Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked a trove of classified documents about a US government program of mass surveillance in 2013, is sharing his story with the world in a new memoir.
The book, titled “Permanent Record,” is set to be released on September 17. It details the whistleblower’s early life, his work at US intelligence agencies, and “puts the reader in his mindset as he made the decisions he made,” according to Patricia Eisemann, a spokesperson for Metropolitan Books, which is a subdivision of Macmillan Publishers.
Snowden ignited a fierce debate about national security and individual privacy after his leak of classified intelligence documents. Privacy advocates hailed him as a hero, while others denounced him as a traitor.
Snowden faces criminal charges in the US, and has been living in exile in Russia since 2013.
“Edward Snowden decided at the age of 29 to give up his entire future for the good of his country,” John Sargent, CEO of Macmillan Publishers, said in a statement. “He displayed enormous courage in doing so, and like him or not, his is an incredible American story. There is no doubt that the world is a better and more private place for his actions. Macmillan is enormously proud to publish ‘Permanent Record.’”
Snowden announced the news in a straightforward tweet, saying “I wrote a book.”
“Everything that we do now lasts forever, not because we want to remember but because we’re no longer allowed to forget. Helping to create that system is my greatest regret,” Snowden says in the video clip accompanying the tweet.
In another tweet, he spoke of an “international conspiracy.”
“So I just completed an international conspiracy across twenty countries, and somehow the secret never leaked,” he wrote. “On Constitution Day, the result will be on shelves worldwide.”