Unanswered questions for ex-CIA officer Edward Snowden

Unanswered questions for ex-CIA officer Edward Snowden

by Jon Rappoport

March 18, 2015


Now that the documentary, Citizen Four, has been released, and now that it has won an Oscar, it’s time to revisit unanswered questions, which I raised soon after Snowden’s identity was revealed to the world. (Spygate archive here)

This is not an article about the value of the documents Edward Snowden took from the NSA. I leave those judgments to others.

This article is about Snowden himself and his back-story.

So far, I see no reporter who has directly asked Snowden even faintly challenging questions about his background.

I find that quite odd. And the number of people who don’t find it odd makes the situation even odder.

If a man came to me, stating he was an ex-CIA officer who had taken a huge cache of vital documents from the other major spying agency in the US, the NSA, I would want to know a great deal about him.

I wouldn’t care that he was an engaging young man who appeared to be committing a heroic act on behalf of freedom. I wouldn’t care, because I know that people who work for intelligence agencies are prepared to lie. They are trained to lie. They believe in lying. This is basic knowledge that any reasonable reporter would have.

Yet, in Snowden’s case, an exception has been made. Why?

As soon as you see a photo of Snowden for the first time, you realize he’s the perfect image of the techie’s counter-spy: young, thin, bespectacled, “vulnerable.”

You have to wonder: if he’d been 60, balding, fat, with a constant sheen of nervous perspiration on his chubby cheeks, would he have grabbed so much positive attention from the get-go? Would reporters have refrained from grilling him about his back-story?

Within a day of Snowden’s identity being revealed, details of that story appeared in the press.

Upon reading the story, a number of questions sprang to mind. To my knowledge, none of them have been satisfactorily answered, or even posed by journalists who have had direct access to Snowden.

Why do potential or possible holes in Snowden’s back-story matter? Because holes always matter. They can lead to unexpected discoveries; they can reveal that a person is more than he says he is, different than he says he is.

In 2003, at age 19, without a high school diploma, Snowden enlists in the Army. He begins a training program to join the Special Forces. The sequence here is fuzzy. At what point after enlistment can a new soldier start this training program? Does he need to demonstrate some exceptional ability before Special Forces puts him in that program?

Snowden breaks both legs in a training exercise. He’s discharged from the Army. Is that automatic? How about healing and then resuming Army service?

If Snowden was accepted in the Special Forces training program because he had special computer skills, then why discharge him simply because he broke both legs?

Circa 2003 (?), Snowden gets a job as a security guard for an NSA facility at the University of Maryland. He specifically wanted to work for NSA? It was just a generic job opening he found out about?

Also in 2003 (?), Snowden shifts jobs. He’s now in the CIA, in IT. He has no high school diploma. He’s a young computer genius?

What kind of work does he do for the CIA until, in 2007…

He is sent to Geneva. He’s only 23 years old. The CIA gives him diplomatic cover there. Diplomatic cover is serious status. Snowden is put in charge of maintaining computer-network security. A major job. Obviously, he has access to a wide range of classified documents. Sound a little odd? He’s just a kid. Maybe he has his GED by now. Otherwise, he still doesn’t have a high school diploma.

Snowden reportedly says that during this period, in Geneva, one of the incidents that really sours him on the CIA is the “turning of a Swiss banker.” One night, CIA guys get a banker drunk, encourage him to drive home, the banker gets busted, the CIA guys help him out of that jam, and then with that bond formed, they eventually get the banker to reveal deep banking secrets to the Agency.

Snowden is this naïve? He doesn’t know by now that the CIA does this sort of thing all the time? He’s shocked? He “didn’t sign up for this?”

Furthermore, if this banker story is true, and if Snowden is the source for it, why did he reveal it? All sorts of people should be able to do a little digging and figure out who the Swiss banker is—thus blowing the banker’s cover and exposing him. Was that Snowden’s intention?

In 2009, Snowden leaves the CIA.

It should noted here that Snowden claimed he could do very heavy damage to the entire US intelligence community in 2008, but decided to wait because he thought Obama, just coming into the Presidency, might make good changes.

After two years with the CIA in Geneva, Snowden really had the capability to “take down most of the US intelligence network,” or a major chunk of it? He had that much access to classified data?

Snowden goes on to work for two private defense contractors, Dell and Booze Allen Hamilton. In this latter job, Snowden is assigned to work at the NSA.

He’s an outsider, but he claims to have access to so much sensitive NSA data that he can take down the whole US intelligence network in a single day. Really?

How many people work in highly classified jobs for the NSA? Here is one man, Snowden, who is working for Booz Allen, an outside NSA contractor, and he can get access to, and copy, documents that expose the spying collaboration between NSA and the biggest tech companies in the world—and he can get away with it.

If so, then NSA is a sieve leaking out of all holes. Because that means a whole lot of other, higher-level NSA employees can likewise steal these documents. Many, many other people can copy them and take them. Are we to believe this?

“Let’s see. Who’s coming to work for us here at NSA today? Oh, new whiz kid. Ed Snowden. Outside contractor. Twenty-nine years old. No high school diploma. Has a GED. He worked for the CIA and quit. Hmm. The CIA. They don’t like us and we don’t like them. Why did Snowden quit the CIA? Oh, never mind, who cares? No problem.

“Tell you what. Let’s give this kid access to our most sensitive data. Sure. Why not? Everything. Let Snowden see it all. Sure. What the hell. I’m feeling charitable. He seems like a nice kid.”

Sometimes cognitive dissonance, which used to be called contradiction, rings a gong so loud it knocks you off your chair.

Let’s see. NSA is the most awesome spying agency ever devised in this world. If you cross the street in Podunk, Anywhere, USA, to buy an ice cream soda, on a Tuesday afternoon in July, they can know.

They know if you sit at the counter and drink that soda or take it and move to the only table in the store. They know if you lick the foam from the top of the glass with your tongue or pick the foam with your straw and then lick it.

But this agency, with all its vast power and its dollars…with the brightest, sharpest minds in the business…

Can’t protect its own data from outright theft. Can’t lock up its own store. They overlooked their own security systems. Never set them up right in the first place. Forgot to.

And they can’t track one of their own, a man who came to work every day, a man who made up a story about needing treatment in Hong Kong for epilepsy and then skipped the country.

Just can’t find him.

Can’t find him in Hong Kong, where he does a sit-down video interview with Glenn Greenwald and Poitras and MacAskill. Can’t track the reporters to Snowden’s hotel.

Can’t find that place where Snowden’s staying.

No. Can’t find him or spy on his communications while he’s in Hong Kong. Can’t figure out he’s booked a flight to Russia.

Can’t intercept him at the airport before he leaves for Russia. Too difficult.

And this man, this employee, is walking around with three or four laptops that contain the keys to all the secret spying knowledge in the known cosmos.

Can’t locate those laptops. The most brilliant technical minds of this or any other generation can find a computer in Outer Mongolia in the middle of a blizzard, but these walking-around computers in Hong Kong are somehow beyond reach.

And before this man, Snowden, this employee, skipped Hawaii, he was able to access the layout of entire US intelligence networks. Yes. He was able to use a thumb drive.

He walked into work with a thumb drive, plugged in, and stole…everything. He stole enough to “take down the entire US intelligence network in a single afternoon.”

Not only that, but anyone who worked at this super-agency as a systems-analyst supervisor, or higher, could have done the same thing. Could have stolen the keys to the kingdom.

This is why NSA geniuses with IQs over 180 decided, in the midst of the Snowden affair, that they needed to draft “tighter rules and procedures” for their employees. Right.

A few thousand pieces of internal security they hadn’t realized they needed before would be put in place.

This is, let me remind you again, the most secretive spying agency in the world. The richest spying agency. The smartest spying agency.

But somehow, over the years, they’d overlooked their own security. They’d left lots of doors open.

But now, yes now, having been made aware of this vulnerability, the Agency would make corrections.


Should we believe the NSA is this weak and bumbling, when it comes to protecting its data, when it comes to tracking down one of its own who has stolen the farm? Or should we entertain the possibility that Snowden didn’t really steal all that information himself? Did someone at the CIA give it to him? Was this a long-term CIA op?

Yes, strange possibilities. But the world of intelligence is strange. It’s designed that way.

power outside the matrix

May 20, 2013: Snowden arrives in Hong Kong from Hawaii. He’s just taken medical leave from the NSA. This is not troubling to his employer, despite the fact that, as AFP reports, Snowden worked briefly at the US Embassy in New Delhi (2010) and abruptly left India, citing medical problems on that occasion as well.

Both times, Snowden didn’t seek medical help in the country in which he was employed.

June 1, 2013: Three reporters connected with The Guardian—Glenn Greenwald, Ewen MacAskill, and Laura Poitras—fly from New York to Hong Kong, and begin their week-long interview of Snowden. If this raises red flags, it doesn’t lead to intercepting Snowden.

June 5, 2013: The Guardian publishes its first article containing NSA leaks. The next three days see more NSA revelations, but there is no mention of Snowden.

June 9: The Guardian goes public about Snowden for the first time. According to Reuters, the NSA started an “urgent search” for Snowden several days before June 9—perhaps as early as June 1.

June 10: Snowden checks out of his hotel, but remains in Hong Kong. The US intelligence apparatus still can’t find him.

June 12: The South China Post publishes an interview with Snowden, who says he’ll stay in Hong Kong until he’s told he has to go. The NSA still can’t find him.

June 14: The UK Home Office orders airlines to deny passage to Snowden, if he tries to come to the UK.

June 20, 21: The Guardian publishes more top-secret documents from the Snowden cache.

June 23: Free and unencumbered, Snowden flies to Moscow with Wikileaks’ Sarah Harrison.

During this entire period (May 20-June23), the NSA, and other agencies of the US government, have been unable to locate Snowden?

They’ve been unable to get hold of, or disable, his famous four laptops, which presumably contain all the documents he took from the NSA. Instead, Snowden transfers the documents to Greenwald and Poitras in Hong Kong, hides out successfully, and makes his flight to Moscow.

In past articles, based on all these questions and oddities and paradoxes, I’ve spelled out alternative scenarios about who Snowden might be, and what’s really going on here. For this piece, in the wake of Citizen Four, I just want to refresh the questions, the unanswered questions about Snowden and the NSA.

And point out that no reporters who have had direct access to Snowden have pressed these questions.

He’s been given a free pass.

“Well, why should we wrangle with Snowden? He handed us the documents? Why should we look a gift horse in the mouth?”

Because in the spying game, things are not what they seem. In the spying game, ops are layered. They have multiple purposes. Cover stories. These ops conceal their bottom lines.

Snowden worked for the CIA. He was a spy. And at certain levels, the CIA and the NSA hate each other. They compete for federal money, for status, for prestige.

The NSA doesn’t just spy on private citizens. The NSA spies on politicians and bankers and corporate CEOs, and those people know it and they don’t like it, and they want to relieve themselves of that burden and that threat. They want to curb the power of the NSA as it applies to them.

They would welcome, as perhaps the CIA would, putting a crimp in NSA’s spying capabilities, limiting those capabilities in some way, at least giving NSA pause for thought about risking further exposure beyond Snowden’s disclosures.

For these and other reasons, the back-story of Edward Snowden is more than an academic pursuit, and the unanswered questions are of more than passing interest.

Educated privacy advocates who spend a great of their time commenting on security issues may not want to disturb the image of Snowden; and they certainly don’t want to be called conspiracy nuts re their view of who Snowden might be; but reporters shouldn’t care about that. Reporters should vet their sources as thoroughly as possible.

That’s SOP. Only this time, from all available information, it didn’t happen. It didn’t happen when Greenwald, Poitras, and MacAskill met Snowden. It didn’t happen after Snowden gave them his cache of NSA data. And it isn’t happening now.

Jon Rappoport

The author of three explosive collections, THE MATRIX REVEALED, EXIT FROM THE MATRIX, and POWER OUTSIDE THE MATRIX, Jon was a candidate for a US Congressional seat in the 29th District of California. He maintains a consulting practice for private clients, the purpose of which is the expansion of personal creative power. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, he has worked as an investigative reporter for 30 years, writing articles on politics, medicine, and health for CBS Healthwatch, LA Weekly, Spin Magazine, Stern, and other newspapers and magazines in the US and Europe. Jon has delivered lectures and seminars on global politics, health, logic, and creative power to audiences around the world. You can sign up for his free emails at NoMoreFakeNews.com or OutsideTheRealityMachine.

This entry was posted in Spygate.

45 comments on “Unanswered questions for ex-CIA officer Edward Snowden

  1. Even wilder: this nerd [d]ates a superhot chick who’s a super-toned acrobat. She vanishes without a trace and nobody—but NObody—looks for her, and her father—a software engineer—mourns her mnisfortune. Later, rumors surface she has migrated to Russia to be with the nerd, and apparently nobody was watching her?

    • Chili Boots says:

      Getting awarded an ‘Oscar’ for the plodding ‘Documentary’, “CITIZEN FOUR” strikes me
      as quite odd. This ‘Academy of Motion Pictures’ is a propaganda-fueled gate-keeping and
      filtering Agency that really liked the totally bogus “American Sniper”, as well. I don’t trust
      this Guy, either. ‘Oscars’ are about as relevant and trustworthy as ‘Nobels’, these days.

    • Who is the girlfriend of Edward Snowden? I haven’t once read her name in the last two years.

      • Aris Tocles says:




        Too funny. Met on an online dating service. Yea, she needed to troll on Craigslist looking for love and companionship. And she just happen to have a flickr account too. With pics of the Snowden with his back turned. It is so over the top.

        This is America. You only get two choices. Is he a hero or traitor? No use in talking about is he for reals.

        • ozziethinker says:


          In a strange way, your innocuous “aside” is one of the most perceptive statements to come out of Rappoport “comments”. “Two choices – hero or traitor”; but you see this isn’t America. It is Global and Americans must adjust and shatter the “fantasy” otherwise there will be a clash of cultures bigger than Ben Hur.


          • Aris Tocles says:

            Yes, I understand the control system is global. The primary way “Americans” are controlled is to “give” them two choices. That way they feel they have a say, and have a stake in the outcome. We are exceptional that way. You can have this or that. For instance, you can vote for Hillary or Jeb for 2016. Never mind the fact that they are so close that Jenna Bush feels related to Hillary because “Uncle Bill” is a brother from another mother to pops. The characters these two candidates play are the anti-choices. If you drink your coffee in the morning to scan Drudge so you can find out early what you will watch on Hannity and O’Really to know what to think, Hillary is the anti-choice (think biblical here). If you read Huffpo and engage with “conservatives” in the comment sections, then well, another Bush is your anti-choice. Either way the control system is maintained.

            In other parts world you get more choices. Then these parties have to compromise and form coalitions to form governments to maintain the control system.

            Side note: The reason (inherent) American Exceptionalism is advocated and advanced is because “Chosen” by God was already taken.

      • Reverend Saltine says:

        Lindsay Mills. She’s kept a secret amnd the “media” apparently reuse to search for her or interview her. And she is waaayyy hot-looking as a trained acrobat.

    • Grogger says:

      The federal government has perfected the use of illusion during the past one-hundred years. Like a stage magician, they use smoke, mirrors and flash bang grenades to distract our attention from something they do not want us to notice.

      Edward Snowden and all the other CIA and NSA whistleblowers cannot be such because the people they work for simply do not allow such things. Mistrust of all employees has been the norm at all intelligence gathering facilities whether it is in Point Magoo, a plane, a ship or unmarked van. The watchers are being watched. This has been true since several incidents in the 70’s and 80’s.

      That said, what is it the feds do not want us to focus our attention on? What would be worse for the public to know about than domestic spying? Hillary Clinton denying that she attended a meeting of the Bildeberg group is another sleight of hand move. Why should she deny it when she knows there is footage of her attending? It would have silenced the questions and concerns if she had simply said they discussed the economy or whatever. she knows that and her PR people understand that. So why the emphatic denial?

      What is happening right now that we should be investigating instead of discussing Snowden, martial law, economic collapse, 911, wars in the Middle East, transfats, second-hand smoke, is it Michelle or Michael Obama, Skull and bones, and the myriad of other issues that consume our time and energies? Are there UFO’s? No, Project Bluebook would not have been created to give a measure of credence to this popular idea if it was real. Again, misdirect the public attention. Where should we be looking?

      There is a high probability that we should begin an investigation with Bill Gates. The man’s product is everywhere and in everything we use. The next step would be to look closely at the movement of our elected officials at the federal, state and local levels. Where are they going each day and what are they doing? Are there any persons, places or things they avoid? Look for things and people that do not stand out. Ask why questions.

      Why would the federal government subsidize the transition from analog to digital television? Why promote centralized communities? Why Common Core? Why suggest forcing people to vote? Why the shifts in policies at a seemingly low level such as allowing doctors and lawyers to advertise? Why force people to wear seat belts? Why fuel the debate about global warming? Why go from English as our primary language to Spanish? Who are the NSA and CIA recruiting and what are their backgrounds? You know the drill – Who, what, when, where, why and how.

      I know you will be able to find what is in the fed’s right hand as soon as you take your focus off of the left hand.

  2. Don says:

    Pleaase consider that our Federal entities are not necessarily manned by the brightest bulbs in the box. Many are merely Government employess doing a job, period. Not genius, not sharp, minor bureaucrats. As proof, look at what Gary McKinnon did via a dial up PC several years ago hacking NASA and other military computer systems. Had their knickers in a wad for years over his access to their inner sanctum secrets! And, fellow UK citizen Lauri Love had similar results some time later. Easy to understand Ed Snowdens actions. Easy to see how he got away with it.

    • trackdriver says:

      excellent point! dial up modem and all, Mckinnon busted the top dogs in DC. US tried for years to extridite Gary but British govt resisted probably because they were outside the loop and US wasn’t sharing outer space info. Snowden is entirely possible!

  3. Citizen says:

    Jon, I agree with you that Snowden cannot possibility be simply what he presents himself to be — his image of a slight, bespectacled IT genius is straight out of Central Casting. But I don’t agree with where your suspicions lead you — i.e., to a battle between the CIA and NSA. Sure, that might explain why Snowden has thus far managed to “elude” capture (not to mention steal all those secrets with a thumb drive), but where’s the retaliation? Surely the NSA has loads of secrets about the CIA (we might have even gotten some definitive answers about lots of so called conspiracies)…but nada. Seems more likely to me that this is a joint CIA-NSA Psy-Op on us….feed us a fake “hero,” see how much private citizen spying we’ll take without open revolt, and feed us a lot of useful disinformation, with some morsels of truth thrown in. When Snowden comes back to the U.S. for his “fair trial,” we’ll really see the Bread & Circus show they have planned for us.

    • AnotherLover says:

      That’s exactly what my gut told me. The second I heard this Snowden story I gagged so hard I almost passed out from suffocation. The human mind’s been sold this fairytale for so long, it’s as if the controllers are just communicating with us on the only level we can understand. One man taking action, with the goods. Make me sick. And so far it’s just been more Wikileaks bullshiddy. “The NSA’s spying on the internet!” And?? Are you kidding me?

      Now for some speculation. It’s a pure psyops, and it’s designed to deal with the growing concern of privacy. The concerns are dealt with by sending two messages:

      1)We totally dominate you.
      2)We are totally compromised.

      I can’t imagine a more cognitively dissonant scenario.

      The information has been learned by the populace and the mind-shift is complete. Operation successful.
      Thanks, Jon!! Nice writing, as always. Appreciate the timeline. Cheers

    • Chili Boots says:

      No discipline, or negative ramifications, either, for the myriad, ‘mistake’-making alleged oafs
      that were involved in 9/11. Snowden, and probably Assange also, are not what they seem.

  4. Bob Pegram says:

    Jon –

    All of these are good questions, but you are apparently assuming something that isn’t true from what I have read. You are assuming that everybody in the CIA is in agreement on how much government is good, how much spying on Americans and others around the world is appropriate, etc. From what I have read, there are vying factions in the CIA – some more socialistic, one world government types, and some for personal freedom, the U.S. Constitution, and smaller government.

    Could it be possible that those for smaller government were fed up with the way things were going and guided and protected Snowden long enough for him to succeed in the task he accomplished? This meshes with your speculation about the CIA not liking the NSA, that they are rivals.

    The first head of the CIA was Allen Dulles, brother of John Foster Dulles, Secretary of State under Eisenhower. Both brothers were founding members of the Council on Foreign Relations in the 1920s. The CFR’s stated goal, per David Rockefeller, the head of that organization when he wrote his autobiography, is to create a on-world socialist/communist government. It is not for freedom.

    Could there be people in the CIA (and maybe NSA) who are at odds with that goal? There have to be some. Whether they were in positions to help Snowden may never be known. Some of the most patriotic acts in history are never known by the majority of the public or by most historians. History is very different than what we have been led to believe. I know you agree with that statement.

    Bob Pegram

    • babylovet says:

      David Rockefeller a Communist and/or Socialist…

      Thanks for the comic relief.

      • bob klinck says:

        If you haven’t yet figured out that socialism is a stalking-horse for international finance you are both weak in logic and ignorant of history. The people who create the tickets that in a money economy permit human action encourage centralization of power in any form, for it all falls into their hands and increasingly alienates the population from their own control of the command capacity of money. Socialism is power concentration in an extreme form. It was financier Sir Ernest Cassel who financed the establishment of the London School of Economics for the express purpose of “train[ing] the bureaucracy of the future socialist state”, and it was financier Jacob Schiff et al. who financed the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia. It is the Rockefeller Foundation that financed academic Marxist critiques of Social Credit, which posits the most radical proposals for power decentralization through money distribution, and the same foundation has supported a hydra-headed program of sociological reform that has drastically enfeebled the citizenry and transferred power into the hands of the state.

        • ozziethinker says:

          As I have written on my blog, the strong social movements that had been brewing from the late 18th century peaked as the new communist strategy (1870’s), which Marx merely “corporatized”. Other than a couple of “Ashram” systems, there have been no communist systems of government. Both USSR and China were and are State owned/run Capitalist monopolies.

  5. Jeremiah says:

    Awesome, detailed, sequitur logic.

  6. Enrico Sanna says:

    What if the people at Nsa and Cia were not that smart? What if they were midgets posing as giants?

  7. mangrove says:

    Thanks for continuing with this story, or should I say this fairytale they’ve presented to us. My takeaway rationale for the Snowden deception was simply to make headlines with the story in order to make the public aware and thus intimidate us into knowing that we’re being watched in everything we do. Curbing of free speech. It’s the Panopticon, which is anything but a new concept, but it is a useful one. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panopticon

    And to “Don” above, the incompetence theory doesn’t fly, much as you might wish it does. Just above every government conspiracy that takes place happens behind the veil of “incompetence.” Isn’t that a bit too convenient? 9/11 all the way down to Snowden…. “Nobody could imagine planes being used as weapons” to “Nobody could imagine a high-school dropout stealing the world’s biggest security secrets.” Right.

  8. From Québec says:

    Amazingly, this post has a lot to do with your previous post: “The Group Is All”

    Americans (the group), thinks highly of the CIA as an organization composed of “brilliant minded people”.

    Well, I have news for you. These CIA people, are recruited for their corrupted reputation, they are far from being brilliant minds. Every False Flags they have ever created, were easily debunked. They always botch their operations like amateurs.

    People (the Group), have a lot of difficulty to believe that ONE INDIVIDUAL can be that brilliant and that honest at the same time. They do not want one individual to become their hero or saviour, it has to be a GROUP.

    I believe in Snowden’s integrity. He was recruited because he was a genius in his field… the best of the best. The CIA probably taught that he was corruptible, since his whole family worked for the government.
    But Snowden turned out to be incorruptible

    The only reason why they could never locate him, is because he is much more brilliant than them. I know this is hard to swallow for people who puts group ahead of the individual.

    Another thing that bugs me, is that, I’m wondering if the war in Ukraine has anything to do with the fact that Snowden is in Russia?

    Some excerpts:

    Edward Snowden, the untold story.

    “His father, Lon, rose through the enlisted ranks of the Coast Guard to warrant officer, a difficult path. His mother, Wendy, worked for the US District Court in Baltimore, while his older sister, Jessica, became a lawyer at the Federal Judicial Center in Washington. “Everybody in my family has worked for the federal government in one way or another,” Snowden says. “I expected to pursue the same path.” His father told me, “We always considered Ed the smartest one in the family.” It didn’t surprise him when his son scored above 145 on two separate IQ tests”


    “Nor is he optimistic that the next election will bring any meaningful reform. In the end, Snowden thinks we should put our faith in technology—not politicians. “We have the means and we have the technology to end mass surveillance without any legislative action at all, without any policy changes.” The answer, he says, is robust encryption. “By basically adopting changes like making encryption a universal standard—where all communications are encrypted by default—we can end mass surveillance not just in the United States but around the world.”

    I encourage everyone here to read the above link.

    • From Québec says:

      Another excerpt from the same link:

      “Snowden read a news story that convinced him that the time had come to act. It was an account of director of national intelligence James Clapper telling a Senate committee that the NSA does “not wittingly” collect information on millions of Americans”

      “It’s like the boiling frog,” Snowden tells me. “You get exposed to a little bit of evil, a little bit of rule-breaking, a little bit of dishonesty, a little bit of deceptiveness, a little bit of disservice to the public interest, and you can brush it off, you can come to justify it. But if you do that, it creates a slippery slope that just increases over time, and by the time you’ve been in 15 years, 20 years, 25 years, you’ve seen it all and it doesn’t shock you. And so you see it as normal. And that’s the problem, that’s what the Clapper event was all about. He saw deceiving the American people as what he does, as his job, as something completely ordinary. And he was right that he wouldn’t be punished for it, because he was revealed as having lied under oath and he didn’t even get a slap on the wrist for it. It says a lot about the system and a lot about our leaders.” Snowden decided it was time to hop out of the water before he too was boiled alive.”

  9. jaredmatthewcaldwell says:

    You keep bringing up his lack of diploma, but that’s not relevant to the tech industry. I work for a major tech company with a household name, and there are plenty of people who work there without degrees.

    Also, the tech industry is the only industry not ruled by baby boomers, currently. Not surprised he was running major operations at 23 and up. The tech industry is a different beast.

    His lack of diploma is no cause for suspicion.

  10. Dr. Zed says:

    Snowden is a ‘good psyop’ by patriots in spookland. Obama purged his military command of patriots. Such factions do exist in positions that matter.

    How would Snowden work as a ‘good psyop’? Cells in both CIA and NSA gathered all the docs. They didn’t act furtively; they had access. They gathered them over some years. It was all very quiet and unnoticed.

    Next they hired an actor and assigned him a fake bio and exfiltration back-story. Ed Chiarini may have found the actual actor, although at least half of Ed’s work is utter madness.

    Snowden is paid to run with the script and give talks. The good cells briefed him on technical matters. He already had some computer skills. Doubtless you would want a decently proficient person to play this role, as the job entails tech talks to nerds. That explains the ‘nerd’ persona if you will. It’s possible the good cells even hired him as an employee for his cover story and training. The girlfriend? I think she’s his liaison officer.

    The cells tasked Snowden to hand over the document cache to Greenwald et al. They also secreted copies in various locations, both as safety dead-hand drops, and in the hands of unknown journalists with instructions ‘in case of emergency’ shall we say.

    You ask how little Snowden could play international fugitive so well. He got gigantic help from cells inside. They kept him steps ahead of his pursuers. Ditto intel operations against Greenwald et al.

    The good cells do not wish to destroy their agencies, though myself, I think these bogus empires should be pulverized to the last brick. Be that as it may, the cells all know about intel-made, false-flag terror for mass surveillance. They hate it. I suppose a natural inclination in these cells for ‘company loyalty’ if you will. They want their profession to be lawful, not power-grabbing evil-doers.

    So they have Greenwald do a very slow drip on doc releases. A sudden release could tear the whole house down, and even stop their paychecks, or subject them to investigations.

    Notice what Snowden is doing. He isn’t promoting panopticon desperation. He’s promoting ‘personal crypto’ in tech conferences. He’s telling tech firms to make crypto easy for Sally Soccermom and Joe Sixpack. Neither NSA nor CIA would as bureaucracies promote such concepts; only patriot cells would do that.

    So yes: Snowden’s back-story is a construct. Yet his docs are real, and show us how to defeat unconstitutional evil which is also unlawful internationally under treaty. By mapping the wires, the docs gave Google and Yahoo means to fix holes. By having Snowden promote crypto, the good guys are trying to get such means into our hands as consumer products and open source software.

    My own comment is that perhaps the worst internet security breakdown comes from a simple money racket.

    The ‘certificate’ system (SSL/TLS as we know them) crams together two separate concerns, identity and crypto. The concerns ought to be separated. A number of new security arrangements can happen with some efficiency. Browsers only need a JavaScript API to in-built compiled primitives, e.g. hash functions and block ciphers. Those items Mozilla, Google, Apple, and the rest could add inside a month. They do not need any permission.

    My hypothesis seems to cover all the concerns raised by your article. Thank you Jon for bringing them up.

  11. From Québec says:

    WOW! I’ve just finish listening to the Alex Jones show, and William Benny was in studio talking about NSA and Edward Snowden.

    Must see this interview:

    “On today’s worldwide transmission, we talk in-studio with the former highly placed intelligence official, William Binney. The 32 year NSA veteran warns we are entering a turnkey totalitarian state and surveillance is being used to control the population”
    Start listening at: 1:28:03

    Alex Jones Show: Commercial Free Video – Wednesday (3-18-15) William Binney in Studio

  12. Michael Butler says:

    yeah it doesn’t add up at all. How many governments have fallen as a result of the ‘Snowden’ revelations? I can’t recall one. How many major political figures? I can’t recall any either. Journalists like Greenwald have made a cottage industry of leaking his purported ‘secrets’ in piecemeal fashion…how many bombshells have we seen? Zero that I can recall. Sorcha Faal gives us better intel. And the pink elephant in the Snowden cache….how about some juicy tidbits on 911? Oh yeah, zero there too. For a guy that got away with the ‘keys to the kingdom’, I guess he forgot to pickup the 911 material as he was sauntering out the door into the Hawaiian breeze. And we’re supposed to believe they have no idea exactly what secrets he absconded with? How about some enterprise grade data exfiltration software? I guess the NSA couldn’t afford that to see who accessed what files and when. With only a 10 billion dollar budget, I guess that critical piece just slipped through the cracks…maybe they needed more bandwidth to watch porn or something. Hero or zero? Zero, it’s not even close.

    • musings says:

      Just running with the story as though it were true as reported by Greenwald (and I second the notion that Snowden’s formal educational attainments are irrelevant – many techies consider chasing that degree to be a total nuisance – I’ve known plenty of famous techies and some behind-the-scenes ones too who, although admitted to Harvard and MIT, dropped out as soon as they could access their most passionate love, a good programming role – I really don’t know why the bombshells haven’t dropped about 9/11 – but if it was, as I believe – a total inside job, then every communication with shadowy al Qaeda would be a red herring anyway – more significant would be the inside demolishing crew and the level of occupancy of the buildings – forget about those flights that never happened either. Therefore, you aren’t going to see anything about it, because those communications were probably well-covered by writing in pencil on paper pads and burning. Totally internal, except for one cooperative old man who owned the buildings (having recently bought them).

      Is this a psyop to tell us that we can live with NSA knowing “everything” about us? Or is it to convince us that it does when it might not? Yes, the Panopticon needs to publicize itself, even after lying to Congress, in order to be an effective chill on personal freedom. But is it? Does it curtail freedom or does it merely act like it might in order to prevent uprisings? Would we be better off with protests that accomplished something?

      I think the American public is suffering by a thousand cuts. The last thing we need is a bloated central government hiring us out as the world’s policeman. But whether a tv-sodden mass of people can organize to wrap their heads around making all politics local, and using it as a springboard to change, is the big question. So far, I am seeing us as convinced that the only thing we have to fear is the Islamic world. That and urban crime. What we really should fear is the loss of opportunity to change things before we are so deeply in that whole generations are sacrificed to endless war and saddled with a debt that makes military service seem the only game in town. With military models adopted for local policing, the transformation into a bellicose police state is complete. Then the wars have truly been brought home. Does Snowden have any secret files on that? I doubt it.

  13. ozziethinker says:

    Jon, I think this is an exercise or either affirming “safe” or bolstering “faltering” old belief systems.

    Patriot versus conscience (law versus freedom to think) is played out in cartoon like moves by the CIA-NSA “good cop, bad cop” routine.

    Our star, “golden boy” Snowden, “couldn’t lie straight in bed”, so where does he head for?

    Communist arch-bastions of evil, China (Honk Kong) and Russia. Who interviews him? The Left Wing newspaper (UK “old guard”) The Guardian (Note UK Home Office steps up to “refuse” (lol) Snowden safe passage for immunity & he is accompanied by wikileaks lackey. Wikileaks boss and “CIA man” is hold up “immune” in………the UK!)

    Oh dear………:(


  14. Hmmmmm…..Snowden=”Snow job”.

    A person who worked at one of these agencies said that he worked in the basement of the facility and every time he had to go to the bathroom he had to lock the door behind him. He could go nowhere unless that door was locked. He said that most people would not believe the things he knew to be true. Quiet man. He stared into the distance quite a bit.

  15. From Québec says:

    All you people should watch the video I’ve posted about the interview of William Binney on the Alex Jones Show yesterday, before criticizing Snowden.
    Your NSA is as dumb as your CIA. And Snowden is a hero.

  16. don draper says:

    “Should we believe the NSA is this weak and bumbling, when it comes to protecting its data, when it comes to tracking down one of its own who has stolen the farm?”
    Sounds like NSA – which likes to call itself ‘No Such Agency” business a s usual to me!

  17. From Québec says:

    Iceland’s most popular party wants to give Edward Snowden citizenship


  18. bdbinc says:

    Reblogged this on BDBinc and commented:

    The corporate media’s elaborate fabrication of fictitious “good guys” re branding their own “bad guys” to do this. In most stories the mainstream media tells people the opposite of the truth. Like Snowden (upon investigation and questioning) Putin is also a bankster cabal player and not the “lefty” media construct “hero’ .

  19. Aris Tocles says:

    Let me help you and your readers out with “answers” to some of your questions about his back story.

    1) You can’t enlist in the 18X option without a High School degree. Once you enlist, regardless if you fail (80% do), you have a 5-year enlistment commitment. Spilled Guts Snowden said he enlisted under the 18X(ray) on Brian Williams interview. You would be placed in casual status until you recover and completed basic training and advanced infantryman training and then be an infantryman.
    scroll down to registration information from a forum from 2003.

    2) Not computer skills but you do need to pass the DLAB (Defense Language Aptitude Battery) this shows you can learn a foreign language. Which is a requirement for SF.

    3) If real, he could have have had a secret security clearance. The security clearance background investigation for a young recent high school student is not that complex. So he could have been a security guard. The move to the CIA in 2003 is pretty much bull shit. CIA goes to college campus for recruitment because they want college graduates. That is unless you are born into the company.

    4) The Swiss Banker thingy. Yes this is phase 2 of the psyop. The banker is Bradley Birkenfeld. An American who was a banker in Switzerland. You can search this bullshit too if you want but the cliff note version is he tried to be a whistleblower, was thrown in minimum security federal prison in Pennsylvania, where he, depending on which interview you listen to became a room mate of Scott Bennett, or “met” Scott Bennett in the courtyard and they swapped war stories. Birkenfeld gets released and is awarded a cool 104 million in the fraud case against UBS. Bennett is making the rounds on the alt media circuit claiming to have been a direct commissioned psyops officer in the Reserves while simultaneously working for Dov Zakeim in Booze Allen in MacDill AFB. Bennett was busted for DUI at the MacDill front gate. He had weapons in car, which led to a search of his house on base, which also had weapons. And he frauded the government by claiming he was an Active Duty officer so he could get base housing. Of course this his second run in with the Feds. Last time, he tried to get immigration paperwork fast tracked on a girl he met on the internet. Pretty comical stuff going on in that little psyop

    5) A bonus for you. Try to book a flight from Hong Kong to Cuba via Moscow on a travel search site. It aint gonna happen. See this is how he got “stuck” in Russia.

    I don’t think its a NSA vs CIA turf war. It is a combined US/UK/Russia snow job.


    • theodorewesson says:

      Just to add,…



    • strangerthings says:

      ^Pretty much a fact.^ Having lived it and actually gone to the training myself. I have to have an ASVAB of 130 or something, a HSD, be an E-5 with 4 years in the Army. They did accept enlistees long before I joined but stopped it because the attrition rate was too high, that was prior to ’83. I went to the training in 90. I was medically terminated from the program I did not get medically discharged but was offered the option to return. I remained in the Army for several years.

      You seriously should question the bullshit surrounding this guy. It sounds like a screenwriter wrote a script.

  20. Aris Tocles says:


    Yep, here we have Spilled Guts Snowden and Heyday Hayden yucking up at a couples photo shoot at “a gala in 2011”. Seriously whats up with that back drop? Only thing is what gala and where? In 2011 Snowden was a contractor for Dell at KRSOC in Hawaii and Heyday was working for Chertoff Group. Why would they pose like that? Sing “Happy Together” as you look at the photo. Of course somehow Bam Bam got the photo for his Wired article.


  21. Well, Mossad is at the top of the food chain, aren’t they?

  22. The whole story stank from its very beginning.
    Telling people that it could all be a fake, I was called a “conspiracy theorist”, a bad man even, doubting the integrity of this modern hero.
    Jon shows it palpably: The proper questions weren’t asked.
    But that, of course, may be sheer coincidence.

    • jack blazer says:

      maybe snowden was used. for what? …to generate this huge discussion about (illegaly) spying out EVERYBODY …the natural question in this case should be: “what could be hidden behind it..?” i guess it could be ‘large scale biological mindcontrol’..!

  23. wayne says:

    Thank you Jon and everyone else for providing many great points to ponder. The Binney interview was very interesting and to my mind it does seem as though the NSA perhaps could have underestimated threats from within, it wouldn’t be the first time a government agency got caught with their pants down due to a pompous belief in their own superiority. Anyway, I am a relative newcomer to the inner workings of secret groups and all that however this much seems clear: the NSA is spying on whoever they please and no good can ever come of that in a supposedly free and democratic society. The questions Jon brings up are of great interest to me and like him I would very much like to know the answers. Who better then Jon himself to interview Mr. Snowden then? Any chance Jon for you to make this happen? If Snowden were to flat out deny an interview with Jon then yes, I would be very skeptical of his true identity and motives. At least in Canada our government has the good courtesy to tell us beforehand exactly how they are going to rule us with an iron fist before they slam it down on us! See the proposed bill C-51. A clear path to government tyranny if ever I did see one. Dismantle government as we know it and all their many layers of deception and start fresh. Can we find real leaders that are incorruptible? Human history seems to say no so where does that leave us?

  24. bdbinc says:

    Wikileaks is intels (NSA/CIA/6eyes) program to identify and threat assess ( “deal with” ) whistle blowers.

    All information released by the media was pre approved before its release .
    The idea of censorship was proposed under the media release of wikileak’s US torturing program (not news as it was already known) and the mega data spying .

    Wikileaks was and is a control program, we still don’t know about the TPPA . People seem to be OK with just partial bits of info on the TPPA from CIA’s wikileaks program. A Frog boiling program.
    Controlling both sides is what the Cabal do. They fund both sides of the wars, fund their own opposition and control it to retain power.

  25. Jon Brown says:

    A very well written article indeed, and some thought provoking comments underneath.
    I went through the whole range of feelings that some of you have too probably. At first I thought he was a traitor (due to still being half asleep) then as I became more and more able to think for myself, I thought he was a hero, sticking his neck on the line trying to expose the murky dealings of the spying agencies that we all should have known were going on anyway.
    Then as I really started to wake up I realized that the whole thing was a set up.
    But it wasn’t until I found out that Mr Snowden isn’t a traitor or a hero, not even a shill.
    He is in fact a CGI creation. He doesn’t even exist. I have no doubt whatsoever that not a single person who reads this will look into it. But I just wanted to let you know how much you are REALLY being fooled.
    Good luck everyone.

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