U.S. congressmen continue to whip up hysteria against Russia. By extending the application of the so-called Magnitsky Act to the whole world, they seek to make Russia look like a model of corruption, like a country that violates human rights.*
As a matter of fact, the “Magnitsky Act” is a missile in an ideological and information war. The U.S. legislative branch has always been at the vanguard of such efforts.
The congressmen are trying in this way to show their constituents that they’re doing something to earn political dividends, to see their name in the press one more time.
If Washington really wanted to stand up to corruption, U.S. officials could take a few steps that would solve the problem once and for all.
First, U.S. officials could publish the names of Russian officials, both past and current, who have large sums of money in their accounts in American banks and in their branches in Europe. Large sums are those that go beyond savings on a state salary.
Second, if the owners of such sums can’t explain their origin, the funds need to be returned to Russia, to the state budget.
Third, U.S. officials could provide Russian law enforcement agencies evidence of corruption by Russian officials.
But as much as Washington talks about “fighting corruption” it refuses to do it for real. Why? Because a corrupt official is an excellent tool that works in Washington’s interest. Using foreign holdings like a lever, you can make a corrupt official do what you want.
And, yes, such an official becomes an ideal “foreign agent” inside Russia. But Washington can’t afford to fight against such agents.
*Editor’s note: The Magnitsky Act of 2012 is a bipartisan bill passed by Congress and President Obama, intended to punish Russian officials responsible for the death of Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky in a Moscow prison in 2009 by barring their entry into the United States and their use of the U.S. banking system.
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