Same old, good Joe. Cynical to the core, more comfortable with Soviet Communist bosses than with their victims.
Biden's Secret DiplomacyBy: Vladimir Bukovsky and Pavel Stroilov
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Here before us is a Soviet archival document,* a top secret report by a communist apparatchik who had received a delegation of US Senators led by Joseph Biden in 1979. After describing routine arms control discussions, it quotes Biden as telling the Soviets off-record that he did not really care about the persecution of Russian dissidents. He and other Senators might raise human rights issues with their Soviet counterparts, but only to be seen by the public as defenders of human rights, not to have those problems really solved. They would happily take no for an answer.
Vadim V. Zagladin, the then deputy head of the International Department of the CPSU Central Committee (the organization formerly known as the Comintern), wrote in the report:
The delegation did not officially raise the issue of human rights during the negotiations. Biden said they did not want 'to spoil the atmosphere with problems which are bound to cause distrust in our relations.' However, during the breaks between the sessions the senators passed to us several letters concerning these or those 'refuseniks'.
Refuseniks were one of the best known groups of oppressed citizens in the USSR at that time: thousands of Jews who were refused exit permissions to emigrate to Israel on various trumped-up pretexts.
Unofficially, Biden and [Senator Richard] Lugar said that, in the end of the day, they were not so much concerned with having a problem of this or that citizen solved as with showing to the American public that they do care for 'human rights'. They must prove to their voters that they are 'effective in fulfilling their wishes'. In other words, the collocutors directly admitted that what is happening is a kind of a show, that they absolutely do not care for the fate of most so-called dissidents.In the same conversation, Biden asked us to ensure that senators' appeals on those issues are not left unanswered - even if we just reply that the letter is received but we cannot do anything. [Read the rest]