Edward Snowden, a whistle-blower from the US National Security Agency, applied to 21 countries for political asylum on July 1, but encountered negative responses. Snowden withdrew his Russia asylum bid after Russian President Vladimir Putin dictated terms for his stay. The fate of the whistleblower has become a symbol testing US hegemony.
Snowden's exposure has discredited the US. His latest revelations that the US has been spying on the EU mission in New York and its embassy in Washington have caused explosive consequences and strong reactions from EU members like France and Germany.
These immoral actions will further deprive the US of its power to mess with world affairs under the guise of moral values.
Snowden has exposed US hypocrisy, its random violations of citizens' privacy and arrogant cyber espionage in other countries. US soft power has failed to prevent these negative influences spreading across the world. Non-US media refrained from launching harsh criticism against the US, but the storm caused by Snowden's leaks has made the global public well aware of what's going on.
Snowden's latest step has displayed US hegemony to the world. He submitted 21 applications for political asylum, then the US projected its power - the countries involved either cowered or delayed for time.
Two of the world's most famous Internet liberalists are now hunted by the US. This kind of confrontation is unconventional and represents a risk to the image of a strong US.
Washington hasn't issued any apology to the world. The criticism of the EU against US' espionage activities was also simply dismissed.
Fairness and justice is common goal of the world. They are also required in international relations. The morals Washington has displayed to the international community don't match the country's role as world leader. In many cases, the US destroyed the world order that it has helped to build.
How will the Snowden issue be wrapped up will give us some hints of the US' performance on the world stage.
We probably shouldn't expect too much from a country that doesn't bother to offer an explanation to such a shocking scandal.
The US is still holding on to an outdated understanding of national interests, based on which it has designed its Internet policy.
We believe Snowden will not be the last liberal fighter against Washington. The sudden appearance of such a fight actually comes from accumulation of events of our times.
The Internet is changing the world. We don't yet have a full understanding of what will occur.
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