Feinstein: ‘We don’t know’ whether Russia helped Snowden

Edward Snowden. (The Guardian/AFP/Getty Images).
Edward Snowden. (The Guardian/AFP/Getty Images).

Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) on Sunday downplayed suggestions that Russia may have prompted Edward Snowden to steal spy information but said a connection is possible.

Asked on NBC's "Meet the Press" whether the former National Security Agency contractor may have had help from the Russians, Feinstein said: "He may well have. We don't know at this stage."

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) described Snowden on "Meet the Press" as "a thief who we believe had some help."

"I believe there was a reason he ended up in the loving arms of an FSB agent in Moscow," Rogers said.  "I believe there are questions to be answered there. I don't think it was a gee-whiz luck event that he ended up in Moscow under the handling of the FSB."

The congressman also said most of the information Snowden collected had nothing to do with the privacy issues he raised, adding that the NSA leaker sought information that puts the U.S. military at risk.

"Some of the things we're finding we would call clues that certainly would indicate to me that he had some help and he stole things that had nothing to do with privacy," Rogers said.

Josh Hicks covers the federal government and anchors the Federal Eye blog. He reported for newspapers in the Detroit and Seattle suburbs before joining the Post as a contributor to Glenn Kessler’s Fact Checker blog in 2011.
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