Monday, December 22, 2008

Treason Bill Fuels Stalinist fears (2)

That actual title of the above article is “Putin Government Taking Russia Back to Totalitarianism, Rights Activists Say,” and was written by Paul Goble. This article was posted on the “Georgian Daily, Independent Voice,” a very interesting web site referred to me by Professor Kowalski. I don’t see any background on the site so I’m guessing it is located in both New York and Tbilisi. At the bottom of this article one can scroll to “Next” or “Prev” for other articles. They seem uniformly interesting at the present time.

The above particular article is interesting because it presents the Russian Treason Bill in a slightly different light from the article I referred to on the 18th: . Consider the following statement from “some of that country’s [Russia’s] leading human rights activists”:

“‘The Establishment of contemporary democratic norms of law has taken place precisely when the authorities make a sharp distinction between conscious service to an armed enemy of the state and statements against the government and the existing system,’ A distinction the proposed legislation obliterates.”

What a vast difference between this proposed law and laws we have in the U.S. – if any are still in effect. The Russian Human Rights activists acknowledge that it would be legitimate to prosecute for treason anyone who provided “conscious service to an armed enemy of the state.” But American citizens do that all the time with impunity. Jane Fonda wasn’t the only one to provide “conscious service” to an armed Vietnamese enemy. And what of the Islamists? They are armed enemies of our nation and yet apologists for them exist in Academia and elsewhere. They oppose America and do conscious service to our Islamist enemy. Perhaps we need to create some Treason laws.

And yet it is hard to know how effective these Pro-Islamists are. In our democracy I’m sure we can tolerate a great number of them. As long as they are a small minority (if that is what they are) then there will be other voices that can be listened to – or am I being overly optimistic?

I also recall the accusations of “fascism” leveled against Bush. This treason bill is fascistic in nature. Where are the anti-Americans and anti-Bushites on this issue? To make it treason to criticize Putin or the Kremlin is far different from anything that prevailed during the Bush administration. I’m waiting to hear these anti-Fascists criticize this bill.

No comments: