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Meanwhile On Planet Obot

Marcy pointed me to this wonderful take-down by Julia Ioffe: Dear Lawrence O’Donnell, Don’t Mansplain to Me About Russia.

Ms Ioffe is shrill, but with reason, i.e. she knows what she is talking about and has no illusions about anyone involved. The only thing that I would add is that Zero and Putin both have a lot in common with the Shrubbery – all three are much better at campaigning than governing. They want the office and power, but they aren’t all that interested in doing the job.

Update: Ms Ioffe has picked up kudos from Digby, Duncan, and Charley Pierce offered her a job.

Driftglass has decided that he is the ultimate authority on who is a whistleblower and has ruled that Glenn Greenwald is a liar because he claimed that Edward Snowden could spend the rest of his life in a Super-max if he returned to the US, rather than staying in Russia.

Driftglass uses the example of John Kiriakou, to show what ‘really happens to whistleblowers’ under the benevolent reign of Zero, noting that he was only sentenced to 30 months in prison.

Driftglass apparently missed the bit about Mr Kiriakou being convicted under the Intelligence Identities Protection Act which has a 36 month maximum sentence, after a plea bargain. Driftglass also missed Mr Kiriakou’s open letter to Edward Snowden. Mr Kiriakou seems to feel that Mr Snowden is a whistleblower, and that he shouldn’t trust anyone in the FBI or the Department of Justice.

Snowden is watching the Manning case as an indicator of what he can expect, and there was some slightly good news on that front as the judge cut the maximum sentence from 136 years to 90 years after she noted that several of the charges covered the same conduct. What the prosecution had done is the equivalent of filing two murder charges against someone because they fired two bullets into the victim. It is reasonable to assume that the maximum sentence that Bradley Manning would receive is the same as a life sentence.

I’ve seen all these suggestions about how the Russian government is going to have Snowden under constant surveillance, etc. just like the old Soviet Union. No, sorry, Putin has a better plan. To enter Russia you need a Russian sponsor. The Russian sponsor is responsible for everything you do while you are in Russia. It is the Russian sponsor who will be watching you like a hawk, to avoid any unpleasantness with the government after you leave. It is much more efficient and modern.