During the segment, Oliver asked Snowden how many of the documents he actually read from classified information he leaked to the media.
“I’ve evaluated all of the documents that are in the archive,” Snowden said.
“You’ve read every single one?” Oliver said.
“Well, I do understand what I turned over,” Snowden replied.
“But there’s a difference between understanding what’s in the documents and reading what’s in the documents,” Oliver said.
“I recognized the concern,” Snowden said.
Oliver specifically mentioned an improperly redacted document included in a New York Times report that contained sensitive information.
“That is a problem,” Snowden conceded.
“That’s a f*****,” Oliver countered.
Oliver continued pressing Snowden: “But you have to own that then. You’re giving documents which you know could be harmful, and you know could get out there.”
“Yes. If people act in bad faith … You will never be completely free from risk if you’re free,” Snowden said. “The only time you can be free from risk is when you’re in prison.”
Snowden said he was initially worried people would soon forget his information leak.
“I did this to give the American people a chance to decide for themselves the kind of government they want to have,” he said.
Snowden admitted that he misses America. “My country is something that travels with me,” he said. “You know, it’s not just a geography …”
“Well, that’s already way too complicated answer,” Oliver interjected. “The answer is, ‘I miss it a lot, it’s the greatest country in the world.’”
“I do miss my country, I do miss my home, I do miss my family,” Snowden said.
In terms of comforts, Snowden admitted he misses Hot Pockets microwaveable snacks “very much.”