If President Trump does have to leave office, there’s a lot of talk about who he will pardon before he goes. Two names that keep being mentioned are Edward Snowden and Julian Assange. Assange is the founder of Wikileaks and Snowden was the CIA subcontractor who leaked classified information about the NSA’s global surveillance program. Both were charged with espionage. Snowden is currently a permanent resident of Russia, and Assange is in prison in England, reportedly in grave health.
Views of both men’s actions have gone through an evolution over time. They were accused of leaking information that put Americans in danger and that prevented 54 terrorist attacks. But those claims came from the same intelligence figures (CIA Director James “Liar” Clapper, Robert Mueller, etc.) whom we later learned were allegedly part of a coup attempt against President Trump and who themselves had no qualms about lies and illegal actions to frame Americans whose political views they found unacceptable.
Now, conservatives who once thought of Snowden and Assange as traitors are starting to see them more as persecuted whistleblowers. Particularly after we learned that Snowden was right, the intelligence agencies were spying on all Americans and lying about preventing terrorist attacks, and a court ruled that the surveillance program exposed by Snowden was illegal and likely unconstitutional. Meanwhile, Democrats seem to hate Assange less for exposing classified information than for costing Hillary Clinton the 2016 election by releasing DNC emails that showed what the party was actually doing and saying.
Their names may be coming back into the news more in coming days, so John Stossel, who like many of us was confused about what the truth was, talked to Snowden directly. He concluded that pardons for both are warranted. Read it and see if you agree.
And before any Democrats or liberal media members scream in outrage over Trump possibly pardoning them, let them recall that President Obama commuted the sentence of Bradley (now known as Chelsea) Manning, who was also convicted under the Espionage Act for leaking sensitive military information that put American troops in danger in the Middle East, and which was leaked to…Julian Assange of Wikileaks.