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Friday, July 5, 2013

Venezuela Offers Snowden Asylum

Posted by on Fri, Jul 5, 2013 at 7:48 PM

Guardian has the story:

"In the name of America's dignity ... I have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to Edward Snowden," Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro told a televised military parade marking Venezuela's independence day...

Maduro said Venezuela was ready to offer him sanctuary, and that the details Snowden had revealed of a US spy program had exposed the nefarious schemes of the US "empire".

"He has told the truth, in the spirit of rebellion, about the US spying on the whole world," Maduro said.


Comments (41) RSS

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Cascadian Bacon 1
God speed you patriot, may you live a long and drone free life.
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on July 5, 2013 at 8:01 PM · Report this
Funny if this had happened under a GOP President @ 1 would be calling for his hanging
Posted by Hypocrite22334 on July 5, 2013 at 8:04 PM · Report this
Hold up he calls Assad in Syria a legitimate leader? Wow does he really have any credibility here?
Posted by Seattle14 on July 5, 2013 at 8:07 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 4
good luck getting there ed. seriously, good luck. russia to venezuela is a seriously long way. hopefully moscow to cuba is possible as a non-stop.
Posted by Max Solomon on July 5, 2013 at 8:13 PM · Report this
@4 It's not the stop, it's the route. Because airlines fly great-circle routes to save distance and fuel, Moscow to Havana crosses over American airspace. And, if I were a betting person, I wouldn't put money on American authorities not ordering the plane to land.


Although, it's not very much American airspace, and for a few extra gallons of fuel, maybe they could skirt it.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on July 5, 2013 at 8:35 PM · Report this
sperifera 6
My money is on Maduro personally escorting him from Sheremetyevo to Caracas on his Presidential plane. I don't see Snowden taking a commercial flight at this time. Too risky.
Posted by sperifera on July 5, 2013 at 8:53 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 7
Though I bet they will avoid American airspace, forcing a Russian airliner to land would be nothing short of an act of war, very foolish. But then again we have an administration of fools.

I got teargased at least half a dozen times protesting the Bush regime and it's unnecessary and illegal wars and surveillance, that Obama continued.

And let’s not forget that Dear Leader and his dried up hag Feinstein and calling for Snoden's Blood alongside republican shitheads like Linsey Graham
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on July 5, 2013 at 8:59 PM · Report this
Matt from Denver 8
@ 7, your answer is required on the What Goes Up thread.
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 5, 2013 at 9:04 PM · Report this
Matt from Denver 9
@ 7, whoops, make that the Godwin on Guns thread.
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 5, 2013 at 9:09 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 10
Already did it dumbshit, I guess a direct quotes from NAZI party leaders espousing socialism isn’t good enough for you.

Next you are going to be on about how Stalin was not a "true communist."
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on July 5, 2013 at 9:33 PM · Report this
Empire shouldn't be in scare quotes. C'mon, Guardian.
Posted by Ansel Herz on July 5, 2013 at 9:47 PM · Report this
Matt from Denver 12
@ 10, I don't wish to continue the threadjack, but you leave me no choice. If you're dumb enough to measure their sincerity by their words rather than their actions, you really are impaired.
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 5, 2013 at 9:48 PM · Report this
Cascadian Bacon 13
@ 12
Yea dude they campaigned on a platform of Socialism, just like our current spying, lying, murderous president.
Posted by Cascadian Bacon on July 5, 2013 at 9:55 PM · Report this
Matt from Denver 14
@ 13, still threadjacking? How rude. Go back to the Godwin thread already.
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 5, 2013 at 10:08 PM · Report this
dirac 15
@3 Far more credibility than the hacks in the White House and the Senate and those who support them running roughshod over the constitution at this point. As an added bonus, they're doing a great job radicalizing Latin America against the US all over Snowden. And no, I don't consider Assad legitimate, but that doesn't mean US and Europe should be involved in a civil war or regime change.
Posted by dirac on July 5, 2013 at 10:12 PM · Report this
I know he made his decision a long time ago and that it's better than life in jail, but it's depressing to think about trading a life in America, with all its familiar creature comforts and all the people you know, for one in Venezuela. Enjoy your new life, Edward Snowden.
Posted by floater on July 5, 2013 at 10:31 PM · Report this
sirkowski 17
Human Rights Watch
Under Chávez, the government dramatically expanded its ability to control the content of the country’s broadcast and news media. It passed laws extending and toughening penalties for speech that “offends” government officials, prohibiting the broadcast of messages that “foment anxiety in the public,” and allowing for the arbitrary suspension of TV channels, radio stations, and websites.

Embracing Abusive Governments
Chávez also rejected international efforts to promote human rights in other countries. In recent years, Venezuela consistently voted against UN General Assembly resolutions condemning abusive practices in North Korea, Burma, Iran, and Syria. Moreover, Chávez was a vocal supporter of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, and Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, bestowing upon each of these leaders the “Order of the Liberator,” Venezuela’s highest official honor.
Under Chávez, Venezuela’s closest ally was Cuba, the only country in Latin America that systematically represses virtually all forms of political dissent. Chávez identified Fidel Castro – who headed Cuba’s repressive government until his health deteriorated in 2006 – as his model and mentor.
Posted by sirkowski on July 5, 2013 at 10:40 PM · Report this
@ 15. That is false no amendment is absolute there is a national security exception. I trust our leadership a hell of a lot more. To say Syria has a legitimate leader is silly. No troops on the ground but no reason can't do same as Libya it worked there.

Posted by Seattle14 on July 5, 2013 at 11:01 PM · Report this
WFM 19
Wait. This guy gives up a six-figure salary, a condo in Hawaii, and a smoking hot pole-dancer girlfriend to go fishing for asylum in some third-world craphole. Principles be damned. The man has terrible judgement. Good riddance.
Posted by WFM on July 5, 2013 at 11:02 PM · Report this
Ballard Pimp 20
Meanwhile, Ron Paul can't decide whether to shit or go blind. Which isn't unusual for Snowden's political idol.
Posted by Ballard Pimp on July 5, 2013 at 11:08 PM · Report this
seatackled 21

I would absolutely love to spend some time in Iceland, one of the places that's been mentioned as a place he might seek asylum, but I figure if I have to be stuck somewhere for potentially the next fifty years, I'd rather be in Venezuela or Hong Kong.
Posted by seatackled on July 5, 2013 at 11:26 PM · Report this
@19: I think you dont know what principle means.
Posted by david on July 5, 2013 at 11:54 PM · Report this
Supreme Ruler Of The Universe 23

What is he doing for spending money, presuming that that US froze all his assets? How does he eat? Someone must be putting him up (who and why).
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe on July 6, 2013 at 12:50 AM · Report this
@20 most sensible comment I read in this thread. Just one little addition, Rand is boggling as well.
Posted by Machiavelli was framed on July 6, 2013 at 1:10 AM · Report this
@23 well like any Ron/Rand Paul follower he invested all his money in gold and perhaps a few diamonds, which of course he hides in the usual location. Don't you read comic books?
Posted by Machiavelli was framed on July 6, 2013 at 1:16 AM · Report this
ScrawnyKayaker 26
@25 Hope it's diamonds. You can't get through airport metal detectors with a tube of gold wafers up your butt.
Posted by ScrawnyKayaker on July 6, 2013 at 7:19 AM · Report this
If this were the world most of you seem to think it is his picture would be on Jason Bourne's cell phone. As it is he's just pathetic.
Posted by MikeB on July 6, 2013 at 7:27 AM · Report this
@23 I figured he'd cashed out his assets before he ran, but I'd figure that he had maybe $50k tops, which doesn't last too long when you're on the lam far from home.
Posted by tiktok on July 6, 2013 at 7:59 AM · Report this
I hope he remembers to stock up on toilet paper on the way over there. It's in really short supply in Venezuela.
Posted by Toe Tag on July 6, 2013 at 8:28 AM · Report this
raindrop 30
Snowden could have stayed in Hawaii, hired a lawyer, and worked with a U.S. news organization and existing whistleblower laws. At most he'd be facing contempt of court and maybe gross misdemeanor charges in the U.S. courts. He'd still be with his family. And we would still know the extent of PRISM and NSA overreaches.
Instead he embarrasses the U.S. and causes great harm to our foreign relations. And he also gives state secrets to the most contemptible and evil nations on the planet.
At first I had respect for him, but no more.
Posted by raindrop on July 6, 2013 at 8:33 AM · Report this
@29 On the other hand, the way they keep devaluing the Venezuelan Bolivar, there might be a handy alternative.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on July 6, 2013 at 8:43 AM · Report this
Confluence 32
I have a friend who's a recently arrived immigrant from Venezuela. He's so glad to be out because the place is so unsafe, corrupt, etc. I don't think Snowden has any real clue about the life he's just signed up for.

And @30 is right -- he could have followed his principles (if he must) in a more measured way and still maintained his cushy life. But that wouldn't have satisfied his narcissistic ego. He needed a big, flashy, dramatic bang, painting himself as the renegade hero. The way he handled this whole thing reveals a lot about who he really is & his true intentions.
Posted by Confluence on July 6, 2013 at 8:54 AM · Report this
@3, Sleazeattle14,

Soooo, you support the Obama Administration (and the neocons of congress) financing al Qaeda in Syria?

Assad, baaaad, al Qaeda baaad ---- get it?…
Posted by sgt_doom on July 6, 2013 at 9:10 AM · Report this
@32 Venezuela is not fully democratic but it's not close to cuba or chile under Pinochet. it's sort of like mexico under the PRI -- but seems to have fairer elections. a majority truly elected maduro. the opponents are not being jailed en masse or killed. i'd give it a low score on the democracy count but it's nowhere NEAR Guatemala when they were committing genocide against all lefties and peasants, and all unions, or iran under the shah when torture was practiced and no elections, etc. I'd say we give them a cheer for offering asylum, give them another cheer for having elections and not killing en masse, and tell them to stop the authoritarian practices they've got -- and oh btw we'll make a deal with them, we in America will stop our illegal torture, drone killings and massive assault on rights worldwide represented by the illegal NSA spying programs.

sound fair to you?
Posted by venezuela not so bad on July 6, 2013 at 9:36 AM · Report this
Matt from Denver 35
sgt_doofus, never change.
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 6, 2013 at 9:37 AM · Report this
@30 Someone that exposes your misdeeds and lies only embarrasses you with you supplying the material. The government cannot justifiably blame Snowden for their malfeasance. The counter accusation only says they know they are wrong since the objection is merely that they don't want people knowing that they are doing these things.

Frankly, this country needs no help embarrassing itself. From Ellsberg and Drake, to Manning and Snowden, they're telling us things we already know but the evidence makes it impossible to deny anymore.

The opposition to these exposures scandalously retreats to frightening calls to nationalism (how dare you tarnish this great country's name!) and when that fails, it falls to out right mockery, which is really desperate.

Posted by Agrippa on July 6, 2013 at 9:37 AM · Report this
Matt from Denver 37
@ 30/32, are either of you sure he didn't flee on his attorney's advice?
Posted by Matt from Denver on July 6, 2013 at 9:39 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 38

Stop lying about yourself, Five Large. Nobody believes it when you pull just the right biographical anecdote out of your ass whenever you need to bolster your credibility.

You're playing a made-up character on the internet. Anonymously. Get help, Five Large. Get help.

Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on July 6, 2013 at 9:57 AM · Report this
raindrop 39
@37 - No, and we can't prove our hypotheticals. However, it is more plausible to say that an attorney would not have recommended fleeing.
Posted by raindrop on July 6, 2013 at 10:14 AM · Report this
sirkowski 40
@32 Snowden doesn't have any clues about anything.
Posted by sirkowski on July 6, 2013 at 11:43 AM · Report this
so an attorney wouldn't possibly have said "that national security exception might extend to your ass"?

Libya was/is a shitshow. tens of thousands of sub-Saharan Africans were murdered by the rebels in their NATO-supported sweep toward and into Tripoli, and the many, many workers from some of the poorest countries in the world still haven't restored remittance schedules feeding families back home, with the economy largely interrupted by mayhem.

There's no reason to expect a Syrian expedition, aerial or holistic, would go better. There is no resume of clean conflict.

Venezuela is surely corrupt (though their corruption problems are minor league vs. liars' loans, liars' wars, etc, whose scale is greater than anything close enough to Chavista fingers to be stolen there) and tragically unsafe, though hardly moreso than a US prison, but there are lots of babes and nice people, there, and good health and dental care
Posted by daws on July 7, 2013 at 1:33 AM · Report this

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