Edward Snowden spoke out this week against the process in which House Republicans sought to release a memo full of classified government information.
Jake Laperruque, a lawyer for the Project on Government Oversight, tweeted Thursday how House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA), who had once called Snowden a “traitor” for his 2013 leak of surveillance documents, was now acting recklessly with government disclosures.
“Journalists disclosing Snowden documents... would interact with the Intelligence Community prior to publication,” the surveillance expert explained. “They certainly didn’t oblige all their requests, but they made good-faith effort to hear concerns on why [the intelligence community] thought some stuff shouldn't be public.”
Snowden concurred, writing: “I required the journalists who broke the 2013 domestic spying stories (as a condition of access) to talk with gov in advance of publication as an extraordinary precaution to prevent any risk of harm. Turns out our standard of care was higher than the actual Intel committee.”
When Snowden leaked surveillance documents to the media in 2013, Laperruque recounted, “we [had] news outlets listening to [intelligence community] concerns about safety of releasing classified info beforehand.” On the other hand, he lamented, “we have Nunes, who called it treason to provide those outlets with info, voting to release classified info without even this basic interaction.”
Indeed, as the famed whistleblower and Laperruque both noted, Nunes and the Republican-led intelligence committee have received repeated warnings from the Department of Justice and the FBI that the memo contains sensitive classified information that could be potentially damaging to national security.
And yet, they seemingly disregarded all concerns on the way to releasing the memo—with President Trump’s approval—on Friday afternoon.