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POLITICS: U.S., UK split over Uzbek violence

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posted on May, 16 2005 @ 10:28 AM
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Given the strategic importance of Uzbekistan for the United States, I was wondering what the official reaciton to the latest events in this republic was going to be. Now, perhaps a little unexpectedly, there is a EU-US split over how to react to the violence in this Central Asian country: Britain strongly disapproves of the violence, whereas the US is silent about it.
 



www.cnn.com
LONDON, England -- Condemnation by Britain of Uzbek soldiers who opened fire on protesters contrasts markedly to the near silence coming from its allies in Washington.

In London, Foreign Secretary Jack Straw on Sunday slammed the violence in the city of Andijan as "a clear abuse of human rights." He was speaking as witnesses described how Uzbek soldiers fired into a crowd, including women, children and their own police comrades begging them not to shoot.

"I am extremely concerned by reports that Uzbek troops opened fire on demonstrators in Andijan," Straw said.
"I totally condemn these actions and I urge the Uzbek authorities to show restraint in dealing with the situation and look for a way to resolve it peacefully."

The clashes present a quandary for Washington because Karimov is considered a key ally in the fight against terrorism and the U.S. maintains a military base in Uzbekistan to support anti-terrorist operations in Afghanistan.





Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


I wish our government would condemn the Uzbek authorities. It's a basic obligation that we have, in way of sustaining democratic ideals and human rights. Firing assault rifles into the crowd is an ugly act and the US position should be clear.

[edit on 16-5-2005 by Aelita]

[edit on 16-5-2005 by Aelita]




posted on May, 16 2005 @ 11:05 AM
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I wish our government would condemn the Uzbek authorities. It's a basic obligation that we have, in way of sustaining democratic ideals and human rights. Firing assault rifles into the crowd is an ugly act and the US position should be clear.


I totally agree, the US has an obligation to do something about this, especially because they have a military base in the country. But they’re pro-war on terror, so its all hush hush from Washington. F**king self-centred, egoistic, evil bureaucrats. And to think these people are the worlds only superpower...



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 12:14 PM
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Turning a blind eye is the official U.S. policy in Uzbekistan....


From a White House press conference, March 16, 2005

Q As Commander-in-Chief, what is it that Uzbekistan can do in interrogating an individual that the United States can't?

THE PRESIDENT: We seek assurances that nobody will be tortured when we render a person back to their home country.

www.whitehouse.gov...


Admitting that there are human rights violations occuring in Uzbekistan would be admitting our own guilt. Why would the U.S. want to stop the abuses when apparently someone (the CIA, Bush, Alberto Gonzales) feels that we are benefiting from them (getting information from boiling suspected terrorists)?

Sure, I agree that getting information from terrorists is important. However, it's the "suspected" part that makes me uncomfortable--as well as the torture. Its hard for me to imagine that it yields anything useful.

The business of renditions is dirty--these suspects are kidnapped off the street in the U.S. and in other countries and sent back not only their "home" country, but to other places--all of which have records of using torture. Uzbekistan is one of the most egregious offenders as I am sure we have all heard the reports of vats of boiling body parts. While this technique is useful for getting information, it isn't particularly useful for getting accurate information--or any information useful in a courtroom.

There have been cases where innocent people were caught up in this process. And if we are doing it, whats to stop another country from carrying out the same type of operation? Anxious to take that vacation to Eastern Europe or China, much? And just how is this promoting democracy in the world? Sounds like it is establishing a justification for further terrorism, if you ask me.

So the U.S. has no choice but to mumble and shuffle its feet when reports of human rights abuse emerge in countries like Uzbekistan. Why would we want them to be anything less than savages? We need them to do our dirty work.

hrw.org...



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 12:25 PM
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I have also ran a google search on "human rights uzbekistan" and a ton of links came up. Mostly about absense of such rights.

Links like that one make you wonder whether Karimov is any better than Saddam (some people think he's not).



Torture is rampant in Uzbekistan, but police mete out particularly harsh treatment to religious detainees to compel confessions or other testimony.


Or, check this out:


Maruf Makhkamov was arrested on October 30 and accused of "Wahhabism." The 25-year-old man was kept for two months in a basement cell in Tashkent police headquarters, where officers beat him every day until he lost consciousness. Police arrested Makhkamov's brother and said he would be released only when Maruf confessed to being an "extremist." The officers threatened to arrest Makhkamov's wife as well and to gang rape her in front of him. He signed the confession and on February 23 went on trial with six complete strangers as part of a covert "extremist" group.


Time to invade Uzbekistan?




[edit on 16-5-2005 by Aelita]



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 12:26 PM
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I find it absolutely hypocrtical and downright stupid that the US government is supporting a helpful autocratic dictator over concerns about islamist rule. Support the Uzbeks, support their revolution, messily as its begun. Advance the www.abovetopsecret.com... Revolutions, some might say.

But regardless of that, can't the US learn from history? Supporting a dictator, generally agreed upon as being unsavoury and brutal, is not going to advance any goodly intersests. I mean, sure, you can support guys like Mussharaf, he's a tyrant, but more in the original greek sense, not a brutal nasty dictator. But Karimov is a different guy altogether, why support him?

True enough, cooperation with authorities like him almost certainly aided in stopping that shipment of nuke bomb material in Krygystan last year, and undoubtedly there are 'pressing' pragmatic concerns. But, ultimately, the US can't engange in militant democratic rhetoric and not do something about this guy, at least not without being obvious hypocrits.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 03:18 PM
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This is going to be an explosive issue in Britain, if not in the United States.

The fact that Uzbekistan is a close U.S ally and a rampant human rights abuser is going to blast away any pretense of good intentions in Bush's foreign policy. The U.S support for Karimov will hurt them dearly and I for one am glad.

There have been reports of up to 700 men, women and children murdered by the Uzbek army. This is the worst mass murder of civilians by their own government since Tianamen Square!

The U.S's very own Foreign Relations Committee has this to say about their ally:


For now, unfortunately, the U.S. and the Uzbek government are losing the battle for the hearts and minds of the Uzbek people. The reasons are simple: Post-Soviet transition problems, worsened by the politically and economically oppressive policies of the current regime have produced tremendous poverty, corruption and resentment among the people. Uzbekistan has a horrendous human rights record, with ongoing torture in its prisons, creating many "Enemies of State," as the title of a recent Human Rights Watch report correctly identifies.

U.S Foreign Relations Committee

Hardly a more incongruous ally for a nation that extolls the virtues of a democratic free society!

After this there cannot be any doubt as to exactly how the United States foreign policy is geared. The spreading of democracy is sham! Its nothing more than removing irritants and getting access to oil fields. 100% Imperialism

Also discussed in my thread here:
www.atsnn.com...



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 04:56 PM
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you all forget we have bigger fish to fry and we could not afford to lose access to afghanistan, we cant do anything if we expect to win in afghanistan.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 05:07 PM
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you all forget we have bigger fish to fry and we could not afford to lose access to afghanistan, we cant do anything if we expect to win in afghanistan.


So screwing one lot of people to "help" another is a good thing? I would rather not be part of it!

Its like having enough food to feed 20 people but having 40 people starving, so you kill half of them so the other half can have a full belly.

Not to mention that there is money to made in Afghanistan. Key drugs producer, now Iraq is also a key link in the drugs trade routes and also the whole Oil Pipeline things from the caspian. They don't do anything if it does not line their pockets.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 05:15 PM
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Namehere,
Once you go down that road , its very difficult to come back.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 05:52 PM
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Namehere, if thats the case then Bush should come out and say that! Im sure he'd see his support evapourate faster than a Texas puddle!

They dont need to prop up regimes just so they can use bases on their territory, its just easier and cheaper. So much for being do-gooders



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:05 PM
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originally submitted by Subz
There have been reports of up to 700 men, women and children murdered by the Uzbek army. This is the worst mass murder of civilians by their own government since Tianamen Square!


This is the worse mass murder of civilians by their own government since Tiananmen Square huh?..... How convinient to call it so.... and for one reason only....because the US sees the Uzbek government as an ally against the war on terror....even thou the US does not condone the things the government of Uzbek has done...

I am not condoning what is happening in Uzbekistan...but allowing Sharia law to be supreme and for the country to become Islamic is going to make things worse.

I also have to wonder why in the world there is this much outrage from all over the world over this when in fact Kofi Annan does not want to admit that genocide is and has been happening in Sudan since over 2,400,000 people have been killed by the jihads called forth by the government of Sudan and by the Arab militias since 1983.

But because it is the US who sees the regime in Ubekistan as allies against the war on terror it is all over the news and suddenly this is the worse catastrophe that is happening in the planet... That's bs....

Althou, as I said I do not condone those things that are supposedly happening in Ubkistan, there are worse things happening in the world right now, yet because the UN, Kofi Annan, claims it is not genocide the whole world is silent about it. But because the US sees the Uzbek government as allies in the war on terror....this is the worse mass murder since Tiananmen Square.......



[edit on 16-5-2005 by Muaddib]



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:21 PM
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But because it is the US who sees the regime in Ubekistan as allies against the war on terror it is all over the news and suddenly this is the worse catastrophe that is happening in the planet... That's bs....


First, it's not the worst catastrophe and Sudan always has been a bigger and worse thing. Second, the fact the Uzbekistan is an ally, to the tune of $50M in US aid, doesn't make it immune from common norm. Do you really want to have criminals as your allies? Saddam was pretty good in combatting the islamic extremeists, should we reinstate him in power?



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:34 PM
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Aelita, do we really want to see Uzbekistan turn into an Islamist state? Many of those prisoners released, and the ones that these people wanted released, are members of radical islamic groups who have wanted to make Uzbekistan Islamic since the 90s.

[edit on 16-5-2005 by Muaddib]



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:47 PM
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No, we don't to turn Uzbekistan into an Islamist state. But if you read up on what' happening there, the "ilsamist" moniker is oftentime used to suppress any kind of opposition to Mr.Karimov. It's a convenient pretext.

Much of the protests that were happening were in reponse to his oppressive rule.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:51 PM
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The US sends prisoners to the torture-grounds that are Uzbeki jails. You think they want to let that go? It's a convenient way to quietly "disappear" suspects.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 07:59 PM
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Better than keeping them at the alleged "torture grounds" at Gitmo, eh?
Which would you prefer?


seekerof



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 08:02 PM
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Gitmo, at least it's a high-profile prison. The Uzbeki prisons probably house the local thugs along with the "terror suspects". Plus, there is less acountability for the actions of those who run the place in Uzbekistan.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 08:14 PM
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Originally posted by Muaddib
This is the worse mass murder of civilians by their own government since Tiananmen Square huh?..... How convinient to call it so.... and for one reason only....because the US sees the Uzbek government as an ally against the war on terror....even thou the US does not condone the things the government of Uzbek has done...


Muaddib im not the only one likening this to Tiananmen Square major news carriers are running with that line.


But if the reports of more than 700 deaths since Friday hold true, and if Uzbek forces were behind the killing as most reports indicate it would be some of the worst state-inspired bloodshed since the massacre of protesters in China's Tiananmen Square in 1989

Excerpt from: ABC News


If the reports of more than 700 deaths since Friday hold true and if Uzbek forces were behind the killing - as most reports indicate - it would be some of the worst cases of bloodshed involving a government's troops and civilian demonstrators since the massacre of protesters in China's Tiananmen Square in 1989.

Excerpt from: CBS news


The U.S. State Department on Monday criticized Uzbekistan's government for opening fire on demonstrators and said the Bush administration had contacted Uzbek authorities to urge restraint.

" We are deeply disturbed by the reports that the Uzbek authorities fired on demonstrators last Friday," State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said.

Excerpt from: CNN

Please dont try and paint this as merely my anti-Bush agenda. This is clearly acknowledged as the Uzbek army opening fire on civilians, not rioting prisoners. These were civilians protesting against the dire economic and political situation they find themselves in. This is exactly the same combination of circumstance surrounding the Tiananmen Square massacre which is why you see major news networks running with that line.

You seem to agree with EVERYTHING that the Bush administration says and I happen to believe NOTHING they say. Why you are getting angry about it I dont know, it shouldnt of suprised you



Originally posted by Muaddib
I also have to wonder why in the world there is this much outrage from all over the world over this when in fact Kofi Annan does not want to admit that genocide is and has been happening in Sudan since over 2,400,000 people have been killed by the jihads called forth by the government of Sudan and by the Arab militias since 1983

If Sudan is the worst blight on the worlds conscience then why has the U.S invaded 2 countries instead of Sudan? If the United States government clearly is trying to end dicators and Axis's of Evil then why doesnt Sudan figure into this? Why? I'll tell you why, the Bush administration only rolls out the humanitarian wagon when it wants to use it as a cover for imperialistic manouvers. However we wouldnt want to change the topic now would we?


[edit on 16/5/05 by subz]



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 09:01 PM
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re have been reports of up to 700 men, women and children murdered by the Uzbek army. This is the worst mass murder of civilians by their own government since Tianamen Square!

If it was 7,000 people then that statement would at least stand a chance of being accurate.

Hardly a more incongruous ally for a nation that extolls the virtues of a democratic free society!

Indeed, its a tyranny, and a nastly little one at that. People make the decision to let it alone in exchange for bases of operation for planes and intelligence agents. Some might argue that it paid off. 700 dead uzbeks is a small price to pay for stopping nuke terror. People can certainly rationalize that the protestors are violent, and the government has every right to use deadly force.

I disagree tho, the issue has come to a boil now, its clear who's side the US should be on. Perhaps people can pretend that the Fur in the darfur don't exist, but this is clearly a situation where, without a move from the US, the impetus of the rainbow revolutions will be shut down.

Also, recall that Bush noted recently that it was one of the greatest mistakes of history that Eastern Europe fell to the soviets, rather than be freed along with the rest of the continent after WWII. That sentiment would be completely negated, exposed as sheer propaganda and hipocracy, is there is no action here, in a former soviet republic.

The one thing that the US has done wrong in history, the Big Legitimate Complaint, was that it supported Tyrants, even really bad ones, in favour of stability. That lead, directly, to 911 and these current Terror Wars. If bush doesn't start doing something, well, he's revealed himself for quite the fraud, and also allied himself with those who effectively permited and enabled 911 to happen. Excusable Septermber 10th, inexcusable September 12th.

namehere
you all forget we have bigger fish to fry and we could not afford to lose access to afghanistan

Explain how loosing bases in uzbekistan will prevent the US from annihilating the Iranians??

but allowing Sharia law to be supreme and for the country to become Islamic is going to make things worse.

Simple answer: occupy uzbekistan. Fear of the evil we don't know and favour for the evil we do know lead to Terror. Its a failed global rationale. The US needs to support global militant democratic revolution, or Isolationism.

when in fact Kofi Annan does not want to admit that genocide is and has been happening in Sudan

This would be a sensible charge, if the US was invovled in the Sudan. The US has to agree that there is no genocide in the Sudan, or else it is saying 'we permit genocide, carte blanche, no reprisals, no actions'. The UN is hypocritical for not getting invovled. So is the US.

But because the US sees the Uzbek government as allies in the war on terror

Indeed, now that the US isn't invovled, its a conpsiracy. If the US was invovled, it's a conspiracy.

Hatred and unpopularity at the time have ever been the fate of those who have aspired to empire. But it is good judgment to accept odium in a great cause; hatred does not last long, and brilliance of the moment and fame of afterdays remain forever in men's memories

So, if nothing else, who cares if the world uses this as an oppurtunity to smack the US? How does that justify inaction, nay, support for a man we all agree is a violent tyrant??

Jahmuhn
. You think they want to let that go?

Jordan is a small country, but not that small, and the flight from afghanistan to jordan can certainly be arranged.



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