Retweeted by Glenn Greenwald a few minutes ago, some breaking bombshell news about Edward Snowden!
Just in: NSA confirms to me it has copies of Edward Snowden's e-mails during his time as a contractor, but they “are exempt from release.”
Wow, you mean they actually do have emails from Snowden contacting his superiors to “blow the whistle” on privacy abuses by the NSA, but they’re hiding them? This is HUGE, people!
But, uh… here’s the actual FOIA response:
Scroll down to the last sentence, and you’ll find:
“For your information, there are no emails indicating that Mr. Snowden contacted agency officials to raise concerns about NSA programs.”
Oh. Never mind!
Meanwhile, please note that the Freedom of Information Act was not intended to be used to reveal every single email of a government employee. It’s supposed to be a targeted request for specific information, not a fishing expedition.
Matthew Keys has now sent me several tweets, very upset that I didn’t include the link to his site where he does mention the response from the NSA; so here it is, buried at the end of the fifth paragraph: NSA Says Snowden E-Mails Exempt From Public Disclosure.
The Desk’s original FOIA request was for “and and all e-mails sent by Edward Snowden using the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org to any and all NSA officials, including officials at the Office of General Counsel, for the time period between January 1, 2013 and June 1, 2013.” Though the request did not specify records related to Snowden’s claim that he raised concerns about the legality clandestine NSA surveillance programs, Phillips wrote that “there are no e-mails indicating that Mr. Snowden contacted agency officials to raise concerns about NSA programs.”