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The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

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June 23, 2013 - 10:52 am

USA Today reports:

Snowden was permitted to leave Hong Kong despite an extradition request that he be returned to the United States to face charges of espionage. Russia’s state ITAR-Tass news agency said he had landed in Moscow.

Russian news site RT reported that Snowden was to Moscow on Monday for Havana, and then on to Caracas, Venezuela. But the Ecuador ministry and Wikileaks, a web site that divulges state secrets and is assisting Snowden, said he will try to get to Ecuador instead.

Hong Kong said in a statement that it allowed Snowden to leave because documents provided by the U.S. government for extradition did not “fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law,” and the U.S. had not yet provided the additional information requested to consider the U.S. request for a provisional arrest warrant.

After the announcement Saturday of the extradition request, an Obama administration official told USA TODAY that Hong Kong risked harming relations with the two sides if it did not comply with its legal obligations. Regina Ip, a legilsater and Cabinet member in Hong Kong, said, “I don’t think we need to be concerned about any consequences.”

Wikileaks is assisting Snowden, as its own leader, Julian Assange, holes up on Ecuador’s embassy in London to avoid rape charges in Sweden.

The Obama administration looks impotent as Wikileaks, Hong Kong, Russia, Cuba, Venezuela and Ecuador defy the US.

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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Top Rated Comments   
How embarrassing...OMG, can our country look any more pathetic under the "leadership" of these buffoons? We charge the guy with espionage, he holes up in Hong Kong, Putin spits in our eye and lets him fly to Russia, and now he's in Latin America? WTF, over? Do we have any power or prestige left with the rest of the world?

If the whole world believes Obama is a joke and a fool, how the hell did the American people reelect this Bozo? (That's a rhetorical question...I know the answer) If America does not rise up and vote anti-democrat in 2014 we are truly screwed as a country.

Remember BENGHAZI!
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (7)
All Comments   (7)
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Honestly, even if Snowden WAS a straight-up spy, and not just someone who wanted to shed a little sunlight in the darkness, I really don't WANT the Obama administration to catch him. I doubt there's any harm he could do to the country with what he may or may not know that A) exceeds the public value of knowing about PRISM, and B) exceeds the damage Obama himself has done/ is doing/ will do. Yeah, yeah, it makes the US look impotent if we don't catch him. It's a TINY bit too late for that. Like, oh, I don't know, four or five years.

Still, Snowden HAS to have expected to be chased. The list of places he's running through COULD be a tour of places to sell secrets, but I'm not sure what government agents he'd be getting on the roster of. My impression was that he was just passing through. And it seems to me more like he charted a route through every nation he thinks has a reason or a will to defy the US, so I can't say I'm surprised that they're doing it. I notice France is not part of his tour, is what I'm saying. It's China and Russia, which can defy the US relatively safely as a little power play. Or Cuba, which is fairly hostile towards the US as a matter of course, as are most of the tin-pots in South America, Ecuador and Venezuela being no exception.

Now, I find a final destination in South America to be unappealing, but the general dislike of the US, smaller sphere of influence, and general governmental disorganization those countries have may be a part of the appeal. Less incentive to comply outright with the US, less incentive to find you for their own purposes, less ability to find you at all. Oh, and you can probably bribe off anyone who does find you in those cultures.

I suppose we'll see if that reasoning served well. Assuming Wikileaks isn't playing a double game and releasing intentionally misleading information to protect Snowden.
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
Not mentioned anywhere but yet vital to understanding le Affaire Snowden In Hong Kong and that Extradition Request of ours is the ever constant underlying idea of "Face" as it applies right here, right now, to all details of Chinese affairs.

Snowden probably was yet another unwanted "foreigner legal problem" who just popped up inside of a legal jurisdiction [S.A.R. Hong Kong] inside another legal jurisdiction, that of Beijing, neither of which wanted to be blamed by the other for their legal mishandling of any forthcoming Request for Extradition.

So, now that the convenient "Face" saving device of the "information from the United States" being insufficient to initiate extradition proceedings according to Hong Kong and/or Chinese Law, both legal jurisdictions can breathe easier and no doubt sighed in relief as that Aeroflot aircraft lifted off of the new Hong Kong airport runway.

Exit potential major Troublesome Tangled Foreigner Legal Problem.

Got popcorn?

These are just the opening arias.
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
Ever think that Snowden's Prism leak was a cover for what he was really up to? This is looking more and more like a straight forward espionage case. Snowden was either working for a foreign government or freelancing it. The "civil liberties" piece was a just a con job to gain support from Progressives and their Libertarian stooges.

And FYI the President of Ecuador is a Chavez mini-me.
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
I understand Greenland is nice at this time of the year. If Snowden eventually gets to Venezuela maybe Mr. Obama could send Danny Glover and Oliver Stone to talk him into coming home. (Oh Right - They're both busy "being" Bradley Manning.) According to all the movies I've seen, the CIA is divided into only two divisions - a) Weasley incompetent time-servers and b) indestructable killers who have gone "rogue." Maybe we could coax Jason Bourne or one of Angelina Jolie's unstoppable leather-clad crotch-kickers to take Snowden out. ("What - They're fictional? Damn!") Anyway - Edward Snowden can look forward to a long, profitable and well-published life full of unbearable sanctimony in whatever non-extradition haven he chooses. A true American Success Story!
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
How embarrassing...OMG, can our country look any more pathetic under the "leadership" of these buffoons? We charge the guy with espionage, he holes up in Hong Kong, Putin spits in our eye and lets him fly to Russia, and now he's in Latin America? WTF, over? Do we have any power or prestige left with the rest of the world?

If the whole world believes Obama is a joke and a fool, how the hell did the American people reelect this Bozo? (That's a rhetorical question...I know the answer) If America does not rise up and vote anti-democrat in 2014 we are truly screwed as a country.

Remember BENGHAZI!
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
Good points, yes; but it's an excellent bet that the experienced professional handlers on the American side of this just unfolding case [obviously not any Obama appointees] aren't very much surprised at the Chinese handling of Snowden, and that the Chinese would be looking around pretty anxiously for some Face Saving way out of their doubtlessly unwanted Foreigner Legal Issue, on top of the other simmering Sino-American tensions.

[...see above for my further ideas.]
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
Make that South America...
42 weeks ago
42 weeks ago Link To Comment
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