On Tuesday, two days after Edward Snowden came forward and claimed responsibility for the recent leak of top-secret National Security Agency documents, Booz Allen Hamilton, the private contractor where Snowden most recently worked, announced that it had fired him.The announcement came in a short statement, which was actually simply an update of a statement the company had released on Monday. In it, Booz Allen Hamilton confirmed that Snowden “was an employee of our firm for less than 3 months, assigned to a team in Hawaii.”
“Snowden, who had a salary at the rate of $122,000, was terminated June 10, 2013 for violations of the firm’s code of ethics and firm policy,” the statement said. “News reports that this individual has claimed to have leaked classified information are shocking, and if accurate, this action represents a grave violation of the code of conduct and core values of our firm. We will work closely with our clients and authorities in their investigation of this matter.”
Booz Allen Hamilton included the salary figure in apparent response to Snowden’s claim, in an interview with The Guardian, that he made a salary of around $200,000. The company, of course, has plenty of motivation to want to discredit Snowden. It receives the vast majority of its revenue from the government, and Snowden engaged in one of the most significant leaks of secret documents in U.S. history while on the company payroll. (TPM called Booz Allen Hamilton on Tuesday, but the company declined to discuss anything beyond what it said in its statement.)
Ed Pilkington, a reporter for The Guardian U.S., was asked about the salary discrepancy during an appearance on MSNBC on Tuesday. He acknowledged the difference, but suggested it was a minor issue.
“One hundred and twenty-two thousand, two hundred thousand is a small difference. I can’t explain that,” Pilkington said. “But up to now, everything that he’s said — all the articles that we’ve published largely by Glenn [Greenwald] — have been proven to be accurate. There have been no denials and they haven’t come back with any misinformation or anything like that. So, the big stuff has been totally bang on.”