Ex-KGB Official: Snowden Is Working With Russian Intelligence

Friday, 23 May 2014 07:25 PM

By Cathy Burke

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Former National Security Agency spy-secrets leaker Edward Snowden is working with Russian intelligence, a former KGB official claims.

Oleg Kalugin, an ex-KGB major general, told VentureBeat the former NSA contractor is serving the Russian federal security service, or FSB, the intelligence institution that succeeded the KGB after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

The 80-year-old Kalugin, in a Thursday interview, said Snowden serves as a consultant or technical adviser to the intelligence agency — and they like his work.

"These days, the Russians are very pleased with the gifts Edward Snowden has given them," he told VentureBeat. "He's busy doing something. He is not just idling his way through life. The FSB are now his hosts, and they are taking care of him."

After Snowden released reams of top-secret NSA documents that showed the agency's spying on telephone data extended even to unsuspecting Americans, he fled the country.

Russia granted him asylum last August.

Ex-NSA head Gen. Keith Alexander told the Australian Financial Review he believes Snowden was being manipulated by Russian intelligence, the International Business Times reported Friday.

"Understand as well that they're only going to let him do those things that benefit Russia, or stand to help improve Snowden's credibility," Alexander said."They are looking to capitalize on the fact that his actions are enormously disruptive and damaging to U.S. interests."

Kalugin and his wife became the youngest KGB general in history, at age 34, helping to run Soviet spy operations in America during a career that spanned more than three decades, VentureBeat notes.

He and his wife relocated to Maryland after falling out of favor with the Russian regime in the 1990s, VentureBeat reports.

According to Kalugin, Snowden is being handled by the FSB in Russia, and has shared a lot of his pilfered secrets with his hosts.

"Whatever he had access to in his former days at NSA, I believe he shared all of it with the Russians, and they are very grateful," Kalugin claims.

And in Kalugin's view, he's a traitor.

"Of course he is, by American standards. Snowden is a traitor," Kalugin said. "When someone changes sides and goes over to the other side, it's a victory."

But with the friendly Russian reception, Kalugin says, "I'm sure that Snowden is enjoying it."

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