NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden during a meeting with German Green Party MP Hans-Christian Stroebele regarding being a witness for a possible investigation into NSA spying in Germany, on Oct. 31, 2013 in Moscow, Russia.
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, who has provided a trove of evidence to show how the agency spies on Americans as well as other governments, was again assailing the NSA on Friday for doing something he considered untruthful.
On Thursday, the agency released a single email Snowden sent while he worked as a contractor at the NSA. In it, Snowden asked a legal question about whether executive orders have precedence over federal statute law. His question apparently referenced a portion of text from an NSA training manual he felt was incorrect.
Snowden has always said he tried to relay his concerns to the agency before going public with them, but the NSA has denied this claim. When Snowden restated this position during a Wednesday interview with NBC, the NSA released the single email mentioned above.
Which brings us to Friday's happenings.
Snowden: NSA's email release is incomplete
In an interview with the Washington Post, Snowden called the NSA's release "incomplete" and said the agency released the single document to gain a "political advantage."
Snowden also brought up the fact that the NSA had previously said he had made no attempts to contact them with concerns, which this email proves to be untrue.
Snowden then mentioned that Senators Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) and Mark Udall (D-Colorado) knew about the NSA's mass surveillance in 2011 and thought it was "abusive," but felt they could do little about it. That alone, he said, "underscores how futile such internal action is—and will remain—until these processes are reformed."
Senator Udall's office responds to Snowden
Senator Udall's office offered a tepid response to Snowden's claim that Udall and Wyden have been unable to enact meaningful reform from inside the system.
Udall "did not feel constrained" by being a part of the government, Mike Saccone, a spokesperson for Senator Udall, told Mashable. Saccone said Udall has worked since 2011 to "rein in" the NSA's mass data collection, but fixing organizational missteps through the Senate takes time.
The spokesperson also said that Udall still believes Snowden should return to the U.S. to make his case.
Former government whistleblower says Snowden wouldn't get a fair trial
Daniel Ellsberg, whose leaking of the Pentagon Papers in 1971 made him the Edward Snowden of the the Vietnam War, wrote in The Guardian on Friday that Snowden would not receive a fair trial if he came home.
Ellsberg was responding to Secretary of State John Kerry's call for Snowden to "face the music" on Wednesday, saying that no whistleblower can expect a fair trial until the Espionage Act is reformed. The former intelligence leaker said that the act—originally meant to prevent military insubordination during a time of war—was now being used to prevent whistleblowers from defending themselves in court.
That's what happened to him, Ellsberg wrote, so why wouldn't it happen to Snowden?