Dick Cheney: Snowden Is a 'Traitor,' Maybe a Chinese Spy

Former vice president also defends NSA snooping
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 16, 2013 9:11 AM CDT
Dick Cheney leaves the funeral of Margaret Thatcher at St. Paul's Cathedral, in London, Wednesday, April 17, 2013.   (AP Photo/Olivia Harris, Pool)

(Newser) – Edward Snowden's list of enemies grows ever longer: Today, Dick Cheney added his name to the pile, telling Fox News Sunday that the NSA leaker is a "traitor," as per Politico. "I think it's one of the worst occasions in my memory of somebody with access to classified information doing enormous damage to the national security interests of the United States," said the former veep. And Cheney is "suspicious" of Snowden's choice of Hong Kong as refuge: "That's not a place where you would ordinarily want to go if you are interested in freedom, liberty, and so forth. It raises questions whether or not he had that kind of connection before he did this."

Even if Snowden isn't a Chinese spy, Cheney says he's "very, very worried that [Snowden] still has additional information that he hasn't released yet, that the Chinese would welcome the opportunity" to relieve him of it. Cheney also defended the NSA's surveillance programs, which he helped revamp in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, saying, "Congress authorized the president to use military force to deal with the crisis. That puts you in the category of using your military assets, intelligence assets, and so forth to protect the country against another attack."

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