John Dillinger had many accomplices. Imagine then for a moment that the Kremlin issues a directive against any of his accomplices prohibiting them from dealing with Russian banks or traveling toÂ Russia.
In a crude way, this is exactly the effect of theÂ Magnitsky BillÂ on Putin’sÂ behavior. It is supposed to be more of an announcement than a punishment, more of a signal than real legislation to help Russian dissidents defeat another dictator. Putin’s low-level response of halting all adoption of Russian children by American parents was in fact an appropriate response to a Bill that was spun for its importance, but which genuinely looks more like DoS is brushing a hibernating bear. Â In fact, the Magnitsky Bill repealed theÂ Cold War-era Jackson-Vanik restrictions on trade with Russia to establish normal bilateral tradeÂ betweenÂ Russia and the US.
Maybe someone can explain to me why repeal of trade sanctions and normalization ofÂ bilateralÂ trade are sold to the public as aÂ punishment.
I am not an expert on Russian international relations, but I amÂ knowledgeableÂ about the standard practices of the US State Department. Often, DoS does not see eye-to-eye with US Congress on foreign policy and when it wants to pleaseÂ CongressÂ or push for its own message, the magnitude of the damage of any Bill sponsored byÂ Foggy BottomÂ becomes more of a ridicule than serious intent. The Magnitsky Act, in my humble opinion, falls more within the category of “Hey, Putin, we are here”.
John KerryÂ watched over the passing of this Bill as the Foreign Relations Committee Chairman in the Senate.Â That is enough distinction to drown the mostÂ optimisticÂ of critics and anything Kerry pursues explains the “Double Negative” notion in the English language like no other explanation can. Just like normalizing trade with Russia and selling it as a punishment just because it has a human rights component DoS will ignore anyway.
Russia, China, and the United States are refusing to sign a letter, already signed by 52 countries that would referÂ AssadÂ to the International Criminal Court at The Hague. Syria is not a member of theÂ ICC, which givesÂ AssadÂ the excuse to ignore it, but if there are enough countries, the pressure will mount on the rest to force the issue against the will of a known terrorist.
ObamaÂ cannot find the time or the excuse to question himself or to tell us why the US has not signed this letter. No member of the mainstream media or any other media will drill him on this issue. Funny how the left is all heart when it comes to the perception by the public, but is all steelÂ decisionÂ time. That is their genius. They can fool anyone, anytime, on anything and Obama showed them how to use words to pave the way.
John Kerry, the newÂ Secretary of State is probably pressing for that decision. If matters were bad withÂ ObamaÂ by himself in power, now they are ten times worse with the three amigos:Â Obama, Kerry, and soon Hagel.
TheÂ Magnitsky BillÂ will not stop Putin. His governmentÂ saidÂ it yesterday by telling the UN Security Council not to bother taking that route on Syria by seeking to refer Assad to the war crimes tribunal. Why shouldÂ RussiaÂ not be so explicit when they haveÂ ObamaÂ by their side as a genocide watcher too?
Syria is proof that the 21st Century looks like a repeat of its predecessor. More wars, more killings, more genocides, and most important of all, more violent men to start violence and five times as many unwilling to stop them.
.. Moreover, someÂ anthropologistsÂ believe man left the caves.