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  • Jul 14, 2014
  • Updated: 4:56pm
Edward Snowden
NewsHong Kong

EXCLUSIVE: Whistle-blower Edward Snowden talks to South China Morning Post

Ex-CIA contractor speaks to reporter from secret location in Hong Kong, revealing fresh details of US surveillance, pressure on Hong Kong, snooping and cyber attacks on China.

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 12 June, 2013, 8:51pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 June, 2013, 3:31am

Surveillance whistle-blower Edward Snowden has spoken for the first time since blowing his own cover in an exclusive interview with the South China Morning Post.

The ex-CIA analyst has been holed up in secret locations in Hong Kong since fleeing Hawaii ahead of highly sensitive leaks revealing details of US top-secret phone and internet surveillance of its citizens.

Snowden's actions have been both praised and condemned globally. 

More... Edward Snowden: US government has been hacking Hong Kong and China for years

More... Whistle-blower Edward Snowden tells SCMP: 'Let Hong Kong people decide my fate'

But he told Post reporter Lana Lam: "I'm neither traitor nor hero. I'm an American."

Today, he reveals:

  • more explosive details on US surveillance targets
  • his plans for the immediate future
  • the steps he claims the US has taken since he broke cover in Hong Kong
  • his fears for his family

The 29-year-old was working for defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton at the National Security Agency (NSA), the biggest spy surveillance organisation in the world, when he leaked information claiming the US was systematically seizing vast amounts of phone and web data. Snowden fled to Hong Kong after using Britain’s Guardian newspaper to expose the agency’s PRISM program which gives officials easy access to data held by nine of the world’s top internet companies, including Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Skype.

People who think I made a mistake in picking HK as a location misunderstand my intentions. I am not here to hide from justice; I am here to reveal criminality

“People who think I made a mistake in picking HK as a location misunderstand my intentions. I am not here to hide from justice; I am here to reveal criminality,” Snowden told the Post earlier today.

He vowed to fight any extradition attempt by the US government, saying: “My intention is to ask the courts and people of Hong Kong to decide my fate. I have been given no reason to doubt your system.’’

It is believed the US is pursuing a criminal investigation, but no extradition request has yet been filed. Hong Kong has an extradition treaty with the US, although analysts say any attempts to bring Mr Snowden to America may take months and could be blocked by Beijing.

His actions have been both praised and condemned globally, with some hailing him a hero while others a traitor. Some senators have accused Snowden of treason.

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46

This article is now closed to comments

O'Shea
Mr/Ms Made in Thailand or Mr/Ms Scorpion, your anonymity is consistently similar to the cowardice that you accuse Snowden of.
rustedarmor
"I'm neither traitor nor hero. I'm an American."
No, my friend. You are now a Chinese national ... I hope your Mandarin is good ...
walter.ziobro.5
It seems to me that Beijing could request a quid pro quo (in the form of information) from Mr Snowden before blocking his extradition. Or, they could ask for something from the US to NOT block his extradition. In the extradition game, it looks like Beijing is holding the trump card. Don't be surprised if the US elects to "pass" on a legal extradition.
Felix George
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN
Mr. Edward Snowden has the biggest balls in the world.
Not since Mr. Michael C. Ruppert released his book--"Crossing The Rubicon" has there been anyone on earth, like Mr. Edward Snowden, with the courage and the ability to take a stand against the evil forces trying to control our earth.
When we see corruption, we have three choices:
1. Join it
2. Ignore it
3. Fight it
Those who ignore and join are ultimately faced with this dilema... "There is no honor among thieves!"
Money, cars, houses, whores, drugs, drinks, gold, diamonds, power, and the like are all worthless, when compared to honor, love, truth, justice, peace, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control... (all of these are "free"!)
Those who trash Mr. Snowden and his allies (who seek "equality & partnership") are obviously working for the dark side... they want "power and control" over everything around them!
Hitler is a wonderful example for you "power and control" junkies.. there is no limit.. there are no boundries... there are no rules... for your greed and lust.
But, there will always be an ugly ending for you and yours.
2 Kings 6:16
Mr. Snowden...you are my hero.
Keep up the good work.
I will try to help you in any way I can.
May the Good Lord Bless You and Keep You Safe!
Respectfully submitted,
elgato
Felix L. George, Architect
San Diego, California, USA
felixlgeorge@gmail.com
Don't Tread On Me
pete.dosado
Just an amateur sleuth trying out my new techniques! If Snowden wanted to be consistent with his life goals and aspirations, he should have, since he was going with a pole dancer, gone to Poland for asylum! Now, unless he was going with a Honky Tonk entertainer, there was absolutely no reason for him to seek asylum in Hong Kong!
awoaca
Neither a traitor nor a hero. Just a self-righteous jerk. And way out of Daniel Ellsberg's league..
marian.hilton.165
such a foolish response, it makes me incredibly sad.
hongkiejj@malaysiaboleh
Eventually has to talk to someone local and there is not much choice frankly......but good choice irregardles.
Lets hope this courageous young man gets his fair share of justice.
The people of HK supports free speech and the right to exercise their constitution rights.
Wish you all the best dude ...u r gonna need it .
Mikhail  Kryzhanovsky
CIA AGAINST AMERICA. Part 4. M.Kryzhanovsky
Therefore , we are closing the above referenced file. Erica S. Hamrick".
On October 12, 2010 I had a meeting with U.S. Secret Service agents who informed me that I'm still on CIA program as "Filament" and I could work for Secret Service too. We talked about the vulnerability of Obama's security - the agents got pretty nervous and blamed Rahm Emanuel for that.
On January, 20, 2011 I talked to FBI agent Eric Perry. He said I talk too much and I made "high authorities, people on the very top extremely nervous". He didn't explain if it was FBI Director Robert Mueller, the White House Chief of Staff or somebody else.
On August 30, 2012 I had a meeting with another Secret Service agents , who asked me again if I can and if I want to kill President Obama.
Looks like President Barack Obama is really CIA/FBI/U.S. Secret Service next target.I ask you, Mr. Rogers, to investigate this case.

Mikhail Kryzhanovsky
a former KGB spy and CIA "Filament"
prof7777prof@yahoo.com
Mikhail  Kryzhanovsky
CIA AGAINST AMERICA. Part 3. M.Kryzhanovsky
On July 2, 2008, Barack Obama, who was running for the U.S. President, made a statement: “We can’t rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we’ve set. We got to have a civilian national security force that just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded”. Since then he is the target of the "Millenium Hilton" program.
I had a possibility to neutralize Barack Obama. On March, 20, 2010, I’ve received an invitation for a dinner with President Obama and Speaker of the House Pelosi from DCCC (Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee) signed by Ian Sugar, Director of Development. Sugar sent to me couple of personal e-mails and explained that I pay $15,999 (credit card) and on May 13, 2010 at 6.00 PM I come to St. Regis Hotel, New York and enjoy a dinner with Obama.
On June 8, 2010, I got the letter from the US Office of Special Counsel Patrick Fitzerald: "Mr. Kryzhanovsky, You allege that CIA Director violated the Hatch Act through his role in the "Millennium Hilton" operation. We reviewed this matter, and as explained below, we are closing our file without further action. The Hatch Act prohibits government employees from engaging in political activity while on duty. Your allegation that Mr. Panetta is involved in a CIA-FBI conspiracy, which you call the "Millennium Hilton" operation, even if true, is not activity that falls within the prohibitions of the Hatch Act.

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