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Edward Snowden | Photograph: TheGuardian.com
As the world changes rapidly with modern technology, governments grow increasingly concerned with guarding their secrets. Some citizens have taken it upon themselves to expose classified government information to inform the general public of secret operations that they believe have infringed upon the rights of the people.

With the events concerning former CIA information technology employee Edward Snowden, and the classified NSA documents he sent to The Guardian and Washington Post, we seem to be left with more questions than answers. 
The classified documents Snowden made available reveal that the United States government is bending policy to justify spying on millions of Americans in the name of Homeland Security. Many ask if his act is one of crime or courtesy, if he's a patriot or a traitor. According to the website for the Office of Inspector General, whistle-blowing retaliation is basically the pre/post retributions a whistle-blower is forced to endure because they are asking too many questions and not agreeing with what is being done inside the establishment. So it's easy to understand, as we watch Bradley Manning being escorted to the beginning of his trial where he is being charged with "aiding the enemy", among other things, for releasing sensitive government files and videos showing American war crimes, why Edward Snowden fled the country. Acknowledging that he will never see his family again, that his old life is gone.
Recently, Snowden left Hong Kong during the cover of night and landed in Moscow. Possibly heading towards Venezuela. Ecuador’s foreign minister, Ricardo Patino, also stated they had received a request from Snowden for Asylum. One thing Snowden seems to be doing very well is leading false trails to where he is heading next. Keeping the very frustrated federal agents on their toes and in the dark. Tension between the US and China has become strained; the US government doesn’t necessarily believe China's reasoning for letting Snowden leave the country. We can be certain this won’t be the last time we hear from Snowden, since it has already been rumored he has even more to reveal to the public.

In her book, Classified Woman, Sibel Edmonds notes the cover-up of improper background checks required by the FBI and CIA. Some instances, most recently with Edward Snowden, help prove this to be true. She also discusses the blatant harassment of herself, her family and friends, and sometimes co-workers whom she was close to. From tapped phones and filed emails, to threats and undercover officers making no attempt to hide that they were following her. To this day Sibel Edmonds’ birthday, place of birth, and ALL the languages she speaks are classified.

Yet in all these cases (Sibel Edmonds, Bradley Manning, and Edward Snowden), the individuals only set out to inform the public, which is their duty as a citizen. Is that a crime, or is it a courtesy? And now that the petition to pardon Edward Snowden has reached over 100,000 signatures, requiring the White House to respond, our question to you is: should these whistleblowers receive this extreme scrutiny and punishment by our government, or a hero's cheer for shedding light into the hushed dealings of the federal government?


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B
6/26/2013 12:11:43 pm

It's Bravery. And I really can't see the reason why the US government is accusing him of espionage. Espionage is when a person spies for the enemy. What Snowden basically did is to reveal to the American citizens that their government is spying on their private lives!

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Michele
6/26/2013 12:12:17 pm

I think he did the right thing! He was a whistleblower who did not have a "higher up" to go to. They would have swept it under the rug and he would have been let go, the maybe ended up accidentally killed or missing. He did what he morally felt was the right choice "for the people" of this United States. I respect his courage and pray he receives political asylum wherever his feet land.

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Margaret
6/26/2013 04:05:21 pm

As a Canadian I definitely support Mr. Snowden. Too many people are saying "I have nothing to hide, so it doesn't matter." I'm not sure if Americans are aware of the case of Maher Arar who was the victim of extraordinary rendition to Syria and torture for a year. The man held dual citizenship in Canada and Syria. He was detained at a US airport on a stop over on his way to a family vacation because the US government mistakenly thought he was Al Qaeda.. Sometimes "intelligence" agencies can put 2 and 2 together and get 73. (The man held dual citizenship in Canada and Syria.) This was in 2002. His family remained on the no-fly list until 2011 even though both Canada and Syria had declared him totally innocent long before then. Mr Arar thought he had nothing to hide.

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Joker
6/27/2013 12:49:16 pm

Not sure if anybody knows this but there's a 30 count indictment being announced against Jahar today. This case seems to be on an accelerated track which could indicate a plea deal is imminent.

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6/28/2013 02:30:50 am


"Accelerated track"? "Plea deal is imminent"? Huh?

The probable cause hearing was DELAYED. If the lawyers intended to make a plea deal, they would have done it already.

The indictment is so weak, adding nothing new to the preliminary charge, that I can't imagine a plea deal.

This case will go to the Grand Jury, and Dzokhar will have occasion to tell HIS side of the story.


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Joker
6/28/2013 11:25:19 am

You're evidentially not familiar with the criminal trial process.

The probable cause hearing is now kaput. The defense must have waived their right to it.

The Grand Jury has already heard the evidence. That's why there's an indictment.

The indictment is 74 pages long. This about 60 pages longer than the original complaint. New is the charge that deals with the death of Sean Collier. Bear in mind that all the Feds need to do is match the ballistics of the gun that Tam threw at a cop on Laurel st to the bullets found in Sean Colliers body. That charge alone could get him executed.

The indictment also confirms that there is evidence of the confession written inside the boat.

July 10th is now his arraignment. This is where he will enter a plea. The whole process has been accelerated. That is why I feel a plea bargain may be in the works

In the future I would suggest that you do some reading before you attempt to counter someone else's views.

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6/29/2013 02:31:21 pm

Again: the indictment is weak. After a short look I already detected major embarassing flaws (Lingzi Lu and Martin Richard were victims of the first bomb).

Waiving the preliminary hearing seems to be quite common, can have various reasons and in no way indicates that Dzhokhar intends to plead guilty.


Margaret
6/28/2013 11:50:45 am

I think we've gotten way off-topic here.

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Joker
6/28/2013 01:01:53 pm

I suspect this site is about to die anyway. In the end it was never really about seeking truth and justice.

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6/28/2013 01:07:52 pm

@Joker - Why would you say that? We're still here, don't plan on "dying" anytime soon?

-WEARETHELION

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Joker
6/28/2013 01:33:47 pm

You may be here but your folowers will be gone because all they ever really cared about was "free Jahar"

6/28/2013 01:39:08 pm

@Joker - If there's just one person left, we'll stick around. Even if that one person is you... ;)

We've made it clear to supporters that we are here for far more than just the case for Jahar. This is about rights, and about protecting people by protecting those rights.

-WEARETHELION

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Margaret
6/28/2013 02:35:39 pm

Thank you, wearethelion. Your commitment to the protection of rights is what keeps me tuning in. The assault on rights includes and goes way beyond Mr. Tsarnaev. this assault started before the marathon and seems to grow every day, as witnessed in the death of Mr. Todashev.. We cannot stand quiet.

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B
6/29/2013 04:34:42 am

If you stop being so mean, maybe less people will be forced to leave this group! Peace

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Audra
6/30/2013 02:00:58 am

I'm sure the same thing may have been said about Info Wars and Boiling Frog. They started with a initial cause and eventually it turned into so much more. From my point of view We Are The Lion is a new breed and I DON'T see them ending just because Jahars trial is done and over with.

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