Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite Save As Favorite View Article Stats
6 comments

Exclusive to OpEdNews:
OpEdNews Op Eds

What Audacity! President Obama Lectures China On Human Rights

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 2   Well Said 2   Supported 2  
View Ratings | Rate It

Headlined to H4 1/22/11

Become a Fan
  (82 fans)

opednews.com


rights by joliea.wordpress

On January 18, President Obama greeted Chinese President Hu Jintao, who had come to America for a summit meeting, and said: "History shows that societies are more harmonious, nations are more successful and the world is more just when the rights and responsibilities of all nations and all peoples are upheld including the universal rights of every human being," Someone should tell him that he should practice what he preaches.

For this U.S. president to be lecturing the leader of any other nation on human rights, based on his continued escalation of these egregious wars, is very difficult to comprehend, so we need to examine this moral issue to a greater degree. A common definition of human rights is, "The basic rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled, to include the right to life and liberty, freedom of thought and expression, and equality before the law."

President Obama wasted no time in bringing up the issue of human rights in China, in particular, the 2011 Nobel peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, who was charged with suspicion of "inciting subversion of state power" and was sentenced in December 2009 to 11 years in prison. There is no question that China's record on human rights has been very troubling; you may recall the tragic Tienanmen Square protests of 1989. But Mr. Obama might be careful with accusations based on the old saying, "before you start pointing fingers make sure your hands are clean."

In America we have our own questions involving human rights. Pfc. Bradley Manning, a U.S. soldier, was charged in July 2010 with a violation of "unauthorized disclosure of classified military information." He has now entered his sixth month of solitary confinement in Quantico, Virginia, awaiting a court martial in spring, 2011. He is accused of downloading data from the military's SIPRNet ( Secret Internet Protocol Router Network) and passing it to WikiLeaks, that international organization that has embarrassed the U.S. government by publishing classified information.

PFC. Manning is considered a traitor by many in our government and the media; he is considered a hero by many other patriotic Americans who applaud his bravery in exposing the case where a U.S. helicopter in Iraq trained its sights on innocent civilians and Reuters reporters and killed them. For his actions, it's been reported that Manning is in solitary confinement, with extremely severe restrictive measures on his personal contacts, exercise and sleep; far more so than other prisoners.

Was what he did a violation of classified information or was he doing his duty as a U.S. soldier? General Peter Pace, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has been quoted as saying, "It is the absolute responsibility of everybody in uniform to disobey an order that is either illegal or immoral' and to make such orders known."

We need to expand our thinking on this issue and ask some pertinent questions about human rights and America's associated actions:

*When the Iraqi city of Fallujah was largely destroyed by U.S. and British forces in 2004, and white phosphorus chemicals were alleged to have been used, was that not a violation of human rights?

*When hundreds of thousands of Iraqis were thrown out of their homes and forced to flee to neighboring countries, was that not a violation of human rights?

*When civilians in Afghanistan and Pakistan are terrorized and killed by Hellfire missiles rained down from U.S. drones, is that or is that not a violation of their rights as human beings?

*When thousands of homes have been blown up because of "suspected" explosives inside, and large portions of the Afghan countryside leveled, is that not yet another violation of human rights?

Does President Obama want to compare America's record on human rights versus China's, when considering these actions for which he bears direct responsibility?

These are concrete examples of human rights violations are they not? But while they were happening and still are happening is there anyone besides organizations such as Amnesty International, the Red Cross or agencies of the United Nations demanding that these actions be ceased? Is there ever any serious discussion or debate about this issue in the newspapers or magazines we read, on talk radio, or on cable TV? Absolutely not!

No, there is nothing but silence on the matter. Sure there are some courageous American human rights activists speaking out in opposition to these continuing violations but their voices are largely ignored or suppressed. It's as if we don't acknowledge the violations or discuss them, then it's something that should not concern us because, after all, it doesn't affect us directly. But it should -" morally.

There is a part of psychology that might well fit this situation, I believe that this constant criticizing of China's human rights shortcomings while, at the same time, America has been involved in numerous wars and military conflicts that have violated the human rights of innocent civilians, could be described as a form of "projection", sometimes referred to as Freudian projection.

Next Page  1  |  2

 

Michael Payne is an independent progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues; and especially with the great dangers involved with the proliferation of perpetual war, the associated defense (more...)
 
Add this Page to Facebook!   Submit to Twitter   Submit to Reddit   Submit to Stumble Upon   Pin It!   Fark It!   Tell A Friend

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Orwell's "1984" becoming a reality in modern-day America

Heed the Warning Signs; America is Edging Ever Closer to a Societal Implosion

How Do You Spell Sociopath? G-O-P

The Beginning of the End for the U.S. Dollar as the World Reserve Currency

The Escalating War Within America: A House Divided

Barack Obama Has Severely Crippled His Presidency and the Democratic Party

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
5 people are discussing this page, with 6 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

President Obama, knowing full well the results of... by michael payne on Saturday, Jan 22, 2011 at 12:27:15 AM
Greetings. I would wager that the civil rights an... by edward stein on Saturday, Jan 22, 2011 at 7:39:36 PM
Dubya did the same thing, did he not? Somewhere am... by Marta Steele on Saturday, Jan 22, 2011 at 8:51:12 PM
The United States has been funding and supporting ... by Anton Grambihler on Saturday, Jan 22, 2011 at 10:28:15 PM
There is no question that the US is hypocritical o... by Eric Scheihagen on Sunday, Jan 23, 2011 at 10:07:11 AM
Here is the problem with your contention that Chin... by michael payne on Sunday, Jan 23, 2011 at 12:48:44 PM