With John Kerry, Obama says: 'We've prepared this room for

you, Mr. Snowden. If you should need anything, just scream.'

Guardian Unlimited, U.K.

[Click Here for More Guardian Cartoons]



Wanting to Keep U.S. Trade Privileges is Not Treason! (El Comercio, Ecuador)


"Anticipating the possibility that some might issue opinions contrary to his own, Correa said traitors and servants of empire will always come forward to criticize. ... It seems the president confuses blind trust in his own judgment with the exercise of national sovereignty. He is clearly convinced that his truth is the only truth and that the views of others are tissues of lies. He defends his judgment as if defending the nation's sovereignty."


By José Ayala Lasso


Translated By Miguel Gutierrez


June 29, 2013


Ecuador - El Commercio - Original Article (Spanish)

Ecuador President Rafeal Correa: Miffed at Julian Assange for upstaging him, he has revoked Edward Snowden's Ecuadorian travel documents. At the same time, he has preemptiviely renounced trade priviledges with tye United States, after U.S. lawmakers pressured him to reject Snowden's asylum.

DEMOCRACY NOW VIDEO: Ecuador President Rafeal Correa blasts U.S. 'blackmail' over Snowden case, June 28, 00:02:04RealVideo

President Correa has unilaterally and irrevocably renounced Andean Trade Promotion and Drug Eradication Act [ATPDEA] tariff preferences for Ecuador, explaining that as a sovereign country, it will not accept pressure or blackmail from anyone. Anticipating the possibility that some might issue opinions contrary to his own, Correa said traitors and servants of empire will always come forward to criticize. He has disqualified them morally and intellectually, calling them accomplices of the United States of America.


When one Ecuadorian or a thousand ask the president to think before making a decision and put national interests above all other considerations, are they exerting undue pressure on his person? If someone warns you about the possible negative consequences of a decision, are they acting as a blackmailer? It seems that the president confuses blind trust in his own judgment with the exercise of national sovereignty. He is clearly convinced that his truth is the only truth and that the views of others are tissues of lies. He defends his judgment as if defending the nation's sovereignty. For that reason he has renounced the ATPDEA, and in an ironic attack on the United States, the people of which he says he loves and admires, he has expressed a willingness to fund, with $23 million a year, a human rights training program for that country.


One must ask what else President Correa will be willing to renounce, if the commercial damage to Ecuador isn't limited to ATPDEA trade benefits, and comes to include other areas like the Generalized System of Preferences or the sugar quota. I don't believe the president would then consider irrevocably waiving trade with the United States of America, do you? Following the Snowden case, a delicate problem that neither China or Russia want to take on, these are the criteria that in one way or another define the severity of the problem with our most important trading partner.


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Meanwhile, encouraged by the declarations of Foreign Minister Patiño, Snowden sought asylum in Ecuador, and Australian Julian Assange, from his office in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, wrongly assuming a role forbidden to him, and reported that our government had authorized Snowden's travel documents.

An official correction later argued that the eventual issuance of the document would be the responsibility of whoever issued it. Later, President Correa denied this report as well, and just in case, disavowed and revoked a document issued by an official whose authority was ultimately withdrawn. Curious the way our consular offices work!


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Posted By Worldmeets.US June 28, 2013, 6:18pm