- By Park MacDougaldPark Macdougald is an editorial researcher at Foreign Policy.
Be it the next pope or the next Nobel Prize winner, an international news event is not an international news event without a rush of betting on its outcome. Enter the British online gambling website William Hill, which is currently allowing users to bet on Edward Snowden’s location as of New Year’s Day, 2014 (the NSA leaker is currently hiding out at a Moscow airport as U.S. officials seek his extradition, with few options for outbound flights). As you can see below, the odds-on favorite for Snowden’s destination is Cuba (7/4), with the United States (3/1) and Ecuador (4/1) close behind. Notice the reference further down the list to Ecuador’s embassy in London, where WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is currently holed up:
Other gambling sites such as Ireland’s Paddy Power have hosted similar betting on Snowden’s whereabouts, although they appear to have removed the event “Edward Snowden’s Next Confirmed Location” from their website on Tuesday. For those interested in playing the long game, however, the site is still taking bets on who will play Edward Snowden in the inevitable film adaptation of the NSA leaks – with Jake Gyllenhaal (10/1), Edward Norton (12/1), and Ryan Gosling (16/1) rounding out the top three (the smart money is on Jonah Hill at 33/1).
So while Snowden’s globetrotting may be causing an international diplomatic crisis, rest assured: Wherever he ends up (and whoever ends up playing him on the screen), someone, somewhere has made a buck.