Snowden’s Motives


This article is a summary of the lives and possible motivation of Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, and Julian Assange. It goes into depth about the backgrounds of each and what could have sparked their interests and convictions that led them to where they are today. Firstly, the author of the articles starts off by explaining the “age of the leaker” that we live in. Many of the followers of these famous leakers applaud them for protecting the Constitution and the people, but the author hypothesizes that, “In fact, the leakers despise the modern liberal state, and they want to wound it… They want to spin the meaning of the documents they have released to confirm their animating belief that the United States is an imperial power, drunk on its hegemonic ambitions. ”

The passage on Snowden talks about his adolescence and more specific the content of his postings on the tech website, Ars Technica. Many of his posts are political banter and he actually condemns leakers at an earlier age. The author brings up the point that his posts do not coordinate time-wise with the plan that he stated he had in an interview. He stated that during the Bush administration era he was planning on leaking information because he was disgusted with the security policies of the administration. He halted when Obama promised a change to the policies, but then executed after he saw no change was coming. Though, Snowden was very committed to his philosophy, he needed Greenwald with his insight on politics and the media to put into straightforward words. As a result of the leak and the cooperation of Snowden and Russia, other countries including Russia have become upset with the U.S.’s internet policies, spying possibilities, and how American companies such as Facebook are handling their information. They want more control on internet companies like Facebook and Google.

While the majority of the article remains relatively neutral, the author paints a very negative picture of Snowden. Evidence of this can be seen in how he picks specific negative and sometimes derogatory posts from Snowden’s Ars Technica profile. Also, the author goes on to say that a lot of the information leaked, such as techniques used for foreign spying are not necessarily illegal, and the leaking this information could hinder our National Security. He does not think these leakers deserve any of the praise they have gotten because their motives are not to criticize to eventually help it, but instead to hurt it and try to destroy it.

One thought on “Snowden’s Motives”

  1. I think it is an important note that you made on the author’s negative tone towards Snowden. The author’s viewpoint is what many readers will assume to be true if this is the first time they are reading about the subject. Leaking the information was a violation against privacy and the information was not meant for the public’s eye. This could be related to how the president has executive privilege and knows secrets that few others know. What we must keep in mind is that the reason for this is for our own personal safety. While I understand the author’s negativity, I partially believe it was good for the public to know exactly what information the government hold to be wary of what they put online in the future.

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