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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 9/16/21

U.S. "human rights" propagandists cover tracks of Uyghur terror

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Rainer Shea
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Faced with the shift towards a multi-polar world, one where China is increasingly enabled to act as a benevolent facilitator of Global South economic development and international peace, the U.S. empire is seeking to sabotage the game of geopolitics. To throw ever more parts of the globe into anarchy, or at least a state of crisis, so that there isn't a stable globe for the new multi-polar order to develop within.

This is a desperate situation for the imperialists, one where they've become so set on sabotaging Chinese infrastructure projects that they're now effectively waging war even against countries that provide great neo-colonial spoils for Western capital. Eritrea and Ethiopia have embraced the neoliberal policies that the imperialists prefer. Yet Washington has been targeting them with strategic disinformation, a terrorist proxy force called the TPLF, and sanctions, because these two countries have signed on to China's Belt and Road Initiative. Washington's goal is to destroy functioning states within Eritrea and Ethiopia, as well as across the horn of Africa in general.

The consequence of this campaign to burn down the world will be a weakening of capital, where the global market contradictions brought on by the climate crisis get exacerbated by the chaos which Washington has already manufactured across large parts of the exploited world. But the empire sees no other route than to keep destabilizing, to act as a beast that lashes out due to its being wounded. Until anti-colonial proletarian revolution brings down the imperialists, the places they can still deal damage to will continue to descend into this engineered chaos. The kind of chaos where refugees have been getting sold as slaves in Libya following the 2011 Libya bombing campaign, or where hundreds of thousands are facing famine in Ethiopia partly due to the TPLF's depriving the masses of food aid.

Following Washington's military defeat in Afghanistan last month, the imperialists have tried to fully impose these hellish conditions onto the country. They've succeeded in that they've frozen Afghanistan's wealth through blanket sanctions, exacerbating the country's famine and leaving nothing for the 90% of Afghans who live below the poverty line. However, Washington's redoubled new campaign to destabilize Afghanistan has run into limitations, ones that will contribute to imperialism's demise in the long term.

The U.S. has unleashed ISIS, al-Qaeda, the new generation of mujahideen fighters, and the East Turkestan Islamic Movement upon Afghanistan, acting as terrorist proxies in the effort to free up the country's $1 trillion in minerals for foreign exploitation. Their goal is to mount a new version of Reagan's proxy war against the Soviet Union, with China being the targeted superpower. Washington's private mercenary contractors, special-operations forces, and intelligence operatives, who remain in Afghanistan despite the Taliban's driving them out of key territories, are prepared to assist the terrorists.

Despite all this coordination and surface-level strength, the imperialists are rendered paper tigers in this struggle to retake Afghanistan. The Taliban's control has been shorn up too solidly, and the imperialists have only themselves to blame; the CIA's death squads in Afghanistan have committed war crimes of such magnitude and prevalence that the country's masses have decided the Taliban is the lesser evil, not just because of Washington's regular atrocities against civilians but because Taliban rule provides a break from war. For the first time in decades, Afghans have a modicum of stability to look forward to, with the prospect of a BRI project within the country looking increasingly likely.

The imperialists can only respond by vilifying China--the Taliban's emerging geopolitical partner--to no end. A CNN headline has declared that "As China woos the Taliban, Uyghurs in Afghanistan fear for their lives," leaving out the detail "because they are members of al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups." This narrative that the Taliban has begun committing some kind of ethnic cleansing against the Uyghurs, when in fact all it's doing is countering the Uyghurs who've been won over by the CIA's violently Sinophobic ethnic nationalist propaganda, is being bolstered even by media outlets that are supposedly anti-imperialist.

Alongside the absurd CNN fearmongering about a Chinese-Taliban genocidal alliance, the claims from Uyghur separatist terrorism apologist groups that the ETIM doesn't exist, and the seemingly celebratory Newsweek reports about how Uyghur terrorist leaders see the Afghanistan pullout as an opportunity for harming China, this week Al Jazeera put out an article titled "How 9/11 helped China wage its own false 'war on terror'."

To support its claim that the ETIM was unfairly classified by as a terrorist group, and that the Trump administration was therefore right to take the ETIM off the terrorist-organization list last year, the article argues:

Despite several rebellions in the early 20th century, the [Xinjiang] province remained part of China and, in 1955, it was granted autonomy by CCP leader Mao Zedong. In the following decades, economic and material investment in the region raised the standard of living and provided some advantages for its non-Han inhabitants, but these services came at a cost. Increasing Han migration displaced Uyghurs from their indigenous lands and started causing tensions. It is these changing social dynamics that set the scene for unrest in Xinjiang, not a religious drive to wage "jihad" as has been claimed. Thus, in the late 20th century, ethnic tensions in the province were rooted in Uighur concerns over self-governance, cultural preservation, educational opportunities, or labour and health issues.

Not only does this article promote the "one million detained Uyghurs" claim--which comes from manipulated and inadequate research by far-right Christian propagandist Adrian Zenz--but it leaves out both the context behind the unrest and the extent to which Uyghur ethnic nationalist violence has been perpetrated. It was Rebiya Kadeer, the former wealthy oligarch who got driven out of China after getting discovered to be a mass swindler, who incited the violence during China's 2009 Uyghur separatist riots. Kadeer and her U.S.-funded organization the World Uyghur Congress (which Al Jazeera also suggests has been falsely labeled a terrorist organization) have repeatedly made inflammatory and false claims about China committing a "cultural genocide" against the Uyghurs. As even an Al Jazeera reporter pointed out amid the riots, this rhetoric had to have played a role in the bloodshed, which killed far higher rates of Han Chinese than Uyghurs.

Al Jazeera portrays the riot as the inevitable consequence of (vastly exaggerated) Chinese repression rather than as the calculated CIA destabilization effort that it was. It also outright ignores the numerous other Uyghur separatist terrorist attacks that plagued China prior to the success of the jihadist deradicalization programs in recent years. At their peak in 2014, these attacks took the lives of 322 Chinese. All for the sake of Washington's campaign to score geopolitical points, and all so that anti-communist columnists could act like they never even happened.

With terrorism apologia like this, the propagandists of empire are trying to manufacture consent for a renewed campaign of violence within both Xinjiang and Afghanistan. One that the ETIM and their aligned Uyghur terrorists, which have become far stronger since Trump took the ETIM off the terrorist list, is eager to get going. Look out for headlines that ask us to sympathize with whatever atrocities these groups commit within Afghanistan in the coming months and years. They'll try to play on people's capacity for empathy by portraying the terrorists as the ones who are being unfairly targeted.

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Rainer Shea is writing articles that counter the propaganda of the capitalist/imperialist power establishment, and that help move us towards a socialist revolution. Donate to me on Patreon here: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=11988744

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