Snowden, Manning, Petraeus, and Clinton getting different treatment

Mar 05, 2015 4:12 pm
Politico and other media outlets announced this week that it was news that Edward Snowden wanted to return home to America, and that he was willing to face a trial for leaking government documents if it could be a fair trial. This was not news at all, as Snowden has maintained that position since becoming a public figure after the leaks were revealed. Glenn Greenwald at The Intercept outlines exactly how wrong those new stories were. In January 2014, AP reported Snowden said in a public chat: “Returning to the US, I think, is the best resolution for the government, the public, and myself.” In a May 2014 interview with NBC News, Snowden said: “I don’t think there’s ever been any question that I’d like to go home.” So journalists don't know how to use Google or Lexis-Nexis? Hardly. This reporting of news that is not news clearly shows a prevailing narrative that the mainstream media wants to report. Marcy Wheeler at Slate is one of the few reporters this week comparing the leaks of public information to the public by Snowden and Chelsea Manning to the leak by former CIA Director David Petraeus, and the clearly unsafe actions taken by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Anyone can argue Snowden was right or wrong for leaking government secrets about how the government secretly spies on its own citizens, but clearly both leaked the documents because they thought it was their public responsibility. So far, neither has gained much by leaking the documents -- Manning is in jail, and Snowden is stuck in Russia, a purgatory of sorts. Petraeus leaked to his mistress and biographer the identities of covert officers, code-protected programs, conversations he had had with the President, and other national security secrets. At one time he was considered a possible presidential candidate, and a glowing biography was surely in his personal interest. He stored the material in an unlocked desk drawer in his study. Is he going to jail like Manning? The New York Times reports that March 3, "Petraeus has agreed to plead guilty to one count of unauthorized removal and retention of classified material, a misdemeanor. He is eligible for up to one year in prison, but prosecutors will recommend a sentence of probation for two years and a $40,000 fine." Hillary Clinton seems to have left secrets in a virtual unlocked drawer. The Associated Press reported that Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, had set up her own private email server at family’s home in Chappaqua, New York, a server that is probably not as secure as one the State Department would have set up for her. Clinton probably won't spend any time in jail either, and instead might be the next president.