back to article Obama cancels meeting Putin in Russia, says Snowden 'a factor'

President Obama has cancelled a planned pow-wow with Russian president Vladimir Putin at next month's G20 Summit in St Petersburg, saying the granting of asylum to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden was "a factor." "Following a careful review begun in July, we have reached the conclusion that there is not enough recent progress …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Silver badge
Megaphone

not worth reading the hate

Yes I know my government sucks. Yes Brits are a jealous bunch and yes the 50 downvotes I will take from this article in the end won't help me get my gold star. Oh well I will still wave the flag because I lived in Europe for several years and quickly realized in the vast majority of countries there if you are not born there you will never be a true citizen. My empire has lots of flaws but it was the one I was born into (and we do integrate immigrants much better despite all the media focusing on tea party types and those Boston bomber idiots) and quite frankly North America is better than Europe in every way in my opinion except politically.

3
3
Unhappy

Re: how "dirty" the tar sands are

BC Hydro will build Site C on the Peace River, as far as you can get from the Pacific, as close as you can get to Alberta. Helpful. (Really, the Peace region of BC should be given to Alberta, meanwhile the Alaskan panhandle should be part of BC, along with the rest of the Fraser Valley - Bellingham and the ridiculous Point Roberts. Soon the USA will be so weak we can just annex them like they did to so many others, but better to wait until they are so poor that they beg us to simply purchase them ;-) Also Vancouver Island should be its own province. Once that's sorted we can start working on the Cascadian Confederacy and get out from under the yoke of all those idiots thousands of kilometres away in Ottawa and Warshington. But I digress...)

The power used to melt the oil out of the bitumen is a huge problem yes, but like I said even if the power is beamed down from orbiting fusion plants we are still left with digging up thousands of square kilometres of precious boreal forest (you say muskeg??) using heavy - very very very heavy have you seen some of those things! - diesel guzzling machinery, combining that with trillions of litres of precious fresh water, and and turning it all into highly toxic "ponds" that you can see from space. Oh and cash, there's the rub I guess.

"Of course, it's far easier to simply demand a province - and frankly most of a nation - live in abject poverty" - I'm sorry but that is retarded. I agree with a lot of what you have to say, but saying that we will all live malnourished in stick huts if we don't exploit the oil sands as fast as corporately possible is seriously retarded.

0
0

@nonesuch

I see you're point, but I see the relationship between those of us in the usa and the rest of the world as a symbiotic relationship. We need you, you need us. One thing I can say with the utmost confidence is that our government is a bunch of douche bags. Republicans, Democrats, liberals, conservatives, independence, tea partiers, American Socialists, communists and anarchists. Pretty much anybody who has an appointed position or has been voted into office is a waste of skin.

While I cannot apologize for the love of my country any more than any of you can, I do apologize for the idiots 'we the people' put in office every 4 years.

1
0

@Trevor

Why would we ever invade Canada? You guys invented Hockey and you guys brew the best beer in north america.

0
0

No, Trevor the US will not invade Canada. We can't have the undesirable influence of all those people who know how to make a working health care system screw up the money machine for the 1%.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Be careful Potty, hate wears you down, and does not hurt your enemy. It is like taking poison and wishing your enemy would die.

1
1
Gold badge

Re: how "dirty" the tar sands are

BC Hydro's Site C still isn't enough to power the oilsands, and most of it's capacity is spoken for meeting the needs of the northern BC and north western Alberta communities. (Freeing up the more southern Hydro plants to sell more power to California.)

As for you "but they dig up the earth" bullshit, plug it. Yes, they dig up all sorts of muskeg - and damned little boreal forest, thank you - all of which can be restored. You are absolutely 100% right about the toxic ponds which I why I said that the majority of the power requirements are not for turning bitumen into usable oil, they are for refining and extracting the toxic minerals that go into the tailings ponds so we can deal with them in a far more ecologically friendly manner. Read my fucking post before gnawing on yet more of your leg.

Regarding your rampant anti-corporatism, there are a couple of issues with your logic. The first being that Alberta is nowhere near exploiting the tar sands "as fast as corporately possible." In fact, it has been estimated that we are using less than 10% of the possible extraction capacity given the supplies of equipment, manpower and the traffic density of hiway 53. Alberta makes companies looking to exploit tarsands go through an incredible amount of paperwork to get permission; a huge amount of which is "how will you restore the environment."

In addition to this, Alberta - and Canada more generally - is completely dependent on those tar sands. They are such a large part of our economy that if we were to simply stop tomorrow Canada could take something like a 20% hit to our GDP and our nation would collapse into a depression that would take us decades to recover from. It is not merely the cost of the oil, (and the resource taxes it generates,) it is the massive number of people it employs and the very high wages they get paid.

So you are simply flat out wrong and deeply misinformed. I don't believe for a second that we should be plowing ahead with pulling yet more oil out of the ground and burning it, but that is because I understand the science of climate change. I also understand economics and geopolitics and I am perfectly aware that nothing on this earth will stop that oil from being dug up.

So there are two choices before us: rail helplessly against the tar sands in general, waste our time and effort being completely fucking ineffective and worthless...or make sure that the fuckers to as little damage as possible.

If you want to make sure that they do as little damage as possible then you will do everything in your power to make sure that the nuke plant goes forwards. Because with that kind of electrical power we can not only cut the CO2 cost of refining bitumen into oil - a major factor - we can also make sure that we don't need toxic tailings ponds, because we can extract and refine the toxic metals from the waste products and deal with them in a far more ecologically friendly manner.

(I.E. react them with something that locks them up in a stable chemical compound that is non-toxic and then bury them in massive underground vaults designed for purpose. Because hey, with cheap electricity you can make cheap vaults out of non-toxic metals like iron or aluminium.)

But nope, we're right back to ranting-by-eco-pamphlet. Lots of angsty NIMBY talking points designed to get the normals all riled up...no actual understanding of the situation.

0
0
Gold badge

Re: @nonesuch

@zent1: we don't need you.

0
0
Flame

Re: how "dirty" the tar sands are

" In fact, it has been estimated that we are using less than 10% of the possible extraction capacity given the supplies of equipment, manpower and the traffic density of hiway 53."

You mean highway *63*? Do you know how many nicknames that bit of road has that include the word DEATH? Of course wages are high, conditions are terrible, and do you know how much it costs to rent a leaky garden shed to sleep in up in Fort McMurray, if you're lucky enough to find one available? Do you know that production is planned to double or triple this decade? I guess they could go faster if they started conscripting workers and housing them in tents, if there were enough tents? And you must be a special kind of stupid if you truly believe that the companies will put everything back the way they found it, even if huge amounts of taxpayer subsidized cheap energy was available and we count burying the toxic metals along with the nuclear waste as a job well done. And then what? That economic hit you exaggerate is coming any way you slice it, the stuff isn't endless. The bigger we build it the harder it will be when it runs out.

But I'll leave it at that since I've had about enough immature bullshit like this from a corporate-cock sucking spaz who knows nothing about me: "bullshit, plug it" "Read my fucking post before gnawing on yet more of your leg" "rampant anti-corporatism" "flat out wrong and deeply misinformed" "completely fucking ineffective and worthless" "ranting-by-eco-pamphlet" "no actual understanding" etc

0
0
Gold badge

Re: how "dirty" the tar sands are

OOoooh. A hiway that has a nickname with the word death in it! So scary!

Of course, you don't actually talk about why. You just fearmonger. Which seems to be your MO. Let's discuss, shall we? Why is hiway 63 so terrifying?

Well, the answer is actually a pretty simple confluence of three factors. The first is that it is very, very long. So long that people have a natural desire to speed on it. Not regular speeding, but blindingly fast even for Alberta. The QE2 has got nothing on the morons tear-assing on that hiway.

The second is that the hiway has not been twinned. So it's just a couple of lanes with no median that if you want to pass the car in front of you you have to poke out into oncoming traffic, which is typically speeding and all too often using cars that don't meet Alberta safety regulations for having "always on" headlights.

The third item is that there are enormous trucks going up that hiway all the time. They are slow. They are difficult to get around. They are impossible to see around.

When you put the three things together you get some dumb shit poking his car into the oncoming traffic lane to pass an entire row of enormous equipment (that's probably 300m long) who then gets rammed head-on by some jackass doing double the speed limit.

The solution to this is simple: twin the hiway. Something that the government is in the middle of doing right now. So ooga booga hiway boogyman is far less the terrifying pamphlet-monster that will kill all the poor souls working in the oilpatch and far more "a problem everyone is aware of and one that the entire province agrees must be dealt with before we allow production to increase at all." Indeed, at least six separate projects are on hold - construction cannot start - until the hiway is twinned.

As for housing, Fort Mac got dispensation to create two new neighborhoods of dense urban housing and construction has already started.

Regarding manpower, I believe Newfoundland has not yet been completely depopulated, so we're still good. If we need more, we can just get the federal government to raise Alberta's immigration limit and there are an unlimited number of individuals from around the world eager to come work there for the $250K-$400K/year they pay.

I agree with you that the economic hit of oil production tapering off is indeed coming, but A) there's 100 years of oil left there at convention technology levels. B) Alberta is slowly diversifying it's economy because of the cash from the oil sands; we will be better positioned to deal with it as these other economic elements grow and replace the requirement for petroleum as a key sector.

I'm no fan or friend of the tar sands at all. I think they are disgusting and wastefull and we need to be moving away from them sooner rather than later. The issue I have with your pointless blitherings is that they have no connection to reality whatsoever.

Your arguments are straight out of Mike Hudema's ridiculous pamphlets and at the core of it boil down to "I do not believe that any amount of regulation can possibly make any form of mining activity - but especially tar sands mining - ecologically friendly for the simple reason that I believe companies will renege on their duties to rehabilitate mine sites and that governments will let them get away with it."

Of course, Hudema gets very angry when you present a list of mining and forestry companies that have done superb jobs of rehabilitating their mine sites and of massive government fines levied against those who don't...where the fines are calculated to be the cost required to rehabilitate the site properly.

Alberta has made mistakes, sure. We've let companies get away with some really bad stuff, damn right. But we're not British Columbia. We don't make a law that says "reforest of be fined" and then fine the company $5000 for not reforesting 1000sq km that they cut down for timber.

You also completely gloss over the political and economic realities facing the province - another Mike Hudema trait - in that for all the ills of the current regime the alternative is far, far worse. Bitch all you want about how evil the tar sands are, but you only alternative to the Tories in this province is the Wild Rose, and they so batshit insane the Tea Party denounced them. If you think for a second that they will do a better job of holding Shell's feet to the fire you're loony.

A nuke plant at Athabasca is the only realistic hope to mitigate the damage of the tar sands. Your fairy-tale Hudema-esque "just stop doing it right now" is not going to happen.

So quit pissing away your efforts on unicorn-chasing and start agitating for real-world solutions that will show tangible benefits for the people alive today and the children of tomorrow. Or, hey, bitch more on the internet. You'll convince all the powers that be to change everything that way, I'm sure.

0
0
Meh

Re: how "dirty" the tar sands are

"Why is hiway 63 so terrifying?... a problem everyone is aware of and one that the entire province agrees must be dealt with" "I agree with you that the economic hit of oil production tapering off is indeed coming" "Alberta has made mistakes, sure. We've let companies get away with some really bad stuff, damn right." "I'm no fan or friend of the tar sands at all. I think they are disgusting and wastefull and we need to be moving away from them sooner rather than later."

OK! Let's be pals then! :-)

"The issue I have with your pointless blitherings is that they have no connection to reality whatsoever."

Wait... what? My only issue was with you saying all problems would be solved if only we could overcome the mighty power of the evil hippies and put in a nuclear power plant. I said it would still be a filthy mess, and you respond basically saying I should be put up against the wall for treason for daring to suggest that it's not all a Shangri-La Garden of Eden full of happy smiling workers with flowers in their hard hats dancing around with the beavers and the caribou who are breathlessly waiting for the huge improvements to their environment once reclamation makes everything better than ever.

I never said it should be stopped, and I don't think it should be. I definitely think it could be slowed down, that it's expanding way faster than the infrastructure needed to make life liveable for the workers, and that it's going ahead leaving problems like tailings to be figured out by future generations. I'm not even against a nuclear power plant, I agree that would be much better than burning coal, I just don't agree that a different source of electricity is the magic bullet. I'm not even really against pipelines, safer and more efficient than rail (Lac Megantic) or road (Lemon Creek). But I don't trust the people in charge any further than I could chuck one of their 400 ton dump trucks, and every time anyone says anything like "there could never be a spill" or "we're doing the best we can for the environment" I feel the need to speak up. Never heard of Mike Hudema, but now that I read the Wikipedia page about him he seems like a principled and committed person. I glossed over the political realities because I don't live there, so I can't vote there, so I couldn't care less who is the nuttiest. I don't expect that my posting here will do anything besides give a non rose tinted alternative viewpoint to anyone reading. And take a conversation about Obama meeting Putin in Russia way way way off topic ;-)

0
0
h3

It would make me highly amused if Putin just said that Snowden can just continue leaking due to American being so childish about this. (The way he would say it would be better).

6
0
Silver badge

nope

Russia has never been known for letting information it might find advantageous to keep to itself leak out for the heck of it. Much of the joke of the Doomsday device in Dr. Stranglelove is they can't even leak information right that is to their advantage for it to be leaked.

0
0
Silver badge

left wing right wing doesn't matter

The only difference between Putin and Obama is the US political system won't completely let Obama act like Putin or he would.

2
0

whoa whoa

stop hating obama

he won the nobel peace prize in 2009 for "his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and co-operation between peoples"

he has brought so much peace (not killing people with drones...) to the world it fills my heart with joy

/sarcasm

7
1
Silver badge

Re: whoa whoa

If asked about whether he has killed anyone Obama would probably bust out his Arnold Schwarzenegger voice and say Yes but they were all bad. Still it times like these I ask what would Bill Hicks say and it probably wouldn't make Obama happy.

2
0

Re: whoa whoa

*Best Obama impersonation*

"Why would i need to kill anyone? I have people to do that for me"

0
0
MJI
Silver badge

Re: whoa whoa

He won it for not being Bush or the person who replaced Bush in his party.

1
0
Gold badge

Colbert wieghs in

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/428239/july-31-2013/bradley-manning-verdict

0
1

Re: Colbert wieghs in

For anyone, outside of the US, who wishes to watch this clip click here and download the clip (via the Comedy Central mobile site).

0
0
Gold badge

Re: Colbert wieghs in

Oooooh. Neat trick! I always just ended up using a VPN. Cheers!

0
0
Silver badge
FAIL

Obama--what a weasel!!

A) Snowden outs programs at the NSA and other Western SigInt agencies

B) Obama expresses strong disapproval and the Justice Department throws an Espionage Act indictment at Snowden

C) Obama comes out and says "We want to arrest Snowden, but we aren't going to do anything extraordinary like scramble fighter jets to get him"

D) The Obama administration has 3 nations close their airspace to the Presidential party of another sovereign state on the SUSPICION that Snowden is with them and a 4th nation refuse to let said party leave until its been verified that Snowden is not actually present.

E) Obama intervenes personally to defeat an amendment to a military spending bill to prevent the defunding of NSA bulk gathering of American's phone records. First, it's extremely rare for any President to intervene to defeat an amendment to a bill in Congress. Second, this amendment does not affect any other NSA programs OTHER THAN BULK TELECOMMUNICATIONS GATHERING IN THE U.S. It doesn't affect "non-bulk" gathering of telecoms data on Americans who are specifically under investigation. It doesn't affect telecoms intercepts of any of the 6 billion people who live outside the U.S. It doesn't affect any internet traffic or email gathering programs anywhere in the world. The amendment in question just defunds any efforts to gather telecoms data on American residents without probable cause.

F) President Obama cancels a summit with Russia. Not because they are selling arms so that the Syrian government can bomb their own people. Not because Putin is oppressing any political, media and civic organizations that he doesn't control in Russia. Not because Putin has a pretty awful human rights record in Chechnya and the surrounding area. Snowden gets asylum in Russia, and all of a sudden it's time to call off the pow-wow in St. Petersburg.

G) So basically D, E and F make C) look like our "most transparent president ever" is burning a mountain of bullshit to generate a big fat smoke screen around the fact that getting Snowden has now leapt to the top of the U.S. strategic agenda, past Syria, human rights and a host of other issues that are out there.

And I am not a fan of Russia under Putin. I don't see a need to mobilize 100 army divisions to contain them, but I'm pretty certain that Russia under Putin is at best a "frenemy" to every nation in NATO or the EU. But are we going to let the granting of asylum to one guy drive our relationship with Russia?

9
1
Anonymous Coward

Your handle describes you well

B) Obama expresses strong disapproval and the Justice Department throws an Espionage Act indictment at Snowden

Snowden was right to out wrongs, but legally it is espionage.

C) Obama comes out and says "We want to arrest Snowden, but we aren't going to do anything extraordinary like scramble fighter jets to get him"

Very considered opinion. It would be a huge waste of time and money to potentially start a war by "scrambling fighter jets" to retrieve one man.

E) Obama intervenes personally to defeat an amendment to a military spending bill to prevent the defunding of NSA bulk gathering of American's phone records. First, it's extremely rare for any President to intervene to defeat an amendment to a bill in Congress. Second, this amendment does not affect any other NSA programs OTHER THAN BULK TELECOMMUNICATIONS GATHERING IN THE U.S. It doesn't affect "non-bulk" gathering of telecoms data on Americans who are specifically under investigation. It doesn't affect telecoms intercepts of any of the 6 billion people who live outside the U.S. It doesn't affect any internet traffic or email gathering programs anywhere in the world. The amendment in question just defunds any efforts to gather telecoms data on American residents without probable cause.

As much as I hate it, intelligence gathering is important to defend against those who wish to harm us. Obama is not to blame. Those who wish to harm us are.

F) President Obama cancels a summit with Russia. Not because they are selling arms so that the Syrian government can bomb their own people.

'Merica ain't the wrolds police force. Your lame argument could apply to the UK and any other country who is sitting back and watching other countries "selling arms so that the Syrian government can bomb their own people."

Your other points are null and void.

And I am not a fan of Russia under Putin. I don't see a need to mobilize 100 army divisions to contain them, but I'm pretty certain that Russia under Putin is at best a "frenemy" to every nation in NATO or the EU. But are we going to let the granting of asylum to one guy drive our relationship with Russia?"

This is just confilicted nonsense.

2
9
Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: Your handle describes you well

"Intelligence gathering is important to defend against those who wish to harm us."

When the state deems it necessary to spy on its entire population, it's time to ask exactly who are the "us"

3
1
Silver badge
FAIL

@ Obviously

I guess my point was too subtle for you to grasp. I'm not saying that Snowden didn't violate the law. I am supporting the point that the Register made in the subtitle for this article. Obama derided Snowden as just another hacker, and then he went to all these extraordinary lengths to get Snowden or to stop the impact of Snowden's revelations. When was the last time the U.S. cancelled a summit with Moscow's leadership? In 1979, when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan probably? When was the last time you saw 3 countries close their territory to a diplomatic conveyance of the leader of another country? I don't know if I have ever heard of that, and I have a better memory for these kinds of things than most people.

Essentially the U.S. government has made shutting up or shutting away Edward Snowden one of it's top geopolitical imperatives. The level of uncomplaining cooperation that you see from various European governments (for example, the 4 governments who put a crimp in Evo Morales' travel plans or Britain slapping a D notice on the leaks) seems to indicate that this level of concern is at least largely shared in European government circles. Why this huge level of anxiety in official circles?

And nobody is saying that we don't need intelligence services or that there aren't bad guys out there that need to be surveilled. It's the surveillance of law-abiding citizens that is the problem.

1
0
Anonymous Coward

A question ..

On one hand the US govt. is asking Russia to hand over a 'criminal' under law enforcement co-operation treaties, treating Snowdon as if he's a bank robber who's done a runner.

On the other hand we have the President of the United States basing geo-political decisions on whether Russia co-operates in this matter.

So my question is. Is this a strategic mistake on the part of the President ? Has he not elevated Snowden to the 'political refugee' class ? - since he (POTUS) is clearly prepared to alter the trajectory of US diplomacy based on whether Snowdon is returned to the US ?

5
1
Anonymous Coward

Re: A question ..

I wonder if the US would happily hand over a Russian dissident, just like that, because he was a pain in the arse in Russia. Even with no greater esteem for Putin or the country I hope Putin will not agree. Time for Snowden to leave Russia, though-

1
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: A question ..

"since he (POTUS) is clearly prepared to alter the trajectory of US diplomacy based on whether Snowdon is returned to the US ?"

Where is you evidence for such a sweeping statement? Your opinion should remain as such.

0
4
Anonymous Coward

Re: A question ..

@obviously - by his own words. The President said the decision not to meet with President Putin was in part due to the Snowdon issue. That's not something you do for a garden variety criminal.

4
0
Anonymous Coward

What goes around...

...usually comes around. Snowden will get his day in court or be found dead, one or the other.

0
3
Silver badge

I don't like what you said, but I have to agree that you are most probably right.

2
0

Geez Trevor

Been hitting the Molson's a little early today?

2
1
Gold badge

Re: Geez Trevor

Molson? Really? Utter horse piss, that stuff. I'm Albertan, damn it! Get me some Vitamin P, or at least a Kokanee Gold. Better yet, try some Alley Kat; I personally think the Apricat is amongst the best beer in the world.

2
0
PAW

Why bother

Obama plans to attend a Group of 20 meeting in early Sept that Putin is hosting in St Petersburg so what's the point of a Moscow meeting immediately after? Putin is showing more interest in playing Obama than negotiating on meaningful issues (Syria and Iran). PRwise, Obama can't win. If he goes to Moscow he's a tool and if he cancels (as he has), he's a drama queen. I just hope there's some good cartoons that come from this.

1
0

I find it amusingly ironic

30 years ago, we welcomed defectors fleeing Soviet tyranny, persecuted for revealing the truth about their despotic regime, and cheered them on as they made their life-or-death dash across the Iron Curtain, desperately seeking freedom from an unjust and totalitarian state ruled by a dictator.

Now, in these margin times, a defector is fleeing American tyranny, persecuted for revealing the truth about his despotic regime, and we cheer him on as he makes his life-or-death dash across the Electronic Curtain, desperately seeking freedom from an unjust and totalitarian state ruled by a dictator!

How things have changed. How they remain the same...

21
0
Silver badge

Re: I find it amusingly ironic

If I could give you +10 for this post I would.

And from the article "One wonders quite how far the US is willing to go to get its hands on Snowden"

I wonder what would have happened if the pilot of the diplomatic plane that was denied access to airspace had continued on its pre-planned flight path. I wonder if the jets would have been scrambled then, and I wonder if the diplomat had had the nuts to put his life on the line, would they have shot them down?

I don't think so.

1
0
Silver badge

Re: I find it amusingly ironic

It does make any demands the US wants to make about civil life and human rights ring a bit hollow when they are so desperate to arrest a political dissident who has raised issues regarding human rights and civil life of their own citizens.

1
1

Re: I find it amusingly ironic

It is absurd to compare the modern USA with USSR, or to compare Snowden with Russian dissidents. People could not even leave the USSR on holiday, whereas every American citizen is free to travel the world. The supreme soviet was unelected, whereas the US citizens have full suffrage. The USA has to keep people out, not shoot people trying to escape like the USSR. Snowden is being pursued by a democratically elected government that wants to bring criminal charges and give him an open trial. The USSR could not give anyone a free trial because it didn't have an independent judiciary.

The Snowden issue is important, and I am undecided if he has done us a favour or not by revealing PRISM etc. But comparing him to dissidents like Solzhenitsyn is the sort of thing someone only does if they are looking for upvotes from the fruitcake fringe the Reg commentariat.

2
2
Silver badge

Re: I find it amusingly ironic

"It is absurd to compare the modern USA with USSR"

You know, you are absolutely right. As far as spying on people, the Russians are completely backwards.

0
0
Stop

@ Jim 59

Just because laws between the USA and USSR may differ, doesn't mean the principles - or abilities - do. For example, you argue:

"People could not even leave the USSR on holiday, whereas every American citizen is free to travel the world."

IF they can afford it. Given the wealth distribution curve in the USA, I'd say, at guess, that at least 60% of the population can't afford to leave their home town, let alone travel to another country. So while the laws may imply freedom, the actual outcome, for the majority, is still the same.

"The supreme soviet was unelected, whereas the US citizens have full suffrage."

But giving people the choice between Democrats and Republicans, given that for the average American life stays pretty much the same regardless of who is in power - that is, subject to random search and seizure, indefinite detention without trial, no due process (don't tell me that the Obama Administration has given Snowden anything remotely approaching due process) - so again, the effect is much the same whether there was only one party or two. Western democracy has become a token gesture at best.

"The USA has to keep people out, not shoot people trying to escape like the USSR."

That one I'll give you - considering that you have an overcrowded, poverty-stricken third-world country ruled by brutal drug lords on your southern border. Anything's better than that. But that's the majority of people you have to "keep out"; I don't see too many other westerners trying to set up in America.

"Snowden is being pursued by a democratically elected government that wants to bring criminal charges and give him an open trial."

Ha! Well, for democratically elected government I refer you to my above answer on that subject. The Obama Administration has openly branded him a traitor. No trial, no due process, no "alleged", they've just come straight out and announced on the international stage that he's guilty. There's no chance he'll ever receive a fair trial now. If you believe for one second that if Snowden were to return to the USA he'd be found anything other than guilty on the spot, I'd be interested in selling you the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

To finish, I'd like to quote some excerpts from a letter sent from Snowden's father's lawyer to the Obama Administration:

"We are also appalled at your administration’s scorn for due process, the rule of law, fairness, and the presumption of innocence as regards Edward... Your decision to force down a civilian airliner carrying Bolivian President Eva Morales in hopes of kidnapping Edward also does not inspire confidence that you are committed to providing him a fair trial... Yet Speaker Boehner has denounced Edward as a "traitor"... Ms. Bachmann has pronounced that, "This was not the act of a patriot; this was an act of a traitor." And Ms. Feinstein has decreed that Edward was guilty of "treason,"..."

Yes, a fair and just trial under a democratic government indeed. You can read the letter in its entirety here.

2
1
FAIL

Commie buddies

Obama and Putin, two communist buddies who are reluctant to meet because they'd have to talk about NATIONAL HERO Snowden.

1
3
Anonymous Coward

Snowden better be careful

Old 'Rambo' Putin would sell his ass to the highest bidder at a whim if it suited him.

"Hey Vlad, my old buddy, want a brand new Harley?"

0
0
Silver badge
FAIL

Stay extension guaranteed

By this action, President Obama has actually ensured Mr. Snowden can stay safe in Russia as long as he likes. President Putin cannot now hand him over without appearing to give in to American demands and losing face.

9
0

I always thought

Time is your friend in any war with the merkins.

They'll whittle themselves away with friendly fire............

4
1
Silver badge

Re: I always thought

themselves != allies

1
0
Anonymous Coward

W O W!

Way to go Russia. You have managed to persuade the rest of the world that your country has not moved forward and that you seem to be stuck in the very distant past in one fell swoop!

Well done! Hitler would be proud.

2
9
Anonymous Coward

W O W!

Way to go USA. You have managed to persuade the rest of the world that your country has not moved forward and that you seem to be stuck in the very distant past in one fell swoop!

Well done! Hitler would be proud.

FTFY

2
1
Silver badge
Black Helicopters

@ Obviously #2

Wow, you just don't stop, do you?

What's the work environment like at the NSA/GCHQ? Do they bring in break room donuts occasionally? If so, I'm jealous, because I really like the grape jelly ones....

0
1

Sour grapes

So you lost Snowden. But you got Red October. :-)

1
0
PAW

In context...

Putin looks for reasons to poke Obama in the eye. He openly despises Obama. See their June meeting in Ireland. Snowden (folk hero or not) is just the latest opportunity. Obama worked well with Putin's 2008 successor, Dmitry Medvedev, but Putin seems to want the U.S. positioned as an enemy.

As a U.S. citizen I'd much prefer Obama spending his time dealing with the forthcoming threatened shutdown of the US government by the GOP. This summit flap will hopefully have no more gravity than Putin's cancellation of a meeting with Obama at Camp David in 2012.

2
0
This topic is closed for new posts.

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2017