Speaking with the New Yorker via encrypted email, Edward Snowden denies allegations made by members of Congress that his leaks of NSA documents were to aid a foreign power.
"This 'Russian spy' push is absurd," said Snowden. "Spies get treated better than that" by the likes of Russia and China, which US politicians have implied Snowden is snooping for.
The most persistent of those accusers: congressman Mike Rogers (R-MI).
Speaking on NBC's "Meet The Press," the House Intelligence Committee chairman described Snowden as a "thief, who we believe had some help."
"It's not the smears that mystify me," Snowden told me. "It's that outlets report statements that the speakers themselves admit are sheer speculation." Snowden went on to poke fun at the range of allegations that have been made against him in the media without intelligence officials providing some kind of factual basis: " 'We don't know if he had help from aliens.' 'You know, I have serious questions about whether he really exists.' "
(HT: @tnycloseread; photo: New Yorker)