Edward Snowden has to live in Russia for some unforeseen amount of time. Poor Snowden. He left the United States because he didn’t like a few programs aimed at terrorists, catching terrorists, or finding terrorists cells. The programs, whether one likes them or not, are the products of an elected legislature voting for them, the executive branch executing them, and the judicial branch exercising approval. For someone who felt those limited programs were a gross overuse of power, he now is in a country where those programs are child’s play. Ironic, don’t you think?
According to his spokesman, he is “stuck” in Russia and forced to take temporary asylum there until he can get a flight to one of his permanent potential homes — Ecuador, Cuba, etc. etc. — because the U.S. and its allies won’t let flights in their air space that might have Snowden on board. So, for now, Snowden will be floating about Moscow. For any of you who have spent time in Moscow, it doesn’t rate as a fun, exciting city. And, if Snowden thinks the U.S. government is underhanded and overbearing, he is in for a surprise in Moscow. Although the Russian and Chinese governments have already copied everything he had on his computers and phones, he will be watched and followed 24/7. I can’t help but think it is vastly amusing.
I also wonder about who is paying for this entire soap opera. First, Snowden went to Hong Kong and stayed in a luxury hotel. Then he went to Moscow and is staying in the airport hotel — and clearly not losing weight from lack of food based on his latest appearance on camera. Soon, he will be living somewhere in Moscow. Who’s paying for his rent and food and transportation? From all the information given on the news, he doesn’t come from a super rich family who smuggled money out in advance for him to some offshore account. He isn’t old enough or successful enough in a career to have amassed large amounts of cash. So, who is paying for all of this? Would it be Wikileaks? Or, if this were a book plot of mine, was his girlfriend really a recruiting agent for a foreign government? Wouldn’t that be a fun scheme? She was sent to find an insecure, geeky man who was essentially a failure at everything — school, work, and probably personal problems in his teens — and recruited him to access documents he shouldn’t have been able to get and to run away and release them to the press. She merely strokes his ego and plies him with tales of how he will be an American hero if he shows the overreaching arm of the government. Of course, he does this from outside the U.S. in a country known for copying everything off every person’s phones, computers, iPads, etc., so that his “secret” documents were certainly not secret anymore to the Chinese — and now not a secret to the Russians.
I just have to wonder: Who’s providing the money and from where? If I were the American government, I would follow the money — and cut that off! Snowden with no funds will dislike Moscow even more.