“SNOWDEN SPEAKS: CHENEY CALLING HIM A TRAITOR IS ‘HIGHEST HONOR’”

MSNBC

“All In with Chris Hayes”

This photo provided by The Guardian Newspaper in London shows Edward Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the National Security Agency, on Sunday, June 9, 2013, in Hong Kong. (Photo by The Guardian/AP Photo)
This photo provided by The Guardian Newspaper in London shows Edward Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the National Security Agency, on Sunday, June 9, 2013, in Hong Kong. (Photo by The Guardian/AP Photo)

Since outing himself as the man who leaked classified details about NSA surveillance toThe Guardian and Washington Post, former government contractor Edward Snowden has been more than happy to discuss his actions and motives with members of the press. On Monday, he opened up even further, taking questions from the public in an online Q&A at the Guardianwebsite.

Given the opportunity to respond to his critics, Snowden struck out at President Obama, former vice president Dick Cheney, and members of the media who he said had fallen short in their coverage. He was particularly strident when asked to respond to accusations that he was planning to trade classified information for asylum in China.

“This is a predictable smear that I anticipated before going public, as the US media has a knee-jerk ‘RED CHINA!’ reaction to anything involving HK or the PRC, and is intended to distract from the issue of US government misconduct,” he wrote. “Ask yourself: if I were a Chinese spy, why wouldn’t I have flown directly into Beijing? I could be living in a palace petting a phoenix by now.”

When prompted to respond to those who have called him a traitor, he said, “being called a traitor by Dick Cheney is the highest honor you can give an America, and the more panicked talk we here from people like, [Sen. Dianne] Feinstein and [Rep. Peter] King, the better of we all are.”

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Dick Cheney, Vice President of the United States.
Dick Cheney, Vice President of the United States. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)