Ah, the elusive Snowden

Ah, the elusive Snowden

SnowdenWhat a hoot! The Obama Administration, ruthlessly efficient at targeting Tea Partiers, pro-choice and anti-vote fraud groups, and inquisitive media, makes the Keystone Kops look good when it comes to catching a real criminal.

Eric Snowden, regardless of what one thinks of his motives or the programs he exposed, clearly broke the law in releasing classified information to the media.

So here’s what our Department of Justice (DOJ) has done to bring him to justice:

—  It sent an extradition request to Hong Kong and sought to pressure the authorities there to arrest Snowden. Those same authorities, however, first requested additional information about U.S. official hacking of Hong Kong websites – and while awaiting the response, allowed Snowden to depart.

— Although it secretly filed charges against Snowden in a Virginia court on June 14, it apparently failed to issue a “red notice” with Interpol, the international police agency, to detain him. Snowden arrived in Moscow but Russian authorities left him at liberty as they claimed there was no Interpol alert to arrest him.

The U.S. government apparently jawboned the Hong Kong authorites and presumably the Russians (how’s that reset button working, anyway?) to arrest and extradite Snowden, but so far to no avail. It’s really hard dealing with foreigners who fail to cringe at U.S. authority and might – especially if you decline to use the one reliable system already in place. Which raises the question: why didn’t we file a “red notice”? Is it possible that the Obama Administration would rather let Snowden go than bring him back and risk exposing more about NSA programs and our parlous security clearance systems in an eventual court case?

This are indeed thorny issues. It’s really much easier, and infinitely more gratifying, to suppress the domestic opposition. You can hide what you do from them for a very, very long time. Then, when it finally comes out, they only have the slow, grinding processes of U.S. law available to defend themselves. Plus your friends in the media and on Capitol Hill can loudly and continuously proclaim your innocence. Too bad foreigners aren’t as reliable.


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