A group of whistleblowers who stood up to U.S. power from within traveled to Moscow to tell Edward Snowden they honor what he did.
Snowden, accompanied by Sarah Harrison of Wikileaks, met with four U.S. intelligence and security officials-turned-whistleblowers in the Russian capital on Wednesday. The former NSA operative personally received an award for ‘Integrity in Intelligence,' granted by the Sam Adams Associates for Integrity in Intelligence—an organization of U.S. whistleblowers. This award has been given each year since 2002 to intelligence officials who 'speak truth to power,' Consortium News reports.
The delegates who delivered the award—Jesselyn Radack, Thomas Andrews Drake, Ray McGovern and Coleen Rowley—say they met with a man who demonstrated striking confidence in the decision he made to expose dragnet surveillance on the part of the NSA and governments around the world, despite the personal hardship and global manhunt he has faced since taking this action.
“He’s convinced that what he did was right," former CIA analyst turned whistleblower McGovern said of the meeting, RT reports. "He has no regrets. And he’s willing to face whatever the future holds for him."
Raddack, former Department of Justice official who accused the FBI of ethics violations, declared on Twitter she is "[h]onored to be among 1st Americans to meet w/ #Snowden since Hong Kong" and published the following tweet with a link to a photograph of the meeting:
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— Jesselyn Radack (@JesselynRadack) October 10, 2013
FBI whistleblower Rowley told RT that Snowden seemed "remarkably centered," with Raddack adding, "He looked great."
Snowden has been nominated for several awards, including the Nobel Peace Prize. When he accepted the prestigious German whistleblower prize in early September, he declared in a public statement, "[This] belongs to the individuals and organizations in countless countries around the world who shattered boundaries of language and geography to stand together in defense of the public right to know and the value of our privacy."