NSA leaker, Edward Snowden, is a finalist for this year's Sakharov Prize, awarded annually by the European Parliament to those who "combat fanatacism, intolerance or oppression."
Also in the running this year are "a group of jailed Belarusian political activists representing “all Belarusian political prisoners,” and Malala Yousafzai,
the 16-year-old Pakistani girl from Swat Valley who survived Taliban
assassins who had marked her after she advocated education for girls.
The winner will be picked by Oct. 10 by the Parliament’s president and
the leaders of the body’s political groups.
Snowden's nomination and shortlisting are enough to rile Washington. The Euros knew that when they let him through to the finals.
The European Parliament is the only directly elected body within the
European Union setup, and its selection of Snowden provides an insight
into how his revelations are viewed in Europe, even as he faces criminal
charges in the United States.
an expert on European-American relations at the French Institute for
International Relations, cautioned that the nomination says more about
the nominating parties than about a broader European view. But even he
acknowledged that the inclusion of Snowden in the final three
underscores a major difference between the United States and Europe.
“Perhaps it says that with the NSA scandal, the United States has isolated itself among democratic countries,” he said.
My guess is that Malala will win. It's hard to imagine the Euros wanting to goad the Americans badly enough to award the prize to Snowden. Then again, who knows?