"Mr. Snowden justifies his flight abroad on the grounds that, had he remained within the jurisdiction of the United States, he could not have had a fair trial, would very likely have been subjected to cruel and unusual punishment, and would have been isolated and silenced to avert informed debate by Americans about the public policy issues his revelations raise. Not so very long ago – let’s say in the time of Daniel Ellsberg – it would have been fairly easy to show that such fears were groundless. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. Mr. Snowden has been driven to ground in Russia, a country with an incomparably worse record of lawlessness than ours that he never intended to visit, let alone reside in. If he tries to go elsewhere, he will be hunted down and made to disappear."
"What is not in doubt is that there has been a massive, ongoing failure by our government to conduct its intelligence activities in a manner supportive of our liberties and our alliances with foreign nations. Both oversight and management of intelligence collection programs need urgent corrective surgery. And it is time for a major pruning of the jungle of surveillance programs that national hysteria about terrorism, essentially limitless funding, and burgeoning technical capabilities have combined to produce."
It is only because the Internet exists that we have access to the better thinkers of our time, of which Chas Freeman is clearly one. As you may know preserving the Internet as it is will be very difficult. Please see The End of Free Internet as We Know It? By Timothy Karr