John Yoo is not welcome in Russia

I don't know if John Yoo had plans to travel to Russia any time soon, but he just made the Russian government's shit list, so that's out. In response to American sanctions imposed on Russians accused of rights violations, Moscow published a list of 18 current and former American officials who will now be barred from entry into Russia: Russia Bars 18 Americans After Sanctions by U.S.

The list includes Americans who, according to Russia's Foreign Ministry, are responsible for "the legalization of torture," "unlimited detention," and/or violating the rights of Russian citizens abroad. This includes Yoo, who is perhaps best known as the primary author of the Bush Administration's torture memos.

Preet Bharara, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, also found himself on the barred list. Bharara oversaw prosecution of the case against Viktor Bout, the convicted Russian arms smuggler now serving a 25-year sentence in federal prison for conspiring to sell weapons to a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist group.

Moscow had warned that it would response in a tough way to the United States' so-called Magnitsky List of sanctioned figures, named after a lawyer in Russia who was investigating official corruption, only to be arrested and die in custody in 2009. Already, Russia's Parliament has banned adoption of Russian children by American families, canceling scores of adoptions that had not reached their final stages.

A spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, which released the tit-for-tat list on Saturday, said that Washington must realize that it cannot conduct its relationship with Moscow "in the spirit of mentoring and undisguised diktat."

"Our principled opinion on this unfriendly step is well known: under the pressure of Russophobically inclined U.S. congressmen, a severe blow has been dealt to bilateral relations and mutual confidence," said the spokesman, Aleksandr Lukashevich.

He added, "The war of lists is not our choice, but we had no right to leave this open blackmail unanswered.”"
I just learned a new word: "Russophobic." According to the New York Times, John Yoo took the news well, responding via email, "Darn. There goes my judo match with Putin." Which basically means he couldn't care less. I guess when that many people dislike you, making it on the Russian government's shit list is just a tiny drop in the bucket. While we're at it, John Yoo, you're not welcome at my house either.

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