Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a big press conference on Thursday, and spent some time talking about President Obama, Ed Snowden and the various US surveillance programs that have been revealed. Putin appeared to be quite supportive of the surveillance programs
, saying that he believes that the US's surveillance programs are a "necessity" and "mainly directed at fighting terrorism," so there's not a real problem with them. He even defended collecting data on everyone "because you have to monitor not only a specific terrorist suspect, but rather his whole network of relationships." That Vladimir Putin would appreciate vast spying power is hardly a surprise. But this claim is raising some eyebrows:
"How do I feel about Obama after Snowden's revelations? I envy him because he can do this without incurring any consequences."
Did you catch that? Putin, the former head of the KGB, and very well known for using Russian intelligence services to his strong advantage is envious
that President Obama has all this surveillance capabilities at his fingertips and that all of this can be revealed "without incurring any consequences." It seems like there should be a general rule of thumb: when Vladimir Putin is envious of your surveillance state, you've gone too far.