Here we see three prominent American whistleblowers sitting around a desk at the offices of USA Today having a very insightful conversation about privacy and the NSA and how we got to where we are.
Did you notice what's missing?
No one is in shackles. No one is being muzzled. There is not an iron bar or cell door or fluorescent jumpsuit or a jailer in sight.
Which is weird because as of today, Glenn Greenwald has still refused to retract his remarkable assertion that spending the rest of one's life being held incommunicado in a supermax hellhole is the fate of American whistleblowers. This remains a lie. Mr. Greenwald knows its a lie. And yet he keeps asserting it over and over again, and his friends in the media keep letting him slide.
My understanding from the start is that [Edward Snowden] believed that the US is not a safe place for whistle-blowers, that whistle-blowers cannot get a fair trial in the United States and that he wanted to participate in the debate that he helped to prompt rather than spending the rest of his life in a cage or incommunicado.All three of the gentlemen you see in the video were investigated.
One the three -- Thomas Drake -- faced charges that stemmed from his leaking materials to reporters and which were A) bullshit and, B) dropped.
(This is where aNone of them have been "disappeared".
Comedy Central video used to be.
But ever since President Worse Than Boosh and John Oliver broke The Daily Show, Comedy Central videos have been autoplaying for no explicable reason.
So no more Comedy Central videos for now.
Thanks a lot Obama!)
None have been rendered incommunicado.
None of them have been dumped into a supermax hellhole for decades.
And speaking of reporters riding hobbyhorses instead of reporting facts, if you happened to read about the Drake case in Salon, at some point you hit this paragraph in which the journalist widens the specific and unfair things that happened to Thomas Drake way out into an all-encompassing indictment of the entire system:
First, let's stipulate that based on the few factual details that an averagely-bright layman such as myself can get hold of, what happened to Mr. Drake was awful. Simply awful.
Second, precisely because I am an averagely-bright layman and not an intel tech or analyst or civil rights attorney, if you are a journalist and you want to win me to your point of view, you have to do it with the facts. You can't just make shit up. You can't conflate one story with another. You can't just make gigantic leaps from what is true to what-you-want-me-to-believe-is-true or blindly assert that such-and-such is obviously untrue because you, personally, don't want it to be true.
You can't, for example, just claim -- as this reporter does -- that Mr. Drake was indicted for "going through proper channels". He wasn't. That's a lie. He was indicted for leaking information to the press. But strangely the reporter doesn't mention those leaks at all, choosing instead to part company with the actual facts in order to pursue her wider, ideological agenda.
And what is this "reporter's" agenda?
Well, that might be easier to suss that out if, before you started reading this column, the editors at Salon bothered to tell you that the reporter -- Ms. Jesselyn Radack -- is not a reporter at all but is, in fact, Thomas Drake's attorney.
Weird how they thought that wasn't important enough to mention.