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JoFerret Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 10:10 PM
Original message
Shadow on the US beacon
Edited on Sat May-15-04 10:12 PM by JoFerret
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A30052-20...

The first victims of U.S. prison abuse at Abu Ghraib were Iraqis. But those who will pay a price also live in Libya and Hong Kong, Venezuela and Burma, and anywhere else human rights are in jeopardy.

They will pay a price because America's capacity to stand up to dictators, and stand up for their victims, is the lowest it has been in memory. And so far at least, President Bush either does not appreciate or does not care enough about this handicap to begin taking the steps that might point to recovery.

"Of course our hands have never been completely clean," says a friend in the human-rights-and-democracy-promotion world. "But this is different. Our hands are unclean in a way we haven't known about since My Lai."

Is this is an exaggeration? You might dismiss some of the domestic criticism, as Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld seems to, as the carping of political opponents. You might discount some of the reaction of the Arab world, too, where official newspapers have long delighted in proclaiming U.S. hypocrisy.
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DarkPhenyx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 10:16 PM
Response to Original message
1. I think this is a more important paragraph to quote.
But if you could ask the dissidents and human rights champions who over the decades, in isolated prison cells and frozen work camps, have somehow gotten word that U.S. diplomats or presidents had not forgotten them; if you could ask the elected leader of Burma, who is still under house arrest; or the peasants who are being chased from their villages in western Sudan, or the democrats being slowly squashed in Hong Kong by the Communists in Beijing -- if you could ask any of them, you might get a different answer. They might tell you that the United States has never been perfect, has never done enough, has never been free of hypocrisy -- but also that if America cannot take up their cause, no one will.
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daleo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 10:40 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. There is still Canada, most of Europe, etc.
But it is true, that once the U.S. shows that it doesn't care about human rights violations, by its actions regardless of its words, every tyrant and torturer will use the knowledge to justify its own behavior, and to sow despair among its political opponents.
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LittleApple81 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat May-15-04 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Next question, Does Bush care? After me the deluge. n/t
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-16-04 12:11 AM
Response to Original message
4. "Is this is an exaggeration?"
Edited on Sun May-16-04 12:11 AM by bemildred
Complete and utter bullshit, is what it is.
The US has never given a rats ass about human rights unless
there were NO US interests at stake, and even then not much.
One need merely inspect the US record on Latin America and
the third World to make this abundantly clear. The one thing
likely good to come from Abu Ghraib will be the removal of the
hypocritical mask of "human rights advocate" from the US Government,
never deserved and too often exploited for venal ends.
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frankieT Donating Member (375 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-16-04 12:20 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. good post - eom-
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun May-16-04 12:24 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. My pleasure. nt
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