Over here on the Left, a large and vocal number of people now treat as unassailable fact the assertion that Mr. Greenwald would be instantly Buttled
and tossed incommunicado into a lightless hellhole should he set foot on American soil is (emphasis added):
Wallace Shawn on Artistic Solidarity: As Glenn Greenwald Can’t Return to U.S., I Took My Play to Him...WALLACE SHAWN: Initially, it was just an emotional response to the fact that I had invited this writer, who I deeply admire, to come and see my play. And, you know, people like me in show business, we’re show-offs, and I wanted him to see the play. And he kept not appearing in the audience. And eventually, I realized he was not able to return to the United States because of having received the NSA papers.
What Mr. Shawn did -- taking his play to Brazil to stage it for a writer who he greatly admires -- was an unreservedly kind and generous thing to do. Period.
The problem, is that Mr. Shawn's understanding of Mr. Greenwald's situation is based on a fairy tale, manufactured from one stupid remark by one elected buffoon, and a couple of idiotic comments by media goofs.
So how in the world did Mr. Greenwald's insinuations and unsupported allegations on this specific subject ever become so concretized in the imagination of so many on the Left that it is now stated as offhandedly and axiomatically as "Benghaaaazi!" and "ACORN" and "IRS Scandal!" are referenced on the Right?
Mr. Shawn is a gifted dramatist, but in this particular venue Mr. Shawn cannot hold a dramaturgical candle to Mr. Greenwald, who has been trotting all over the planet tirelessly promoting the tale of shadowy conspiracies to keep him exiled from the land of his birth.
Of course, I respect (and sometimes disagree with) the opinion of those who are heartily sick of people who keep trying to distract from the important and consequential story of NSA abuses by dragging the personal dramas of Glenn Greenwald into it.
If you are one of those people --
For the benefit of anyone for whom reading is perhaps not fundamental, Glenn Greenwald's personality, and the peripatetic globe-trotting of Edward Snowden, are not the story here. If you decide to make them the story, then you are taking yourself off the real story, and that's your fault, not Greenwald's or Snowden's...
-- I strongly urge you to direct your comments to:
Amy Goodmanc/o Democracy Now!207 W. 25th St., Floor 11New York, NY 10001
*(For those who don't know who Barton Gellman is, shame on you. He is the Washington Post reporter to whom Edward Snowden also vouchsafed access to his massive trove of stolen documents and who has also written many fine articles about the NSA. When last seen, Mr. Gellman was living his life in New York City and writing stories about the NSA, unmolested and undisappeared by The League of Shadows.)