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30-year-old American Edward Snowden, a contract employee at the National Security Agency, is the whistleblower behind significant revelations that surfaced in June 2013 about the US government's top secret, extensive domestic surveillance programmes. Snowden flew to Hong Kong from Hawaii in May 2013, and supplied confidential US government documents to media outlets including the Guardian

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Departing US consul fires sarcastic shots at media over Snowden saga

Stephen Young 'thanks' Beijing-friendly press for its objective coverage of the Snowden saga

PUBLISHED : Friday, 19 July, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 19 July, 2013, 7:12am

Departing US consul general Stephen Young, kept busy by whistle-blower Edward Snowden's surprise stopover in Hong Kong, fired some sarcastic parting shots at the media yesterday.

But he said he believed the damaged trust between the United States and Hong Kong could be repaired and pointed to encouraging signs of emerging universal suffrage.

Well, I thank you for all of your objective reporting at Ta Kung Pao, first of all. And if you don't get the sarcasm, it's there. I do wish you'd be more objective. But I know you have your master in Beijing
US consul general Stephen Young

At a media event before he departs for the US next week, Young was asked by a journalist from the Beijing-loyal Ta Kung Pao when the US government would reply on whether it had been hacking into the city's computers.

"Well, I thank you for all of your objective reporting at Ta Kung Pao, first of all. And if you don't get the sarcasm, it's there," Young replied. "I do wish you'd be more objective. But I know you have your master in Beijing."

Another journalist asked how the diplomat felt about protests by pro-democracy activists and Snowden supporters who said they no longer saw the US as a symbol of democracy. "Actually that was a plot by us," he joked.

"You see, as Ta Kung Pao regularly reports, along with Wen Wei Po and others, we actually fund and direct the pan-democrats so we have them coming to demonstrate outside our consulate to throw people off the scent."

After answering several questions from an i-Cable journalist, Young said that anyone who asked only a single question would get an "extra credit".

And when a South China Morning Post journalist identified himself and said he wanted to ask two questions, Young said: "You just lost your credit."

The Post had an exclusive interview with Snowden last month in which he claimed the US government had been hacking into computers in Hong Kong for years.

Sarcastic remarks aside, Young said he had a generally optimistic view of Hong Kong's future and believed that the damaged trust between the US and Hong Kong could be restored.

He said Snowden had made a lot of allegations, some of which seemed to be "self-serving to gain sympathy", and he did not think the US needed to apologise to anyone for someone who had violated his country's trust.

On universal suffrage in 2017, Young said he was encouraged by the central government liaison office's decision to have lunch with lawmakers, as well as Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying's plan to have dinner with people including the pan-democrats.

Asked if he supported the Occupy Central movement, he said he backed moves towards genuine universal suffrage but such moves should stay within the law.

The Snowden saga had no direct connection to the bill that would add Hong Kong to the US visa-waiver scheme, Young said.

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johnwe
Typical and dreadful rubbish from a US big mouth- too big because he thinks he is loved and respected by the people of Hong Kong. He has a lot to learn on that front. They love to tell people how to run their lives and set rules as if they are models of those standards they trot out like regurgitation from rote learning. The claim that US is the paradise of freedom, democracy and all the usual rubbish is laughable jargon. In fact it is the seat of deceit, state theft, secret rendition, illegal detention without due process of law using a foreign territory to avoid being tainted by the dirt
hitting the land the pristine white and virtuous - all done brazenly and defended as in the interest of national security - i.e. other countries and people have no need for their own privacy and security.
Go home Mr Young and know that there is a strong dislike for people like you among Hongkongers. Enjoy your well earned retirement in God's only democracy for the only virtuous people in the world.
chanyellowgreen
I guess Young would have scored very low marks if he sat our DSE exam on liberal studies. He was simply not answering any questions! Poor him.
peaceful
An Apology???
He is not allowed by his Masters in Washington to do so.
dynamco
www.fmcoprc.gov.hk/eng/xwdt/gsxw/t1040980.htm
The Spokesperson's Remarks on Relevant Comments of Stephen M. Young, US Consul General in Hong Kong
cghongkong.tumblr.com/page/2
Ask Me Anything
“hi Steve, my hard drive crashed Can the NSA send me a backup pls ?'
'hi Steve, how do I get rid of the Stuxnet virus ?(pls do not send a drone)'
cghongkong.tumblr.com/
www.state.gov/r/pa/ei/biog/137277.htm
Consul Young's next posting is Ambassador to Wales
as an avid hiker he has vowed to climb to the Snowdon summit
impala
Next post ambassador to Wales... shows what a big shot in the State Department Mr Young is huh. I just learnt he previously was ambassador to Kyrgyzstan (I kid you not).

I suggest we change the headline of this piece to "Mid-level Career Bureaucrat Vents Own Ineptitude at Newspaper Journalists.'

All a bit sad really. Goodbye Mr Young. Enjoy Cardiff. (snicker)
andreaswagner
And he doesn't even play Rugby:)
the sun also rises
I am surprised that this departing US Consul General ,Mr.Stephen Young is so good at Chinese that he can even fully understand pro-China local paper----Tai Kung Po and doubts its (not all local papers) objectivity in reporting the Snowden Gate Incident.But this old guy refused to offer an apology to Hongkongers for his country's NSA's intrusions of our Internet Exchange at Chinese Univ.and computers of hundreds(at least) of our public officials (including those lawmakers,Exco members,important committee chairpersons,NPC delegates and CPPCC members and major officials and...),businessmen (big shots and pro-China businessmen ?) plus students (maybe they are potential or suspected terrorists ! No explanations were offered at his gathering with local media at the Foreign Correspondents Club in Central.Shame on this old guy and his words !
stoatmonster
Well said Mr. Consul-General. Many sections of the press have reported biased, naïve, misinformed and one-sided viewpoints on the Snowden issue. You are also quite right not to apologize for the weasel's treacherous conduct.
blue
What a sore loser. Well said jve.
impala
For a diplomat, Mr Young is not very diplomatic. What's worse, he is using the lamest excuse any government has in the box: it's the fault of the media. Let him respond to the content of the allegations before he -sarcastically- complains about the messenger.

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