At Holocaust Museum, Obama Debuts New Sanctions Against Atrocities

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Saying the "seeds of hate" must not be allowed to take root, President Barack Obama used some of his newly embraced executive power to deliver new sanctions against Iran, Sudan, and Syria designed to prevent mass atrocities. The president also took the occasion of his first-ever address from the U.S. Holocaust Museum to announce he would posthumously award the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Jan Karski, who the Associated Press describes as "a wartime emissary of the Polish government-in-exile who was among the first people to provide accounts of the Holocaust to the world." Obama 

But the real news from Monday's speech was the executive order that authorized new sanctions against those who would use high-tech tools to violate human rights. The Hill has perhaps the most succinct description of what that means.

The White House announced new tools toward their goal, including an executive order authorizing sanctions and visa bans against those abusing human rights through information technology such as cell-phone tracking or internet monitoring, a new frontier in confronting what the White House called “digital guns for hire.”

That was the stick. As a carrot, the AP notes, "the White House also announced a set of 'challenge' grants for companies that help create new technologies to help warn citizens in countries where mass killings may occur."

Original: The president's speech at the United States Holocaust Museum has just gotten underway. President Obama is expected to offer remembrance of Holocaust victims, and to "discuss his administration's strategy to prevent and respond to mass atrocities and address the United States' pledge to 'never again' allow genocide to happen," according to the Associated Press.



This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.