You can watch the full seven-minute interview, conducted on June 6 in Hong Kong, at the Guardian. The clip was filmed by Laura Poitras, one of the journalists Snowden initially contacted after lifting scores of secret NSA documents.
In an interview with BuzzFeed in June, Glenn Greenwald said Poitras has “amazing” footage of Snowden during his time in Hong Kong, including footage of the then 29-year-old watching as the surveillance debate he hoped to inspire unfolded on CNN.
It’s likely there’s much more footage of Snowden explaining his methods and motivations, as Greenwald said he spent “five or six hours just relentlessly questioning him.”
Some choice Snowden quotes from the new clip:
“I think the government’s going to launch an investigation. I think they’re going to say I’ve committed grave crimes, that I’ve violated the Espionage Act. They’re going to say I’ve aided our enemies in making them aware of these systems, but that argument can be made against anybody who reveals information that points out mass surveillance systems, because fundamentally, they apply equally to ourselves as they do to our enemies.”
“America is a fundamentally good country. We have good people with good values who want to do the right thing. But the structures of power that exist are working to their own ends to extend their capability at the expense of the freedom of all publics.”
“I grew up with the understanding that the world I lived in was one where people enjoyed a sort of freedom to communicate with each other in privacy, without it being measured or analyzed or sort of judged by these shadowy figures or systems any time they mention anything that travels across public lines.”
“I don’t want to live in a world where everything that I say, everything I do, everyone I talk to, every expression of creativity or love or friendship is recorded. That’s not something I’m willing to support, it’s not something I’m willing to build, and it’s not something I’m willing to live under. I think anyone who opposes that sort of world has an obligation to act in a way they can.”