WASHINGTON, September 17 (RIA Novosti) – The former head of the US National Security Agency (NSA) and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Michael Hayden, says he envisions a grim future of boredom and alcoholism for fugitive US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden, who is currently living in Russia.
“I suspect he will end up like most of the rest of the defectors who went to the old Soviet Union: isolated, bored, lonely, depressed, and most of them ended up alcoholics," Hayden was quoted by The Washington Post as saying in response to a question about Snowden at a discussion forum held in a church across from the White House earlier this week.
Hayden, who is now a principal at the Chertoff Group, a security consultancy co-founded by former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff, described Snowden as “a troubled young man – morally arrogant to a tremendous degree, but a troubled young man,” The Post said.
Snowden, a computer specialist and former employee of the NSA, is currently living an anonymous life in Russia, going for walks and traveling without being recognized, lawyer Anatoly Kucherena, who helped to get Moscow to agree to grant Snowden temporary asylum, has said.
Earlier this summer, Snowden was the focus of international attention after he leaked classified information about widespread US government surveillance programs to the media.
He fled to Hong Kong and then to Russia, where he was granted asylum in July after spending weeks in the transit zone of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport.