Celebrities, Whistleblowers Lead Petition to Ecuador for Snowden's Political Asylum

Celebrities, Whistleblowers, Lead Petition to Ecuador for Snowden's Political Asylum

Petition Has Over 23,000 Signers

For Immediate Release: July 1, 2013
Contact: Robert Naiman, Just Foreign Policy, (202) 448-2898

Washington, D.C. - Oliver Stone, Danny Glover, John Cusack, Amber Heard, Shia LaBeouf, Roseanne Barr, and musician Boots Riley have joined Vietnam War whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg and Iraq War whistleblower Joe Wilson, author Noam Chomsky and many other prominent whistle-blowers, activists, former intelligence and military officers, academics and others in calling on Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa to grant whistle-blower Edward Snowden political asylum. The full letter and list of prominent signers was circulated by the organization Just Foreign Policy and is posted on the group’s website.

The letter is here:

The petition is here:

"We're proud to stand with patriotic American whistleblowers like Dan Ellsberg, Coleen Rowley, Joe Wilson and Thomas Drake in appealing to President Correa to grant political asylum to Edward Snowden," said Robert Naiman, Policy Director of Just Foreign Policy. "For democracy to work, Americans have to be able to find out what our government is doing. Unprecedented government secrecy and an unprecedented crackdown on whistleblowers are threatening the ability of Americans to control their government. If President Correa grants asylum to Snowden, all Americans who love freedom will be in his debt."

The actors, directors and musicians were joined by author and journalist Naomi Klein, professor and Middle East expert Juan Cole, “The Young Turks” co-host Cenk Uygur, Thomas Drake (the former NSA Senior Executive and whistleblower), Coleen Rowley (retired FBI agent & former Minneapolis Division Legal Counsel, and one of three “whistleblowers” named Time Magazine’s “Persons of the Year” in 2002), Jacob Appelbaum (developer of The Tor Project), Medea Benjamin and Jodie Evans (Cofounders of CODEPINK), Ann Wright (retired US Army Colonel and former US diplomat), and Ray McGovern (Former U.S. Army officer and former senior CIA analyst) among many others.

Over 23,000 others have joined in signing the petition as it has circulated on the internet. The Ecuadorean government first reported it had received a political asylum request from Snowden on Sunday.

The letter states that Snowden has revealed “severe abuses of the basic constitutional rights of U.S. citizens and the rights of people in other nations. Yet rather than focusing on the danger to citizens' freedom and privacy exposed by these revelations, and what reforms are necessary to protect citizens' rights, the Obama administration, the U.S. Congress and much of the media are again focusing their ire on the messenger” – Snowden, whom it terms a “brave whistle-blower.”

The letter states that the Obama administration has charged Snowden under the Espionage Act even though Snowden “clearly did not commit espionage,” and that the Espionage Act charges are “arbitrary” and “evidence of political persecution.” It notes that the Obama administration “has charged more than twice as many whistle-blowers under the Espionage Act than all previous presidents combined.”

The letter also describes the dangerous precedent set by the “cruel and inhuman” treatment that U.S. army whistle-blower Bradley Manning has endured, and that Snowden “would have difficulty in receiving a fair trial in the U.S.” It also states that “[t]here is no evidence whatsoever that [Snowden’s] revelations have in any way threatened U.S. national security or were ever intended to do so.”


I wish to join in the hopeful request that Snowden can be granted asylum. He has done great service to his country, but will be persecuted.

I wish to join in the hopeful request that Snowden can be granted asylum. He has done great service to his country, but will be persecuted.

Snowden is hero. He dared to reveal the truth, thereby putting himself at risk. An Arabic proverb, says "give a good(i.e.) swift horse to the man who tells the t ruth!

There is no duty, and no necessity to be crucified or martyred by the massive governmental forces that are perpetrating the wrongs that have been called out by the whistle-blower. It is far more important and valuable to the public for the whistle-blower to not surrender to a discredited authoritarian government and to remain free to comment further or to expose other information that has wrongfully been hidden from the People about the government's actions AGAINST the people.

In "the land of the free," EVERYONE is free to call out an assault on our freedom. And anyone who risks all for that purpose and is accused and hounded as a fugitive by the very same discredited wrongdoers is a hero in search of "the land of the free." Our "Duty to Truth" is always to "betray the Lie," wherever it is coming from.

EVERY whistle-blower exposes information they aren't "authorized" to. And more often than not they expose themselves to retribution by those who want to keep the lid on something they don't want US to know about. That's the nature of whistle-blowing.

What was revealed was how our government is spying, not just on "the enemy," but on all of US.

If we don't want spying on US, then that means WE, the governed, do not give our consent to being regarded and treated and investigated as terrorist suspects.

Thanks to Edward Snowden, we now know how the government is doing this and how large corporations (and which ones) are being mined for information about US and who we talk with, and email to, and for how long, how often and when.

That's not the America WE want to have and WE have the right to say "ENOUGH" "NO MORE" "STOP IT"!

Let's keep things in perspective:

WE are not the servants of the government, the government is the servant of the People.

We do not protect ourselves by empowering the state to abuse us.

It looks like correa has turned his back on Snowden and 'forgotten' his previous claims to be a defender of the right of dissent and freedom of expression. Well, we all knew that was just BS posturing for his election campaign. The US must have threatened to let the trade-preference act with ecuador expire in July, and it scared correa into forgetting his 'principles'. The US is still powerful enough to twist arms and buy weak, unprincipled leaders like correa.

I wish to join in the hopeful request that Snowden can be granted asylum. What was revealed was how our government is spying, not just on "the enemy," but on all of US. We do not protect ourselves by empowering the state to abuse US.
I do not believe Mr. Snowden would receive a speedy or fair trial in the US and hope the Ecuadorean government can grant him asylum until such time as he may make his case in a truly just situation.

I wish to join in the hopeful request that Snowden can be granted asylum. What was revealed was how our government is spying, not just on "the enemy," but on all of US. We do not protect ourselves by empowering the state to abuse US.
I do not believe Mr. Snowden would receive a speedy or fair trial in the US and hope the Ecuadorean government can grant him asylum until such time as he may make his case in a truly just situation.

It's encouraging to see our neighbors to the South finally deciding to tell the USA to bug off and mind its own business. Other nations are either sovereign and can make decisions independent of the American empire or the whole world is a farce. Soon the world will tire of our "diplomatic bullying" of all less powerful nations.

as Snowden himself stated, while he still could, 'it is not about me', this is a matter of principle.

The systemic flaws of the US system, the world conventions, is nowhere near better illustrated as in this case as a totality: the principles, the modes, the policies and polities, the economics, the personalities involved, the wilful confusion of language of our world are to be redrawn bottom up. Creativity, inclusiveness, long-term thinking, potential rather then power are to be brought to the front. These are the real globalisers.

Thanks Edward,


Americans should not live in a survailence state.

End the illegal suvailance!

I'd like to add my name to the list, in support of a hero to the public. If not for these whistleblowers, we'd be forever left in the dark by our govt.

i want to take action instead of letting this great country screw by someone hungry for power.

Re you comment "..... buy weak, unprincipled leaders like correa"
What unmitigated arrogance, ignorance and slander you write - underscored by not even bothering to capitalise the first letter in a foreign presidents name.
How dare you cast aspersions on a foreign leaders character, but overlook the economic threat made to the Ecuadorian people (and now Venezuela too) - plus the knowledge that any person outside of USA (including Snowden) has of the utter vindictiveness that US will employ against those who do not conform to their lawless edicts.
And Anonymous- may I suggest you update your stereotypical views, check the moral ascendance of S.American leaders in recent years. ... BTW - Coinciding with the reduction of USA's past utterly evil interference on that continent.
Because typing this from Africa - may I tell you that your liberty is sold very cheap by your president to the interests of a few elites, multi-nationals, and a festering boil called Israel ... and there is no moral superiority in that over 'the rest' of your stereotyped view of 2nd and 3rd class nations.
Thank you for letting me vent. I cannot tell you how angry and how typical "Stupid Yank" your world view is..... And if you don't like my sterotyping you - GOOD LESSON!!!

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