10 March 2006

Uncle Sam Faces Backlash After Lecturing World on Human Rights

Earlier this week, Sambo Rice's State Department released Uncle Sam's annual Human Rights Report. As one would expect, the fiercely political document aims to smear its enemies with accusations while whitewashing its own record as the world's most profligate torturer and covering over the grotesque abuses committed by allies like Colombia and Apartheid Israel. This flagrant, unapologetic hypocrisy has made it the target of ridicule and scorn throughout the world.

On Thursday, Syria's Foreign Ministry responded to the report by referencing Uncle Sam's ongoing campaign of global terror.
The US. Administration will be very much mistaken when it assumes the role of human rights defender in the world at time when these very rights have been flagrantly violated by it in more than one place in the world, including Guantanamo and Abu-Ghraib’s scandals, and its silence and blessing of the violation of the Palestinian human rights.
Because Venezuela's Bolivarian Revolution has produced the world's most progressive constitution, because the government of Venezuela refuses to subordinate the needs and interests of the Venezuelan people to Debt-Leverage Imperialism, and because Comrade Chavez has challenged Uncle Sam's right to wage an offensive war on the world, that nation too has found itself in Sam's crosshairs.

The Venezuelan government lashed out at Uncle Sam, calling the report "toilet paper."

Recounting that Uncle Sam maintains its own terrorist training camp, the School of the Americas (renamed WHINSEC to conceal its identity), Vice President José Vicente Rangel said, "the State Department spokesmen don't have the authority to judge any country on Earth because if any nation of the world, if any government violates human rights and is a center of corruption, it's precisely the government of the United States."

The Venezuelan government issued an additional statement ridiculing the document. "Once again, the State Department has proclaimed itself judge of the world… Trying to be the hand of God, its bloody fingernails give it away.''

The Chinese Government responded to the report with a report of their own which detailed the extreme racism, sexism, and inequality that exists today on Sam's plantation. Here are a few excerpts from that report:
On Life and Security:
  • The U.S. Justice Department reported on Sept. 25, 2005 that there were 5,182,670 violent crimes in the United States in 2004. There were 21.4 victims for every 1,000 people aged 12 and older, which amounts to about one violent crime victim for every 47 U.S. citizens (Crime Rate Remains at 2003 Level, Study Says, The Washington Post, September 26, 2005).
On Infringements upon Human Rights by Law Enforcement and Judicial Organs:
  • The United States proclaims to be a "paradise of freedom," yet the total number and ratio of its people behind bars both rank the first in the world. According to data released by the statistics bureau of the U.S. Justice Department on Oct. 23, 2005, the total number of people incarcerated in the United States was 2,267,787 at the end of 2004. This meant an incarceration rate of 724 per 100,000, up 18 percent from ten years earlier and 25 percent higher than that of any other nation. (Study Notes Upswing In Arrests of Women, the Washington Post, Oct. 24, 2005.)
  • Sexual infringement is quite common in prisons. According to a report released by the U.S. Department of Justice in June 2005, an estimated 8,210 allegations of sexual violence were reported by correctional authorities, of which almost 42 percent involved staff-on-inmate sexual misconduct. A report of the Human Rights Watch said that 21 percent of inmates in seven Midwestern prisons in the United States suffered sexual violence perpetrated by inmates of the same sex.
On Economic, Social and Cultural Rights:
  • A study of eight advanced countries by London School of Economics in 2005 found that the United States had the worst social inequality, Reuters reported on April 25, 2005. The poverty rate of the United States is the highest in the developed world and more than twice as high as in most other industrialized countries (Newsweek, The Other America, Sept. 19, 2005).
On Racial Discrimination:
  • According to The State of Black America 2005, the income level of African American families is only one-tenth of that of white families, and the welfare enjoyed by black Americans is only three-fourths of their white counterparts. In 2004, the poverty rate was 24.7 percent for African Americans, 21.9 percent for Hispanics, and 8.6 percent for non-Hispanic whites. In New Orleans, 100,000 of its 500,000 population live in poverty, with the majority of them being black American
  • Violent crimes against ethnic minorities have been increasing in America. According to a FBI report issued in October 2005, of the 9,528 victims of hate crimes in 2004, 53.8 percent were victims of racial prejudice, and 67.9 percent were blacks. Among the hate crime offenders, 60.6 percent were whites. According to statistics, blacks are twenty times more likely than whites to be a victim of hate crimes. In Los Angeles, 56 percent of hate crimes were targeted at blacks.
On Rights of Women and Children
  • Statistics from American Institute on Domestic Violence showed each year in the United States 5.3 million women are abused, and 1,232 women are killed by an intimate partner. A news report said one out of every three American women would fall under the influence of domestic violence in her life.
  • The FBI reported in October 2005 that during 2004, approximately 94,635 females nationwide were victims of forcible rape, which means that 63.5 out of every 100,000 women suffered from forcible rape. This figure also represents an increase of 0.8 percent from 2003. Women are sexually harassed while at work. In 2004 the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received 13,136 charges of sexual harassment, with 84.9 percent of them filed by women.
  • According to an investigation by the Pentagon released on Dec. 23, 2005, up to 6 percent of the women at the Army, Navy and Air Force academies said they experienced sexual assault during the 2004-2005 school year, and about half or more said they were sexually harassed. In the Reserve Forces and National Guard units, 60 percent of women and 27 percent of men were sexually assaulted or harassed during their service. And 11 percent of women were raped.
As if to further underscore Uncle Sam's hypocrisy in publishing such a cynical document, today's Independent featured a story highlighting the inhumane treatment of detainees held without charge in its Guantanamo Bay concentration camp:
The United States authorities are facing demands by doctors from around the world to abandon the barbaric method of force-feeding hunger strikers at Guantanamo Bay.

More than 250 medical experts are launching a protest today against the practice - which involves strapping inmates to "restraint chairs" and pushing tubes into the stomach through the nose. They say it breaches the right of prisoners to refuse treatment.

About 80 prisoners are understood to be refusing food, including a UK resident, Shaker Aamer, a Saudi national who is married to a British woman and has four children.
The piece continues:
Since August they have been routinely force-fed, an excruciatingly painful practice that causes bleeding and nausea. The doctors say: "Fundamental to doctors' responsibilities in attending a hunger striker is the recognition that prisoners have a right to refuse treatment"… The World Medical Association has prohibited force-feeding and the American Medical Association backed the WMA's declaration.
More than ever before, the world has responded to the inherent hypocrisy of Uncle Sam's Human Rights Report with contempt and hostility, causing its value as a political asset to wane. One shouldn't be surprised to see its release become less public in coming years.
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