“Can You Hear Me Now?”
By: Diane Sori / The Patriot Factor / Right Side Patriots on http://cprworldwidemedia.net/
“It’s our belief that the man put U.S. national security in great danger and he needs to be held to account for that.”
- State Department spokesman John Kirby in regards to whistleblower Edward Snowden
The European Union (E.U.) in urging its member nations to protect American whistleblower Edward Snowden from extradition to the U.S. got it right...NO ifs, ands, or buts about it.
"An abrupt end to the program would be contrary to the public interest in effective surveillance of terrorist threats, and Congress thus provided a 180-day transition period...under the circumstances, we will defer to that reasonable decision," wrote Circuit Judge Gerard Lynch, the very same judge who originally ruled what the NSA was doing to be illegal. Quite interesting I would say.
But can you really blame them, after all the documents Snowden revealed showed one and all that the U.S. under the Obama administration had spied...YES spied...NOT only on we American citizens, but on foreign leaders, nongovernmental organizations, and on the United Nations as well. And this has led the E.U. Commission to now consider the ramifications of the European Court of Justice's ruling that struck down the U.S./E.U. data-transfer agreement known as 'Safe Harbor'...the very agreement that allows American companies to move personal data between the European Union and the U.S...rendering it invalid because U.S. surveillance of tech companies conflicted with E.U. privacy guarantees. This translates into American tech companies financially being hurt as foreign companies and governments have been forced to reject their products out of fear that the NSA has, if you will, 'compromised' them, as well as their now having to figure out how to legally transfer European employee and customer data back to their U.S. servers.
And now according to his lawyers, Snowden, who currently is a director at the 'Freedom of the Press Foundation,' would like to come back to the U.S. if...and only if...he’s guaranteed a fair trial with full due process...which is kind of a misnomer as Snowden is charged under a law that allows for NO mitigating circumstances. And via a newly opened Twitter account (Edward Snowden@Snowden ... https://twitter.com/Snowden) Snowden called the E.U. Parliament’s non-binding vote a “game-changer,” while at the same time his lawyers called it a “symbolic blow” to the Obama administration’s efforts to get Snowden back to the U.S. to face charges.
Remember, the U.S. has in place long standing extradition treaties with all the European nations...except in death penalty cases...and this vote sends a slap-in-the-face message that the E.U. will, in Snowden's case, NOT honor this agreement, thus making it clear to Obama that they feel that Snowden did NOTHING less then protect democracy from itself...further translating into the fact that Snowden may soon be granted 'safe passage' to travel freely throughout other countries in the European Union...freely travel and freely talk to anyone he so chooses.
But why is the European Union really protecting Edward Snowden... to find the answer to that we must go back to 2004, when the U.N. special rapporteur (the person appointed to report on the proceedings of its meetings) for freedom of expression, as well as his counterparts in the Organization of American States and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, issued a joint call to all governments to protect whistleblowers from all "legal, administrative or employment-related sanctions if they act in 'good faith.” Then in 2010, the parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe stated in resolution 1729 that "the definition of protected disclosures shall include all bona-fide warnings against various types of unlawful acts,” and that member countries' laws "should therefore cover both public and private sector whistle-blowers, including members of the armed forces and special services."
And to the members of the European Union, Edward Snowden fits the definition of a whistleblower to a tee as what Snowden exposed, they felt, threatened their very sovereignty, privacy, as well as their founding principles. So the E.U. countries feel they owe, if you will, Snowden a debt of gratitude for his revelations, which clearly and undoubtedly were in the public interest...as they are here in America as well but which the Obama administration could care less about as the public interest...as 'We the People'...be damned.
So in the E.U. now giving Snowden a form of legal protection they have done two things, first being what our First Amendment failed to do in Edward Snowden's case...protect the privacy of individuals in a clear case of need-to-know public interest as it relates to the freedom of information and second, the Whistleblower Protection Act...a federal law that protects federal whistleblowers who work for the government and report agency misconduct...seems to have been completely negated as it did NOT protect Edward Snowden whose sounding the alarm was indeed an act done in the public interest...an interest having NOTHING whatsoever to do with national security issues being breached as would be interpreted by our intelligence services.
And with Snowden tweeting that, “This [E.U. ruling] is not a blow against the U.S. Government, but an open hand extended by friends. It is a chance to move forward,” the truth is it is indeed a well deserved blow to an administration run amok that has NEVER been called to task for their criminal actions. And you have to love that when Edward Snowden signed onto Twitter that he chose to follow only one account...that being the NSA...whose first tweet to them was “Can you hear me now?” Yeah they can and so too can 'We the People.'