The effort to bring Edward Snowden to Germany for testimony.....got a pretty hard stumble yesterday....as a special committee for the Bundestag came to the decision that it wasn't practical or smart to bring Snowden into Germany.
It was a twenty-seven page explanation. What one could get out of the details is that Germany evaluated the cost and gains of such a on-site testimony....then gauged US reactions (probably cutting Germany off from various intelligence programs), and the heavier weight fell to a 'no-Snowden-visit'.
The end? Well....no. The committee simply evaluated what would occur, what was of value, and how things might turn out. The Bundestag could go entirely against the committee, and just state that a majority (SPD, Greens and Linke Party) felt it was a great idea to bring Snowden into the country. Would this harm the relationship of the SPD to the CDU.....to the current government? Probably so.....but it's not exactly a four-star relationship currently anyway.
Chances of interviewing Snowden in Russia? Well....the committee hinted that it didn't see big issues with that. Course, this means that the dream deal that Snowden seeks.....getting out of Moscow and permanently staying in Germany.....won't happen.
Adding to some odd variety to the whole story is an item which barely got mentioned in this week's Snowden events. You see....Snowden has a new attorney in his corner.....Plato Cacheris. Why would Snowden need Cacheris? Well....Cacheris is thought (by the NY Times) to be this guy who will talk to the US gov't and possibly work a deal for Snowden to return to the US.
Yeah, I know....it's an amazing thing.....Snowden desiring to return to the US? After a number of months, and funding for his marginal lifestyle in question while living there in Moscow, under guard.....I suspect that Snowden has come to realize that this isn't going to work long-term. There's no prospects of a stable life under these conditions. On the thinking level.....he never put much thought into long-term implications....that's obvious.
The hinge to such a deal? One can only imagine that Snowden wants some type of charity or compassion to what he's done. I imagine it's a desired signed deal.....arrive in California, avoid court episodes, admit some type of guilt, remain in California for the prison deal, and get a sentence determined in advance. My humble bet? A twenty-five year deal at a minimum security place, with access to the internet. He'd likely expect release at the year twenty under good behavior and still be less than sixty by the time he leaves.
The odds of such a deal? If he had all the files and data on himself (rather than his Guardian journalist friend).....I think they'd talk to him and rig up a deal (probably thirty years). But Edward doesn't have the files. He's basically worthless to talk or discuss the situation in detail.
We are approaching twelve months of this game that he set upon. He's probably figured out by now that some of the people who said they would support him.....weren't really helping him, and likely pushed him toward the Moscow-solution. Some of the advisers that were 'free' in the beginning.....probably are seen now as fronting some agenda which he doesn't really grasp or understand in detail.
The German side of this? If he had all the files and could deliver a testimony with every single detail from the files....he'd be a million-dollar guy to interview. Sadly, he has no files, and every other week....his Guardian buddies release another key part of the files. The agenda will continue for months.....maybe even years. For the German people and government....what you'd get out of a Snowden testimony is simply version 1.0, and next week....you'd find that there is more to the episode.....getting you version 2.0, and next month.....more new German stories with version 3.0.
For this reason, the absolute necessity of the Greens in demanding Edward be allowed into Germany.....is of marginal to zero value. Other than publicity, magnet for political intrigue, and pandering to German journalists who got left to the side of the street because the Guardian guys got the bulk of the files.....it's all a joke.