Jamie White | Infowars,
Why Trump should pardon Snowden?
Edward Snowden hopes that President Donald Trump will soon drop the case against the NSA whistleblower and allow him to return to the United States, says Snowden’s lawyer.
“We hope very much that the new U.S. president would show some weighted approach to the issue and make the one and only correct decision – to stop prosecution against Edward Snowden,” Anatoly Kucherena, Snowden’s Russian lawyer, told Russian media on Tuesday.
He added that Snowden was still a patriot and missed his country very much, noting that it was too early to talk about naturalization in the event that Snowden feels he cannot ever return to the US.
The Obama administration also formally denied clemency for Snowden last month, claiming that Snowden had “not filed paperwork to seek clemency from this administration.”
But Obama commented last November that a pardon for Snowden was unlikely.
“I can’t pardon somebody who hasn’t gone before a court and presented themselves, so that’s not something that I would comment on that this point,” Obama said.
Russia granted an extension to Snowden’s asylum last month, set to last for a “couple years,” according to Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakhrova.
The former NSA contractor fled the US and was originally granted asylum by Russia in 2013 after blowing the whistle on unconstitutional global surveillance apparatuses controlled by the NSA and other intelligence agencies abroad.
Though Trump has called Snowden a “terrible traitor,” Infowars radio host Alex Jones has nevertheless reached out to the president to reconsider the facts, noting that Snowden uncovered illegal activities.
“Next time I talk to him I’m going to bring that up. ‘Sir, I understand that you think it’s treason if somebody’s giving us secret data but what if it’s illegal?” Jones said on his broadcast.
Trump recently tapped Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) to be Director of National Intelligence, who previously called the bulk collection of data and telephone records “legal, constitutional and used under the strict oversight of all three branches of government,” signaling that a Snowden pardon is far from certain.