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Ewen MacAskill on Being 'Totally Gobsmacked' at First Meeting With Edward Snowden

In an interview with Fusion’s Jorge Ramos, Ewen MacAskill, Defense and Security Correspondent for The Guardian, talks about his first impression of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

“When I saw him in the hotel room in Hong Kong I was totally gobsmacked,” MacAskill recalled.

With over 20 years experience under his belt, MacAskill was sent with Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras to determine whether Snowden was a credible source. His first impression was that the story was a hoax, and Snowden appeared to be too young to have done all the things he claimed to have done.

“The idea that someone of that age could have done all the things he was claiming to be, he said he trained with special forces because he wanted to fight in Iraq, he’d been with the CIA in Geneva, he’d been with the NSA in Japan and Hawaii, he just sounded..the stuff of fantasy.”

MacAskill went on to interview him for six days in Hong Kong, sometimes with Greenwald and Poitras, other times by himself.

MacAskill said, “By the end of it we became friends. We liked each other.”

Watch our full story on Edward Snowden and privacy in the United States on AMERICA with Jorge Ramos June 3, 10pm ET.

Ewen MacAskill on Being 'Totally Gobsmacked' at First Meeting With Edward Snowden

In an interview with Fusion’s Jorge Ramos, Ewen MacAskill, Defense and Security Correspondent for The Guardian, talks about his first impression of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.

“When I saw him in the hotel room in Hong Kong I was totally gobsmacked,” MacAskill recalled.

With over 20 years experience under his belt, MacAskill was sent with Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras to determine whether Snowden was a credible source. His first impression was that the story was a hoax, and Snowden appeared to be too young to have done all the things he claimed to have done.

“The idea that someone of that age could have done all the things he was claiming to be, he said he trained with special forces because he wanted to fight in Iraq, he’d been with the CIA in Geneva, he’d been with the NSA in Japan and Hawaii, he just sounded..the stuff of fantasy.”

MacAskill went on to interview him for six days in Hong Kong, sometimes with Greenwald and Poitras, other times by himself.

MacAskill said, “By the end of it we became friends. We liked each other.”

Watch our full story on Edward Snowden and privacy in the United States on AMERICA with Jorge Ramos June 3, 10pm ET.

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