Sunday, July 14, 2013

From Russia with Love, Part 2

Trey Smith

Today I will be sharing and commenting on portions of Edward Snowden's recent statement issued from Moscow on Friday. The full statement can be read at the WikiLeaks website.
Since that time, the government and intelligence services of the United States of America have attempted to make an example of me, a warning to all others who might speak out as I have. I have been made stateless and hounded for my act of political expression. The United States Government has placed me on no-fly lists. It demanded Hong Kong return me outside of the framework of its laws, in direct violation of the principle of non-refoulement – the Law of Nations. It has threatened with sanctions countries who would stand up for my human rights and the UN asylum system. It has even taken the unprecedented step of ordering military allies to ground a Latin American president’s plane in search for a political refugee. These dangerous escalations represent a threat not just to the dignity of Latin America, but to the basic rights shared by every person, every nation, to live free from persecution, and to seek and enjoy asylum.

Yet even in the face of this historically disproportionate aggression, countries around the world have offered support and asylum. These nations, including Russia, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador have my gratitude and respect for being the first to stand against human rights violations carried out by the powerful rather than the powerless. By refusing to compromise their principles in the face of intimidation, they have earned the respect of the world. It is my intention to travel to each of these countries to extend my personal thanks to their people and leaders.
It is ironic to the nth degree that, while the Obama administration has taken the position that breaking a domestic law in order to expose greater criminality is patently wrong, they have concurrently thumbed their noses at international law and protocols! While our politicians have said that the rule of law is sacrosanct, it somehow doesn't constrain their own actions!

As I have mentioned many times before, this underscores the quintessential essence of American Exceptionalism. We expect everyone else to abide by the spirit and letter of all laws, regulations and treaties, but we only follow the same when we feel like it. If it happens to inconvenience us in any way, shape or form or it thwarts the machinations of the elite, we treat any law, regulation, legal agreement or treaty as if it doesn't exist.

A common belief held by many Americans is that those in other nations -- particularly Muslim ones -- hate us for our freedoms and modern lifestyles. I don't think that is it at all. They hate us because of the unmitigated arrogance of our elites.

Can't say that I blame them!

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