NBC’s David Gregory took on columnist Glenn Greenwald on Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” and came out licking his wounds when he asked if Greenwald should be criminally liable for “aiding and abetting” National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.
“To the extent that you have aided and abetted Snowden, even in his current movements, why shouldn’t you, Mr. Greenwald, be charged with a crime?” Gregory asked.
Aided and abetted? Charged with a crime? Greenwald, a columnist for the U.S. edition of the Guardian, wasn’t going to take that, and he came out swinging.
“I think it’s pretty extraordinary that anybody who would call themselves a journalist would publicly muse about whether or not other journalists should be charged with felonies,” Greenwald said. “The assumption in your question, David, is completely without evidence, the idea I’ve aided and abetted him in any way. The scandal that arose in Washington before our stories began was about the fact that the Obama administration is trying to criminalize investigative journalism by going through the emails and records of AP reporters, accusing a Fox News journalist of the theory you just embraced, being co-conspirator in felonies for working with sources.
“If you want to embrace that theory,” Greenwald added, “it means that every investigative journalist in the United States who works with their sources, who receives classified information, is a criminal. It’s precisely those theories and precisely that climate that has become so menacing in the United States. It’s why the New Yorker’s Jane Mayer said investigative reporting has come to a standstill, as a result of the questions you just mentioned.”
Gregory wasn’t happy being on the receiving end of Greenwald’s barbs, and continued his personal attack of the columnist.
“The question of who’s a journalist may be up for debate, in regards to what you’re doing,” Gregory said. “Anybody who’s watching this understands that I was asking a question. That question has been raised by lawmakers as well. I’m not embracing anything. But, obviously, I take your point.”
After the show, Greenwald tweeted his disbelief at Gregory’s line of questioning.
And he received a lot of support from fellow journalists.
Check out more tweets compiled by the Twitchy team, and watch the exchange below.
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