Edward Snowden awarded the 2014 Free Spirit AwardBy Harold Mandel
ON THE WEB, 28 October 2014
Whether the US government likes it or not, dissident Edward Snowden is being recognized as a hero worldwide, including among Tibetans. The Tibet Post reported on 27 October 2014 that Snowden has been given the 2014 Free Spirit Award. NSA whistle-blower Snowden has been given this prestigious award at the 10th anniversary of the Free Spirit Film Festival.
The film festival opened with the India premiere of Plundering Tibet, which is a personal take on mining in Tibet and which has been directed by Michael Buckley from Canada. Lobsang Wangyal, who has been the festival organizer, said this documentary showed the dire consequences of China’s ruthless mining in Tibet.
The Free Spirit Award was given to Snowden for his revelations dealing with the extensive worldwide surveillance by the United States government. Snowden couldn’t pick up the award himself. He has been given temporary asylum in Russia due to cancellation of his passport by the United States. Snowden is the previous National Security Agency subcontractor who made headlines in 2013 after he leaked top-secret information dealing with NSA surveillance activities worldwide.
The Free Spirit Award began in 2003 and is given to show appreciation for people from around the world who are working for peace and justice, social, and environmental issues, reports the Tibet Sun. Films in all genres from all over the world which manifest a true free spirit are shown at the film festival. Snowden certainly deserves the 2014 Free Spirit Award which was given to him at the film festival. His free spirit represents the type of free spirit Tibetans and other freedom-loving people worldwide have longed for ever since mankind first walked on the planet earth.