Edward Snowden has reacted to a damning House Intelligence report analyzing his life and possible motives for revealing NSA surveillance.
The 37-page review with 237 footnotes goes through some episodes of Snowden’s focusing on his incompetencies and disagreements with supervisors.
The report describes him as “a serial exaggerator and fabricator” and “poor student.”
The report by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence was announced in September, right before the premiere of Oliver Stone’s Snowden movie. Only the highlights were released to the public at the time, and Snowden likewise challenged them. The full report was published on Thursday, after it went through the redaction and declassification process.
The report accuses Snowden of causing “tremendous damage to national security” by making the information he shared with the public available to “Russian, Chinese, Iranian and North Korean government intelligence services; any terrorist with internet access.”
As of June 2016, the Pentagon had identified 13 “high-risk issues” among the 1.5 million documents Snowden accessed, the report said, adding that if Russian or Chinese governments had access to eight of those issues – redacted in full – “American troops will be at greater risk in any future conflict.”
The report claimed that Snowden “has had, and continues to have, contact with Russian intelligence services,” and that he “remains a guest of the Kremlin to this day.”
Leading members of the committee behind the report have said it represented proof that Snowden was not a whistleblower but a traitor who gave intelligence to enemies and put Americans in danger.
Americans “can now get a fuller account of Edward Snowden’s crimes and the reckless disregard he has shown for US national security,” said committee chairman Devin Nunes (R-California).
“Snowden and his defenders claim that he is a whistleblower, but he isn’t, as the Committee’s review shows,” said ranking member Adam Schiff (D-California). “Most of the material he stole had nothing to do with Americans’ privacy, and its compromise has been of great value to America’s adversaries and those who mean to do America harm.”
“This extensive report shows Snowden is no hero, and that he should be brought to justice for his reckless actions,” said NSA and Cybersecurity Subcommittee chairman Lynn Westmoreland (R-Georgia).
Snowden says that parts of the reports contain factual errors.
Snowden’s lawyer Ben Wizner described the report as “petulant nonsense.”