“No American citizen in their right mind would trust the honesty and the objectivity of the American judicial system at this time in American history”
Those are the words of attorney Daniel Sheehan, a graduate of Harvard Law School with impressive legal chops that include cases like the Pentagon Papers, Karen Silkwood, Three-Mile Island, Watergate, Iran-Contra, the Wounded Knee trials and the Knapp Commission (Serpico). [Source: curriculum vitae]
In an interview with Ari Rabin-Havt, host of The Agenda (SiriusXM), Sheehan discussed NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden’s decision to flee the United States, traveling first to Hong Kong, then Russia.
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“The reason that [Edward Snowden] chose to go to the Soviet Union,” said Sheehan, “and the reason he initially went to China (into Hong Kong) is because these are two of the only countries in the world in which you wouldn’t be able to assume that the US would send in black helicopter gunships, into anybody’s country, to try to arrest you…in complete violation of the sovereignty of the nation.”
Sheehan said he would be willing to defend Snowden if the whistleblower is tried in absentia.
“I think, If Edward Snowden would agree to have a trial held, where he could be tried in absentia….but a legitimate legal team could be assembled to defend him without putting himself in jeopardy of being executed or tried under the National Defense Authorization Act provisions in front of a military tribunal…if he could have a major trial, I’d be perfectly happy to defend him. I know that there are other people that would be happy to defend him, for example others that worked with us on the Pentagon Papers case…[such as] Eugene Shineman…would be perfectly prepared to represent him.”
In a conversation last year with Emiliano Vasqez (Good Times Magzine), Sheehan described what he learned from his experiences in litigation with the national security state.
“With the Pentagon Papers case, the entire military industrial complex was lined up to stop the revelation of the content of the papers. It was the same in Iran-Contra,” says Sheehan. “Both political parties, Congress, the Executive branch, almost all of the major news media—none of them wanted it talked about.”
Sheehan observed, “The thread dragged through all these cases is the unfolding of all these layers, like an onion, to discover that we’re actually living in a national security state.”
And that was before Ed Snowden revealed the extent of NSA surveillance.
[Image, “Flag of the National Security Agency,” from Wikipedia]