Here’s a name you haven’t heard for awhile: Edward Snowden made headlines today for a reason that he possibly would have previously celebrated, but in 2022? The timing can’t be something that he’s thrilled to see. The 39-year-old ex-intelligence contractor and NSA whistleblower has been hiding out in Russia since 2013 after Putin gave him temporary asylum, which later turned into permanent residency in 2020. Fast forward a few years, and he’s still wanted by the U.S. government on espionage charges, and now, it’s looking about 100% unlikely that he’ll ever answer to that call. The alternative, though, doesn’t look much better because as NBC News reports, Snowden’s formally been granted Russian citizenship by Putin.
The timing of this news is, well, interesting. Putin’s been waging a dismal Ukraine war, and Snowden has stayed largely silent on the issue. And it’s no wonder because the Russian president’s always ready to punish everyone, including elected officials, who criticizes this war. And Snowden certainly didn’t want to get the boot, although he’s anti-war to the point where he released documents (which were considered damaging) regarding the Vietnam War.
Now, however, Snowden has a Russian passport, and it’s unavoidable to ignore how he’s also of fighting age. He should be a little wary, too, considering that Putin’s so desperate for replacement troops (the body count on the Russian side has been
been extremely high) that he recently rounded up 300,000 troops. His regime even reportedly passed out draft papers to Russian civilians who protested the war. That’s tantamount to a death sentence.
In other words, Edward Snowden can’t be excited about today’s news. And people are making the same morbid joke — that he’s eligible to be on the Ukraine frontlines — on social media.
BREAKING: Putin grants former NSA contractor turned traitor to the United States Edward Snowden Russian citizenship via Presidential decree. What great timing for him. Now he can be conscripted to fight in the war against Ukraine. I’m sure he can’t wait.
— Andrew Wortman (@AmoneyResists) September 26, 2022
Dear Edward Snowden, guess what cupcake, you are now eligible to be sent to Ukraine
Hope it was worth it.
— Badd Company (@BaddCompani) September 26, 2022
Vladimir Putin granted Russian citizenship to Edward Snowden which means that Edward Snowden is now eligible to be mobilized to the front lines of the war.
— Aaron Parnas (@AaronParnas) September 26, 2022
Edward Snowden is now a Russian citizen. He can be mobilized. Godspeed. pic.twitter.com/lI0MsOGt4c
— Marcin Roszkowski (@m_roszkowski) September 26, 2022
So Edward Snowden was granted Russian citizenship – SO NOW THEY CAN DRAFT HIM & SEND HIM TO DIE IN UKRAINE. That’s one way to make sure we never get our hands on that piece of work.
— Barbara Poeta (@PoetaBarbara) September 26, 2022
Edward Snowden getting conscripted and then killed in Ukraine would be quite a way for this story to end. https://t.co/OkLpHbaKGk
— Nicholas Grossman (@NGrossman81) September 26, 2022
Vladimir Putin has just made Edward Snowden a Russian citizen.
He is now eligible to be mobilized and serve in a war that he refuses to condemn.
— Christopher David (@Tazerface16) September 26, 2022
“Putin grants Edward Snowden Russian citizenship”
Guess who’s gonna go to the front lines…
— David W Pippy (@DWPippy) September 26, 2022
As of now, there’s been no formal statement by Snowden on his newfound status, but he might regret choosing Russia.