On my birthday, Edward Snowden met with the German politician Hans-Christian Ströbele to discuss the possibility of Snowden coming to Germany to testify in front of a board of inquiry regarding the NSA scandal. Since then, reports of the meeting have flooded the newspapers and magazines, the news panels on tv and every social media platform I have been on.
Initially, this made me very happy. I had been afraid of the topic slowly vanishing, of Edward Snowden becoming the next Julian Assange, who still lives in the backroom of some embassy in London, mostly isolated from the world and completely by himself. I was worried, that Snowden might fade from the spotlight, along with all the questions he raised and the information he brought to light.
But the more I started to read and watch and hear about the topic - delighted that the public was finally discussing this important topic again - the more pissed-off I became. Maybe it's a thing about slowly turning into a bitter old woman, because I never used to get that pissed-off about something on the news. Maybe it's because I truly admire this man and his courage and could not imagine doing what he did. Maybe it's because my country and its government are directly involved. Maybe it's all of this, that repeatedly makes me want to throw my cup of breakfast coffee at the wall and yell at the newspaper articles I am reading over my cereal bowl.
This man, who has given up everything in his life (family, money, a safe job, privacy and personal safety) who will probably never sit at his parent's dinner table to enjoy a Christmas dinner ever again, this man, who has taken a great risk, who is currently living in some safe house in Moscow, who has to be guarded 24/7, who has warned governments around the world that they were being bugged by the Americans, this man doesn't even get asylum in one of the countries that were affected.
Edward Snowden is currently seeking asylum in Germany. A country run by a chancellor who was 'mildly disgruntled' when she found out that Germans had been bugged, and then apparently 'enraged' when it was her own phone that was being tapped. A chancellor who does not want to anger the big bully on the playground, who will sure as hell press her face first into the sandbox if she invites unpopular little Eddie Snowden into her home for dinner. All because little Eddie told everyone that the big bully spies on all of the other kids. And instead of sticking together and calling the big bully out on his shit, all the kids keep sitting on the swing set and the slide, pretending that nothing is wrong and ignoring the hell out of little Eddie in the corner.
If the past is any indication, this government will not nearly do what I would want it to do. If the past is any indication, I will have to fight the urge to throw my coffee cup at the wall for a long, long time.
(picture taken from here)