Edward Snowden

Susan Rice Tries To Turn Possible Snowden Pardon Into Attack on GOP

All the worst people are still mad he blew the whistle on government snooping.

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President Donald Trump recently floated the possibility of a pardon for whistleblower Edward Snowden, who famously informed the public that the National Security Agency (NSA) was secretly collecting and storing millions of Americans' private phone and online records.

The proposition sort of came out of nowhere—it was a response to a reporter's question—and is probably basically a reflection of Trump's willingness to make any idea a trial balloon, plus his now-permanent animosity toward America's federal intelligence agencies for investigating his campaign. Before Trump became president, he repeatedly called Snowden a traitor and even demanded his execution.

If Trump did, in fact, pardon Snowden, that would be great. But some high-level responses over the weekend might give you the impression that Trump was considering something really awful—like, I don't know, bombing a foreign country without congressional authorization, or maybe secretly snooping on citizens' online data.

Susan Rice, former national security adviser and former ambassador to the United Nations, was one of the final four possible running mates for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden before he ultimately chose California Sen. Kamala Harris.

After this tweet from Rice, many Democrats are probably relieved she wasn't the choice:

"This is who you are now." If only it were true that the GOP were the party opposed to warrantless surveillance! But sadly, neither major party can actually make that claim. There are a number of elected Republicans who support what Snowden did and oppose this violation of Americans' privacy, but not nearly enough to comprise the majority.

All summer long, we've seen story after story about the use of surveillance against protesters demanding police reform. The Democratic Party is most certainly going to be positioning itself this week as criminal justice reformers and in opposition to overly harsh or oppressive policing systems. How tone-deaf do you have to be to attack the Republican Party for possibly not imprisoning a surveillance whistleblower? The American Civil Liberties Union thinks Snowden should be pardoned. The New York Times editorial board called him a whistleblower and wants him to at least get clemency. But not Rice.

Rice got backup from NeverTrumper columnist Jennifer Rubin, who seems upset that the Cold War is over:

Rep. Liz Cheney (R–Wy.), daughter of the warmongering ex-veep Dick Cheney, was happy to pile on with the "traitor" nonsense:

We have no good evidence that Snowden gave secrets to the Russian and Chinese governments. He gave them to journalists who revealed them to the American public. And the big revelations were about how the NSA treated American citizens.

Cheney focuses on Russia and China here, but the NSA's apologists have traditionally justified this surveillance as a much-needed way to find out who might have been coordinating with Islamic terrorists overseas. Does anybody remember intelligence officials' absurd argument that in order to find the needle in the haystack, they needed to build the haystack first? They said they needed everyone's data in order to search for the "bad guys'" data. This never had anything to do with Russia or China, even if Snowden ended up having to flee to Hong Kong and live in exile in Russia.

The NSA itself has voluntarily abandoned this surveillance. Not only was it ineffective at actually finding threats, but the spies discovered that they simply couldn't collect this information without repeatedly violating innocent Americans' privacy rights.

It's 2020, and people are marching on the streets to stop an overly powerful police state. And yet we're still seeing people calling Snowden a traitor? Really?

Bonus video: ReasonTV on the case for pardoning Snowden:

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  1. Susan Rice would never violate a constitutional oath.

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  2. What would be better? Is that dismantling of the surveillance state that Snowden exposed along with pardoning him. Yes I realize thats just as like to happen as going back to currency backed by precious metals

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  3. and is probably basically a reflection of Trump’s willingness to make any idea a trial balloon,

    I’m going to use this line the next time the entire media sphere loses their shit about Trump being a unique threat to Western Democracy based on a tweet that’s nothing more than a classic, Trumpian (and clumsy) trial balloon.

    plus his now-permanent animosity toward America’s federal intelligence agencies for investigating his campaign.

    This might have something to do with his reversal on this:

    Before Trump became president, he repeatedly called Snowden a traitor and even demanded his execution.

    It’s possible that Trump, realizing he was hated by the intelligence community– and pretty much everyone else in the swamp, realized (after having his campaign spied on by a sitting presidential administration) that the intelligence community that he undoubtedly saw as noble and good, wasn’t so.

    That’s just my theory, you can make of it what you will.

    And yes, it’s possible he doesn’t give two shits about Snowden, but has found something to “troll the libs over”. The fact that they’re taking the bait tells me as much about “the libs” as it does about Trump.

    1. Sort’a like “I’m going to look at it” is a guarantee he’ll do it.

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    2. I guess we can use “trial balloon” as a euphemism for what Trump’s tweets really are — the freegin’ President of the United States trolling.

    3. Trump might have called Snowden a traitor to get some support within the IC that he’d need; first to expose Obama’s spying on the Trump campaign (and who knows who else), second to reform it.

      Good observation about Trump’s trial balloons. People respond and say things that expose their TDS. I think somebody said Trump’s superpower is getting others to expose themselves.

  4. “We have no good evidence that Snowden gave secrets to the Russian and Chinese governments.”

    The Chinese? Dunno. The Russians? They let him stay didn’t they? Pretty strong evidence of him giving them something.

    1. No. Evidence of them getting something, sure, but more likely the pleasure of tweaking the current crop of cold warriors.

      1. You’re free to believe what you like, even that.

      2. LOL. It is a free country.

      3. Considering he’s only been granted temporary residency status and not permanent asylum either he’s not giving them very good information or he’s really shitty at negotiating for what information he has/had.

    2. The embarrassment he gave the US intelligence agencies would be gift enough. Maybe he did give them more. Generally speaking, I don’t give a shit what he gave Putin. If it were that bad, we probably would have already seen dire consequences from it.

      On the other hand, he gave the American people evidence that their government feels it has no restrictions on it’s own power and that they handed themselves the keys to all of our communications and location data. He gave us the knowledge that despite all the smoke and mirrors, we are not democratically governed, we are despotically ruled. If it’s possible that there are any heroes left in the world, Snowden would be one of them.

      1. I can agree with what he did and think he paid for his safety simultaneously.

      2. The embarrassment he gave the US intelligence agencies would be gift enough. Maybe he did give them more. Generally speaking, I don’t give a shit what he gave Putin. If it were that bad, we probably would have already seen dire consequences from it.

        I think there’s an additional dimension in that, do I think Snowden is disclosing information to Putin that I or the citizens could/would find personally useful? Otherwise, I really only care about Putin as an opposition to the US Gov’t. In which case, he’s maybe worse than Jo Jorgenson? Maybe?

        Moreover, as you accurately point out, what has the fallout been? No personal offense to the CIA operatives working in the field offices in Russia, the Ukraine, or the ME, etc., but I haven’t heard a lot of news about their bodies piling up and if Snowden’s trading their identity got them reassigned to a desk in Siberia or Greenland, I don’t give a shit.

        1. The Chinese got dozens of our “assets” over the first half of tbe decade.
          Of course, they didn’t need Snowden for that – just the internet

      3. I am with you on this one. Hero fits.

    3. Maybe it was just to piss Obama off?

    4. The US Empire voided his passport after he landed. Putin could have helped him get out, but why not keep him and piss off the US? I’m sure they have pressured him to “cooperate”, an added bonus if they could pull it off without bad press. It’s touchy. But the “optics” is good for Putin. He comes off as granting sanctuary from oppression by a hypocritical “free country”.
      How does this involve Snowden offering anything? He is a pawn in the USSA/Russian propaganda war.

    5. No it is not. That’s your *inference*. But its not evidence. France let Roman Polanski be extradited – is that evidence he gave the French government anything?

    6. Why? All they have to do is read Glenn Greenwald.

  5. Susan Rice….Yeah alright. She did such a stellar job, completely fucking up the ME, and substituting progressive ideology for national interest.

    I am sure she is a wonderful human being, but her job performance just sucked.

    As an aside, her son is a big-time MAGA supporter. Makes me smile. I bet those family dinners are interesting.

  6. I hate to sound like a pure contrarian, but whenever I have a conflict of conscience and I’m not sure what the right thing to believe is, I ask myself, what do Susan Rice, anyone with the names Cheney or Kristol, or any former members of the CIA think. If they all agree about it, I know to a certainty that it is unapologetically evil and I need to believe the opposite.

    1. Yeah, it is hard to figure out people who were so fabulously wrong for so long are still taken seriously.

      1. If it were a just world, it would hard to figure out why they’re not all already on death row for crimes against humanity and genocide. But it’s not a just world, because irredeemable garbage like all those listed get to make the rules and will never face consequences. Consequences are for the innocent children dying in the cindering rumble left by their decisions.

        1. I used to blame the “front men” as the prime movers, like you do. It finally dawned on me that these sociopaths are empowered by the public. The majority are fine with a coercive political paradigm. They see no alternative because they have been brainwashed for 12 years. They believe force trumps reason, rights, choice. Worse, they accept the lie that a voluntary govt. would bring chaos. Hence, they self-enslave (vote) and call it “exercising my rights”. It’s the opposite.

          1. I agree that there’s huge blame to go around in the general public, but ultimately it is the fault of the establishment types. If you ever get into political discussions with normies, you find them just repeating politician and media talking points at face value. It’s as if they believe that politicians policies and rhetoric should be taken at face value and in good faith. That’s how most people are, they assume that the people they are dealing with, at least the ones on their side, are honest brokers who respect their intelligence and their wishes. The political class is wall to wall sociopaths that gleefully take advantage of the fact that people are naive and foolish enough to take anyone at their word.

            If I have to choose between the naive people that are trying at least trying to be honest versus the “smart” people that know full well that they’re playing a game where everyone’s life, property and well being constantly hangs in the balance and still continue to lie every chance they get, I know who I’ll blame.

    2. ^ Pretty much this.

  7. The NSA itself has voluntarily abandoned this surveillance. Not only was it ineffective at actually finding threats, but the spies discovered that they simply couldn’t collect this information without repeatedly violating innocent Americans’ privacy rights.

    welp, guess they learned their lesson, takes care of that little bugaboo. I feel better knowing the gentlemen at NSA were able to finally ‘discover’ what is they were doing all those years.
    this article is a fucking mess from the 2nd sentence to the last sentence.

    1. Yeah, they totes learned their lesson and completely stopped doing it. Just abandoned it. No chance that they changed and expanded it and then renamed the program to just cover it up again. No sirree.

      1. Why pay for all the servers and infrastructure when you can just float the ideas to Google?

    2. Yeah, anybody that believe the NSA gave up power that had needs to get their meds checked. FFS. Why would they stop? Despite what Snowden did, what consequences follow to change NSA behavior? Outside of 2 or 3 senators/congressmen, who even talks about privacy from government spying?

      Honestly, the American people deserve it. If they’re not willing to give a shit about their rights, then they will lose them!

      1. Maybe they were super concerned with Americans rights? That took me awhile to write because I’m laughing too hard.

  8. how is Susan Rice still a person to cite?

    1. The article got written back when she was on the short list for being the VP nominee? You’ve got me. She makes Madeline Albright look competent.

    2. How does advertising pay for clickbait articles?

      1. wish i knew

  9. LOfuckingL at the Democrats embracing of the IC and warmongering pieces of shit. Party of principles my ass.

  10. Maybe she’ll blame snowden on a video. Anyway Susan Rice is perhaps one of the biggest fucktards in DC. Go back to the 90s and see how everything she touched got massively screwed up.

    We gave up to the rule of diversity and this is what we got.

    1. Diversity has nothing to do with it. The warmongers and the military industrial complex will always find useful idiots like her to be the face of their evil plans regardless of their skin pigmentation. She got where she is because she’s a sociopath who’s willing to rubber stamp mass murder campaigns.

      1. That’s putting it plainly.

    2. When the Obama administration allowed the ChiCom’s to steal all the personnel files on those requiring security clearance I don’t remember her raising a ruckus, nor when the Clinton administration allowed the ChiCom’s to steal weapons secrets. Am I just misremembering?

  11. If the American Dream is resuscitated from the coma and nursed back to health, Snowden will be given a pardon/a statue/Medal of Honor. The federal police (FBI, DEA, CIA, ICE, etc.) will be disbanded.

  12. Also it’s just hilarious reason thinks Snowden is all about government snooping and nothing else. There’s a whole lot more to that story. You can read about it. Suffice it to say if Snowden returns it’s doubtful he’ll get any pardon. They would have to completely gaslight you into believing he wasn’t turned or that he didn’t release other classified info than snooping. The kinds of things reason doesn’t report on here, and were weirdly celebrated in Stone’s movie treatment.

  13. Snowden’s public service of blowing the whistle on billions of daily felonies agains the American people, committed by officers we PAY to serve us, deserves our thanks.

    Susan Rice is a scumbag who belongs behind bars with the rest of the Obama regime.

    -jcr

  14. Why are former Obama shit heads and Barry himself still flapping their gums?

    Rice, Barry and Hillary have blood on their hands for Benghazi. They left that poor guy to die as they ordered the military to stand down knowing full well there was a terrorist attack only to blame some shlep over a movie and then ruining his life for good measure.

    Evil cunts.

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  17. If Snowden “transitioned” to female, what would Rice, et al. be saying? It worked for Manning, and Obama got heralded for his mercy.

    1. Yeah Obama only held Manning naked, in solitary, and incommunicado, and tortured and imprisoned her for five years, before commuting the sentence and setting the release date in the first part of Trump’s term to avoid inconvenience.
      Obama the Merciful.

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