Snowden's Lawyer Interrogated By UK Authorities At Heathrow Airport
from the not-a-one-off dept
One of the most chilling moments so far in the Snowden saga was when Glenn Greenwald's partner David Miranda was held and interrogated for nine hours at London's Heathrow airport by the UK authorities, in a series of moves worthy of a tinpot dictatorship. And in case you thought that was a one-off, they've done it again -- this time, to Jesselyn Radack, a lawyer who represents Snowden and has spoken on his behalf several times. Here's what happened, as described by Kevin Gosztola on his Firedoglake blog:
Jesselyn Radack told Firedoglake she was directed to a specific Heathrow Border Force agent. He "didn’t seem interested" in her passport. She was then subjected to "very hostile questioning."
After asking what she would be doing in London, and establishing that she would be meeting with Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy, the border agent moved on to other issues, and showed a surprising knowledge of her recent movements:
"Why have you gone to Russia twice in three months?" Radack said she had a client in the country. "Who?" She answered, "Edward Snowden."
The questions are clearly concerned with one topic -- whistleblowers -- and give the impression that the person asking the questions already knew the answers, but just wanted to put pressure on Radack:
"Who is Edward Snowden?" asked the agent. Radack said he is a whistleblower and an asylee. Then, the agent asked, "Who is Bradley Manning?" To this, she answered, "A whistleblower."
For whatever reason, the agent asked, "Where is he?" "In jail," Radack told the agent. (Now, she is known as Chelsea Manning.)
The agent said, "So he's a criminal?" Radack corrected the agent, "He's a political prisoner." The agent asked if she represented Manning and she said no. Then he followed up, "But you represent Snowden?" She replied, "Yes, I'm a human rights lawyer."
She was "stone face cold" during the interrogation but afterward was shaking and in tears. "How did he know to bring up those names?"
This blatant attempt to intimidate Snowden's lawyer, who was informed that she was on an "inhibited persons list," comes in the wake of news that a US law firm was spied upon as it advised the Indonesian government in a trade dispute with Australia. It confirms that for the US and UK governments, nothing is exempt from their total surveillance, not even information traditionally covered by attorney-client privilege.