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Letters: Snowden's safety

August 04, 2013
  • A Russian lawyer shows a temporary document to allow Edward Snowden to cross the border into Russia.
A Russian lawyer shows a temporary document to allow Edward Snowden to cross… (Associated Press )

Re "What next for Snowden?," Editorial, Aug. 2

It's a bit disingenuous to say about Edward Snowden that "those who engage in civil disobedience should be prepared to accept some legal consequences for their actions."

"Some legal consequences" could be taken by many to mean solitary confinement or multiple life sentences. In fact, the U.S. had to assure Russia that Snowden wouldn't be tortured or executed; given our country's treatment of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning, it was an assurance that had to be made.

You praise Snowden for alerting Americans to abuses by the National Security Agency, then suggest he should face trial and hope for leniency. This hope is quite extraordinary in a post-9/11 world. Time after time, we have seen individual rights sacrificed to the amorphous foe of terrorism.

The same intelligence structure that hounded Snowden's harborers is unlikely to show him anything but the inside of a jail cell for life.

Laura Brown

Pasadena

Sometimes national behavior boils down to self-esteem. Russian President Vladimir Putin's actions in the Snowden affair deliberately embarrassed President Obama and our government. Friends don't do that.

Putin is no friend. His behavior belittles the relationship. Obama's manner should reflect that reality. Business-as-usual and affirmative gestures, including moving forward with summit plans, should be taken off the table.

This is a matter of national self-esteem.

William Goldman

Palos Verdes Estates

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