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Thank you, especially to all of my regular readers for supporting my work during what must have felt like a very quiet period these last months. I've been working quite hard behind the scenes, and have a great deal planned for next year that wouldn't have been possible without you. You'll be the first to hear when it's ready.

Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Thank you Ed. Glad to see you're able to spend time with your 1 year old. Merry Christmas!

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We need your perspective now more than ever Edward. The Horror of a War with Russia is looming large, I’m fearful that what we are hearing is another Gulf of Tonkin situation. I’m 73 I’ve heard enough government lies in my life, my son was in Desert storm, my former classmates went to Vietnam some never came back.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Merry Christmas to you as well!

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I'm all for cleverly-crafted pieces, whatever the regularity of them, so thanks to you!

I'm often left wondering how normal guys & girls like me and others in the comment, how could we make a dent in the evil spiral around people like Assange and prosecuted whistleblowers / journalists (as the latter is increasingly becoming the former), how could we help, and gain time if not success in stopping the legal machinery. I mean, does Assange (and others in the same situation) need money? In the sense, would money help Assange (and others in the same situation) find a way to postpone the execution of US' plans? Do they need direct action, and if so, should it be coordinated? Not talking about hard things, but if administration is a clockwork, a few grain of sand can do their work and buy time...

Probably being too optimistic here, but if the State creates a dictatorial power, somehow, organised agorism at least could be a soft, hard-to-catch counter power. I wish we could devise a way to be less powerless.

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@ Edward Snowden Dec 23, 2021 Author ⁉

Foremost on my mind herein is wondering if your "Continuing Ed" substack is still a thing?

Rereading your prescient Dec 2021 piece on the ongoing persecution/prosecution of Julian Assange and the cowardly behavior of the vast majority of the corporate owned media and their stenographic pundits through the lens of current events and circumstance, reminded me of the importance of your voice to the public understanding of the damage being done to the "fourth estate" by the corrupt marriage of government secrecy and corporate media💡; an arrangement that may subsume the founding axiom "The public good before private advantage".👍

As Usual,

Thom Williams☠ aka Ethan Allen

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are you coming back? I hope all is well

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Are you preparing your next book? I will be so happy to hear of it.

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Happy New Year Sir. For those who want to participate in the much needed discussions of full range models of what happened and full range discussion of solutions, please take a look at the links below. I could use some help here. I am not a writer. I am an engineer with success analyzing all possible models for complex challenges, considering all possible solutions, and analyzing the merits of the different possible solutions. It is curious that our enemy appears to do this kind of planning and analysis but our side does nothing like it. When do we start considering real, innovative solutions? Who else has done this or is doing it? Isn't it up to us?

https://solutionseeking.substack.com/p/edward-snowdens-contributions-to

You may want to review this page too..

https://solutionseeking.substack.com/p/coming-soon

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I subscribed, but your newsletter doesnt show up in my email (I checked the spam folder, too) I do receive the receipt that you accepted payment. It's only $5. I'm not really complaining. But would like to know how to fix it. I somehow found this link on the receipt.

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I think/guess it's because he hasn't written anything online since the start of the invasion. There are harsh prison sentences in Russia currently for even calling the war a "war". The Russian economy is in free-fall, people are having their phones checked on the street for dissent and Ed's baby is due this month.

At this point I think a subscription is more an act of charity than an expectation of a newsletter soon.

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Ed, too many time passed, don't you think its time to write anything? Probably just start from the very first thought on your mind?

Hope you are doing well,

Julia.

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founding

Happy Holidays

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@ Randy Bassin

Thanks for giving continued currency to this thread of communicative acknowledgement of Edward Snowden's importance to humanity writ large; hopefully the government and citizens of his home country will awaken to his unique importance to truth and integrity and end the serial corruption of his freedom and liberty, and that of his family as well.

As Usual,

Thom Williams (aka ethanallenspeaks)

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Dec 23, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

"As a measure of journalistic impact, the Pulitzer Prize holds significantly less prestige than the CIA plotting to murder you." Very well put. Happy Holidays, in spite of these dark times.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

With how overwhelming and exhausting these things can be to talk and think about, a little bit of dark humour goes a long way in lightening the load haha

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It's hard not to listen to listen to people the CIA wants dead when they keep getting glowing reviews like this one from Ed's wikipedia page:

"U.S. officials condemned his actions as having done "grave damage" to the U.S. intelligence capabilities."

I think the feds would be a lot more trustworthy if they could somehow prove that the people they are trying to kill have done something bad but Im no expert in human rights abuses

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@ Johann Goergen 🎯👍

Excellent catch Johann! Some people are content pretending to be patriots, others prefer being patriots. Ed also rang my bell with this in his discussion of "bad faith":

"I’m deeply taken by the generosity of this early definition: there’s a sympathy there — a sympathy with “a house divided against itself” — that’s utterly lacking in the contemporary sense, wherein “bad faith” is purposeful malfeasance. This remains, for me at least, a compelling history to decode: how a phrase that roughly meant “unknowingly lying to one’s self” came to roughly mean “knowingly lying to others.”🦄✔

As Usual,

Thom Williams☠(aka Ethan Allen)

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@ Johann Goergen✔

Thanks for the reply.🤔It appears that the reply notifications pass the test of time.

EA

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

I am sure many of your readers don't watch Fox News but I want to give a shoutout to one "gelled automaton" on Fox: Tucker Carlson. As far as I know he is the only one in mainstream media who has spoken out forcefully and often about the JA travesty. Given that he is the most watched media figure, that is important and he deserves credit for not shying away from the truth about JA's persecution. Anyway... Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you Edward. I hope there will be a day soon when you and your family can celebrate the season back home.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Julian Assange has suffered so much for his bravery and his commitment to shedding light on authoritarian rule. The impact of his suffering is a black mark on our times. History is being written and we need to be clear on what side of history you stand for. The only thing that can save us from totalitarianism is freedom of the press. It is oxygen

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Love Whitmanesque!

Your discussion of the Janus-like doublethink reminds me of this JP video about meta-denial (being in denial that you’re in denial): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si97as8Y25s

On a more serious note, I opened my new “Profiles in Courage” series with a reference to Assange’s impending extradition. My first entry focuses on Dr. Tess Lawrie (https://margaretannaalice.substack.com/p/profiles-in-courage-dr-tess-lawrie/), and I hope to feature you at some point, Edward.

I would especially like to call your attention to my “Ode to a Whistleblower” at the end of that piece as I had people like you and Assange in mind when I wrote it. If you have any way of contacting Assange, could you please share this with him and send him my gratitude for his tenacious bravery and the sacrifices he (like you) has made to reveal the truth?

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American government is, and has been for decades, a criminal enterprise. The persecution of Assange for doing honest journalism is just the baldest, most naked example of its evil. Your wise and just assessment of its crime and that of the cowardly, complicit official UK make put the crux of the matter in simple, honest terms. America is an amoral danger to the entire world.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Chris Hedges did a great interview with Nils Melzer re Assange - I recommend it ...

Having watched multiple dissections of the US "case" against Assange and a repeated dismantling of it, frankly I have come to the conclusion that this is personal - it is simply revenge -

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Thank you for beautiful and perceptive - and funny - Season's reflection. You photograph of [your?] child is so delightful - and such a sad comment at the same time. I won't give up my hope for Julian's release from the continuing torture by the UK, US and Australian sickos, but I do wish and suggest that republishing his writing, now, would pivet to the reasons he is such a great intellectual as well as as activist and truth teller. Just 'Wikileaks meets Google' available free from the Internet demonstrates the power of his intellect and humanity. And I love it that you have become such a fine writer over the years. Thank you for taking on more responsibility than is fair for one person on behalf of so many.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Well written and great food for thought as always. Very keen to see what the new year brings.

I really respect and appreciate the way you approach topics, and the nuance with which you write about things which are often painted in very bold and partisan strokes.

I've found this happens in particular when discussing Assange. I often find it difficult to thread the needle and explain my stance of appreciating all that he has done for freedom of information, while not necessarily agreeing with the ways he might have acted as a person, yet still being adamant that his extradition and prosecution are Very Bad Things, for not just journalists and whistleblowers, but everyone - and that's not even getting into how people seem to want to personally blame him for everything that Wikileaks has ever and will ever do.

All this to say, once again, that I really do love the differing perspectives that you provide.

EDIT: Some clarification, because John seems to only understand absolutes and is weirdly caught up on assuming I was talking about sex:

I do not believe Assange deserves any of the terrible treatment he has received. I do not believe he has commited any "heinous crimes". I sometimes disagree with things he says or believes.

Disagreement is not condemnation, and it does not take away from the respect and appreciation I have for his actions, nor does it change how horrific I find his treatment at the hands of world governments.

Many people want to believe that bad things only happen to bad people (see the Just World fallacy, it's built into our brains as humans). I try to point out to these people that no - what he did was absolutely a net positive - but without falling into the hero worship and blindless support that so often shapes the way we interact with public or political figures. If you find you cannot disagree with anyone you respect, or you hate anyone who isn't 100% in agreement with you, 100% of the time, then you must live in a miserable world.

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"while not necessarily agreeing with the ways he might have acted as a person,"

What "needle"?

Are you seriously suggesting that because Assange -MAY- have once engaged in your puritanical definition of "kinky sex" that America's War Crimes don't exist?

Are you really going to throw Assange into the same pool as Jeffery Epstein?

SERIOUSLY?!?!?

If you allow yourself to be diverted by "sex talk" you end up like Al Franken and Cuomo and Tara Reid and Shahid Buttar.

Biden killed #BelieveWomen and #MeToo. Let it go!

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Thank you for proving exactly the point I was trying to make. It's extremely difficult to not explicitly and completely either condemn or worship a public figure without someone else assuming the absolute worst and attacking you for it.

If consenting adults want to engage in kinky sex, then good for them. There's not enough information to say anything either way about what happened with Assange and the sexual assault allegations for me to make a judgement.

Regardless, that's got nothing to do with the point I was trying to make about encouraging the existence of nuanced views. Constant aggression and assumptions of only 'for or against' are how we end up with our current political and cultural climate.

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You're the one with the "needle" problem. Why do you even bring it up?

"while not necessarily agreeing with the ways he might have acted as a person,"

Why do you even consider this question? Most of those accusations are lies (or probably lies) meant for prurient minds to glom onto because that's how the Oligarchy distracts us. Just refuse to discuss it. Ignore it. Don't fall into that "Venus Fly Trap".

Either the prosecution of Assange is another war crime or it isn't. His sex life (which most are probably jealous of -- as it is reported in the MSM) is totally immaterial to the question.

If you delete your comment(s), I'll be happy to delete mine.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

I don't really know where you're coming from with this. You brought up his sex life. I brought up Assange as a pertinent example of how people often willfully misinterpret discussion of public figures, and how refreshing I find the nuance with which Snowden discusses topics. You seem quite caught on the particular turn of phrase I used. I often *feel as if* I have to thread a needle when discussing political or social issues with people (especially online) as it's hard to maintain a nuanced viewpoint in the face of partisan tribalism and short character limits.

You are reading something else entirely into what I wrote. If you want to leave this behind now and delete your reply, I'll happily delete mine, but I don't see any issue with leaving the original comment up as-is.

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"while not necessarily agreeing with the ways he might have acted as a person"

If that isn't an obvious reference to Assange's sex life, what is it? The dirty dishes in his room? That he has an obnoxious personality? The statement reeks of "cancel culture".

What act did Assange commit that is so heinous he deserves what is happening to him?

There's no "nuance" when it comes to discussion of the crimes America (and England) is committing against Assange. There are no "needles to thread".

See what Caitlin says about propaganda.

https://caitlinjohnstone.substack.com/p/maturity-is-realizing-that-propaganda

WRT deletion, that ship has sailed. You come across as an apologist for America's war crimes.

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Dec 23, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

"I don't believe in God, or in institutions, or in government as a whole." Then how are you doing, Ed? Assange is not an accident that everything turned out like this. They know what they are doing and they do it in stages.

Whatever, don't give up. Merry Christmas to you!

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Thank you so much for all you've done, especially for the UK. It's so appreciated. The voices here for liberty, press freedom and against surveillance and police overreach feel small. Seeing you still speaking out is really inspiring and encouraging. It's been really helpful hear about you describing the acts of individual citizens as laying bricks - worthwhile even if they don't bring about a final goal. A wonderful Christmas to you and your family!

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

"Two-hearted, two-minded creatures: the media is full of them."

I'm not so clear on the "hearts" (is there even one?) but on the mind -- most members of the "media" are single-minded. Like Rachel Maddow, whatever it takes to get clicks (eyeballs) so they can afford their extravagant life-style.

They, like Obama, sold the-rest-of-us "down the river" with their "greed is good" gospel.

Only a few of us know this. Even fewer are able to discuss it. And maybe as few as 4 or 5 can expose it in a way that people will understand it.

Where is Huey Long when you need him? (Why does Long's assassination remind me of RFK and JFK? Why didn't Biden allow the declassification of the JFK murder? Why...? Why...? Why...? Did Bernie back down because he didn't want to follow in Long's footsteps?)

Could a case be made that if the rest-of-us ignore what is happening to Assange (and Hale; Manning; Snowden; Donzinger; ...) we deserve what we get?

Schadenfreude comes to mind, but it is hardly enough of an indictment. Does my failure to take action put me into the same category as those Jews who meekly, and voluntarily, walked into the ovens?

Does my purchase of 2 Assange T-shirts provide me any absolution?

What is the plan?

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Very true. I often wonder when did we take the turn to no journalism? I think it was when corporate greed took over news rooms. Then it just became an advertising revenue/ratings game for them. Protecting the truth died then I believe.... Merry Christmas.

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Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

“Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”

-Some conspiracy theorist

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founding

If "conspiracy theorist" also includes visionary people who knew where society was at the time and what direction it was headed way before everyone else, then there's an obligation to put George Orwell in that group, thanks to his novel 1984.

Actually the term conspiracy hypothesizer is a more accurate term. However, that's too many syllables to easily roll off the tongue. Also, the difference between hypothesis - where you have an inference, guess, or assumption but still need to gather evidence to empirically back it up - and theory - which is an explanation for data gathered about a phenomena of interest. However, this is a subtle point that most shouldn't get stuck on, just like the difference between mass and weight in engineering or physics is practically the same for most people in everyday life. In a similar manner, most readers here basically take for granted that the rise of totalitarianism is most certainly a very real theory happening right before our eyes.

For optional reading (due to the Substack hiatuses - for better or worse), I highly recommend Republic of Lies by Anna Merlan, since it was mentioned in an exchange with the author on Twitter a few months ago. I admit I've only gotten 10% into the book and It's a much tougher to read than Permanent Record (since the book might as well be an academic research piece rather than prose). However, it's subtly profound, as I can see ramifications of the book emanate through popular media, from the earliest Metal Gear Solid games to movies in the 2010s (until Disney took over and started churning out "dumb Marvel movies") in a vein similar to how Marlinspike analyzed films for themes of surveillance in his 2015 Webstock talk for the original pitch for Signal. (Wow, 2015 feels so long ago...)

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Addressing the need for libraries and librarians to defend Julian Assange there is a 3 part blog post at Bibliotekettarsaka from Mikael Böök. It is available in English as well.

"hand on heart, is it unpolitical to leave Julian Assange and the WikiLeaks to their enemies, be silent, and pretend that nothing has happened? Would it not rather be apolitical? Can a library that wants to be a pillar of democracy and human rights be apolitical?"-- Mikael Böök at Bibliotekettarsaka .

Looking for Needles in a Haystack – Libraries and the Assange Case: Part 1.

https://bibliotekettarsaka.com/2021/12/13/looking-for-needles-in-a-haystack-libraries-and-the-assange-case/

Looking for Needles in a Haystack – Libraries and the Assange Case: Part 2.

https://bibliotekettarsaka.com/2021/12/16/looking-for-needles-in-a-haystack-libraries-and-the-assange-case-part-2/

Looking for Needles in a Haystack – Libraries and the Assange Case: Part 3:

https://bibliotekettarsaka.com/2021/12/21/looking-for-needles-in-a-haystack-libraries-and-the-assange-case-part-3/

The Bibliotekettarsaka blog is by Finnish Mikael Böök and Norwegian Anders Ericson. It is also in English.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021Liked by Edward Snowden

Always delightful to see a Pynchon reference. That's the good news.

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