On the Sunday morning of the 7th of July 2013, the American people have received the official line on how to think about Edward Snowden. This, of course, relieves us of the terrible burden of thinking too closely or rigorously about the content of Snowden’s revelations: (1) that the CIA contracts out spy work to a private for-profit industry, (2) that the Government is spying on its friends, the nations of the European Union, among others allied by treaty and shared heritage, and, (3) the most damning, that the Government is spying on the American people.
On the CNN program hosted by Fareed Zakaria, the apostles of Establishment thinking appeared to set us straight on what to think. The guest panel was blueribbon: Zbig Brzezinski, Richard Haass and some flunky from the Wall Street Journal. “Zbig” is the foreign policy heavy weight who staffed the creation of the Trilateral Commission and then served as the Trilateralist handler for the Presidency of Jimmy Carter. As Carter’s handler, Zbig is the one who initiated the joint project of the CIA and its Islamist friends to overthrow the secular leftist Afghan government and bog its Russian sponsors in its own Afghan debacle. The commencement of what has become a Thirty Year War on the Afghan people leading to Afghanistan hosting CIA contract agent Osama bin Laden and then to America’s longest war ever began as a bright bulb in Brzezinski’s over-active brain.
Zbig was seconded by Richard Haass, chief staffer for the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the capstone of the foreign policy establishment in the United States. Since its founding early in the 20th century, the CFR has provided every Presidency, Republican or Democrat, with its marching orders. Every intervention, every assassination, every loan or grant, every coup in which the United States has participated has the fingerprints of the CFR and its minions. If one were to answer the question, “What’s wrong with American foreign policy?”, the answer could be reduced to three letters, “CFR”.
This is what we learned. Snowden is a traitor and the only folks supporting him are “outliers”. It was further opined that unlike Daniel Ellsberg, the whistleblower who released the Pentagon Papers, Snowden wasn’t man enough to stay within American jurisdiction and face the music. And that we should ostracize Snowden because he chose to seek the safety of China and then Russia.
Let’s take a look at these arguments:
- Is Snowden a traitor? Treason consists in aiding the enemies of the country in wartime. Edward Snowden revealed that the United States Government was using the telecommunications industry to acquire massive amounts of data ON THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. The Government wasn’t spying on the Chinese, or the Russians or even the Taliban, the Government was spying on we, the people.
- Snowden ran instead of facing the music? When Daniel Ellsberg released the Pentagon Papers in 1971, he actually sought to be imprisoned. He saw a virtue in the willingness of draft-evaders to be imprisoned in order to end a war. However, in those innocent days, the Government did not maintain secret prisons and did conduct open trials. We’ve learned now that anyone branded an enemy by the Empire could be “disappeared”, may not receive benefit of a trial or could easily be the victim of an accident in custody. Snowden was wise to avoid the tender mercies that he could encounter in Obama’s Gulag.
- Did Snowden favor China, or Russia? Edward Snowden chose to relocate to Hong Kong. Hong Kong was a British colony for decades and is governed under a legal system favorable to due process and which provides asylum to those running from tyranny. When the British ceded the colony back to China it did so only with China’s adherence to a treaty which guaranteed the continuance of the rule of law for the next 100 years. Snowden fled to Hong Kong, and not to China, because it was free, or at least free-er than what may be found elsewhere. Russia was merely a stopover to asylum in a country not subject to the Imperial reign.
- Bolivia, Venezuela, and Nicaragua have offered Snowden asylum and for doing so, they were dismissed by the imperial mouthpieces as “outliers”. We can suppose as well that we too would be so dismissed. What is an outlier? Simply, an outsider. Yes, the above-named countries are outsiders. But then again, the American people, those who are the spied-upon are very much outside the Imperial System. This is a Government of the Elite, for the Elite and by the Elite. The People are Outside.
So Mr Snowden, on behalf of outsiders everywhere, thank you for your service. We wish we could offer more but if you find yourself in Minnesota, you can have our couch to sleep on. It’s the best we can do but we do hope you may find asylum from some country not intimidated by the power of the Empire.