Lindsay Mills, the woman reported to be the girlfriend of purported National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden, says she feels adrift without her 29-year-old boyfriend, whom she says abandoned her in Hawaii and fled to Hong Kong.
"My world has opened and closed all at once. Leaving me lost at sea without a compass," Mills, a 28-year-old professional pole dancer, wrote on her blog, "L's Journey," on Monday. The blog post was written a day after Snowden, a former technical assistant for the CIA and ex-employee of defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, was identified by the Guardian on Sunday as the source of its stories revealing the NSA's controversial telephone and Internet surveillance programs.
"As I type this on my tear-streaked keyboard I’m reflecting on all the faces that have graced my path," Mills continued. "The ones I laughed with. The ones I’ve held. The one I’ve grown to love the most. And the ones I never got to bid adieu. But sometimes life doesn’t afford proper goodbyes."
According to the Daily Mail, Mills and Snowden had been together since at least 2009.
"Surely there will be villainous pirates, distracting mermaids, and tides of change in this new open water chapter of my journey," Mills—who refers to Snowden as "E" and herself as a "world-traveling, pole-dancing super hero"—added. "But at the moment all I can feel is alone."
Snowden, who was interviewed by the U.K. newspaper in his hotel room in Hong Kong where he was hiding at the time, said he has no regrets about going public—even if he never sees his family again.
"I don't want to live in a society that does these sort of things," Snowden said. "I do not want to live in a world where everything I do and say is recorded. That is not something I am willing to support or live under. ... I can't in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, Internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they're secretly building."
Snowden said he decided to leave his family, girlfriend and a six-figure-a-year salary behind, and flew to Hong Kong on May 20.
On June 3, Mills wrote:
The past few weeks have been a cluster jumble of fun, disaster, and adventure. From pop-up homes to last-minute unplanned adventure to stressful moments that would give Gandhi indigestion. While I have been patiently asking the universe for a livelier schedule, I’m not sure I meant for it to dump half a year’s worth of experience in my lap in two weeks time. We’re talking biblical stuff — floods, deceit, loss. Somehow I’ve only managed a few tears amongst all of the madness of May. Waking up to June with hopes for a better swing of luck, only to find that I’ve lost my camera’s memory card that stored 90% of my trip’s memories. I feel alone, lost, overwhelmed, and desperate for a reprieve from the bipolar nature of my current situation. My coping response of the past was to [flee] to foreign lands. Trying to outrun my misfortune. But before I can sail away to lands unknown I need to wipe my misguided tears and reflect on all that is happening. Listen to my core. Find zen or something like it. And breathe into what little patience I have left.
The newspaper said it revealed Snowden's identity at his request. Booz Allen said it fired Snowden on Monday for "violations of the firm’s code of ethics."
"All my options are bad," Snowden told the Guardian. "I could be rendered by the CIA. I could have people come after me. Or any of the third-party partners.
"My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them," he added. "The only thing I can do is sit here and hope the Hong Kong government does not deport me. ... My predisposition is to seek asylum in a country with shared values. The nation that most encompasses this is Iceland. They stood up for people over Internet freedom. I have no idea what my future is going to be."
A petition urging the Obama administration to pardon Snowden was posted to the White House website on Sunday afternoon.
"Edward Snowden is a national hero and should be immediately issued a full, free, and absolute pardon for any crimes he has committed or may have committed related to blowing the whistle on secret NSA surveillance programs," the petition read.