The Guardian Releases Footage of Snowden Hard Drives Being Destroyed (Video)

The Guardian journalists are shown destroying the hard drives with power tools

The Guardian unveiled chilling video footage of the destruction of hard drives that contained sensitive government secrets leaked by former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

After the Guardian’s Glenn Greenwald published Snowden’s documents revealing government collaboration in surveillance programs, UK intelligence officials ordered the newspaper to cough up or destroy the files. They also threatened to  shut down the newspaper.

Also Read: NY Times Editor Jill Abramson: Obama Crackdown on Leakers Threatens National Security Journalism

So the paper destroyed the files — and has now posted the footage. Captured in July 2013, the video features a “senior editor and a Guardian computer expert” using angle grinders and other power tools to smash the hard drives and memory chips that contained the files. Intelligence officers monitored their destruction.

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger protested that the files existed outside the country, but David Cameron’s government insisted.

Also Read: Stephen Colbert Wants to Join Edward Snowden in Brazil, Leaking Info and Sipping Daiquiris (Video)

The episode became a flash point in debates over freedom of the press in the United Kingdom.

Watch the video footage below: