Hello, people. Good evening. (Sorry, María… me again).
Here I send you two links regarding the Snowden Asylum breaking news. The task for this Saturday is to bring, already done, a “pros and cons” essay where you explain (two pros and one con or two cons and one pro) about this matter. In the links you will be able to find examples related to some Larin American countries which have offered Snowden the asylum option. Venezuela is one of them, and since we are all Venezuelan, your essay should present aspects involving our Nation (only). Do not forget that the PROS and CONS should have to do with YOUR PERCEPTIONS of the fact (Unit 1, the one we worked on last Saturday). The structure of the paragraph should be the one that we practiced in the class (Where to set the topic sentece and supporting sentences). FOCUS ONLY on the structure we studied. The rest of the information is all UP TO YOU. You do NOT need to follow any other formal aspect besides the ones regarding the way you should make a paragraph. If any questions, do not doubt to reply.
See you on Saturday.
P.S: For those who did not go to class last Saturday: Welcome!
(CNN) — He’s a high school dropout who worked his way into the most secretive computers in U.S. intelligence as a defense contractor — only to blow those secrets wide open by spilling details of classified surveillance programs. Now, Edward Snowden might never live in the United States as a free man again. Where he may end up was a source of global speculation Sunday after he flew from Hong Kong to Russia, his ultimate destination unknown to most. Snowden has revealed himself as the source of documents outlining a massive effort by the U.S. National Security Agency to track cell phone calls and monitor the e-mail and Internet traffic of virtually all Americans. Snowden, 29, said he just wanted the public to know what the government was doing. “Even if you’re not doing anything wrong you’re being watched and recorded,” he said. [pic]Legal risks for NSA whistleblower
[pic]Pentagon Papers Whistleblower on NSA
[pic]Obama answers outcry over NSA
Snowden told The Guardian newspaper in the United Kingdom that he had access to the full rosters of everyone working at the NSA, the entire intelligence community and undercover assets around the world. “I’m just another guy who sits there day to day in the office, watching what’s happening, and goes, ‘This is something that’s not our place to decide.’ The public needs to decide whether these programs or policies are right or wrong,” he said. Snowden fled to Hong Kong after copying one last set of documents and telling his boss he needed to go away for medical treatment. From Hawaii to hiding
Before his leak of U.S. intelligence, Snowden was living “in paradise.” He worked for a major U.S. government contractor in Hawaii, earning a six-figure salary and enjoying the scenic state with his girlfriend. He told The Guardian he never received a high school diploma and didn’t complete his computer studies at a community college. Instead, he joined the Army in 2003 but was discharged after breaking both legs in an accident. Snowden said he later worked as a security guard for the NSA and then took a computer security job with the CIA. He left that job in 2009 and moved on to Booz Allen Hamilton, where he worked as a contractor for the government in Hawaii. He told the Guardian that he left for Hong Kong on May 20 without telling his family or his girlfriend what he planned. [pic]Patriot Act at center of NSA controversy
[pic]Sanders: I voted against the Patriot Act
“You’re living in Hawaii, in paradise and making a ton of money. What would it take to make you leave everything behind?” he said in the Guardian interview. “I’m willing to sacrifice all of that because I can’t in good conscience allow the U.S. government to destroy privacy, Internet freedom and basic liberties for people around the world with this massive surveillance machine they’re secretly building.” Some residents on Oahu island are glad Snowden left.
“From a Hawaii standpoint, good riddance, thanks for leaving,” Ralph Cossa told CNN affiliate KHON. “I’m sure the guy had an overactive Mother Teresa gene and thought he was going to go out and save America from Americans, but in reality he was very foolish,” Cossa said. “We expect the government to honor our privacy, but we also expect our government to protect us from terrorist attacks.” Opinion: Snowden is a hero
President Barack Obama insists his administration is not spying on U.S. citizens — rather, it’s only looking for information on terrorists. Booz Allen Hamilton, the government contractor that employed Snowden, said Snowden had worked at the firm for less than three months. “News reports that this individual has claimed to have leaked classified information are shocking, and if accurate, this action represents a grave violation of the code of conduct and core values of our firm,” the company said in the statement.
The firm said it will cooperate with authorities in their investigation. According to the Guardian, the only time Snowden became emotional during hours of interviews was when he thought about what might happen to his relatives — many of whom work for the U.S. government. “The only thing I fear is the harmful effects on my family, who I won’t be able to help anymore,” he said. “That’s what keeps me up at night.” As for his concerns about his country, “the greatest fear that I have regarding the outcome for America of these disclosures is that nothing will change.” READ: Some shrug at NSA snooping: Privacy’s already dead
Obama: No one listening to your calls
Official: Damage assessment over U.S. intelligence-gathering leaks (CNN) — It’s been days since three Latin American presidents offered to give Edward Snowden a safe place to hide out from U.S. authorities. But the man who’s admitted leaking classified documents about U.S. surveillance programs remains holed up at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport. And the global guessing game over his next steps hasn’t stopped. It’s still unclear where Snowden will go, and how he’ll get there. What’s the holdup?
Out of Russia: Snowden’s options
Sure, we’ve heard fiery speeches offering asylum from leftist leaders who are eager to criticize the United States. But supporting Snowden’s cause and wanting to make Uncle Sam look bad aren’t the only parts of the equation, with so many trade and diplomatic relations hanging in the balance, said Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue think tank in Washington. [pic]Edward Snowden on the move?
[pic]How would Snowden get to Venezuela?
[pic]Cuba next stop for Snowden?
“They want to make a point,” he said, “but I think they’re concerned about suffering the consequences, which I think would be serious. The United States has made that pretty clear.” Here’s a look at the pros and cons that leaders are facing in five Latin American nations that are among the 27 countries where Snowden is seeking asylum. Venezuela
President Nicolas Maduro was the first leader to say he’d give Snowden asylum. Officials have said they’re waiting to hear whether Snowden accepts the offer. Pros:
• Maduro regularly alleges U.S. imperialism, has accused the U.S. government of trying to destabilize his country and even suggested that U.S. officials may have infected late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez with the cancer that eventually killed him. Taking in a high-profile fugitive wanted in the United States would give him another platform to criticize the country
. • It’s been months since the death of Chavez, who earned major political points at home and a place in the global spotlight with his fierce criticisms of America, including a notorious United Nations General Assembly speech where he called President George W. Bush the devil. Maduro describes himself as Chavez’s son. But while he might have the same speechwriters as his predecessor, he doesn’t have the same charisma, and it seems like fewer people are listening to his words. Giving Snowden asylum would be politically popular in Venezuela, shoring up support for Maduro among Chavez loyalists. • It also has regional and global implications. “This for Maduro, I think, really provides an opportunity for him to show himself on the world stage as a regional leader, as the true successor of Chavez,” said David Smilde, a senior fellow at the Washington Office on Latin America. Cons:
• Relations with the United States have been slowly thawing since Maduro’s election in April. Last month, things were looking up when U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Elias Jaua. That would change if Venezuela granted asylum to Snowden. “This will clearly freeze the warming of relations with Venezuela,” Smilde said.
• Despite years of tense Venezuela-U.S. relations, economic ties between the two countries remain strong. Imports and exports between the United States and Venezuela totaled more than $56 billion last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Venezuela’s state-run oil company makes tens of billions of dollars annually from exports to the United States. Venezuela is the United States’ fourth-largest supplier of imported crude oil, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Would offering Snowden asylum put that relationship in jeopardy? It might. But this isn’t the first time Venezuela has run afoul of the United States. Smilde argues that in offering Snowden asylum, Maduro gains more than he loses. “Surely there’s going to be legislators in the Senate who are going to want sanctions against Venezuela, but I don’t think it’s going to get very far,” Smilde said. Shifter says it’s unclear whether the benefits are worth the costs.
Venezuela: Edward Snowden Offered Asylum
[pic]GroundReport | Author: Global Voices
Filed Under: News, Politics | Posted: 07/09/2013 at 6:00PM
Comments | Region: Venezuela
Written by Aglaia Berlutti · Translated by Marianna Breytman [pic]The president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, offered humanitarian asylum to Edward Snowden , former contractor at the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) who leaked classified information about mass surveillance programs in the United States and the Great Britain. Snowden, charged with espionage and property theft by the United States government, is currently on Russian territory, where he is attempting to avoid extradition to American soil. Maduro’s offer comes at a complicated diplomatic moment: UNASUR (Union of South American Nations ) demanded an apology from Europe due to the incident  suffered by Evo Morales, during which various countries closed their airspace to the Bolivian leader based on suspicions that he was transporting Snowden. In events leading up to the military parade that celebrated 202 years since the signing of the Venezuelan declaration of independence on Friday, July 5, President Maduro stated  [es] that, “As leader of the State and Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, I have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to the American young man, Snowden.
” Maduro explained that Venezuela is offering the measure to Snowden to “protect him from the persecution that has been unleashed from the most powerful empire in the world against a young man who has told the truth”. A day later, the Venezuelan president confirmed his intention via Twitter (@NicolasMaduro ) [es]: @NicolasMaduro : Ratifico el espíritu humanitario de conceder el asilo al joven estadounidense Snowden para protegerlo de la persecución mundial del imperio. @NicolasMaduro : I confirm the humanitarian spirit of granting asylum to Snowden, the young American, to protect him from the empire’s global persecution. President Maduro had mentioned the possibility of welcoming Snowden on various occasions, but this is the first time he has done it openly and directly. Despite the controversy, the United States government declined to make comments regarding the Venezuelan president’s offer. According to Reuters  [es], the White house has not released an opinion on the issue and referred questions to the country’s Department of Justice.
Nevertheless, on Sunday, July 7, a group of U.S. Congress members established their position on Snowden’s possible political asylum, stating that: “Whatever country offers asylum to Edward Snowden, who leaked data from the National Security Agency’s (NSA) surveillance program, will set itself against the United States.” The announcement  [es] appears to be a direct response to statements made by Venezuela and Bolivia to grant the humanitarian measure to the former U.S. contractor. Nonetheless, despite the Venezuelan president’s offer, on Monday, July 7, Edward Snowden requested political asylum from Nicaragua through a letter , information that was confirmed directly by the government of the Central American country. “I, Edward Snowden, citizen of the United States, am writing to request asylum from the Republic of Nicaragua due to the risk of being persecuted by the Government and its agents,” he explains in the letter, dated June 30, 2013.
In it, Snowden also explains the consequences that he can suffer after revealing the United States’ secret electronic surveillance program, which he fears could result in the Espionage Act of 1917 being applied against him. If found guilty under this U.S. law, Snowden could be sentenced to life in prison. It is worth highlighting that the request for asylum – or the offer that President Maduro made – is duly stipulated in Venezuelan legislation in the Organic Law on Refugees or Refugees and Asylum-seekers (published in Official Gazette No. 37,296 dated 03 October 2001). The debate on social networks
The offer of asylum to the former NSA contractor on behalf of President Maduro has sparked a heated debate in Venezuela between those who support the government’s position with respect to asylum and those who criticize it by considering it unnecessary and merely political. Above all, the offer seemed to intensify the political confrontation between both countries and it is reflected as such on social networks. On the forum “Aporrea,” which tends to be pro-government, Maduro’s decision is supported almost unanimously. Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa’s position is also praised [es]: rararoadrunner (Foro Aporrea) : ¿Será necesario que UNASUR envie una escuadrilla, compuesta por un avión de cada país, para acompañar a Edward Snowden de Moscú a su país?
A ver: lo que vemos ahora es que usted encarna la gloria al bravo pueblo, un ejemplo para [email protected]! ¡Vivan los Estados independientes de América, el sueño del Libertador, Simón Bolívar! rararoadrunner (Foro Aporrea) : Will it be necessary for UNASUR to send a squadron, composed of a plane in every country, to accompany Edward Snowden from Moscow to their country? Let’s see: what we see now is that you embody glory to the brave people, an example for everyone! Long live the independent States of America, the dream of the Liberator Simón Bolívar! Deuteros (Foro Aporrea) : Ecuador está mostrando una actitud bastante valiente y digna en este asunto; Rafael Correa es un gran ejemplo de líder. Esperemos que Rusia asuma una postura más frontal respecto a Snowden.” Deuteros (Foro Aporrea) : Ecuador is showing quite a brave and dignified attitude towards this issue; Rafael Correa is a great example of a leader. We hope that Russia assume a more head-on position with respect to Snowden.” Even so, pro-government political analyst Nicmer Evans criticizes the governmental offer on his blog  [es]: Lo más interesante del caso es que el ser de la CIA o haberlo sido ahora es tan “chic” que nuestro país no podía quedarse atrás en tener su propio ex agente delator, y hemos corrido a ofrecer asilo a el exCia más cotizado del mercado: Snowden, que como una estrella del pop está siendo debatido por muchos países en cuanto a quien ofrece el mejor asilo en solidaridad con quien hasta hace poco era el responsable de que todos estuviésemos pinchados por los gringos a través de Prism, y hoy es la panacea de ejemplo revolucionario mundial.
The most interesting thing about the case is that the being of the CIA or having been it is now so “chic” that our country cannot remain behind in having its own former informing agent, and we have run to offer asylum to the most valued ex-CIA member in the market: Snowden, like a pop star, is being thrashed around by many countries in terms of who will offer the best asylum in solidarity with someone who, until recently, was responsible for everyone being bugged by the gringos through Prism, and today is the formula for an example of a global revolutionary. There are also citizens who believe the offer of political asylum is a sign of good will. Francys Caridad (@francyscaridad ) [es], for example, celebrates the possibility of Snowden arriving in Venezeula: @francyscaridad : #SnowdenBienvenidoAVenezuela  bienvenido a venezuela snowden! #snowden  #venezuela  #asilo  #asilopolitico  @francyscaridad : #SnowdenBienvenidoAVenezuela  [#SnowdenWelcomeToVenezuela] welcome to venezuela snowden! #snowden  #venezuela  #asilo  #asilopolitico  [#asylum #politicalasylum] Héctor Abad (@hectorabadf) [es] comments on the U.S. position with respect to Edward Snowden’s legal situation: @hectorabadf : Snowden es ahora un apátrida perseguido y sin derecho a asilo, por decir la verdad de que todos podemos ser espiados por la NSA. @hectorabadf : Snowden is now a persecuted, stateless individual without the right to asylum for telling the truth about how we can all be spied on by the NSA.
Mariela Azocar (@MarielaMartha ) [es] also supports President Nicolás Maduro’s decision to offer humanitarian asylum to the former U.S. contractor: @MarielaMartha : @NicolasMaduro  Buen día mi querido presidente si lo apoyo en darle asilo al joven Snowden. Venezuela será su casa… @MarielaMartha : @NicolasMaduro  Good day my dear president if you support the young Snowden in giving him asylum. Venezuela will be his home… Marianny Barroso (@MARIANNYBARROSO ) [es] considers the decision of the Venezuelan state to be convenient in offering political asylum to Edward Snowden and supports it publicly: @MARIANNYBARROSO  Snowden hoy es amenaza de un Gobierno q a hecho mucho daño a nivel mundial!! por eso APOYO el ASILO en Venezuela! patria de BOLIVAR y CHAVEZ @MARIANNYBARROSO  Snowden today is a threat of a Government that has done a lot of harm on a global scale!! that is why I SUPPORT ASYLUM in Venezuela! Homeland of BOLIVAR and CHAVEZ Twitter users also debated how the asylum could affect the already quite deteriorated political and diplomatic relations between Venezuela and the U.S., in addition to the case involving the former contractor’s legal situation.
In Josefina Ruggiero’s (@ruggieroj ) [es] opinion, the words of the President of the DUMA (the lower house of the Russian Federal Assembly) summarize part of what are the current political relations between Venezuela and the United States: @ruggieroj : Presidente de la Duma: la relacion de Vzla con EEUU es tan mala que el caso del joven Snowden no la empeorara. Esta clarito #asiloSnowden  @ruggieroj : President of DUMA: Venezuela’s relationship with the U.S. is so bad that Snowden’s case will not worsen it. It is clear #asiloSnowden  [#Snowdenasylum] Still, for Luis Carlos Díaz (@LuisCarlos ) [es], journalist and Global Voices  collaborator, the concern is more about citizen rights.
@LuisCarlos : Hay demasiado foco en Snowden y muy poco en el espionaje de los estados y la privacidad de los ciudadanos @LuisCarlos : There is too much focus on Snowden and very little on state espionage and the privacy of citizens Venezuelans even attempt to analyze the political problem from an almost humorous perspective, as is the case of Alejandro Barrios (@alepicture ) [es]: @alepicture:  el rechazo de maduro es tan grande que le ofrece #Asilo  a #Snowden  en #Venezuela  y el lo ignora… @alepicture:  The rejection of Maduro is so great that he is offering #Asilo [#Asylum] to #Snowden  in #Venezuela  and he is ignoring it…
Perhaps Twitter user @WATH23  [es] summarized Venezuelan expectations about Snowden’s response to the Venezuelan offer: @WATH23 : Edward Snowden lleva días en el Trending Topic Venezolano. Hoy llega al primer puesto con su negación al asilo político en Venezuela. @WATH23 : Edward Snowden has been a Trending Topic in Venezuela for days. Today he reaches first place with his rejection of political asylum in Venezuela. At the time of writing this post, Nicaragua has not yet ruled on the Snowden’s request for asylum. At the same time, President of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, stated that Venezuela received a formal request for asylum  from the former American contractor. Article printed from Global Voices: http://globalvoicesonline.org URL to article: http://globalvoicesonline.org/2013/07/09/venezuelas-president-offers-asylum-to-edward-snowden-and-controversy-erupts
Edward Snowden offered asylum by Venezuelan president
Nicolás Maduro says whistleblower has ‘told the truth in spirit of rebellion’, while Nicaragua also weighs asylum offer • Share 7757
• Reuters in Caracas
• guardian.co.uk, Saturday 6 July 2013 01.35 BST
Venezuela president Nicolas Maduro has offered asylum to Edward Snowden. Photograph: Ariana Cubillos/AP Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro said on Friday he had decided to offer asylum to former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who has petitioned several countries to avoid capture by Washington. “In the name of America’s dignity … I have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to Edward Snowden,” Maduro told a televised military parade marking Venezuela’s independence day. The 30-year-old former National Security Agency contractor is believed to be holed up in the transit area of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo international airport.
WikiLeaks said on Friday that Snowden had applied to six more nations for asylum, bringing to about 20 the number of countries he has asked for protection from US espionage charges. Maduro said Venezuela was ready to offer him sanctuary, and that the details Snowden had revealed of a US spy program had exposed the nefarious schemes of the US “empire”. “He has told the truth, in the spirit of rebellion, about the US spying on the whole world,” Maduro said. “Who is the guilty one? A young man … who denounces war plans, or the US government which launches bombs and arms the terrorist Syrian opposition against the people and legitimate president Bashar al-Assad?” “Who is the terrorist? Who is the global delinquent?”
Russia has shown signs of growing impatience over Snowden’s stay in Moscow. Its deputy foreign minister said on Thursday that Snowden had not sought asylum in that country and needed to choose a place to go. Moscow has made clear that the longer he stays, the greater the risk of the diplomatic standoff over his fate causing lasting damage to relations with Washington. Earlier on Friday, Nicaragua said it had received an asylum request from Snowden and could accept the bid “if circumstances permit”, president Daniel Ortega said. “We are an open country, respectful of the right of asylum, and it’s clear that if circumstances permit, we would gladly receive Snowden and give him asylum in Nicaragua,” Ortega said during a speech in the Nicaraguan capital, Managua.
Ortega, an ally of Venezuelan president Maduro, did not elaborate on the conditions that would allow him to offer asylum to Snowden, who has been at the eye of a diplomatic storm since leaking high-level US intelligence data last month. Options have been narrowing for Snowden as he seeks a country to shelter him from US espionage charges. A one-time cold war adversary of the United States, Ortega belongs to a bloc of leftist leaders in Latin America that have frequently taken up antagonistic positions with Washington. Nicaragua, one of the poorest countries in the Americas, has benefited greatly from financial support from Venezuela, and Ortega was a staunch ally of late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez.