Edward Snowden Playing Chess With U.S. Government

Whether they are new or old details that surface, Edward Snowden continues to play out the virtual chess match that is unfolding against Obama and the U.S. government.

Why refer to it as a chess match? Simply put, Snowden’s first move put Obama and his administration in check and has led them on a global chase ever since.

Here are a few updates on the developments throughout the night:

Snowden, the World, Making a Fool of Obama | via FoxNews/Reuters

Since his first day in office, President Barack Obama’s foreign policy has rested on outreach: resetting ties with Russia, building a partnership with China and offering a fresh start with antagonistic leaders from Iran to Venezuela.

But the global travels on Sunday of former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden highlight the limits of that approach. Leaders Obama has wooed – and met recently – were willing to snub the American president.
The cocky defiance by so-called “non-state actors” – Snowden himself and the anti-secrecy group, WikiLeaks, completes the picture of a world less willing than ever to bend to U.S. prescriptions of right and wrong.
Snowden flew out of Hong Kong, the semi-autonomous Chinese territory, early on Sunday after Hong Kong authorities rebuffed a U.S. request to detain him pending extradition to the United States for trial. Snowden has acknowledged leaking details of highly classified NSA surveillance programs.
Beijing may merely have wished to get rid of a potential irritant in its multifaceted relationship with Washington. But Snowden’s next stop was Russia, a U.S. “frenemy” in which the friend factor has been harder to spot since President Vladimir Putin returned to power in May 2012.
WikiLeaks, which says it is helping the 30-year-old Snowden, said via Twitter that he intended to go to Ecuador, whose government has antagonistic relations with Washington. Ecuador’s foreign minister, Ricardo Patino Aroca, said, also via Twitter, that his government had received an asylum request from Snowden.

Edward Snowden never crossed border into Russia, says foreign minister | via theGuardian

Russia’s foreign minister has said the surveillance whistleblower Edward Snowden never crossed the border into Russia, deepening the mystery over his suspected flight from Hong Kong.

“I would like to say right away that we have no relation to either Mr Snowden or to his relationship with American justice or to his movements around the world,” Sergei Lavrov said.

“He chose his route on his own, and we found out about it, as most here did, from mass media,” he said during a joint press conference with Algeria’s foreign minister. “He did not cross the Russian border.”

According to WikiLeaks, which said it facilitated his travel, Snowden fled Hong Kong on Sunday morning to transit via Moscow to an undisclosed third country. He has applied to be granted political asylum by Ecuador, whose London embassy is currently sheltering the WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

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