U.S. : Fox guarding the chickens

Charles Brown CharlesB at CNCL.ci.detroit.mi.us
Wed Apr 18 14:33:55 MDT 2001

Xinhuanet. 18 April 2001. Power Politics in Disguise of Human Rights
Doomed to Failure.

GENEVA -- A United States-hatched anti-China attempt was foiled once
again in the U.N. Commission on Human Rights here on Wednesday,
demonstrating again that power politics  under the pretense of human
rights is doomed to failure.

The 57th session of the commission cleared a "no-action motion" tabled
by China by a vote of 23 in favor, 17 against and 12 abstentions. This
represented the 10th victory China has achieved over the  United States
since 1990, which has tried repeatedly in vain to force a draft
resolution on China's human rights situation through the annual human
rights commission session. And it was thus the 10th failure for the
United States.

One of the questions asked by many is why each failed attempt  had not
stopped the making of a fresh one. The answer has to do with the U.S.
foreign policy. Many countries, especially developing ones, have pointed
out  that the so-called human rights issue has long been used by the
United States as a tool for pursuing power politics and hegemonism.

China is not the only country whose human rights situation is distorted
and bad-mouthed by the United States. More than 100  countries and
regions are mentioned in the annual human rights  report issued by the
U.S. Department of State. The U.S. anti-China efforts obviously stem
from the fact that Washington does not want to see a China building
socialism with Chinese characteristics and enjoying political stability
and rapid economic development.

Therefore, although China is enjoying the best human rights situation in
history, the United States has tried its utmost to hawk the allegation
that "China's human rights situation is  deteriorating," in a bid to
distort China's image and create  trouble for China.

Another question coming to people's mind is why the U.S. anti- China
move ended up in failure each time. The answer lies in the  questionable
intention of the U.S. concern for others' human  rights and in the
United States' own human rights record.

While trumpeting human rights, the United States has been  pushing for
the continuation of an already 10-year-old economic  embargo against
Iraq, turning a blind eye to thousands of children who have died or are
facing death for lack of food and medicine.   It also dropped depleted
uranium bombs, which are extremely harmful to both humans and the
environment, in Iraq and Yugoslavia.

Washington, a self-claimed "human rights defender," even  criticized
China for banning the notorious evil cult "Falun Gong," which has caused
the death of many a practitioner. It can thus be seen clearly that under
the pretext of  safeguarding human rights, the United States has been
trying to  force its own views on others and interfere in the internal
affairs of those countries which it regards as obstacles to its
realization of worldwide hegemony, said a number of delegates from
developing countries at the current human rights session.

It is well known that the United States has been faced with  serious
human rights problems at home such as gender and racial  discrimination,
police violence and money politics.   Meanwhile, Washington has adopted
a negative attitude toward  international human rights conventions: It
has refused to ratify  the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Children and
the U.N. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination
Against Women, for example. Among Western countries, only the United
States voted against the Declaration on the Right to Development.

More and more countries have expressed their opposition to the  way in
which the Americans have behaved at the U.N. human rights commission
sessions. And this explains why Washington has failed in making other
countries sponsor anti-China resolutions in Geneva since 1999. Diplomats
from developing countries noted that what the United States is
attempting to do at the human rights session bespeaks its pursuit of the
Cold War mentality and power politics and such  efforts are doomed to


Associated Press. 18 April 2001 - 12:55 PM. China Escapes U.S.-Sponsored
Censure of Rights Record. Excerpts.

GENEVA - A U.S. attempt to win international condemnation of China's
human rights record failed on Wednesday when the U.N. rights watchdog
passed a Chinese motion blocking consideration of the American proposal.

... China amassed support among African countries for Wednesday's "no
action" vote, which required only a simple majority of ballots cast to
pass. Twelve of the 53 nations with voting rights on the commission
abstained and Congo was absent.

...China had lobbied heavily in recent weeks to avert consideration of
the U.S. proposal. When the vote was over, supporting delegates
applauded Qiao and congratulated him, some slapping him on the back.

In addition to several African countries, China also had support from
India and Pakistan. The United States was supported mainly by European
nations and by Japan.

Earlier Wednesday, the Human Rights Commission postponed a vote on
Russia's conduct in Chechnya and censured Israel's settlement policy in
Palestinian territories. The commission voted 50-1 to condemn Israeli
settlement policy in Palestinian territory, with the United States
casting the lone vote against the EU-backed resolution.

... Censure by the U.N. body brings no penalties but draws international
attention to a country's human rights record.


Li'l Joe

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