Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : October 11th 2013 Contents A43
Friday, October 11, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
MOSCOW---Four former US
government officials who met
with former National Security
Agency systems analyst Edward
Snowden said yesterday that he
is adjusting to life in Russia and
expresses no regrets about leaking
highly classified information.
Separately, Snowden s father
arrived to see his son.
The Americans, who once
worked for the CIA, FBI, Justice
Department and NSA, have crit-
icised the US government and in
some cases exposed what they
believed was wrongdoing in the
All supporters of Snowden, they
are the first Americans known to
have met with him since he was
granted asylum in Russia in
In interviews with the Associ-
ated Press, they described spending
the previous evening with Snow-
den to present him with an award
given annually by a group of retired
"He spoke about going out and
about and getting to understand
Russia and its culture and the peo-
ple," said Thomas Drake, a former
NSA executive who gave inside
information to a newspaper about
an electronic espionage programme
that he saw as invasive.
"This is where he lives now, and
so where you live is your home."
Snowden s father, Lon, did not
say when or where he would meet
his 30-year-old son, but expressed
optimism about his situation.
"You know, I have heard so
many things through the media,
and my assumption is certainly,
given the circumstances, he s doing
as well as could be expected," Lon
Snowden told the AP shortly after
he arrived in Moscow.
"He s safe and he s free, and
that s a good thing."
The elder Snowden said he
doubts his son will return to the
United States, where he is charged
with violating the Espionage Act
for disclosing the NSA s surveil-
lance of phone and Internet usage
around the world.
The four former US officials
refused to say where they met with
Snowden or where he is living.
"For his own safety it s best that
no one else knows where he actu-
ally lives," Drake said. "But I believe
he is making the best of his cir-
cumstances and is living as nor-
mally as possible."
Like Snowden, Drake was
indicted under the Espionage Act,
but the felony charges were
dropped before trial and he was
convicted on a lesser charge and
sentenced to one year of probation
and community service.
Drake and the other Ameri-
cans---Raymond McGovern, Jes-
selyn Radack and Coleen Row-
ley---said Snowden was in good
spirits and still believes he did the
right thing in disclosing the NSA
All but McGovern are pass recip-
ients of the Sam Adams Award,
named for a CIA analyst during
the Vietnam War who accused the
US military of underestimating the
strength of the enemy for political
The award is given annually by
the Sam Adams Associates for
Integrity in Intelligence.
The winner of the award in 2010
was WikiLeaks and its founder,
McGovern, a retired CIA officer,
said the anti-secrecy group had
facilitated their trip to Moscow
and that WikiLeaks staffer Sarah
Harrison, who had arrived with
Snowden from Hong Kong in June,
remained by his side.
The Americans said they saw
no evidence that Snowden was
under the control of Russian secu-
rity services, as many in the US
"He spoke very openly about a
whole range of things, a number
of which I won t get into here, but
it certainly didn t involve any kind
of manipulation by the Russian
government or anyone else for that
matter," said Radack, a former Jus-
tice Department adviser now with
the Government Accountability
"He definitely is his own person
and makes his own decisions and
says and does what he wants to."
Snowden s asylum status has
strained the already tense relation-
ship between the US and Russia.
Man who exposed NSA gets visit in Russia
award for stance
Jesselyn Radack, left, Raymond McGovern, Coleen Rowley and Thomas Drake talk to each other before their
interview with the Associated Press in Moscow, Russia, yesterday. The four former US government officials
met with former National Security Agency systems analyst Edward Snowden and said he is now adjusting to
life in Russia. AP PHOTO
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