Green Room

Alleged spy’s newspaper commentaries pretty much what you’d expect

posted at 1:39 am on June 29, 2010 by

The Rightosphere is well-acquainted with stories about the mainstream media working against US interests, but even so, this is still a bit much.

Less than a week after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited the United States, the Justice Department announced Monday that 10 people were arrested on charges of being Russian agents involved in a long-term mission in the country. Another suspect was still being sought.

Five of the arrested suspects appeared in a New York courtroom Monday. Four of the five, including a longtime U.S.-based columnist for the Spanish-language “El Diario” newspaper, were advised of their rights and ordered held due to flight risk, with their next hearing scheduled for July 1….

One of the suspects is Vicky Pelaez, a columnist for “El Diario” for more than 20 years covering politics, immigration and other issues, her lawyer confirmed. Pelaez is married to Juan Lazaro, another of the suspects arrested Monday, and the couple resided in Yonkers, a New York suburb.

Dig around the Internet and you’ll find a few choice nuggets written by Ms. Pelaez, mostly in Spanish. US prisons as modern-day slavery? Check. Arizona’s “unholy” immigration law as modern-day Nazi legislation? Check. The United States as wanton human rights violator? Check. We’ve been so unfair to so many other well-meaning, anti-imperialist nations, and it turns out that Ms. Pelaez just happens to have been a bit more pro-active in her advocacy for one or more of them.

So who has the US “targeted” in the past, particularly for economic and ideological blasphemies? Well… (I’ve tidied up the Google translation, which you can find here.)

During the past 34 years, the U.S. State Department annually issues a document about human rights in 194 countries. These report abuses, especially in nations that dare to come out of the ideological or the U.S. economic model. Naturally the former Soviet Union, North Korea and Cuba were always favorite targets. Later, as the Bolivarian Alternative for the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) advanced, it added Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua. The economic disagreements with China led to complaints against it, and the same goes for Russia for its geopolitics, less and less subordinate.

I’m not going to belabor the absurdity of comparing Soviet, North Korean, Cuban, and Chinese human rights violations to our domestic political issues, nor specifically catalog all of the domestic abuses and assassinations committed by Ms. Pelaez’s apparent sponsor, Russia. And the notion that the US is facilitating the assemblage of some sort of “21st Century barbarism” in Guantanamo and elsewhere is so offensive to genuine victims of human savagery around the world — in Afghanistan where schoolgirls are butchered for learning, in the Sudan where families are burned alive for their religion and in the name of another religion, in Iran where protesters are gunned down, and in a whole host of countries where immense suffering continues with and without the cameras rolling, to yawning international interest — that the ludicrousness of suggesting a sort of “apples-to-apples” comparability to the US isn’t worth mentioning, but for the recognition that genuine victims exist and existed, and that their existence should not be mitigated by casual, and ultimately callous, comparisons.

No, what I find remarkable about Ms. Pelaez’s writings is how… unremarkable they, in fact, are. Each commentary I’ve cited above — America as slave-driving prison state, America as xenophobic racists, America as human rights hypocrite — is pretty much a derivative recitation of just some of the choicer themes in modern Leftist thought. That Pelaez felt comfortable writing about it at all even as she was spying for another country shows a curious misappreciation for the irony of her situation — charged to undermine a free and open America for the benefit of a not-so-free and not-so-open Russia, and doing so in some of the free-est and open-est modes available. And might I add, not that creatively.

If Ms. Pelaez believed that Russia was more deserving of her allegiance than the US, she could have skipped the spying and just moved there. For her and her compatriots, that window appears to have closed. But at least she’ll have time to work on her writing.

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Comments

So the russian who wants to b!tch about America decides to do so by becoming a mexican ?

macncheez on June 29, 2010 at 2:30 AM

HMM….. The old agents of influence game. I wonder who sold them out?

flackcatcher on June 29, 2010 at 3:01 AM

So when is Obama going to apologize to Russia? I’m sure it’s coming. It’s a strange time when our president has more in common, philosophically, with the rantings of an outed Russian spy, then he does with the opposition party of this country.

drocity on June 29, 2010 at 6:51 AM

Good leg work Patrick.

Now Ms. Palaez will find out firsthand the condition of our “slave trade” prisons.

conservative pilgrim on June 29, 2010 at 7:11 AM

What is more amazing is that a Russian spy has the same political opinions as any other leftist journalist in America. The article could have been written by Krugman or any Dailykos kid.

Dennis D on June 29, 2010 at 7:47 AM

What is more amazing is that a Russian spy has the same political opinions as any other leftist journalist in America. The article could have been written by Krugman or any Dailykos kid.

Dennis D on June 29, 2010 at 7:47 AM

Russian spies and leftist journalists have long been fellow travelers. Read Whitaker Chambers’ Witness.

Disturb the Universe on June 29, 2010 at 8:55 AM

I assume these people were reasonably well paid. Otherwise what exactly did they find so seductive and appealing about post-Communist Russia? Or maybe their standards are just pathetically low – I’m reminded of the “Anybody but Bush” sign displayed for years by some guy who lives near me.
Who or what is the “God that failed” so many of them? At least jihadis have a comprehensible faith.

Seth Halpern on June 29, 2010 at 9:14 AM

I’m a little frustrated by the coverage of this story. Are these people Russian nationals or are they American turncoats? It makes a large difference whether they were working for or betraying their country.

year_of_the_dingo on June 29, 2010 at 9:17 AM

US prisons as modern-day slavery? Check. Arizona’s “unholy” immigration law as modern-day Nazi legislation? Check. The United States as wanton human rights violator? Check. We’ve been so unfair to so many other well-meaning, anti-imperialist nations

Sounds like Obama.

Daggett on June 29, 2010 at 9:18 AM

Eric Holder: That’s all you got? Cut her loose and get your butts back to Arizona and bring me Brewer! Now, Move!

cartooner on June 29, 2010 at 9:29 AM

With a Marxist in the White House, these spies are a bit redundant.

faraway on June 29, 2010 at 9:32 AM

This was a great cover. Ever since McCarthy, accusing a publically avowed anti-American Communist of being an “anti-American Communist” has been strictly verboten.

If some NORMAL person committed sabotage or stole state secrets, it would look suspicious. But when a neo-hippy does it, it’s Constitutionally protected free expression.

logis on June 29, 2010 at 9:41 AM

Hey, was Pelaez on Journolist?

The Russians spent all this time and money installing these agents, then the US went and voted someone into the White House who’s worse than any of them.

JEM on June 29, 2010 at 9:45 AM

With a Marxist in the White House, these spies are a bit redundant.
faraway on June 29, 2010 at 9:32 AM

Did you read Kagen’s thesis? (The Conclusion, not the 110 pages of footnotes.)

Obama and his inner circle are hard-core radical Socialists. The Soviet Union was a practical combination of Socialism and Communism. Of course they all sound the same to us, because for all practical purposes they are. But these people violently clash at times.

It’s like Sunnis and Shiites: two sects of the same religion.

logis on June 29, 2010 at 9:45 AM

That Pelaez felt comfortable writing about [perceived advantages of Russia/NK/Cuba] at all even as she was spying for another country shows a curious misappreciation for the irony of her situation — charged to undermine a free and open America for the benefit of a not-so-free and not-so-open Russia, and doing so in some of the free-est and open-est modes available. And might I add, not that creatively.

Hahahahahahah! Yah, the irony was lost. One hopes that she is honest enough (doubtful) to appreciate US versus Russian prisons, eh?

Hieronymus on June 29, 2010 at 9:47 AM

Hahahahahahah! Yah, the irony was lost. One hopes that she is honest enough (doubtful) to appreciate US versus Russian prisons, eh?
Hieronymus on June 29, 2010 at 9:47 AM

The real irony is that this story is on CNN. All of these spies would fit in perfectly there.

Once CNN finally gets their government bailout to make Americans watch against their will, all these kind of “patriots” will have jobs as journalists — and lifetime immunity from prosecution.

logis on June 29, 2010 at 10:19 AM

It would really be interesting to get a full look inside the Soviet Archives, to see all of the agents of influence over the years.

motionview on June 29, 2010 at 10:33 AM

No, what I find remarkable about Ms. Pelaez’s writings is how… unremarkable they, in fact, are. Each commentary I’ve cited above — America as slave-driving prison state, America as xenophobic racists, America as human rights hypocrite — is pretty much a derivative recitation of just some of the choicer themes in modern Leftist thought.

Where did you think the left was getting it from?

Count to 10 on June 29, 2010 at 10:39 AM

Interesting, that they estimate there is fertile ground in the Hispanic community for anti-american sentiment. They love the discontented. In the past they actively helped sow these seeds in the black community. obama’s famous mentor Frank Marshall Davis was a communist. obama’s first leap into politics was promoted by Alice Palmer – who during the cold war supported the Soviet Union, promoted their line, was a member of a Communist front called the “U.S. Peace council”, and, notably, attended the 27th Congress of the Soviet Union. And let me tell you, in order to have attended that – she had to be invited.

runner on June 29, 2010 at 10:41 AM

There used to be a label for these people:

Pinkos.

portlandon on June 29, 2010 at 10:58 AM

Less than a week after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited the United States, the Justice Department announced Monday that 10 people were arrested on charges of being Russian agents involved in a long-term mission in the country.

Silly Russians. They’re wasting their money on spies!

Don’t they realize that all they need to do is go out for a round of golf with President Zero, and he’ll spill the beans about all our military and intel secrets for free?

UltimateBob on June 29, 2010 at 11:01 AM

So was Palaez born in America and just later decided to get paid for her hatred, or was she from maybe Cuba?

It would make a great movie…if Hollywood would ever make movies about Commie bad guys.

PattyJ on June 29, 2010 at 11:02 AM

For more lightness on this, I offer w/o comment, “The Spy Who Loved Me”:
http://www.thesmokinggun.com/archive/years/2010/0629101chapman1.html

Hieronymus on June 29, 2010 at 11:02 AM

Despite the array of surnames in this apparent group of spys I’m told that they are all Mexicans or from Mexico. Does anyone know if this is true?

Mason on June 29, 2010 at 11:11 AM

Say it ain’t so! An open-border traitor is also a, uh, foreign spy? Shocked, am I! Shocked!

FloatingRock on June 29, 2010 at 11:17 AM

As far as I can tell, the only difference between the spy-writer and her fellows on the left is that she was smart enough to get paid for trashing the US.

WitchDoctor on June 29, 2010 at 11:19 AM

Wouldn’t it be fun to put Ms. Pelaez’ writing up next to samples of the usual suspects from the left, Bill Ayers and Reverend Wright and Obama et al, and have people guess which one is the traitor working to destroy America?

You might want to make sure to have a choice that says all of the above.

Tantor on June 29, 2010 at 11:56 AM

Well, Ms Pelaez could write the syllabus for any number of Culture and Identity courses at the top Ivies, certainly she has a future at UC-Berkeley if the prison thing doesn’t work out for her.

RedRedRice on June 29, 2010 at 12:21 PM

I wonder why Russia felt they had to pay someone to get that info — anything they’d be interested in would come out in the New York Times. Also, with Obama and crew in place there’s no need for Russia or China to influence their policy. Soros is already on it.

Ya know, the Obamas kinda fit the profile for one of these undercover subversive agent couples . . .

starboardhelm on June 29, 2010 at 12:46 PM

If there’s ten Russian agents there’s probably ten thousand paid Chinese agents.

JEM on June 29, 2010 at 12:57 PM

If there’s ten Russian agents there’s probably ten thousand paid Chinese agents.
JEM on June 29, 2010 at 12:57 PM

That depends on your definition of “paid.”

logis on June 29, 2010 at 1:09 PM

Did Obama know about these impending arrest before Dmitry Medvedev’s visit? Was there any connection to the timing or was this just “another hole” in our security the Obama administration is unable to plug?

Rovin on June 29, 2010 at 2:25 PM

I love the Drudge photo caption with Obama and Medvedev having lunch together.

“SPIES AND FRIES”

Rovin on June 29, 2010 at 2:31 PM

I wonder if any leftists out there whw *aren’t* spies will take a moment to reflect critically upon how close their own positions mirror those of folks who are openly trying to destroy us.

Nah, it’ll never occur to them – they’re either too ignorant, or are themselves, in fact, also working to destroy us.

Midas on June 29, 2010 at 2:43 PM

I wonder if any leftists out there whw *aren’t* spies will take a moment to reflect critically upon how close their own positions mirror those of folks who are openly trying to destroy us. Nah, it’ll never occur to them – they’re either too ignorant, or are themselves, in fact, also working to destroy us.
Midas on June 29, 2010 at 2:43 PM

They all know perfectly well they are working for exactly the same thing: The Greater Good.

logis on June 29, 2010 at 3:52 PM