Issues Under Fire: Edward Snowden-Barack Obama Stalemate Continue

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07/25/2013

No, we are not back. We’re making good a promise made on our last day in the studio before leaving for summer break. We said if any issues of value heated up, we’d check back in and take a look at them. Well, we had just the sort of development in our chronicles of Edward Snowden that piqued our interest.

Whistleblower Edward Snowden may have move a step closer to securing a safe space on the planet for the foreseeable future. Reportedly, the Russian government has moved forward in approving initial documents necessary for Mr. Snowden’s exit from an international safety zone within Russia’s Sheremetyevo airport.

Currently, the details are still being hammered out and there is no definitive word if the NSA whistleblower will have to keep his mouth shut about about U.S. spying while on Russian soil. If and when Mr. Snowden is ever able to leave the protective environs of Russia’s politically motivated hospitality, will he be freed from those constraints is a major question still to be answered. The devil as you know always remain in the details.

Since the inception of Mr. Snowden’s saga, he’s maintained his primary concern, was to expose the NSA’s vast collection of domestic and international data for much needed public scrutiny. He maintains the American people should be made aware of the extent their civil liberties are being compromised without national debate or adequate oversight.┬áHe stated his biggest fear was that once made aware, the American people would do nothing to reestablish control of over a national security snooping apparatus that’s been allowed to run amok.

While Mr. Snowden has been made to look the villain by the Obama administration with a great deal of help from America’s media; Left Right and Center, he has also gotten just enough attention from American’s intelligentsia, the nation’s youth and the international press to reverse the tide of a government sponsored smear campaign. Were it not for the growing numbers of those refusing to buy the administration’s official portrayal of the NSA’s activities, guidelines and oversight, the more ignorant and apathetic demographics of the nation might have let this story go right over their heads.

Still, we’re marveling over how the administration was able to manage to manage America’s forth estate so effectively. When Issue Under Fire returns, we’ll have to solve that mystery. As you know, we don’t like mysteries.

On the other hand, the Obama administration also secured future funding and congressional cooperation to keep the NSA’s surveillance apparatus fully intact. In a bipartisan effort by a few rogue Congresspersons, the U.S. House of Representatives forced a vote on an amendment attached to a Defense appropriations bill that would have seriously curtailed the NSA’s domestic surveillance.

Facing unprecedented pressure from the White House, President Obama was able to squash the effort in a close 205-217. How the President was able to get a throughly obstinate and obstructionist GOP to go along with anything the president is incline to support is another mystery to be investigated.

Just prior to that vote, Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon gave a talk outlining precisely what the Obama administration is doing behind what is now appropriately termed Secrete Law. If this don’t whet your appetite for more we’ll have to try harder when we return from Summer Break.

In a tactical move, President Obama has once again shifted the nation’s narrative back to jobs and the economy. With a series of planned speeches aorund the country, he’ll place an emphasis alleviating the woes of the middle-class, while helping with the shaky rollout of his signature achievement; The Affordable Healthcare Plan.

Other stories we’re watching with great care, include but in no way limited to:

A. U.S. policy toward military intervention in Syria
B. U.S. efforts to reignite the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks
C. U.S. efforts to suppress information damaging to American’s civil liberties

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