Mengistu considers "returning to South Africa in the future"

Jose G. Perez jgperez at SPAMfreepcmail.com
Thu Dec 16 21:09:33 MST 1999



>I've been almost alone on the local Debate list in opposing the Pinochet
>business and even the persecution of Ocalan as serious threats to old
>fashioned national sovereignty and part of reshaping Western modes of
>domination.  For many on the "left" here, these actions, on the contrary,
>herald a wonderful new phase of an international culture of human rights.

Russell,

    I'm shocked, just shocked, that you don't think, as a matter of
principle, that white European countries and especially the U.S. are an
ethically and morally superior type of humanity and thus entitled, nay,
called by nature to judge the actions of lesser peoples, like the Cubans,
the Chinese and the Chileans.

        Also, having a trial in a place like Spain will highlight the truth,
which is of course whatever the prosecution says it is. All these noisome
formalities like the right to face one's accusers, to mount a defense by
compelling witnesses and so on will no longer stand in the way of justice.
And, of course, if some miscreant judge decides to free Pinochet the error
will prove harmless, as long as some other right-thinking prosecutor in any
other European country has the foresight to prepare the same charges for
laying before, say, the Italian judicial system should Pinochet slip through
the fingers of the Spanish. Of course they could be different charges, but I
suggest the same charges in the interests of judicial efficiency. The
Spaniards will have gathered all the necessary proofs, and suitable
additional evidence can be fabricated on the second go-round to compensate
for whatever obfuscations the general's lawyers raised on the first round.
(To those wanting some practical tips on this sort of thing I suggest a
study of the Leonard Peltier case will not be entirely unrewarding.)

    And do you not admire the terrible sacrifice the Spaniards are making to
carry the White Man's Burden on Pinochet? There are literally hundreds of
what we Latin Americans call esbirros, torturers, rapists, kidnappers and
assassins --not to mention the Socialist politicians who gave them orders--,
Spaniards all, who Spain has been unable to prosecute because the judicial
system is just too busy filling out paperwork for the British Foreign
Office. That's why it is so admirable that, in addition to Pinochet, the
same guy who put him in the dock has also filed charges against 100 or more
Argentines. The man must work night and day.

    Also, letting people of inferior, savage countries like ours handle
these matters on their own can only lead to trouble. Just look at Cuba. The
revolution took power and supposedly in the interests of "justice" they
tried and punished Batista's folks. The next thing you know they're
expropriating the bourgeoisie and trying to abolish the exploitation of man
by man! I mean, what kind of justice is that? There isn't a single share of
any Cuban company that's been worth a nickel since then (not even the nickel
company) on any stock market.

José

-----Original Message-----
From: Russell Grinker <grinker at mweb.co.za>
To: marxism at lists.panix.com <marxism at lists.panix.com>
Date: Thursday, December 16, 1999 7:26 AM
Subject: Re: Mengistu considers "returning to South Africa in the future"


>So what do list members think about this?  For once I tend to agree with
>Mbeki's approach which seems to indicate a refusal by the government to be
>sucked into the current wave of moralistic attempts to prosecute former
>despots/demonise China.
>
>I've been almost alone on the local Debate list in opposing the Pinochet
>business and even the persecution of Ocalan as serious threats to old
>fashioned national sovereignty and part of reshaping Western modes of
>domination.  For many on the "left" here, these actions, on the contrary,
>herald a wonderful new phase of an international culture of human rights.
>Or at least people feel that it's OK as the bastards are finally "getting
>what they deserve".  Mbeki, however, has probably begun to realise the
>dangers of a relatively weak country like SA playing along with this.
>
>It's bad enough as it is, that a number of South African judges and NGO
>types are already heavily involved in running various international
>tribunals, including those for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda.  This
>includes that international human rights icon, Judge Goldstone, who ran the
>Goldstone Commission investigating the old SA regime's counter-insurgency
>programmes, the so-called "third force". For many more radical observers,
>the Commission did more to obscure what had happened and defuse popular
>anger than expose anything.
>
>In addition Mandela now seems to be playing the role of international
fixer,
>dashing off like some kind of much more PC Jimmy Carter to various hotspots
>like the Middle East and Ireland to do the bidding of the US foreign policy
>machine and encourage consensus solutions roughly based on the South
African
>model.  No doubt this gains SA brownie points from Washington and perhaps
>promises of more foreign aid. One wonders however whether Mandela's
>globetrotting is any longer
>part of any SA foreign policy strategy.
>
>On a similar issue: the government has also been angered recently by the
>action of a number of judges who rushed off to the International Court to
>complain about an infringement of their rights by the Minister of Justice.
>
>It must be clear to Mbeki that appeals to international tribunals and
>support for them, are a potential double-edged sword for SA.
>
>Russell
>
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Louis Proyect <lnp3 at panix.com>
>To: marxism at lists.panix.com <marxism at lists.panix.com>
>Date: Wednesday, December 15, 1999 7:05 PM
>Subject: Mengistu considers "returning to South Africa in the future"
>
>
>The Independent (London), December 12, 1999, Sunday
>
>MBEKI UNDER FIRE FOR SUCKING UP TO TYRANTS
>
>by Ed O'Loughlin
>
>AFTER years of talking up his vision for an "African Renaissance", South
>Africa's President Thabo Mbeki gave a broad hint last week that his brand
>of renaissance may owe more to Machiavelli than Michelangelo, writes Ed
>O'Loughlin.
>
>...snip
>
>
>










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