‘closing the barn door after the horses are out’ going on.


16 posted on 05/10/2014 7:52:21 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: nuconvert

No. I didn’t say that.

I do say that if the U.S. is spying on the entire country, that that information has to get out. I am glad it got out.

If the NSA would keep focusing on foreign bad guys instead of using surveillance everywhere, they’d have fewer Snowdens to keep an eye on.


17 posted on 05/10/2014 7:52:58 AM PDT by Dr. Sivana ("I'm a Contra" -- President Ronald Reagan)
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To: nuconvert

Life imitating art?

Snowden gives military secrets to Ivan.

Russian spy planes discovered off California coast.

“U2 plane at 60,000” feet causes LAX computers to crash, shuts down airport and all traffic on the west coast.

New “24” has hacker take over military drones and attack American soldiers in Afghanistan.

question:

Who crashed the LAX computer system, Gary Powers or Ivan?


18 posted on 05/10/2014 7:52:58 AM PDT by reagandemocrat (I'm leaning towards Ivan)
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To: nuconvert
I thought so almost from the beginning-- there's no way a contractor sysadmin had access to all the stuff Snowden got-- he (like Manning) had the help of outside hackers who used him to plant keystroke loggers, etc., onto NSA machines which were then used to hack other computers.

This also means that there is no way to tell whether the info Snowden claims he got from the NSA really came from the NSA or came from the FSB or was just made up.

One of the major points of the operation was to help split Germany from the US-- if Russia can boot the US out of Europe then they can dominate everything from the Atlantic to the Pacific.

19 posted on 05/10/2014 7:53:58 AM PDT by pierrem15 (Claudius: "Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud hatch out.")
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To: nuconvert

I’m not convinced he began as a foreign agent. All that nation-hopping at the beginning wouldn’t make sense. More likely he took the military information as insurance or leverage. It’s also possible that he just was grabbing whatever he could get his hands — en masse — before fleeing, and that’s what wound up in his data-stash.


20 posted on 05/10/2014 7:59:09 AM PDT by ElkGroveDan (My tagline is in the shop.)
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To: Yo-Yo

IIRC his job was as some sort of IT person. That kind of access is more than enough to get what he did.


21 posted on 05/10/2014 8:00:08 AM PDT by Gaffer
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To: nuconvert
He got his position and access by cronyism. Most intelligences services are a bit incestuous. Once inside, no matter how incompetent you are you will still have a job. If you want to find out who is behind this you must first find out who hired him...what are their political connections.


22 posted on 05/10/2014 8:07:00 AM PDT by darkwing104 (Forgive but don't forget)
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To: nuconvert

This is simply NSA supporters trying to smear Snowden.


23 posted on 05/10/2014 8:09:30 AM PDT by Theoria (End Socialism : No more GOP and Dem candidates)
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To: darkwing104

Oh my, you’re ruining the game of sound and fury signifying nothing. Must you be so practical all the time? How can CIA, NSA, etc. run their disinformation campaigns and spew outlandish faux data if you keep steering the discussions back to rational data points?


24 posted on 05/10/2014 8:12:43 AM PDT by MHGinTN
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To: Yo-Yo

Google does that with just one query.


25 posted on 05/10/2014 8:13:10 AM PDT by odawg
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To: IMR 4350

Tsk tsk, you’re not supposed to speak of false flags operations here. Those do not happen, even though such crap as fast and furious shows the fedzilla will do anything to anyone for any reason they want, with no real consequences to fedzilla.


26 posted on 05/10/2014 8:19:27 AM PDT by MHGinTN
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To: nuconvert

Do these “reporters” need to keep asking questions in their headlines? Or should they just go and do their damned jobs and answer them.

On a related note the Snowden incident shows just how out of control the NSA really is. Stealing confidential data willy nilly while letting the barn door wide open should be enough conviction to shut them down permanently. Who cares what Snowden “did” or “didn’t do”. What’s more important is that working for the NSA is a dream job...if you want everyone else to know what the NSA knows about everyone.


27 posted on 05/10/2014 8:19:35 AM PDT by Up Yours Marxists
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To: nuconvert

Without the Snowden revelations where might we have been regarding personal freedoms here in the USA? Just asking.


28 posted on 05/10/2014 8:27:24 AM PDT by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannoli. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: Up Yours Marxists

“Do these “reporters” need to keep asking questions in their headlines? “

It’s called an editorial


29 posted on 05/10/2014 8:33:00 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: Yo-Yo

Speaking to your point #1...

“1) Why did such a low level and relatively new employee have unfettered access to such a vast amount of highly classified and sensitive information”

It’s my understanding that Snowden’s role was that of IT and we might assume he regularly worked with others to resolve the everyday issues associated with computers and networks. He would only need to target the most clueless or gullible person, gain their password and access. It might be as easy as looking over their shoulder after performing some repair on their computer: “I need you to login to see if this patch took.” Response: “Ok, sure”


30 posted on 05/10/2014 8:35:16 AM PDT by Fitzy_888 ("ownership society")
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To: reagandemocrat
Who crashed the LAX computer system, Gary Powers or Ivan?

Ivan.

Russian bombers off the coast.

Our GPS systems went down, some aircraft reported that their GPS stayed down for the entire duration of four hour flights from LAX

Russia has it's own system - GLONASS - which, oddly enough, went down on April 9th...

31 posted on 05/10/2014 8:39:27 AM PDT by null and void ( They don't think think they are above the law. They think they are the law.)
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To: bboop

yeah no kidding

I am not buying any “news” papers on line


32 posted on 05/10/2014 8:52:07 AM PDT by yldstrk ( My heroes have always been cowboys)
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To: RitaOK
I think most Amercans woke up because of Snowden.

Most definitely.

It is laughable for the open borders WSJ to suggest such he did this for a foreign power.

By many orders of magnitude the greatest threat our Republic faces is the evil left and the evil RINOs.

The Federal government is accelerating it's power grab. Every bureaucracy is geometrically expanding it's power and intimidating the people.

If Russia and China's ally is Obama. He is taking aggressive steps to make it very, very, very difficult for Liberty and free enterprise to once again prosper in this Republic.

Think about the ultra-left Marxist bureaucrats that will remain once this fraud is gone? Would a Jeb, Christie or Romney seek to root them out? Not a chance.

Without any doubt, the evil left is our mortal enemy.

33 posted on 05/10/2014 8:55:33 AM PDT by sand88 (We can never legislate our way back to Liberty)
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To: nuconvert
They do not need Snowden's to learn anything they want to know about America. All they needed recently was Franklin's. Historically they just needed Marxist's (Rosenberg) but Putin is jailing them now.

If you recall, Putin stated Snowden did not tell them anything they did not know.

34 posted on 05/10/2014 8:55:51 AM PDT by justa-hairyape (The user name is sarcastic. Although at times it may not appear that way.)
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To: nuconvert

It’s funny how many people are split on Snowden—about half seem to consider him a hero, the other half a traitor.

I’m old school—you don’t divulge classified information, ever. If Snowden is ever given a pardon, it will open the flood gates to whole bunch of people who will emulate him. They will look at disclosing classified as a way to instantly become a “rock star”.


35 posted on 05/10/2014 8:58:47 AM PDT by rbg81
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To: nuconvert

Wrong conversation, as usual. I want to know what is being done to dismantle the domestic spying program. Has anyone been held accountable? Snowden and his role is irrelevant at this point, especially considering little to nothing has been done to tear this program down.


36 posted on 05/10/2014 9:07:30 AM PDT by drunknsage
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To: rbg81

Bump

Agree


37 posted on 05/10/2014 9:13:52 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: justa-hairyape

“If you recall, Putin stated Snowden did not tell them anything they did not know.”

Hahaha


38 posted on 05/10/2014 9:14:48 AM PDT by nuconvert ( Khomeini promised change too // Hail, Chairman O)
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To: Yo-Yo
Two questions that were never answered:

Those questions have been answered completely. A visit to wikipedia will get you started if you want to do a little research. I am not saying wikipedia is a definitive authority, but the footnotes and reference links can get you started.

Here is what most people don't realize: Snowden's job at Booz Allen (the contractor for the NSA) was to make a back up of the entire NSA database to be stored in Hawaii in the event of a catastrophic hardware failure on the mainland.

Snowden created a backup system for the NSA that was implemented, and often pointed out security bugs to the agency. The former colleague said Snowden was "given full administrator privileges, with virtually unlimited access to NSA data" because he could "do things nobody else could." Snowden had been offered a position on the NSA's elite staff of hackers, Tailored Access Operations (TAO), but turned it down for the contractor position at Booz Allen.

They knew he was making the backup -- they hired him to do it. He had tried to show them that there were bugs in their system, and he (in Geneva w/ the CIA) tried to protest the practices of gathering and storing information of ordinary people.

So he took the Booz Allen contract in Hawaii (for less money) and made the back up as per the contract. What they didn't know was that he was making a copy for himself.

There is so much more to the story if you just decide to spend some time on it. I don't have an opinion about the rightness or wrongness of what he did: I could argue either way. But for better or worse, Edward Snowden changed the world.

It is a fascinating story, and we haven't heard the half of it yet.

39 posted on 05/10/2014 9:17:02 AM PDT by Semper911 (When you want to rob Peter to pay Paul, you'll always have the support of Paul.)
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To: Yo-Yo
I'll guarantee you that in almost every other business where a vast amount of sensitive information is available to employees, each database query and file transfer is logged, and excessive data transfer is flagged.

Welcome to government, where "servants" are presumed by outsiders to have secret knowledge and super powers. The reality is an inefficient world of very ordinary bureaucratic functionaries who neither see nor care about much that is outside their own sphere or cone of responsibility or function. Part of the appeal of its mundane nature is access to supposedly "secret" information that mere "civilians" (Citizens and Taxpayers) are not allowed to know -- for their own good, of course.

The dirty truth of the matter is that very little of what is classified as "Secret" is not already common knowledge, and much that is "Top Secret" is in the public realm but might require a little digging to compile. The bureaucratic culture -- self perpetuating beast that it is -- breeds and nurtures a bias to classify almost everything, and this has created a dangerous "us versus them" mentality in which the "servants" actually rule the masters. In a free society, the natural bias must be against classification and there should be very little that is justifiably shielded from public knowledge.

As for the Snowden affair... Sometimes bad things serve good ends. Criminals kill other criminals. Dangerous bacteria break down dead matter and destroy other dangerous organisms. What Snowden proved to the American people was that their own government -- using the people's own hard earned taxes -- is actively spying on us and recording for later retrieval every word we speak and every keystroke we make. The fact that only a handful of the people's elected representatives were "granted access" to knowledge of this activity is very troubling, and the fact that Congressmen who did know were barred by "secrecy laws" from blowing the whistle on unconstitutional government activity is downright shocking.

The culture of government secrecy is out of control. Whatever his motives might have been, Edward Snowden performed a great service to America that far outweighs any theoretical damage to the oft-overstated "American security."

40 posted on 05/10/2014 9:21:04 AM PDT by Always A Marine
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To: nuconvert

If Snowden was a professional he’s still be at NSA and his handlers would have the data and we would have never heard about it.


41 posted on 05/10/2014 9:21:33 AM PDT by Bobalu (What cannot be programmed cannot be physics)
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To: IMR 4350

I agree 100%.. Snowden could not have done what he did had he not had inside help with the blessings of Team Hussein. Americans don’t realize that Barry is a foreigner who is sabotaging America, let alone irreversibly bankrupting us.


42 posted on 05/10/2014 9:24:05 AM PDT by CivilWarBrewing
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To: Semper911
But for better or worse, Edward Snowden changed the world.

Only if you were not paying attention. Snowden's revelations more or less confirmed our suspicions. Waco. Ruby Ridge. 911. This government is not our friend and is not our protector.

When you elect scoundrels and thieves to rule over you, do not be surprised when they behave as scoundrels and thieves.

43 posted on 05/10/2014 9:28:00 AM PDT by justa-hairyape (The user name is sarcastic. Although at times it may not appear that way.)
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To: justa-hairyape
Only if you were not paying attention.

My point exactly. Now everyone knows, and there is evidence to prove it.

44 posted on 05/10/2014 9:31:42 AM PDT by Semper911 (When you want to rob Peter to pay Paul, you'll always have the support of Paul.)
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To: Semper911

That’s much worse than I thought. He didn’t hack anything, he just walked out the front door with everything.

Much like Obama who will be leaving office. No doubt with a suitcase full of hard drives, maybe 200 terabytes plus/minus. The vitals on say 300,000 of the most prominent Tea Partiers, Conservatives, Republicans and business execs. It will be the most profitable political consulting business in history.


45 posted on 05/10/2014 9:39:03 AM PDT by Fitzy_888 ("ownership society")
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To: RitaOK
I think most Amercans woke up because of Snowden.

Which makes him a hero IMO, regardless of methods or motivation.

Fedgov is not your friend, and hasn't been for decades.

46 posted on 05/10/2014 9:43:51 AM PDT by zeugma (Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened - Dr. Seuss (I'll see you again someday Hope))
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To: Fitzy_888
That’s much worse than I thought. He didn’t hack anything, he just walked out the front door with everything.

Exactly.

He is portrayed by some as a shadowy hacker who secretly crept around our systems looking for info to steal. Some have even "reported" that he stole passwords from his co-workers to get to the data. Couldn't be further from the truth.

It is amazing how little most people know about the matter. Even freepers who are naturally curious and well read have swallowed the MSM's weak sauce as fact.

47 posted on 05/10/2014 9:48:18 AM PDT by Semper911 (When you want to rob Peter to pay Paul, you'll always have the support of Paul.)
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To: nuconvert
Snowden was a communication specialist at the CIA station in Geneva in 2007 under diplomatic cover. He would have had the opportunity to come in contact with Russian embassy staff at diplomatic social events or on the streets.

Later he told an implausible story about CIA personnel getting a Swiss banker drunk, allowing him to be arrested by police, then rescuing him in exchange for confidential information. He said this alleged incident disillusioned him. According to Wikipedia: “Eric Schmitt of The New York Times stated that two senior American officials told him that, prior to the end of Snowden’s term, Snowden’s supervisor wrote a negative report that stated suspicions of Snowden attempting to obtain classified information not authorized to him.”

It's possible Snowden was recruited by Russian intelligence operatives in 2007 while in Switzerland and then directed to seek a position with an NSA contractor back in the states. Once Snowden obtained a large haul of NSA data at his NSA job he was directed to Hong Kong where he made his disclosure about NSA’s data collections programs.

Snowden’s announcement came a few days before Obama was scheduled to meet with Chinese leadership and complain about Chinese hacking of U.S. high-tech science. The entire Snowden drama in 2013 may have been orchestrated by Vla Putin to embarrass Obama. In fact Putin may now be in possession of NSA files that could deeply embarrass the White House (if that's possible) or even prove criminal wrongdoings. If Putin is blackmailing Obama it would explain the president's peculiar approach to foreign policy and Obama insistence on suppressing U.S. oil and gas domestic production.

48 posted on 05/10/2014 11:02:45 AM PDT by Brad from Tennessee (A politician can't give you anything he hasn't first stolen from you.)
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To: nuconvert
WSJ 7-4-13:

Edward Snowden’s Secret (Agent) Admirer: Spy Anna Chapman

http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2013/07/04/russian-spy-anna-chapman-professes-love-for-leaker-edward-snowden/

49 posted on 05/10/2014 11:14:22 AM PDT by Brad from Tennessee (A politician can't give you anything he hasn't first stolen from you.)
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To: nuconvert

The establishment can try to smear it any way they want. Foreign governments would not want Snowden’s information public. The blackmail factor alone outweighs the public embarrassment of an incompetent government.
Let’s call him a whistle blower of the first order. I only hope he keeps dumping stuff. Bad on our country to think the government is more important than their citizen masters.


50 posted on 05/10/2014 11:24:30 AM PDT by Steamburg (Other people's money is the only language a politician respects)
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