It was staggering to learn that an official from the National Security Agency actually floated the idea of amnesty for Edward Snowden. I hasten to clarify that I’m not confounded by this idea because I have any particular seething desire to see Snowden pay for what he did. I honestly haven’t given Snowden’s potential jail time much thought, and that’s the truth. My concern has always been with the serially misleading reporting about NSA operations and the deliberately hyperbolic language used by various writers (cough — Greenwald — cough), not to mention the proliferation of the documents seemingly to anyone who asks politely for copies.
And that’s exactly why amnesty for Snowden is absurd. The idea was proposed by the head of NSA’s “Snowden Task Force,” Richard Ledgett, who said that it’s “worth having a conversation about” allowing Snowden to return to the U.S. as a free man if he agrees to turn over his goodie-bag of documents to NSA. Ledgett’s motivation is obviously to retrieve the 10,000-to-1.7 million NSA documents he stole (the number of documents seems to increase every few weeks).
Surely this, official tasked with investigating the Snowden leaks, must know that the documents are utterly irretrievable simply because so many people have copies, say nothing of one or more of the recipients, including Snowden, stashing copies I-don’t-know-where. In fact, I’m fairly certain the kid who spritzes the veggies at my local Safeway has several files. But, seriously, who (that we know of) has one or more of the documents Snowden nabbed?… [CONTINUE READING]