Even in Snowden-friendly Brazil, asylum may be a bridge too far

But not all columnists agree. Reinaldo Azevedo wrote in the right wing Veja magazine’s blog: “Snowden is a traitor to his own country. … What does Brazil gain by giving him shelter?”

“It is very unlikely asylum will be given,” says Pedro Arruda, a political analyst at Sao Paulo’s Catholic University. “President Dilma Rousseff has already expressed herself. Or rather, her silence has given her opinion.”

Brazil’s government has indeed been circumspect. It says that Snowden has not formally asked for asylum, so it hasn’t considered the matter — hardly rolling out the welcome mat.

Paulo Sotero, director of the Brazil Institute of the Woodrow Wilson International Center, says Rousseff already showed her displeasure by postponing a state visit to the U.S. Rousseff also is pushing United Nations action on global Internet privacy issues.