Edward Snowden may have helped blow the lid on the NSA's secret surveillance programs, but Bob Woodward has one complaint: that Snowden should have come to him with the leaks.
"I wish [Snowden] had come to me instead of others, particularly The Guardian,” Woodward said in an interview on "Politicking with Larry King" that airs Thursday on Hulu. "I would have said to him ‘let’s not reveal who you are. Let’s make you a protected source and give me time with this data and let’s sort it out and present it in a coherent way.'"
Woodward didn't say why he felt so "particular" about the Guardian's having obtained the Snowden documents, or how he would but he might have had a hard time convincing the whistleblower to be his new Deep Throat. Snowden has said in the past that he always intended to reveal himself as the source of the leaks.
Ironically, Woodward's newspaper, the Washington Post, has been a chief recipient of Snowden's leaks — but his colleague Barton Gellman has led the paper's coverage, leaving Woodward completely on the sidelines.
In his interview with King, Woodward added that he does not consider Snowden a "hero."
“I think that people are confused about whether it’s illegal, whether it’s bad, whether it’s bad policy,” she said. “So, what he did, and it’s pretty clear he’s held some things back, and he has said he didn’t wanted to do anything that he deemed harmful. Now, [he] clearly broke the law, like Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon papers broke the law... I certainly wouldn’t call him hero...”
Glenn Greenwald, who Snowden worked with to break the NSA story, was skeptical of Woodward on Wednesday, to say the least. He tweeted,
Dear Bob Woodward: Maybe it's worth spending a few minutes thinking about why he didn't http://t.co/OQzorIekhR
Gee, with source-bashing views & behavior like this, it's a huge mystery why Snowden didn't go to Bob Woodward http://t.co/Dl3CsPTAOO
Woodward's definition RT @Pliny_theElder "present [the data] in a coherent way" complete w/anonymous quotes from White House & NSA officials
Jay Rosen also piled on, tweeting:
"Let’s not reveal who you are." Woodward thinks Snowden should have come to him http://t.co/8GtK2G18rX This shows how little he understands.
— Jay Rosen (@jayrosen_nyu) November 20, 2013