“I told the government I’d volunteer for prison, as long as it served the right purpose,” Snowden said the article released Wednesday. “I care more about the country than what happens to me. But we can’t allow the law to become a political weapon or agree to scare people away from standing up for their rights, no matter how good the deal. I’m not going to be part of that.”
Described by WIRED as “the most wanted man in the world,” Snowden is being sought for leaking top-secret documents that unveiled widespread surveillance programs overseen by the federal government. He currently is hiding out in an undisclosed community in Russia, where he says he goes mostly unrecognized.
The magazine includes numerous photographs of Snowden, including a previously unseen one of him with his former boss Michael Hayden, a past director of both the NSA and CIA. Other photos show Snowden in silhouette in a hotel room, or on a couch looking fatigued. In another photo, Snowden wears a T-shirt with the word “SECURITY” on the back. The one expected to draw criticism, however, is the magazine cover showing Snowden, whom many Americans consider a traitor, wrapped in an American flag.