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Thread: Victor Bout - Russian Businessman (?) facing 25 years in US prison

  1. #1
    Hanna
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    Victor Bout - Russian Businessman (?) facing 25 years in US prison

    A Russian businessman was accused of assisting terrorists by selling them weapons out of Thailand. So the US promptly kidnapped him and prosecuted him in New York. Now he is apparently facing minimum of 25 years of prison in the USA.

    The USA reckons Bout is guilty of "plotting to kill American citizens". Bout is saying he was trying to sell airplanes.

    I don't know much more of this and I dislike the sale of weapons in general, about as much as I dislike the idea of kidnapping people and dragging them off to a foreign country to face trial.

    What are peoples views on this? Does Victor Bout get what's coming to him, or is this a travesty of justice?

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    Завсегдатай Ramil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hanna View Post
    I don't know much more of this and I dislike the sale of weapons in general, about as much as I dislike the idea of kidnapping people and dragging them off to a foreign country to face trial.
    That pretty much covers my opinion on the matter. It's not only about Bout. This case creates a very dangerous precedent. US made it clear that it can 'legally kidnap' people in other countries just because they think that person is dangerous. And the jury found him guilty, oh I can imagine how it was depicited in the 'totally unbiased' American media. If we accept the axiom that 95% of all the people in the world are idiots, that means that 11 out of 12 juriors were totally susceptible to anything the prosecutor would say. I wonder what would US do if some other country did that to an American...

    Technically, what US did is an act of war.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramil View Post
    Technically, what US did is an act of war.
    +10
    It's more than a dangerous precedent - arresting foreign citizens on foreign ground and prosecuting them under American law is becoming routine. Pretty much the same happened to Kim Schmitz (the founder of Megaupload and its associated websites). The only reason US is able to do it is because they bullied most of the world into obeying, I wish there were a way to oppose it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramil View Post
    That pretty much covers my opinion on the matter. It's not only about Bout. This case creates a very dangerous precedent. US made it clear that it can 'legally kidnap' people in other countries just because they think that person is dangerous. And the jury found him guilty, oh I can imagine how it was depicited in the 'totally unbiased' American media. If we accept the axiom that 95% of all the people in the world are idiots, that means that 11 out of 12 juriors were totally susceptible to anything the prosecutor would say. I wonder what would US do if some other country did that to an American...

    Technically, what US did is an act of war.
    Well... include me in that 95% and as for how he was depicted in the American media... I actually don't recall hearing about this entire thing until Hanna brought it up. I just Googled his name and interestingly enough, according to the New York Times, Bout's lawyers did not even present ONE witness.

    Now the last case I remember where someone went up against the US Government in New York and rested without producing a single witness on their behalf, was Robert Altman and the BCCI case... he won, but in the media and I believe in the eyes of the world, he was guilty and it didn't matter that he won.
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    Завсегдатай Ramil's Avatar
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    rockzmom, if you're arrested somewhere abroad, brought to US and got accused of the arms trade, what witnesses would you be able to present? Some Nicaraguan guerilla fighter who would say 'No, your honor, that person hasn't sold me any rockets"?
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  6. #6
    Hanna
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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    +10
    It's more than a dangerous precedent - arresting foreign citizens on foreign ground and prosecuting them under American law is becoming routine. Pretty much the same happened to Kim Schmitz (the founder of Megaupload and its associated websites). The only reason US is able to do it is because they bullied most of the world into obeying, I wish there were a way to oppose it.

    It's happened to several British people lately - and then I am not talking about the type of British citizens who take their holidays at Chez Bin Laden in Pakistan.... Whose Britishness could be questioned, although in my view their rights as citizens count too.

    The cases that are beginning to cause a stir are to do with middle class, white people who simply did something that annoyed the USA, but does not even warrant prison in the UK.

    This can be accommodated under a law that was intended for handling radical terrorists. Pretty convenient outcome of 9/11...

    Remains to be seen what happens with Julian Assange, who is STILL awaiting the court order about extradition to Sweden which has caved in to US pressure before, about freedom of the press. The terrorist extradition law could be applied to him too.

    Neither the UK nor Sweden would like to breach their own laws in connection with Assange, in order to please the USA. On the other hand, there is a lot at stage. Meanwhile Assange is still under house arrest in an allround ridiculous and pathetic miscarriage of justice.

    A British retired man sold some battery parts that ended up in Iran, and for this he will to go to prison in Texas, where he might be put in a "chain gang" - a sort of medieval way of keeping prisoners working and chained together at the same time. A Retired British Business Man Being Extradited To The US Worries He Will Have To Join A Prison Gang - Business Insider

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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    +10
    It's more than a dangerous precedent - arresting foreign citizens on foreign ground and prosecuting them under American law is becoming routine. Pretty much the same happened to Kim Schmitz (the founder of Megaupload and its associated websites). The only reason US is able to do it is because they bullied most of the world into obeying, I wish there were a way to oppose it.
    Well, go ahead and see you at a trial!

    I ain't sure about the Megaupload guy, but those selling dangerous stuff to terrorists, including those like Iranian government, etc. should go to jail for a long term, no matter what country it is. They simply have to stop trading that stuff until it's too late.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramil View Post
    rockzmom, if you're arrested somewhere abroad, brought to US and got accused of the arms trade, what witnesses would you be able to present? Some Nicaraguan guerilla fighter who would say 'No, your honor, that person hasn't sold me any rockets"?
    In a way yes... if he really was selling legitimate planes and/or parts to other customers all these years, he would have some sort of paper trail and other customers he bought and sold from/to or employees. Not one of them could have been a witness to back up his story that the US set him up with this particular transaction? If the US only had this ONE example of his selling arms "the merchant of death" as they dubbed him, and not say 10 or 20 examples over the "many years" that the DEA has been watching him and building their case against him and he had records dating back years of perfectly legal transactions, with witnesses and product or photos of products to prove it, it would have helped to make a jury see a case for entrapment or that the US really was just setting him up.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric C. View Post
    Well, go ahead and see you at a trial!
    Yeah, that's exactly what I'm talking about. "Democracy" in action.
    I ain't sure about the Megaupload guy, but those selling dangerous stuff to terrorists, including those like Iranian government, etc. should go to jail for a long term, no matter what country it is. They simply have to stop trading that stuff until it's too late.
    Yes, they should go to jail. But there's no legal reason for them being prosecuted in the US and under American law. It's not universal, and there are still other countries around with their own laws, if you forgot. I could understand if this man would have been prosecuted in Russia or even in Thailand, since he operated on their territory, but Americans barging into the picture is too much.

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    I'm not even speaking about this particular case, I'm speaking about the apparent fact that the jurisdiction of the American law has somehow spread over the entire globe. I find this fact disturbing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    Yeah, that's exactly what I'm talking about. "Democracy" in action.

    Yes, they should go to jail. But there's no legal reason for them being prosecuted in the US and under American law. It's not universal, and there are still other countries around with their own laws, if you forgot. I could understand if this man would have been prosecuted in Russia or even in Thailand, since he operated on their territory, but Americans barging into the picture is too much.
    Well, as long as it doesn't concern U.S. national security, they could be dealt with somewhere else. Selling weapons to terrorists that are most likely going to use them to attack the U.S. is a completely different matter. I think it's just so obvious and clear, isn't it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramil View Post
    I'm not even speaking about this particular case, I'm speaking about the apparent fact that the jurisdiction of the American law has somehow spread over the entire globe. I find this fact disturbing.
    Why would it be disturbing you? What can you do that you could get away with in Russia, and couldn't in the U.S.?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric C. View Post
    Why would it be disturbing you? What can you do that you could get away with in Russia, and couldn't in the U.S.?
    The principle is important. If you're suggesting to us all to submit to the hehemony of the US around the world - fine then, go kiss Uncle Sam's ass. I think you're quite ready for that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric C. View Post
    Well, as long as it doesn't concern U.S. national security, they could be dealt with somewhere else. Selling weapons to terrorists that are most likely going to use them to attack the U.S. is a completely different matter. I think it's just so obvious and clear, isn't it?
    No, it's not. The fact the US made some enemies does not give them the right to stomp all over the world abusing their power. The US is becoming the greatest Orwellian-type dictatorship of all, and in the light of this I see their so called fight for freedom as hypocrisy. Which is sad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    The US is becoming the greatest Orwellian-type dictatorship
    Sorry, didn't notice that. It treats its citizens millions of times better than many of the countries you would put up with do. Some of which would really remind me of Oceania.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramil View Post
    The principle is important. If you're suggesting to us all to submit to the hehemony of the US around the world - fine then, go kiss Uncle Sam's ass. I think you're quite ready for that.
    That is awesome. Go on!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric C. View Post
    Sorry, didn't notice that. It treats its citizens millions of times better than many of the countries you would put up with do. Some of which would really remind me of Oceania.
    How they treat their citizens is their internal business. I'm more affected and disturbed by the fact that they treat the rest of the world exactly as any dictator would have treated it - like it does not have any say in the matter and its only right is to obey or be destroyed. And all this is going on to the accompaniment of inspired rhetoric and doublespeak, which was brilliantly described by Orwell.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    How they treat their citizens is their internal business. I'm more affected and disturbed by the fact that they treat the rest of the world exactly as any dictator would have treated it - like it does not have any say in the matter and its only right is to obey or be destroyed. And all this is going on to the accompaniment of inspired rhetoric and doublespeak, which was brilliantly described by Orwell.
    First, how a country treats its citizens is not its "internal business", if the people are treated harsh, it's up to the world community to decide if it should intervene and help them get rid of those who provide such treatment.

    Second, what Orwell described was exactly how dictatorial authorities can treat people in their own country. Did he write much about other countries? No. There was only one ministry that was engaged in waging wars - Miniwar, the other 3 - Minitrue, Minilove, and Miniplenty stuck to humiliating their own citizens. In fact, if you're looking for a 1984 prototype, you can go with almost any commie regime, they all fit fine.

    And finally, don't you think that common people, like you or those from your environment don't have to be bothered by the things a country may or may not do to some international terrorists? For it can hardly affect you...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric C. View Post
    First, how a country treats its citizens is not its "internal business", if the people are treated harsh, it's up to the world community to decide if it should intervene and help them get rid of those who provide such treatment
    That's where our opinions differ. I consider such an arrogant desire to shape other countries to one's own standards or liking a source of instability, and generally no more than an excuse for aggression (if it suits one's interests).
    Second, what Orwell described was exactly how dictatorial authorities can treat people in their own country. Did he write much about other countries? No
    Seriously? Can't you extrapolate? ))) He described a way such a destructive power operates, how it corrupts and brainwashes people (making them believe in "a course" and succumbing to politically correct "truths"), and its consequences. A matter of citizenship is of no import here. The age of globalization has come.
    And finally, don't you think that common people, like you or those from your environment don't have to be bothered by the things a country may or may not do to some international terrorists? For it can hardly affect you...
    It definitely affects me, because I do not like it when a certain country takes upon itself to judge who's a terrorist and who's not, and what to do about it - without regard to anyone's opinion. If you let it go far enough, who can guarantee that it's not me, who'd be labeled a terrorist next according to some newly invented foreign law?

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    Quote Originally Posted by gRomoZeka View Post
    That's where our opinions differ. I consider such an arrogant desire to shape other countries to one's own standards or liking a source of instability, and generally no more than an excuse for aggression (if it suits one's interests).

    Seriously? Can't you extrapolate? ))) He described a way such a destructive power operates, how it corrupts and brainwashes people (making them believe in "a course" and succumbing to politically correct "truths"), and its consequences. A matter of citizenship is of no import here. The age of globalization has come.

    It definitely affects me, because I do not like it when a certain country takes upon itself to judge who's a terrorist and who's not, and what to do about it - without regard to anyone's opinion. If you let it go far enough, who can guarantee that it's not me, who'd be labeled a terrorist next according to some newly invented foreign law?
    What's wrong with breaking down the standards that make people suffer? If they don't want to follow those standards and aren't powerful enough to do away with them on their own, what could you suggest?

    So, globalization has come, but you still insist on only obeying laws issued by a certain country? Sounds a bit contradictory, don't you think? And even if so, how come some "newly invented" local laws will be wiser than some "newly invented" foreign laws in distinguishing between a terrorist and a person who just looks like a terrorist or anything?

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