A global cat-and-mouse game involving the leaker of National Security Agency secrets exploded into a diplomatic scramble, as U.S. authorities tried to catch Edward Snowden before he reached his next goal: political asylum in Ecuador, the Wall Street Journal reports. Snowden’s unexpected Sunday flight to Moscow from Hong Kong exposed the apparent limits of America’s diplomatic and intelligence-gathering reach. When Snowden was the subject of intense interest from U.S. authorities, they were unable to prevent his departure from a place viewed as friendly to U.S. extradition requests. The White House said it expects the Russian government to “look at all options available” to expel Snowden to the U.S. to face charges, Reuters reports. Snowden reportedly decided to fly to Moscow in consultation with WikiLeaks, which encouraged him to leave Hong Kong after communicating with others about his options abroad.