Latest Executive Order Blocks Property Of Persons Threatening Burma

In Barack Obama’s latest Executive Order comes right on the heels of the new measure put in place to deal with communications during a national emergency created by Executive Order also. This EO is claimed to be to help the people of Burma.

The reasons for the EO, dated July 11, are provided by the State Department,

President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton announced in May that the United States would ease certain financial and investment sanctions on Burma in response to the historic reforms that have taken place in that country over the past year. Today, the U.S. Government has implemented these changes to permit the first new U.S. investment in Burma in nearly 15 years, and to broadly authorize the exportation of financial services to Burma. The United States supports the Burmese Government’s ongoing reform efforts, and believes that the participation of U.S. businesses in the Burmese economy will set a model for responsible investment and business operations as well as encourage further change, promote economic development, and contribute to the welfare of the Burmese people.

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As these vital economic and political reform efforts move forward, the United States will continue to support and monitor Burma’s progress. We have and will continue to urge the Burmese Government to continue its reform process and we expect the Burmese Government to implement measures that increase socio-economic development and safeguard the human rights of all its people, including political rights and civil liberties.

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The United States remains concerned about the protection of human rights, corruption, and the role of the military in the Burmese economy. Consequently, the policy we are announcing today is carefully calibrated and aimed at supporting democratic reform and reconciliation efforts while aiding in the development of an economic and business environment that provides benefits to all Burma’s people. A key element of this policy is that we are not authorizing new investment with the Burmese Ministry of Defense, state or non-state armed groups (which includes the military), or entities owned by the foregoing. Moreover, the core authorities underlying our sanctions remain in place. U.S. persons are still prohibited from dealing with blocked persons, including both listed Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs) as well as any entities 50 percent or more owned by an SDN. The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) publishes a list of SDNs available here.

Also today, the President issued a new Executive Order that will allow the U.S. Government to sanction individuals or entities that threaten the peace, security, or stability of Burma, including those who undermine or obstruct the political reform process or the peace process with ethnic minorities, those who are responsible for or complicit in the commission of human rights abuses in Burma, and those who conduct certain arms trade with North Korea. Individual or entities engaging in such activities would be subject to Treasury action that would cut them off from the U.S. financial system.

Obama then sent a letter to Congress that he issued the Executive Order. So what does the Executive Order do? According to the document:

All property and interests in property that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of any United States person, including any foreign branch, of the following persons are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in: any person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with or at the recommendation of the Secretary of State:

The EO also amends several other Executive Orders including Executive Order 13047 of May 20, 1997 and Executive Order 13464 of April 30, 2008. Terminology has been replaced in the second EO from “logistical, or technical” to “or technological.”

According to Section four of the document those who make “any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services” or is the recipient of “any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from those listed in Section 1 will also fall under the provisions of Section 1, whether you know it or not.

Obama also suspended entry into the country of such that meet the criteria of Section 1.

I hereby find that the unrestricted immigrant and nonimmigrant entry into the United States of aliens determined to meet one or more of the criteria in subsection 1(a) of this order would be detrimental to the interests of the United States, and I hereby suspend entry into the United States, as immigrants or nonimmigrants, of such persons. Such persons shall be treated as persons covered by section 1 of Proclamation 8693 of July 24, 2011 (Suspension of Entry of Aliens Subject to United Nations Security Council Travel Bans and International Emergency Economic Powers Act Sanctions).

Notice that the EO points to a UN act for support. So Barack Obama is willing to do something here with people he deems to be a threat to Burma, that he will not undertake to do with people who are a potential threat to the United States (ie. illegal immigrants coming across our borders and feeding on the welfare system). Thanks for looking out for us Barack. I’m sure the peope of Burma appreciate you support.

While the Obama administration says that the U.S. remains “concerned about the protection of human rights, corruption, and the role of the military in the Burmese economy,” they fail to mention the issue that Burma is taking steps towards a nuclear weapon. I wonder why that was conveniently left out.

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