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Home arrow newsitems arrow Snowden to Eurofora(1): who Helps Whistle-Blowers is not Ennemy, but Friend of the Country concerned

Snowden to Eurofora(1): who Helps Whistle-Blowers is not Ennemy, but Friend of the Country concerned

Written by ACM
Friday, 15 March 2019

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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- Choosing to Reply to the First of 2 "Eurofora"s Questions (See also : ...), at a CoE's Video-Conference, about Whistle-Blowers' Freedom, World Famous pro-Human Rights/Democracy Dissident Edward Snowden, stressed that who Helps a Whistle-Blower, instead of Harassing him/her, is, in fact, "Not an Enemy, But a Friend" of the Country concerned.

- In fact, by Leaving Abroad, "I Wanted to Ask the whole World : Where someone like me should Go ? Where am I Safe to Speak ?", he explained in his Reply to "Eurofora"s relevant Question (See Infra).

 

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- In that rare event, organized Today by the New CoE's Rapporteur on WhistleBlowers, vice-President of the French National Assembly, MEP Sylvain Waserman from Strasbourg, (Comp. also Waserman's relevant Statements to "EF", Yesterday, at : ...., etc), Snowden chose to adress mainly the 1st of 2 Questions that "Eurofora" had raised:

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Our 1st Question concerned, particularly, "WistleBlowers' Ability to continue to Speak on Fundamental Issues" (Individually and/or Collectively), and how to address, through a Socio-Political Struggle, the Fact that, in general, most WhistleBlowers are Threatened to become ..."Carbonized", by Harassment, Pressure and Attacks, shortly after they "come out" in Public at the Medias, Paying personaly a too Heavy price, with Hard Sacrifices for the sake of the General Interest Issue that they revealed,

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as a specialized and experienced NGO Representative had Earlier denounced, (preferring the Protective Secrecy of Anonymous Press "Sources", as far as she was concerned).

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- Snowden Replied that he Found "in there, an Interesting Question", "I think, about the WhistleBlowers' Ability to Speak", (choosing to Start Replying First by "Eurofora"s initial Query, among 3 Differend Participants in a row, who raised Various Issues).

- "Interesting Question : How to Protect them ? What can we do ?", he Wondered.

- "We certainly Can't, in the Current context (since 2013), in the USA, be able to Speak Freely to (Press) Reporters, (not) even about the most Serious Crimes,  without being driven into either Prison, or Exile. And I think, that's a Tragic thing", he Denounced.

- "I would like to say <<that's not the case in Europe>>. But, unfortunately, I have very Little Evidence, to believe it's Different. Especially (judging by) the National Security Context", he bitterly noted.

- "Quite famously, People Forget that I didn't choose to be in Russia", he reminded.

-  In fact, "I was on route from Hong Kong to Latin America, when the Secretary of State, then John Kerry, cancelled my Passport !"

- This was done "as soon as they heard that I left, which Trapped me in Russia".

 - "Now, I could have simply appealed to Russia for Asylum Directly, but I did Not".

- Simply "Because I Wanted to Ask the whole World !", he significantly stressed, (concerning also the Global aspect of Internet Mass Surveillance that he Denounced).

 - Indeed: -"Where can someone like me, go ?", Snowden wondered.

- "Where am I Safe to Speak ?"

- "We Revealed something like the Uniform Violation of the Rights of Every Man, Woman or Child, whose Communications pass through the Networks of the USA and its Allies", he reminded, as far as it concerns what is at stake.

- So, "I Applied to over +20 Differend Countries, for Protection, including France and Germany".

- "And, unfortunately, in Every case, they found a reason Not to accept the query", he denounced :  

- "In Many cases, because of <<US Pressure>>, they said : <<Oh, you know, we won't accept at all !>>. In other cases, it was : <<Oh, you have to Get to our Country First>>, which, of course, they knew it wasn't possible, because my Passport had been Cancelled", Snowden described bitterly.

 - "Even though they could, of course, have offered a Travel Document, (in order) to travel there, and, then, apply for Asylum, they were Not willing to do so".

- "Now, I think we all Undestand the Political Dynamics that Lead to that Common Decision : What Country wants to ask for a Problem ?", he realistically noted.

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 - "But, sometimes, if we don't take these problems, if we don't Willingly Accept these problems", (then),

=> "what we are allowing to happen, is that the Meaning of our Rights, the Protection afforded by our Commitment to the Ideal of Human Rights, is beginning to Shrink !", Snowden Warned.

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- "I think we all know, that, if I had (f.ex.) Belarussian, or Chinese, or North Korean Citizenship, and I had gone to the USA, (then) France and Germany would have Admitted me, they would have thrown me a Parade !", he joked critically..

- "Now, I understand that, and I am Not Angry about what happened. What happens to me is a very little problem of importance", he  said modestly.

>> - "But the (Wider) Dynamic, I think, Matters !

 - "I don't ask Europe, any more to let me in. Although I still, very much, look Forward to the Day that I can Freely Travel to Europe, once again", Snowden acknowledged.

 

=> -"But, I do, very Strongly, Ask Europe, to Make Sure they are Well Prepared for the Next Case, like mine !", he urged.

 - "Because Admitting someone into your Country, and Protecting someone in your Country, who is Trying to Serve the Public Good",

"Even if their Government - which might be a very Close Ally - Objects to it, if it makes them UnConfortable, it creates very Difficult Circumstances for them",

=> Nevertheless, "Admitting and Protecting a Whistle-Blower is Not a Hostile act. Not the act of an Ennemy"

>>> On the Contrary, "It's an Act of a Friend !", Edward Snowden Concluded.

* Since, then, in fact, "You are Upholding a Grieved Country, (f.ex.) USA's Commitment to Protect Human Rights",

"in a Situation where it's very Difficult for them, to do so (by) themselves. Because They are acting Emotionally, they are acting Irrationaly, they are Reacting Angry", he Explained, Realistically but Profoundly.

 - "Because We are All Humans, Governments are Comprised of Humans. We are All Embarassed. We may All make Bad Decisions in a Moment"...

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 - "But, the Attorney General of the USA, who Charged me, with Crimes, ... by the time that he left the White House, said : - "I think that what Mr. Snowden did, was a Public Service. It was a Public Service !".

He was referring to former US Attorney General Eric Holder, who, despite persisting to criticize Snowden's revelations, nevertheless, acknowledged, since 2016, that he had offered a "Public Service" to the Country, by opening a much needed "Debate", which led to adequate "Reforms".

- "Now, we don't know how this Story is going to end, ... And, Honestly, it doesn't matter" so much, the most Famous WhistleBlower of the World, added modestly.

 - "But, if we don't Correct the (US) President, for the Next President. And we don't correct the President, for the Next Person After that, and the Next Person After that", ...

=> Then, "we shall find ourselves withOut WhistleBlowers, when we Need them the most  !".

 - "Because Noone is going to be willing to Sacrifice themselves, for a Public that doesN't, any longer, represent the Ideals that such an individual is Trying to Protect", he Warned.

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+ Concluding that exceptional CoE's Video-Debate, the new Rapporteur of the PanEuropean Organisation for Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law, Strasbourg's Centrist MEP Sylvain Waserman, expessed his Wish to "Invite" Snowden here, in the foreseable Future, this time "in Safety".

Such a move might be naturally made by Waserman, (who is also vice-President of France's National Assembly), most probably during the forcthcoming French Presidency of the CoE, i.e. between May and November 2019, when he intends to present his Report for Public Debate and Final Vote for Adoption by CoE's Parliamentary Assembly, as he told "Eurofora", (See : ...).

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++ It's Interesting to note, also, in this regard, the fact that vice-President Waserman, almost at the same time, would like to give "an International Framework" to his Future Report, (according also to a Recent EU - CoE cooperation's Trend to use, more and more, Strasbourg's PanEuropean Organisation, and its Old and New, various Legal Conventions, often "Open for Signature and Ratification" also to 3rd Countries, from all over the World, particularly in some Key Areas, such as, f.ex., Protection of Private/Personal Data, Fight against Cyber-Crime, Constitutional Law and Human Rights, BioEthics, Children's protection and Struggle against Human Trafficking, etc), as he told "Eurofora" earlier Today.

+++ In this Context, CoE's Rapporteur also told "Eurofora" that he would like to Meet, inter alia, with some Key Officials from the USA, etc.

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(../..)

 

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It's important to create a synergy between "mutually stimulating" EU Countries' moves in order to overcome an "Unjust" Crisis "imported from USA", stressed new French Minister for Economic Revival, Patrick Devedjian, in Strasbourg, warning also that, while hoping for a vigorous Obama US Plan, nevertheless, "Time" is of essence for Europe...

In fact, it's EU's own interest to act Fast, before June 2009 EU Election, since, with Lisbon Treaty not ratified yet, it cannot face again the risk of a Majority Abstention, as back in 1999 and 2004, nor another "anti-EU" mood among Citizens, as in the 2005 French and Dutch "No", followed by the 2008 Irish "No", without endangering rare Historic opportunities, currently open for the EU, whose future is at stake.

From Social issues up to High-Tech Scientific Research, concrete action for Economic revival started from Strasbourg and its European dimension, for the new super-Minister Patrick Devedjian, who visited a Popular Social Housing and Infrastructure project at nearby Hagenau village, before meeting new leaders of Strasbourg's unified mega-University in a Scientific Labo at the Campus, close to EU Parliament and CoE headquarters.

Devedjian, who met also with all the spectrum of Local Political  deciders of Alsace region, close to FrancoGerman borders, wants for deeds to meet the words, in real practice, whenever politicians speak about Strasbourg and Europe's development.

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Devedjan to "EuroFora" : "European coordination can act as a multiplicator by mutual stimulations"
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Devedjian was questioned by "Euro-Fora" on his expectations for reciprocal effects of coordinated European plans :

- "We are living in a (European and Global) system where borders are transparent : When we take measures in France, they produce effects also in Germany, in Belgium, Italy, Spain, or other EU countries, and vice-versa. "So, we can have mutually stimulating effects between national revival Plans, if they are somehow coordinated", ..."They can augment each other's effects, acting as multiplicators and levers". "As a State stimulates Local authorities and Private business, similarly, each EU country's economic revival plan may multiply the effects of other EU countries' actions", he told us.

- "F.ex., when I visited Strasbourg University's Scientific labos, they told me that part of the renovation, funded by France, is realized by German companies located only a few Kms away from the border. Thus, the French revival plan benefits also the German economy. And vice-versa : when Germany takes certain measures, they can have beneficial effects also for French companies"

In an era of Globalisation, "nobody can close and isolate himself inside a Fish-Bowl !", he concluded.
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Economy's revival starts from Strasbourg and Europe, for new French Minister Devedjian
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tgv


This could be one of the reasons for which the new French Minister for Economic Stimulus chose to make his 1st visit to Strasbourg, the headquarters of European and Paneuropean Institutions, in the Franco-German river borders at the heart of Europe.

- "It was President Sarkozy's idea", he revealed, adding also fresh "support to Strasbourg's European vocation, not only with words, but also with deeds" :F.ex., the completion of a High-Speed Train network, due to stimulate fast links with Germany, Austria, Italy, Hungary and other central EU Countries.

- "This Crisis is Unjust for Europe, because it wasn't its fault". The greatest part of the "Crisis was imported from the USA, where problems are deeper than here'', in the EU. The Crisis "wasn't due to a bad managment by Europe", who was affected by problems which emerged elsewhere. That's why Europe must be united and active enough to face this challenge. said Devedjian, who has just won +5% in popularity...

- "I hope that there will be an "Obama-effect" also on Economy, and that the Plan of the New American President will be substantial enough to face this crisis, which is worse in the USA than in our area", Europe, he added.

"Economic Revival overcomes political divisions : F.ex. Strasbourg's Socialist Mayor "Ries agreed that State actions funded by Public Debt are justified during such exceptional circumstances", noted the Center-Right republican Minister.

---------------

"Zeitnot" for 2009 EU Elections ?

--------------------

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"My problem is Time", stressed Devedjian from the outset, at Strasbourg's University. "I have to engage 75% of funds in 2009, out of a total of 29 Billion euros", he explained later. "Monitoring will be of essence", because we must "avoid bureaucracy or delays. No project should get lost or neglected in complex meanders of adminstrative offices' moving sands", he warned.

- "I must create activities in the middle of the Crisis", he added. Questioned by EuroFora whether he aims to start creating some "hopes before the June 2009 EU Elections", Devedjian, a former leader of the Governing Political Party in France: UMP, did not immediately reply, but revealed, later, that he "hoped to start at least some Projects on May 2009, even if the bulk of Revival Plan's effects are "expected from Autumn 2009".

However, with only 30% of EU Citizens currently aiming to cast a vote at the forthcoming EU Elections on June, (See other NewStory), the  coordinated moves' results are expected to be crucial for Citizens' participation and votes at the forthcoming June 2009 EU Elections throughout all 27 EU Member Countries...Thus, it's vital for all Europe's own Future that coordinated national Economic revival plans start to have concrete results and create hopes for new dynamics before the June 2009 EU Election...

A real challenge, since careful choices are needed : Our aim is to fund projects which "create activities", even "in the middle of the crisis", and have a "lever effect, attracting other investments", Devedjian said. Because the "Stimulus' Plan has 2 aims : A Tactical one : to create New Activities. And a Strategic one : Choose what can become efficient and useful also in the Long-term". 

- "Are you ready ?", he asked Strasbourg University's new President, professor Alain Beretz, with some 700 million euros in his pockets for Education-Research in France. - "We are !", he replied.

- "The Minister's initiative can accelerate funds, and Time is important for us. This concerns the entire renovation of all our buildings", said to "EuroFora" President, Beretz. "I showed some Scientific Research Labos to Mr. Devedjian. But, If we had more time, I could show him also some Education Amphis, whose condition needs to meet Strasbourg's new Mega-University's ambition" to reach the 10 best in the World, as Prime Minister Fillon earlier anounced here.

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(Devedjian kicks off his Economic Revival tour from Strasbourg University, meeting with its new chairman Beretz, at Scientific Institute Le Bel) 

-----

Regional Prefectures should gather and select projects to be presented for decision before the end of January 2009.

A well-known close friend of President Sarkozy, who succeeded as EU Chairman to launch, in agreement with German chancelor Merkel and even British prime minister Brown, vigorous EU actions against the Financial/Economic Crisis, (starting from the 1st Historic Summit of EuroZone's Heads of State/Government, October 12 at Elysee Palace, followed by Washington G20 Global Summit), Devedjan will have a key role in the realisation of National and EU plans recently agreed in Brussels.

President Sarkozy is expected to arrive himself in Strasbourg, on the occasion of the official inauguration of its brand New Mega-Hospital, on the 9th of January 2009, at the eve of EU Parliament's session here, Elysee confirmed shortly after Devedjian's visit.

EU is due to review its economic revival plans at March 2009 EU Council in Prague, before the April 2 London Global Summit.

***

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Multi-facet concrete activities at focus : Stimulus Minister Devedjian at the Political, Social and High-Tech fronts in Strasbourg...

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