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The story of Ed Snowden: With Johnny Depp and Brad Pitt?

 

 

Chapman and Snowden in: 'The Ghost of Sheremetyevo' (Gazeta, Russia)

 

"Boy, would Sydney Pollock be excited if he still lived. The script of a thriller is there to be had, and I'm sure it is already being written. We havenít seen bugging like this since the war criminal Nazis. Isn't that so? I canít remember another worldwide manhunt on this scale. If you try telling me Snowden brought this on himself, I wonít put up much of an argument. But following this to its logical conclusion, Iím not sure where I stand toward him personally, less so toward what he has done."

 

By Natalia Gevorkyan

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Translated By John Amor

 

July 15, 2013

 

Gazeta - Russia - Original Article (Russian)

Russian spy Anna Chapman: After a Chapman imposter tweeted a marriage proposal to Snowden last week, the global media found it worthy of headlines. But would the real Chapman turn down a starring role in 'The Ghost of Sheremetyevo'?

 

BBC NEWS VIDEO: Film world circles around Snowden story, July 10, 00:03:59RealVideo

As of today, we have had 53 days of Snowden. Boy, would Sydney Pollock be excited if he still lived. The script of a thriller is there to be had, and I'm sure it is already being written. We havenít seen bugging like this since the war criminal Nazis. Isn't that so? I canít remember another worldwide manhunt on this scale. If you try telling me the guy brought this on himself, I wonít put up much of an argument. But following this to its logical conclusion, Iím not sure where I stand toward him personally, less so toward what he has done. On May 20, he flies from Hawaii to Hong Kong; on June 23, to Moscow. Moscow of all places. Itís pure cinema: The Ghost of Sheremetyevo.

 

One minute itís the transit zone, the next itís a capsule hotel, then ABCís latest "secret location." Anna Chapman, heroically prepared to marry the guy, provides the obligatory touch of eroticism. Obviously this should be set at transit zone E, the newest and therefore best suited to filming, right there on the floor, no hotels or beds, just pure hardcore. His passport is revoked, Cuba is tense, and a couple of countries south of Cuba are deep in meditation. A number of brooding presidents demand a plane flying over Europe be brought down when they think he's on it. Western journalists are provided Cuban visas and take every flight from Moscow to Havana - just on the off-chance. Their colleagues monitor the paths of these flights, which suddenly deviate from the north so as to avoid U.S.-controlled airspace.

 

Meanwhile, Snowden remains on the neutral territory of Sheremtyevo, escorts Brad Pitt and meets Johnny Depp, and is now himself a star. Either of them, incidentally, could play him in the upcoming film. Our compassionate Russian gals feed the former foreign agent in the business class lounge, where there are showers and free Internet all night long. Russian leaders gives the former foreign agent an opportunity to meet and explain himself to Russiaís present-day foreign agents, whom it is now fashionable to call human rights activists. The latter, in their turn, demand that rather than creating competition in this already-crowded field, the former should be sent home, to a court, to prison. Snowden immediately seeks political asylum in five countries, and meanwhile, to the displeasure of many, is prepared to live in Russia, with or without Chapman. Here, documentation is prepared for his future life in Venezuela, where he will likely have to be transported on the presidentís aircraft (one of them, at least), via an indirect, hard to track route.

 

The intelligence services of a world struck dumb by Snowden, starting with Russia's, promptly uncover their dust-covered typewriters and go unequivocally offline, back to record keeping on paper. No more virtual toys, no more gadgets, and no more Internet-enabled phones, either. Just dependable, tried and true old stuff.

 

Terrorists recruit the well-connected: dedicated, preferably dumb, and most importantly with no experience working with computers. There is no more e-mail, no more social or any other online networks, or Skype. The world changes before our eyes.

 

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Snowden begins to enjoy buckwheat porridge and piroshki with cabbage. Bouts of epilepsy give way to attacks of panic. But heís at his computer the whole time all the same. He keeps going, although he takes up smoking on the sly. He spends long Moscow nights dreaming of his native home in Maryland, hacking school, cherry blossoms, Hawaiian women, and a car ambling slowly behind him, and he knows what will happen next: A press conference in Washington D.C., and (for reasons that remain unclear) unencrypted files, which he transfers over and over again. Close by, behind a wall, on their own home turf, Russian intelligence officers sit reading information again and again extracted long ago from his computer. Far off in China, countless hours are spent at the same work by Chinese intelligence officers. And from time to time, they gently whisper in their own language: "what the fuck!"

 

Meanwhile, France has unearthed its own Big Brother with which it outright illegally monitors, if not the content of conversations, at least the details of conversations.

 

Aaron Sorkin hurriedly writes and films one more episode for the new season of Newsroom, which starts literally the day after tomorrow, because he simply must delve into the Snowden affair. Barack Obama in his heart of hearts is just glad people have temporarily forgotten about Guantanamo.

 

Vladimir Putin, with mixed joy and disgust, flies to his Sochi dacha, taking with him a package of pre-translated transcripts. He loathes traitors, but he adores top secret material. Robert Redford for the first time laments that age has taken its toll. Snowdenís lonesome girl shoots sandy landscapes, drinks cocktails with umbrellas and sends encoded SMS messages (as opposed to files). Microsoft justifies itself thus: yes, we gave away information, but only in accordance with court orders. Google and the rest quickly dismiss agents planted at the NSA who it knows by name. Life carries on, but will never be the same.

 

Credits roll, and the finally commences, but without any hint of a happy ending.

 

 

I don't consider Snowden a hero. He took on this dirty work willingly and consciously. Such work comes with its own rules, and he signed up to them. If he had wanted the world to know about Big Brother - if this really was the warning cry of an honest guy shocked at what he had discovered, and not some more intricate game - it doesnít make sense that he would go on the run, with all the complicated logistics that entails. He should have gone to one of the major American newspapers or TV channels, found lawyers, and held a big press conference to discuss the matter. True, all this would come with its own risks. But I must confess, the idea of revealing the full scale and scope of global surveillance has left an unpleasant sensation.

Posted By Worldmeets.US

 

I would agree with an American friend who left Russia for the U.S. many years ago to work in the IT sector. On the Snowden story he told me, "Of course Snowden is a traitor. But all the same, after his Ďleak,í I have to admit sadly that the country I moved to all those years ago was different - a different America." For fairness sake I remark that his wife - an "American American," if it can be so expressed - said no such thing. For her, it is the exact opposite - it doesnít matter so long as itís done for her security at least in part, and she doesnít care whoís listening to what, where or how.

 

I'm more sympathetic to the discomfort of her husband. Moreover, the doubts of former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft about the legality of the presidentís surveillance program, despite his being an ardent Republican, are still fresh in the memory. In March 2004, lying in a hospital bed with the onset of pancreatitis, he refused to sign on.

 

The true story, too, has an open-ended final scene - and also without any particular hope of a happy ending.  

 

SEE ALSO ON THIS:
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La Stampa: Europe Will Rue Toppling Obama Over Snowden
Izvestia, Russia: South vs. North: Snowden's Place in History is Assured
O Globo, Brazil: NSA Targeted Latin American 'Trade Secrets'
O Globo, Brazil: Brazil 'Gravely Concerned' Over Massive NSA Espionage
Pagina Siete, Bolivia: U.S. Fears, Not Evil, Motivate Desperate Search for Snowden
The Hankyoreh, South Korea: What Hugo Chavez Would Say about U.S. Surveillance
Kommersant, Russia: Snowden's Presence May Scuttle Obama's Visit to Russia
Le Monde, France: French Big Brother is Watching You!
Guardian, U.K.: The NSA's Indiscriminate Mass Spying on Brazilians
Le Monde, France: French Political Class Holds 'Outrage Contest' Over NSA Spying
DNA, France: Espionage ... From Washington, With Love
Liberation, France: The NSA 'Panopticon'
Izvestia, Russia: 'Servile Europeans' Inflict Huge Insult on Bolivians
Der Standard, Austria: Mass NSA Surveillance Implies 'Bizarre Presumption of Guilt'
Guardian,U.K.: NSA/GCHQ Metadata Reassurances are 'Breathtakingly Cynical'
Observer, U.K.: U.S. Attempts to Block Edward Snowden 'Bolsters' Case for Asylum
Der Tagesspiegel, Germany: NSA: Merkel Ignores the Nightmare of 'Stasi Squared'
El Nacional, Bolivia: Snowden: South America Must Take Stand Against Old Europe
Der Spiegel: What's All the Fuss About U.S. Spying?
Guardian, U.K.: Britain Blocks Crucial Espionage Talks between U.S. and Europe
Guardian, U.K.: France 'runs vast electronic spying operation using NSA-style Methods'
Guardian, U.K.: Venezuela and Nicaragua offer asylum to Edward Snowden
Elsevier, The Netherlands: Snowden's Revelations are of 'No Benefit to Society'
El Universal, Venezuela: Maduro Uses Snowden Asylum to Distract Venezuelan People
Der Spiegel, Germany: NSA Spying on Germany: How Much Did Angela Merkel Know?
Der Spiegel, Germany Bolivia Irate Over Forced Landing
Der Spiegel, Germany: Germany Rejects Asylum for Snowden
News, Switzerland: Humanity's Cyber-Hypocrisy Overload
El Comercio, Ecuador: Wanting to Keep U.S. Trade Privileges is Not Treason!
Der Spiegel, Germany: Spying 'Out of Control': EU Official Questions Trade Negotiations
Der Spiegel, Germany: Growing Alarm: German Prosecutors To Review Allegations of U.S. Spying
Guardian, U.K.: New NSA Leaks Show how U.S. is Bugging its European Allies
Der Spiegel, Germany: Partner and Target: NSA Snoops on 500 Million German Data Connections
Hoy, Ecuador: Snowden Highlights Ecuador's Decision-Making Paradox
Diario de Noticias, Portugal: America 'Summons World' to Renewed Cold War
Guardian, U.K.: Ecuador Rejects U.S. Trade Pact to Thwart Snowden 'Blackmail'
Guardian, U.K: Glenn Greenwald on Personal Side of Taking on NSA - Personal Smears
Guardian, U.K: How NSA Continues to Harvest Your Online Data
Guardian, U.K: Edward Snowden's Next Step: Live Q&A
Gazeta, Russia: Why Russia, China, and Others, Love 'Poking America in the Eye'
Guardian, U.K.: Snowden Affair Revives Politics of the Cold War
Guardian, U.K.: 'History will be Kind' to Edward Snowden
Guardian, U.K.: Latin America is ready to defy the US over Snowden and other issues
Guardian, U.K.: Putin Confirms Snowden in Moscow Airport; No Extradition
The New York Times, U.S.: China Said to Have Made Call to Let Leaker Depart
People's Daily, China: U.S. Internet Hypocrisy Creates Global Suspicion
Global Times, China: Internet 'Muckraking Frenzy' Damaging China's Global Interests
Huanqiu, China: 'Demented' Hacking Charges Betray U.S. Scheme for Cyber Domination
Guardian, U.K.: Snowden Leaves Hong Kong for Moscow: Seeks Asylum in Ecuador
Financial Times, U.K.: Snowden Fallout Impacts China and Russia
Russia Today, Russia: VIDEO: Former MI5 Agent Judges Snowden 'Canny'
Folha, Brazil: Trust in the State Inadequate as a Pretext for NSA's Spying
Les Dernieres Nouvelles d'Alsace, France: Edward Snowden is Not the Issue
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Global Times, China: Demonizing China Will Backfire on Americans
Global Times, China: Extraditing Snowden Would Be a Mistake
Xinhua, China: 'Idealistic' Edward Snowden Should be Welcomed by China
Mediapart, France: 'Autonomous Machines': World Reawakens to U.S. Web Dominance
Guardian, U.K.: Britain's GCHQ Intercepted Data from Foreign Politicians at G20 Summits
Le Monde, France: French Lawmakers Scramble Over News of NSA Surveillance
Le Temps, Switzerland: Last Resort for Confronting 'Electronic Big Brother'
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Mediapart, France: The NSA is Spying on Us! What a Surprise!
El Espectador, Colombia: Please Consider Yourself Watched!
Le Monde, France: NSA Surveillance Storm Gathers Over Cloud Market
Folha, Brazil: Being 'Carioca' Helped Glenn Greenwald Break NSA Surveillance Story
Sol, Portugal: WikiLeaks and Facebook: What Came Before Will Soon Be Rubble
Guardian, U.K.: World Leaders Seek Answers on NSA Data Collection Programs
Guardian, U.K.: Artist Ai Weiwei: The U.S. is 'Behaving Like China'
Russia Today, Russia: Putin: Government Surveillance 'Should Not Break the Law'
Guardian, U.K.: Russia Offers to Consider Edward Snowden Asylum Request
Handelsblatt, Germany: Obama's Data Nightmare is Europe's
FAZ, Germany: Protect Us from Terrorism ... and Government Snooping
SCMP, Hong Kong: What Will Hong Kong do with Snowden? ... The World is Watching
SCMP, Hong Kong: Why Hong Kong? Chinese Wonder if Edward Snowden is in Wrong Place
Suedostschweiz, Switzerland: Exposed: Spy Powers that Obama Shouldn't Use
Le Temps, Switzerland: Exploring the Limits of Sino-U.S. Compromise
Business Day, South Africa: Obama Sets 'Dubious Example' on Freedom
Economist, U.K.: The Reason We Fear Broad Surveillance
Guardian, U.K.: The NSA's Secret Tool to Track Global Surveillance Data

 

 

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Posted By Worldmeets.US June 15, 2013, 6:44am