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Former CIA head James Woolsey speaking on MSNBC in June. (Screenshot)

Former CIA Head: 'Hang Snowden Til He's Dead'

Andrea Germanos, staff writer

In an interview with Fox News on Tuesday, James Woolsey, who headed the CIA from 1993 to 1995, said that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden "should be hanged."

Giving the whistleblower amnesty would be "idiotic," Woolsey said.

Snowden "should be prosecuted for treason. If convicted by a jury of his peers, he should be hanged by his neck until he is dead," he said.

Woolsey began criticizing Snowden soon after reporting on the NSA leaks began, telling MSNBC's "Morning Joe" in June that Snowden caused "substantial" harm to national security because the NSA documents he leaked were "sent out to terrorists, as well as everybody else." Woolsey said "that will help the terrorists keep us from connecting the dots."

Woolsey's comments to Fox News come the same week in which a federal judge ruled that the NSA's program that collects data on nearly every single phone call within or to the U.S. "almost certainly" violated the Constitution, a ruling some saw as vindication of Snowden. Also this week, an internal NSA review panel released a report recommending a reining in of some of the NSA's surveillance powers.

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