Edward Snowden Wins Swedish Human Rights Award for NSA Revelations

December 2nd, 2014 - by admin

Ewen MacAskill / The Guardian & Carmen Fishwick and Guardian Readers – 2014-12-02 23:56:17


Edward Snowden Wins Swedish
Human Rights Award for NSA Revelations

Whistleblower receives several standing ovations in Swedish parliament as he wins Right Livelihood award

Ewen MacAskill / The Guardian

STOCKHOM (December 1, 2014) — Whistleblower Edward Snowden received several standing ovations in the Swedish parliament after being given the Right Livelihood award for his revelations of the scale of state surveillance.

Snowden, who is in exile in Russia, addressed the parliament by video from Moscow. In a symbolic gesture, his family and supporters said no one picked up the award on his behalf in the hope that one day he might be free to travel to Sweden to receive it in person.

His father, Lon, who was in the chamber for what was an emotional ceremony, said: ‘I am thankful for the support of the Right Livelihood award and the Swedish parliament. The award will remain here in expectation that some time — sooner or later — he will come to Stockholm to accept the award.’

Snowden is wanted by the US on charges under the Espionage Act. His chances of a deal with the US justice department that would allow him to return home are slim and he may end up spending the rest of his days in Russia.

His supporters hope that a west European country such as Sweden might grant him asylum. Members of the Green party called for him to be given sanctuary in Sweden.

Philanthropist Jakob von Uexküll, who established the award in 1980, told the parliament: ‘So Mr Snowden, your Right Livelihood Award is waiting for you. We trust that Sweden will make it possible for you to collect your award here in Stockholm in person in the very near future.’

The awards jury, in its citation, said Snowden was being honoured ‘for his courage and skill in revealing the unprecedented extent of state surveillance violating basic democratic processes and constitutional rights’.

The chamber was filled with members of parliament from almost all the parties as well as family and friends of those receiving the award.

The Guardian editor, Alan Rusbridger, was also among the recipients. The jury citation said his award was in celebration of ‘building a global media organisation dedicated to responsible journalism in the public interest, undaunted by the challenge of exposing corporate and government malpractices’.

In his address, Rusbridger said: ‘One of the challenges Snowden poses for us is the recognition that there is no such thing as the public interest. No such thing as one single, monolithic interest that overrides all others.’

Security from terrorists is a public interest but freedom of expression and a right to privacy were also in the public interest. ‘So there are many — often conflicting — public interests, not one,’ Rusbridger said.

Edward Snowden Wins Guardian Readers’
Nobel Peace Prize Poll, Ahead of Malala Yousafzai

Carmen Fishwick and Guardian Readers

LONDON (October 10, 2014) — Edward Snowden should have won the 2014 Nobel peace prize, according to Guardian readers who put the NSA whistleblower ahead of official winners Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi.

Snowden, who leaked documents revealing global surveillance by the US and UK to the Guardian and others last year, received 47% of reader votes, with educational campaigner Malala gaining 36% and Snowden’s fellow American whistleblower Chelsea Manning at 15%.

Guardian reader Norbert Schuff explained the reasoning behind his vote:
Snowden is the only one on this list who deserves the peace price. His revelations of the broad government surveillance of digital communications not only had the most global impact but will also shape actions for freedom of expression and right of privacy for years to come.

Readers’ hopes were dashed when the Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded the prestigious and often controversial prize to Malala and Satyarthi for ‘their struggle against the suppression of children and young people and for the right of all children to education’.

The committee prides itself on its independence, but, headed by Norway’s former Prime Minister Thorbjorn Jagland and chosen by Norway’s parliament, its members are keenly aware of the political ramifications of their decisions.

‘Giving it to Snowden would run against all political instincts. He is, after all, considered a traitor to one of Norway’s closest allies,’ Kristian Harpviken, director at the Peace Research Institute in Oslo, told the Christian Science Monitor.

Snowden ‘is the only person who deserves the award. He has risked everything to bring sanity to the world. However, I very much doubt that he will get it. Norwegians are too scared of the wrath of US if they grant this honor to him,’ wrote Guardian reader Citzenoftheworld.

At 17 Malala has become the youngest ever winner of the prize.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.

CitizenFour: Documenting Edward Snowden’s
Pultizer-Prize-winning Act of Courage

Gar Smith / The Berkeley Daily Planet

(October 21, 2014) — CITIZENFOUR is a real-life spy thriller featuring three charismatic and eloquent individuals driven by high moral purpose into a knife-ringed pit of high-stakes intrigue. The dialogue crackles like a Hollywood script in a story that unfolds like a John le Carre novel.