NSA Leak Journalists Greenwald and Poitras Return to US for First Time in 10 Months
Since June of 2013, journalists Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras had been avoiding returning home to the United States until last Friday. They left the country last summer to meet in Hong Kong with the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, to meet and begin the relationship that would lead to the biggest story of the decade. They had been threatened by both the United States and British governments, accused of aiding Edward Snowden who remains in asylum in Russia.
Greenwald, Poitras, Ewen MacAskill (all from The Guardian), and Barton Gellman of The Washington Post accepted the prestigious Polk award for national security reporting. Some of them had never even met before the ceremony.
Many who think that their reporting violated national security called for arrest—as a way to get to Snowden—and have compared their activities to those at Wikileaks, the site which routinely posts classified data publicly.
This is, of course, a ridiculous comparison. The possible merits of Wikileaks aside, it remains an organization comprised mostly of hacker activists (adorably shortened to “hacktivists”) who often provide no context for the material they publish.
Greenwald et al. are exactly the type of journalists someone like Snowden or the now-incarcerated Bradley/Chelsea Manning would reporting their stories. The combined weight of the editorial boards at The Guardian, The New York Times, and The Washington Post combined to ensure that what was reported was both in the public interest and, most importantly, true.
While their entry into the country was hassle-free, there is still a chance that the US Government might try to issue them with subpoenas. Still Greenwald and Poitras aren’t taking any chances. According to The New York Times, they are traveling “with a lawyer from the American Civil Liberties Union, and a German journalist to document any unpleasant surprises.”
Image By https://www.youtube.com/user/TheWikiLeaksChannel [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons