Snowden’s Father Doubts Wikileaks and Greenwald Have Edward’s Best Interests in Mind
Against the advice of their lawyers, Edward Snowden and his father had a little Internet chat this morning, and some interesting information came out of it.
For example, Wikileaks is now selling branded Edward Snowden T-shirts and coffee mugs in their online store.
On Aug. 9, WikiLeaks started a “Journalistic Source Protection Defence Fund,” to raise money for Mr. Snowden, saying he had endorsed it. So far, the fund has raised $12,011, according to WikiLeaks’ website.
WikiLeaks also recently began selling Edward Snowden merchandise, including T-shirts and coffee mugs, via its online store. WikiLeaks didn’t respond to questions about the fund or allegations made by with Lon Snowden’s legal team.
Snowden’s father seems to grasp that the people his son has fallen in with may not have his best interests at heart:
More fractious is the relationship between Lon Snowden and his son’s other advisers, WikiLeaks and Mr. Greenwald. Mr. Fein’s wife and spokeswoman, Mattie Fein, said Lon Snowden’s legal team doesn’t trust the intentions of Mr. Greenwald or WikiLeaks and worry they are giving Edward Snowden bad advice.
“The thing we have been most concerned about is that the people who have influence over Ed will try to use him for their own means,” Ms. Fein said. “These guys have their own agenda here and we aren’t so sure that it has Ed’s best interest in mind.”
Meanwhile, Glenn Greenwald is doing his best to cash in as well, trying to “license” an interview with Snowden to NBC News — for $50,000. When Lon Snowden’s lawyer mentioned this cynical ploy, Greenwald flew into a rage and denied everything.
On Sunday, Ms. Fein says she was called by a producer at a U.S. television network saying Mr. Greenwald had been shopping around an exclusive interview with Mr. Snowden for seven figures.
She said she warned the producer that she would cut off access to Mr. Snowden’s father, who has appeared regularly on television, to anyone who agreed to Mr. Greenwald’s terms. A few hours later, she said she received a furious email from Mr. Greenwald, calling her a liar and denying he had made such an offer.
Mr. Greenwald calls the accusation that he was shopping an interview “defamatory,” but did admit to having informal discussions with NBC about producing an interview he would conduct himself and licensing it to them for $50,000.
“There were no negotiations. I didn’t shop anything around. I didn’t go to NBC, they called me and asked and made these offers,” he said. “By the time we paid the crew and got ourselves to Moscow and stayed there for two-three days, we would end up losing money, or maybe breaking even.”
Stay tuned for the next episode of “Edward Snowden Goes to Russia (or, Wikileaks and Greenwald Cash In).”