The NYT reports:
As Justice Department officials began the process Monday to charge Edward J. Snowden, a 29-year-old former C.I.A. computer technician, with disclosing classified information, he checked out of a hotel in Hong Kong where he had been holed up for several weeks, according to two American officials. It was not clear where he went.
I think Snowden did a public service by raising the serious civil liberties concerns posed by the NSA surveillance program. But he's not yet been heroic. It seems to me that heroes do the right thing AND take the consequences for having done so. I'm reminded in this regard of that great courtroom speech in the movie Gandhi:
I take it you will conduct your own defense, Mr. Gandhi.
I have no defense, My Lord. I am guilty as charged.
And if you truly believe in the system of law you administer in my country, you must inflict on me the severest penalty possible.
That's what a hero does.