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Time for Rep. Mike Rogers to produce some evidence of Snowden-Russian cahoots

It's been a little more than a month since U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., chair of the House Intelligence Committee, stated on "Meet the Press" his unproven belief that Edward Snowden was working with the Russian intelligence agency when he downloaded, then leaked huge quantities of classified data exposing the previously unknown extent of National Security Agency tracking of millions of phone calls made by Americans.

Snowden denied it the same day (that is, he denied that he had been working with the Russians). I wrote at the time that Rogers needs to either back it up or retract it and journalists should keep asking him about it until he does one or the other. (This link will also get you the exact quote from Rogers.

So far as I can find, Rogers has neither backed it up, nor retracted it. Rogers in 2013 was the most frequent of all guests on the Sunday shows and he continues to appear. He was interviewed about Russian security preparations for the Olympics on Feb. 9 by Martha Raddatz on ABC's "This Week," but she didn't ask him about his previous claim that it was "no coincidence" that Snowden ended up in the "loving arms" of the Russian FSB, the successor agency to the Soviet-era KGB.

There are probably more important issues about the Snowden affair (unless Rogers is proven right). But still, after the American experience with Sen. Joe McCarthy's various undocumented claims in the 1950s, we should maintain a high put-up-or-shut-up standard in such matters.

(And yes, I'm aware that some of the people on some of McCarthy's lists were indeed Communists.)

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Comments (5)

Milking the Snowden issue

is a lot easier than fixing Michigan.

On the McCarthy list:
in the 1930's half the east and west coasts were at least communist sympathizers (a depression will do that).
Just by coincidence McCarthy had to be right some of the time.
Whether those 'communists' were any sort of threat to the United States is another question.

We have a real problem these

We have a real problem these days.

The healthcare web roll-out and the Snowden affair are similar.

The people who are in over-sight, management, and supervisory roles are unable to do their job because they have little familiarity with the tools and operations of the day. How do they know what a contractor is doing with respect to "that computer stuff" when the supervisors can barely keep up with their smart-phone innovations.

So the easiest form of blame in the Snowden affair is that he is a Russian spy----ahhh, how relaxing to have one of those again. So fifties! Makes you long for a martini and a cigar!

So much more complicated to speak to an over-reaching federal government, incompetent supervision, excessive reliance on contractors, inadequate information security, lax Congressional over-sight, inadequate vetting of contractors, determined ignoring of Constitutional implications of information gathering, post-political youth, on and on...

It's a different world now.

I agree with you totally

Rogers is simply suspicious about how Snowden seemed to have an easy time getting to and being accommodated by the Russian government when he supposedly was a man on the run with little resources. Rogers has no proof, his view is simply that something doesn't pass the smell test.

Yes

Like spending 40 days in the airport without a change of clothes.
Clear proof that he had a prearrangement with Moscow.

And I think that you accidentally transposed two words in your statement:
Shouldn't it be:
".... Rogers has no proof, his view is simply something that doesn't pass the smell test." ?

True story

Yes I agree. We can't allow politicans to run around and throw accusations at people with no proof. That is not the way it works. Only way that will stop is if the public pressures that concept, otherwise the government and its politicans will do what they've been doing- WHATEVER they think is right for us. Like we're incompetent enough to determine what is good for us.