Local experts react to reported NSA leaker

Courtesy:  The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald & Laura Poitras
Courtesy: The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald & Laura Poitras

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Edward Snowden, 29, spilled the beans on sensitive information about how the government collects phone and internet records.

The former Hawaii resident is now the focus of an international investigation.

While he’s in hiding, the scandal has put the spotlight on his live-in girlfriend, Lindsay Mills, who was left behind in Hawaii.

Mills is a former ballet dancer who has trained with Samadhi Hawaii and performed with the Waikiki Acrobatic Troupe.

“It’s very possible. We see that time and time again in these types of things where someone’s wife is not aware he is leading a double life,” President of the Pacific Forum Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS) Ralph Cossa said.

The two had shared a home together in Kunia, but what Mills knew about Snowden’s secrets is yet to be revealed.

What is clear is that the information Snowden leaked is drawing both praise and criticism.

“I would say a number of people feel they are glad he did what he did, whether its accurate or if there’s more going on, calling attention to domestic surveillance and privacy is a good thing,” media expert Ryan Ozawa said.

Ozawa, a self-proclaimed local tech geek, says he’s glad Snowden came forward. However, some people question if the sensitive information will protect freedoms or put them at risk.

“But he’s couching it in these terms to make himself sound like a hero. Well, hero he ‘aint. He’s either a fool or a traitor or somewhere in between,” Cossa said.

Cossa says Snowden has made it easier on terrorists.

“And it is aiding and abetting terrorists who want to conduct business in the U.S. and has made it just a little bit harder for us to detect them,” Cossa said.

Snowden says the information needed to come out, but he is aware of the risks.

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