I have used this story again and again to engage students in a discussion about right and wrong, as a starting point for creating art and sometimes simply to fill time as there might only be 5 minutes left of a cover lesson I was taking.
What is great about this story is that it actually happened! It also allows students to take sides, think a bit, reverse their allegiance and finally work out that the world is not quite as straight forward as we would sometimes like it to be.
So what's the lesson?
I ask my students to research the story and find out as much about the different presentations of the facts as possible before we create a scenario where the students have to imagine they are being abducted by aliens!
They have to think about the final messages they want to send to the folks they love and can only do this by scribbling those short messages on their hands.
Just like Vanunu did they have to hope someone will be there to take the photo and ensure the messages are received.
Students take the photos and use Photoshop to create a false sense of depth of field with careful selections and blur filters. Here's some we made a while ago...
"Edward Joseph Snowden (born June 21, 1983) is an American computer professional, former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) employee, and former contractor for the US Government who copied classified information from the United States National Security Agency (NSA) in 2013 without prior authorization. The information revealed numerous global surveillance programs, many run by the NSA and Five Eyes with the cooperation of telecommunication companies and European governments. Snowden's revelations were the start of a series of global surveillance disclosures."
Julian Assange...fearing further extradition to the US to answer charges of espionage relating to Wikileaks' publication of secret documents, he was granted political asylum by Ecuador in August 2012. He has since remained in Ecuador's London embassy, unable to leave without expectation of arrest, despite a United Nations panel having found that he has been "arbitrarily detained" and that his detention should be brought to an end....