Snowden Was Right to Flee: Daniel Ellsberg

Pentagon Papers leaker slams 'United Stasi of America'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 8, 2013 10:46 AM CDT
Snowden Was Right to Flee: Daniel Ellsberg
In this Wednesday, April 12, 1973 photo, Daniel Ellsberg, co-defendant in the Pentagon Papers trial, talks with newsmen after he testified in Los Angeles.   (AP Photo)

Don't blame Edward Snowden for skipping town when he made his big revelations about NSA surveillance: so says one of his most famous whistleblowing predecessors, Daniel Ellsberg, who stayed in the US after his own leaks. "The country I stayed in was a different America, a long time ago," Ellsberg writes in the Washington Post. Ellsberg's trial was dismissed due to evidence of government wiretapping and more, but "there is no chance that experience could be reproduced today."

Government actions that were "clearly criminal" under Richard Nixon are today "regarded as legal." If Snowden had stayed, he'd be in prison, his mouth shut, like WikiLeaks soldier Bradley Manning. Ellsberg, by contrast, was allowed to keep speaking even while he was under indictment. Snowden, Ellsberg asserts, revealed Stasi-like conduct on the part of the US, and "nothing worthwhile would be served ... by Snowden voluntarily surrendering to US authorities given the current state of the law." Click for Ellsberg's full piece. (Read more Daniel Ellsberg stories.)

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