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The Chinese Death Trucks - very good example of spin

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posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 01:58 AM
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reply to post by The Lass
 


It has everything to do with your recent history and the present state of affairs.

I'm not pro China or even condoning what is going on there. I don't profess to know the slightest about China or its human rights record.

What I am trying to point out here is that you got to take a good look at yourself first before pointing your fingers at others. What gives you the right the take the moral high ground when you can't or won't even acknowledge you own country's failings. How credible can your stance be if your views and opinions are conveniently slanted to suit your myopia.

The very problem with the US right now all over the world is its blindness to everything unless it suits it own interest and agenda. Never mind the cost to human lives, as long as it is not US citizens. You are your worse enemy. The no 1 recruiter of jihadist is the US itself. Osama could not have done a better job in a million years.

You take the stage condemning other countries for human rights abuse whilst at the same time your country foster paramilitary groups and death squads to take down countries that does not toe the US line. Getting in bed with ruthless dictators as long as it fulfills the economical and political interest. If it is a world stage you are taking, it is not a pretty side you are exposing.

The US is not making any friends with its self serving/self righteous attitude while at the same time displaying its complete disregard for it own human rights abuse all over the world.




posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 02:05 AM
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reply to post by visible_villain
 


Yet another spin to the favourite topic.

How about this one.

The Tiananmen Square massacre myth

By GREGORY CLARK
China's recent ceremonies to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of former leader Deng Xiaoping have given the Tiananmen massacre myth yet another lease of life. Most media commentators, the BBC especially, have rehashed the standard condemnation of Deng as a hardliner who instigated a massacre of harmless demonstrating students in Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989.

Why someone who had suffered cruelly at the hands of Cultural Revolution hardliners and who did so much to push China on the path of liberalization should himself become a hardliner is not explained. Even less does anyone seem to have felt any need to check out just what actually happened in Tiananmen in 1989. Eyewitness accounts that say there was no massacre have been conveniently ignored. Blatantly anti-Beijing propaganda accounts have been unquestioningly accepted. Fortunately we now have a source whose sober impartiality cannot possibly be doubted, namely the de-classified reports from the U.S. Embassy in Beijing at the time (see Google under Tiananmen, Document 30 especially).

They confirm that there was no massacre in the square, that almost all the students who had been demonstrating there for two weeks had left the square quietly in the early hours of June 4, and that the real incident was panicky fighting triggered by crowds attacking troops, initially unarmed, as they headed for the square on June 3.

The rest of the article here, that is, if you are interested in other than the truth about the matter.
search.japantimes.co.jp...



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 02:38 AM
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reply to post by A Conscience
 


The post is about China, yet you admit you know nothing about China? I suggest you read up on the goings on in Tibet during the past month. Imagine Texas being closed down to everyone for 1 month. China has issues, I think the thread needs to discuss it. I don't think "deflecting" the subject towards the US is what this board section is about.

Perhaps you should create a new thread to explain your dislike for US policy.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 05:15 AM
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reply to post by Atomic
 


That's precisely the answer I'd expected. And that's precisely the point I have been making.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 06:42 AM
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Ah, The Lass, what a brilliant reply. I stand corrected on many points.

I knew you were good.


Originally posted by The Lass
I'm loathe to defend the Daily Mail however in this particular instance their statistics may indeed bear some resemblance to reality.


Clearly I didn't do enough digging. I did go for a few different sources, and by the tijme it came to actually write the reply I'd closed some of the tabs while putting the figures themselves into Notepad. Wish I'd kept them, just for future reference. Finding sources that agreed on the latest statistics wasn't easy, but I didn't spot the 8,000 figure at all.


A ballpark figure of 10,000 executions per annum is therefore not an unreasonable estimate, especially considering that these execution trucks now scuttle around Chinese streets.


My initial skepticism about this figure has been swept away.


As to the comparative figures between the USA, China & Saudi Arabia etc, they're of little relevance here.


Here we may diverge a little, I think. First, let me just reassure you that I think the idea of death trucks scuttling around is every bit as appalling as you would wish me to. If it were happening here, I'd be livid. But culturally and historically, China has had a lot of brutal, brutal government and they do have a different attitude to this stuff. I'm not a complete cultural relativist but I'm loath to apply our cultural standards to China.

If I may indulge in a brief personal anecdote. Some years ago, I spent a week doing a meditation course with the only Westerner ever to become a Taoist lineage master. That means that this particular gentleman is quite literally the only person on the planet with this particular knowledge set, which is handed from one person to another in an unbroken line stretching back thousands of years.

During a conversation I had with him he told me that Taoism doesn't really have any hierarchy but that people within it, at the very highest level (this is determined on ability, trust me - they can tell who the real adepts are quite easily), take on certain roles. He spoke of the "three guardians". I won't go into the full details, but the function of one of these guardians is to liaise with and influence the Chinese Government in an unofficial way. The way he put it was, "well, China has always been a pretty brutal place in terms of government, so if you can maybe tone it down from a policy that means a few million people being killed to a few hundred thousand, you're not doing too badly."

This from someone who lived out there for most of his life and was connected to a network no other Westerner has even caught a glimpse of.

So... I guess I expect the Chinese to rather more draconian than a Western government. Their cultural background assumptions are different and I don't think we have any right to judge them for it.

I also don't think we have much right to finger-wag at China when the country we live in (I speak as a UK citizen) is involved in two illegal wars of conquest; when we support the US in its imperial ambitions (I think of us as being the new Italy to their Nazi Germany); and when we're happy to nod and wink at all sorts of atrocities committed by our allies and friends around the world.

Secondly, I do think that there's a propaganda campaign being subtly waged against China and that it's been going on for years. As I've said in other posts, I think the US has long-term ambitions of encircling China with US bases in various countries and of integrating its economic system with the rest of the world, which is not, in my view, as benign an aim as it sounds.

I think there's an earlier post in this thread about the US spyplane incident which illustrates the nature of that propaganda campaign.


The Mail's article is about death trucks in China, not on the streets of Riyadh or Miami. If you think I'm any less critical of the execution rates in middle eastern countries you're very much mistaken.


Not at all. And I have absolutely no argument with you, as you know. There were some holes in the artucle which you have filled entirely to my satisfaction. As I say, my skepticism about the trucks has gone.

In mitigation, I think my criticism of the article stands to the extent that the omissions I found were indeed in it. You've been the one to fill those omissions, and I don't think the Mail should have to rely on people like yourself to improve the work of their own journalists.


Nor am I particularly impressed that the USA still retains the death penalty, but at least it's retained there by popular consent and subject to a comprehensive & accountable judicial system.


Here, for me, you're stretching a point. I don't know if you've ever heard the tape of then-Governor of Texas Bush mocking a woman he'd refused clemency... "oh, please don't kill me!" I have little doubt it would make you every bit as cross as it made me.

For me, justice, far more than charity, begins at home. I do want to be informed about the Chinese death trucks. I'd just far rather it was done in an article that didn't have significant gaps and that didn't make such a sneaky appeal to our sense of justice which might be better focused on matters closer to home which, as we are supposed to live in a democracy, we should be better equipped to deal with.


Regarding the harvesting of organs...


Again, you've done work that the Mail journalist should have done, and very well too. Actually, this might be being unfair on the journalist concerned. Who knows what happened in the sub-editing process?

If it's any help, I absolutely agree that anyone who profits from the sale of human organs should face the severest punishment. But I can also see it from the Chinese government's point of view in that, if you're killing lots of people, why not save lives at the same time? Ideally, the most stringent precautions would prevent any corruption. Ideally. Again, I find it hard to get too exercised about the issue for reasons I've already given - it's their country and we need to put our own house in order first.

Issues of consent, of course, are tricky. If I were, even wrongly, sentenced to death I'd be happy if my usable bits helped other people. I'm sorry if that sounds sick to you, but at least some good would come out of the situation. On the other hand, if I thought some cretin was going to make money out of it, that consent might be harder to give. I think I still would, though. I'd still want some benefit to be salvaged.

I admit I find it quite hard to sympathise with people who have reverence for the (in some ways) most trivial aspect of a human being, the physical body. That's just a personal view. I don't carry an organ donor card myself, but that's only because I've heard horror stories about medical people being, shall we say, hasty in making up their minds in whether or not to salvage organs: these issues don't apply to executions where the outcome is not in doubt.

For me, what happens to someone while they're alive is the important thing.


Whilst I do understand the points you make, I honestly don't see how this can be regarded as spin. Amnesty International have given their best estimate in the circumstances, presumably the Mail has picked up on that.


The key word there is "presumably". Look, you've done a fantastic job, and I admit all the points you raise, but you have done work the Mail journalist signally failed to do. You have convinced me that the story is far more accurate than it seemed. But the story itself failed to connect the dots and I'm prepared to defend my initial interpretation of it while admitting freely that you've convinced me that there's more to it than I thought.


I don't think the Chinese authorities are somehow any less culpable because they execute fewer, per capita, than our supposed friends in the middle east.


Now, for the first time in this outstanding reply, I'll admit to a twinge of disappontment because that's just so not the point I'm making.

I'll say it again: my point is that spin in stories like this comes from different moral standards being applied to our enemies than to our friends.

It's not whether the Chinese are any more, or less, culpable. It's whether we are being encouraged to see their faults for political reasons. Such faults may, or may not be there where spin is concerned. In this instance, you've persuaded me that in fact the faults are there when I wasn't initially convinced, and I thank and applaud you for your diligent research, which I admit, found things I didn't.


In fact, the lack of human rights in the middle east ... especially in those nations in which we have an economic, trade or military interest ... demands a thread of its very own.


Absolutely. My point is not about the rights and wrongs of these situations but about the prominence they're accorded in the media. I'd like to plant a seed in your mind, that you might start noticing how much coverage the Mail gives to abuses in China as opposed to, say, Saudi Arabia.


China is not above criticism, no matter their increasing influence, and it's incumbent on us to both highlight and condemn human rights abuses wherever they occur.


Absolutely. I'd just argue that increased coverage of Chinese human rights abuses is a function of their increasing influence. That's the nature of spin.

Honestly, look at my previous posts. How many times do I say I'm not trying to defend China? I'm just trying to be clear-eyed about the way these issues are reported.

All the best and thanks for truly improving the level of debate,

rich23



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 07:10 AM
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OK we have some first hand news here. This is good.

As I say, I'm not looking to defend China. And as people fill in the gaps, I have to admit that the article has, in a sense, tricked me. It may in some senses not be such a good example of spin as I initially thought.

HOWEVER: my point about China being singled out for political reasons, and being judged by standards that we don't apply to our friends still stands as far as I'm concerned.

Pstrron - thank you for your post. No, I haven't lived in China.


Originally posted by pstrron
Second question; are the vans real and used for organ harvesting? Yes on both accounts. If you need a transplant come to China and place an order. The prisoners are all classed by blood type/tissue type making it easier to get a match quickly. Once a match is found and payment made, the prisoner is taken for a ride to the airport. Of course not all of the prisoner boards the plane, only the parts needed.


I'm not impugning your integrity but... I am reeling. Is it really that simple? And, I can't dodge it... the nitpicker in me is looking at the part where you say come to China and then the part where the truck goes to the airport. There's kind of a disconnect there, but The Lass has already filled in disconnects in the original Mail article to my satisfaction.

You paint a truly disturbing picture. The Mail is under-reporting the problem?


There are things they do here that you have no idea of and would be outraged to learn about. However, the same goes for other countries as well.


Indeed. I've heard terrible things about certain isolated places in Central and South America.


Having a 10,000 per year harvest rate can at times be excessive and at other time be conservative. All depends upon demand at the time.


OK this goes WAY beyond the Mail article. The moment this becomes demand-driven, all bets are off. I'm just... reeling.

And I'm now starting to feel like a fool and not at all happy that this thread made the ATS front page.


What some fail to address is that any group that the gov considers a threat or has been outlawed are rounded up, put in prison with no trial and are subject to execution or organ harvest outside of the declared figure.


I'm thinking Falun Gong, for example. Might they be one of these groups?

Ah - here's what you get for going through the posts line by line...


Should the OP of this thread realize this he would quickly understand that the 10,000 victims can be very conservative. Remember the Fallon Gong?...


Actually, I do, and I also remember reading about this on their website around 1999-2000. I just never understood what was such a threat about them. I guess the Taoist guardian (see my previous post to The Lass) didn't do such a brilliant job there. The Falun Gong were talking about organ harvesting ten years ago now and I just thought they were a slightly nutty cult. I'm in tears as I write this.


BTW, I have seen the trucks in mention, all the major cities have them. Welcome the the UN's model country for the world aren't you just thrilled!


No.

Great post, though.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 07:17 AM
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reply to post by The Lass
 


amensty international and HRW have exposed to be propaganda outlets ,


check this out :



Criticism & AI's Contributions to Disinformation
[edit]
Assessment by a former AI-USA board member

Prof. Francis A. Boyle (Professor of International Law, Univ. of Illinois, Champaign) from an interview with Dennis Bernstein:

"Amnesty International is primarily motivated not by human rights but by publicity. Second comes money. Third comes getting more members. Fourth, internal turf battles. And then finally, human rights, genuine human rights concerns. To be sure, if you are dealing with a human rights situation in a country that is at odds with the United States or Britain, it gets an awful lot of attention, resources, man and womanpower, publicity, you name it, they can throw whatever they want at that. But if it's dealing with violations of human rights by the United States, Britain, Israel, then it's like pulling teeth to get them to really do something on the situation. They might, very reluctantly and after an enormous amount of internal fightings and battles and pressures, you name it. But you know, it's not like the official enemies list."

[edit]
Participation in propaganda campaign leading up to the 1991 Gulf War

There were some curious episodes in the lead up to the 1991 Gulf War. Hill & Knowlton launched a major propaganda campaign [5] to change US citizens’ attitudes about a possible US intervention in Kuwait. Part of this campaign produced the “throwing the babies out of the incubators” hoax presented by the daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador in the US. As part of this propaganda campaign President Bush (Senior) appeared on national TV holding a copy of AI’s press release pertaining to the incubator story. It was portrayed as further proof of the incident.

… Of course the worst instance is well known, and that's the Kuwaiti dead babies report. I was on the AI USA board at that time, it was the late Fall of 1990 and, as you know, we were on the verge of going to war. There was going to be a debate coming up in the United States Congress, and a vote. And at the end of November or so, mid-November, since I was a board member, I got a pre-publication copy of the Amnesty report on the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. So I immediately read through this report and it was sloppy, it was inaccurate even its statement of applicable law. It did not seem to me that it had gone through the normal quality control process.
As for the allegation about the Iraqi soldiers taking babies out of incubators and putting them on the floor of the hospital where they did, I didn't know if that was true or not, but it certainly sounded very sensationalist to me. And as a result of that, I made an effort to hold that report back for further review, on those grounds that I gave to you. And indeed I also enlisted a fellow board member for the same reason, and he and I both tried, and I made the point, even if this story about the dead babies is true, it's completely sensationalist, and it is simply going to be used in the United States to monger for war, and could turn the tide in favor of war. And so you know, we really need to pull back on this, further review, more study.
They wouldn't do it. It was clear it was on the fast track there in London. This was not AI USA, this was in London. And it had been put on the fast track, they were ramming it through. They didn't care. Finally, I said look, let us at least put out an Errata report to accompany it on those aspects that are clearly wrong. They refused to do that either. They then put the report out, and you know what a terrible impact that had in terms of war propaganda. Of the six votes in the United States Senate that passed the resolution to go to war, several of those senators said that they were influenced by the Amnesty report. Now I want to make it clear this was not a job by Amnesty International but by London, and what happened then, when the war started, at the next AI USA board meeting, I demanded an investigation. By then it had come out that this was Kuwaiti propaganda put together by the PR firm, Hill & Knowlton, and I demanded an investigation.
Absolutely nothing happened. There was never an investigation, there was total stonewalling coming out of London. They refused ever to admit that they did anything wrong. There has never been an explanation, there has never been an apology. It's down the memory hole like 1984 and Orwell. My conclusion was that a high-level official of Amnesty International at that time, whom I will not name, was a British intelligence agent. Moreover, my fellow board member, who also investigated this independently of me, reached the exact same conclusion. So certainly when I am dealing with people who want to work with Amnesty in London, I just tell them, "Look, just understand, they're penetrated by intelligence agents, U.K., maybe U.S., I don't know, but you certainly can't trust them."
— Prof. Francis Boyle, Interview with Dennis Bernstein, CovertAction Quarterly Number 73 Summer 2002, pp. 9-12, 27.

[edit]
Duped Again?

During the Balkan wars, AI seems to have pushed yet another propaganda piece used to justify the bombing of Serbia, and to assist Croatia and the Bosnian Muslims. From Diana Johnstone's Fool's Crusade, Pluto Press 2002, p. 81:

Regardless of such discrepancies, Cigelj became a feminist heroine. In June 1993, she was honored by the Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights "for outstanding contributions to international women's rights" and the Minneapolis Star Tribune identified her as a "Bosnian Muslim victim". In 1996, she was featured in a documentary film, "Calling the Ghosts: A Story of Rape, War and Women", launched by Human Rights Watch in June 1996 at its annual film festival and distributed by Women Make Movies. Amnesty International thereafter sponsored a 25-city U.S. tour. The promotional blurb stated "Jadranka Cigelj and Nusreta Sivac, childhood friends and legal professionals, lived the lives of ordinary women in Bosnia-Herzegovina, until one day their neighbors became their tormentors. This film documents mass rapes as a wartime tactic, focusing on these two survivors, whose personal struggles transform into a larger fight for justice against the backdrop of the International War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague." Two women, one of them a professional propagandist for the Tudjman regime, became documentary evidence for "mass rapes as a wartime tactic". The film was shown on university campuses as part of programs on Yugoslavia with such celebrities as General Wesley K. Clark, Bosnian ambassador to the UN Muhamed Sacirbey, and Bianca Jagger.

A political activist such as Cigelj, working for the propaganda agency of one of the parties to the conflict, and who tells an inconsistent story, cannot be considered the most reliable witness. There was naiveté on the part of the women's groups, and sloppiness on the part of the journalists, to accept without question such a partisan source.

NB: Amnesty has not issued an apology for playing along in this deception. Furthermore, at the time there were grave doubts about Cigelj's accounts given the mounting inconsistencies. No bar for an AI sponsored 25-city tour of the US.
[edit]
Buying Humanitarian Bombing?

In 1999, AI did not reject and played along when State Dept. officials proposed the "humanitarian bombing of Serbia". When an AI director was asked to explain this decision, she answered "AI is not an anti-war organization".
[edit]
Business Ethics?

In 1991, AI set up a Amnesty Business Group. It was meant to monitor human rights observance by corporations. However, the curious thing is that it chose Sir Geoffrey Chandler to head this unit. NB: Chandler was a Shell company director, and the head of the Sustainability Council. The second curious aspect of this AI unit is the issuance of a report about a controversial oil pipeline. It is quoted as follows on its website: "Launch of Human Rights on the Line Report into the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline project and the Host Government Agreement between BP and the Turkish Government." Note that this pipeline was beset by controversy because BP overlooked the rights and interests of all the people in the path of the pipeline.
[edit]
Film Festival Censorship (2003)

AI sponsors an annual film festival focused on human rights issues. During its 2003 festival it banned the film The Revolution Will Not Be Televised under dubious circumstances. This is what Macdonald Stainsby had to say about it:

"Beginning Thursday, November 6th until Sunday the 9th, Amnesty International held their annual film festival on Human Rights in Canada. The listings were much of the usual fare for AI: Films on Tibet, Burma, Pinochet's 1973 coup in Chile, the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, even a film on Israel's secret nuclear weapons program. The festival had one other film scheduled to be the last one shown. That film had been broadcast on the CBC's 'Passionate Eye' program (twice). It had won more awards than any other film on the list of films to be put on screen at the film festival. It has been shown across Europe, including the BBC. It was removed two days before the festival, and AI still hasn't clarified why or who convinced them to do this. The film is "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised", and citing a series of contradictory reasons, the film was banned from the festival by Amnesty International, after it had already been booked and listed in all of the AI programs."

"A controversy immediately ensued, and it was Venezuelans who support the film who first noticed that the very people from Venezuela that the film exposed as human rights violators had launched a campaign against it globally, wherever people might see it. Don Wright, local region (BC Yukon) coordinator of AI, was interviewed on 'Democracy Now', a radio program in New York run on the station Pacifica. There, the arguments given were (quote): "...when we choose films we strive to choose films that are nonpartisan and nonpolitical to reflect the mandate of our organization."[6] That is a rather bizarre statement, to say the least, for an organization dealing with human rights and coming from a film festival that included topics such as a successful coup in Chile and discussions of Israeli nuclear programs. Perhaps nuclear weapons in the Middle East and military coups in South America are non-political and failed coups in South America are? I guess I'm missing something here. And nonpartisan, well – I guess the Chinese government will be invited to talk on why it maintains sovereignty over Tibet next year, no doubt that we need balance here."
— Macdonald Stainsby, After the Censorship by Amnesty International, we Need to See The Revolution Will Not Be Televised More Than Ever, Venezuelanalysis.com, Nov. 12, 2003.

There is more information on this controversy on the website of the producer of the film. NB: what appears now on the website is an abridged version of the long exchange between AI and the producer; that has now been removed.
[edit]
AI pulls out of UNESCO meeting

On May 17, 2004, AI pulled out of a UNESCO meeting. UNESCO refused to translate and publish AI International Executive Chair's article/statement. See details [7]. NB: Hoffman and Schulz have made a number of remarks indicating that AI will qualify its defense of human rights during the "war on terror". It is not clear where all this is going, but there are many questions. See John Pilger's article about this. It is these issues that may have had a bearing on the UNESCO squabble.
[edit]
Not Challenging Apartheid

Dennis Bernstein: Now, having said that about these connections between the U.S., British and Amnesty International foreign policy…
Francis Boyle: Sure, you’ll see a pretty good coincidence of the enemies that Amnesty International goes after and the interests of both the United States and British governments. Let’s take an older example — apartheid in South Africa under the former criminal regime in South Africa. Amnesty International refused adamantly to condemn apartheid in South Africa. Despite my best efforts while I was on the board, and other board members, they would not do it. They are the only human rights organization in the entire world to have refused to condemn apartheid in South Africa. Now they can give you some cock-and-bull theory about why they wouldn’t do this. But the bottom line was that the biggest supporter, economic and political supporter of the criminal apartheid regime in South Africa was the British government, followed by the United States government. And so no matter how hard we tried, no matter what we did, they would not condemn apartheid in South Africa. Now I just mention that as one among many examples.
— Prof. Francis Boyle, Interview with Dennis Bernstein, CovertAction Quarterly Number 73 Summer 2002, pp. 9-12, 27.

[edit]
Blind on Haiti

The human rights situation in Haiti in the months leading up to the coup against Jean Bertrand Aristide, and after the coup is atrocious. Joe Emersberger reports:

Aristide was twice elected President (in 1990 and in 2000). His first government was overthrown in a coup in 1991. The outcome of the 1991 coup was horrific and well documented. Thousands were murdered; tens of thousands were raped and tortured; hundreds of thousands were driven into hiding. The victims were overwhelmingly supporters of Aristide and his Lavalas movement. The 1991 and 2004 coups were both the work of the US government, Haiti's elite and their armed servants. Canada and France collaborated extensively with the planning and execution of the second coup.[8]

Various human rights organizations sent delegations to Haiti and reported on the situation, and they also found that a government-associated group (which was also instigated by US-directed groups (IFES and/or USAID)), the National Coalition for Haitian Rights (NCHR), were hostile to Aristide government (before the coup), and, after the coup, hostile to the Aristide-Lavalas movement. The human rights organizations which visited Haiti after the coup found that NCHR was compromised and biased, and proceeded to inform AI about the dubious nature of NCHR. Even though AI had been forewarned about NCHR, AI (1) utilized NCHR information, and (2) adopted the same hostility shown by NCHR towards the Aristide/Lavalas movement. While AI had protested the imprisonment of one of the leaders of the Tontons Macoute (a notorious gang/death squad under the Duvalier dictatorship), AI didn't issue any criticism or condemnation for imprisonment or torture of the legitimate Lavalas elected officials. AI never designated any Haitian prisoners with their special "prisoner of conscience" label.[9]
[edit]
Group Manipulation

Several AI chapters connected with universities in the U.S. have been taken over by groups with their own agenda. Their interest is to block criticism of certain countries, and to create a false impression that AI favors their position. There have been instances where manipulators sent "news releases" using AI letterhead (of the local group) to push their agenda. On Oct. 2002, AI-London stated that it is not their business to censor these groups (statement by Donatella Rovera when she was asked about this).
[edit]
Odd Bedfellows

On 10 December 2003, AI co-hosted the following event:

Catastrophe in Chechnya: Escaping the Quagmire
With nearly 250 persons in attendance and presentations by Zbigniew Brzezinski and Ruud Lubbers, the conference was the largest event of its kind dedicated solely to Chechnya to be held in Washington DC.
Hosted by the American Enterprise Institute and co-sponsored by The American Committee for Peace in Chechnya, Amnesty International USA, Freedom House, the Jamestown Foundation, and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, this event promises to be of great potential significance in articulating a new American attitude toward Russo-Chechen conflict.

Why is AI co-sponsoring this event? NB: all the other co-sponsors are right-wing and dubious organizations.[10]
[edit]
Double Standards

In 2 July 2004, AI called for the suspension of weapons sales to Sudan. On 16 February 2005 it called for a suspension of weapons sales to Nepal. However, although AI has shown that while it is willing to issue such calls regarding several countries, it is not willing to request an embargo of weapons sales to Israel. Donatella Rovera, the chief researcher on Israel-Palestine offered the following explanation:

"The situations in Sudan and in Israel-Occupied Territories are quite different and different norms of international law apply, which do not make it possible to call for an arms embargos on either the Israeli or the Palestinian side. The West Bank and Gaza Strip are under Israeli military occupation (not the case for the Darfour region in Sudan). Hence, certain provisions of international humanitarian law, known as the laws of war (notably the 1907 Hague Convention and the Fourth Geneva Convention) apply in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (and not in the Darfour region)." (email communication 5 July 2004).

AI is couching its double standards in dubious legalese, but consider what Prof. Francis Boyle (Professor of International Law at Univ. of Illinois Champaign) has to say about Rovera's statement:

This is total gibberish. When I was on the Board of Directors of Amnesty International USA near the end of my second term in 1990-92, we received the authority to call for an arms embargo against major human rights violators, which Israel clearly qualified for at the time and still does -- even under United States domestic law. Of course no one at AI was going to do so because pro-Israel supporters were major funders of Amnesty International USA, which in turn was a major funder of Amnesty International in London. He who pays the piper calls the tune -- especially at AIUSA Headquarters in New York and at AI Headquarters in London.[11]

[edit]
Right on time selective Human Rights reports

On 9 March 2005, AI released a human rights report on the abuse of Kurdish human rights in Syria [12]. What is odd about the report is:

1. Impecable timing. The report appears at the time the U.S. and Israel are exerting massive pressure on Syria.
2. Selectivity about Kurds. Although Kurds reside in Iraq, Turkey, Iran and Syria, the report only deals with human rights violations in Syria. At present, according to KHRP, far more systematic violations of Kurdish human rights are occuring in Iraq and Turkey than in Syria, but AI studiously ignores what is happening here.
www.sourcewatch.org...



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 07:22 AM
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reply to post by The Lass
 


ALSO that trilateral commission creator and NWO propagandist

# Margaret Bedggood — International Executive Committee [15]
# Zbigniew Brzezinski former member of the Board of Directors [16]
# Lord Hoffman, Director of Amnesty International Charity Ltd (2000); "Lord Hoffman sits as a judge in the Privy Council in a capacity completely independent of Amnesty International."[17]


ALSO that trilateral commission creator and NWO propagandist Zbigniew Brzezinski is a member ,



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 07:27 AM
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Originally posted by The Lass
reply to post by A Conscience
 


It's got nothing to do with our recent history.

It's got everything to do with some here now relegating Chinese human rights to second place behind the economic survival of the United States.

Kowtowing to dictators, that's what it is. Shame on you.


I think you're being a little harsh on A Conscience, there, TL. And I'm not sure who here is relegating Chinese human rights etc. Finding you hard to follow at this point.

As for kowtowing to dictators... there are dictators all over the place. I can, and do, occasionally take to the streets to protest certain actions by certain people. I just want to make sure that I'm not caught up in the shell game whereby our mate from a few years back is suddenly the New Hitler.

There is a LOT of spin in our news media. Sometimes it's subtle, sometimes it isn't. One thing I found particularly encouraging recently, actually, is that at a time when the US was banging the drum for attacking Iran for having presumably the same imaginary WMDs that Saddam didn't have, the BBC started running quite a few programmes about Iran that successfully humanised the place to the extent that one would hope that the Great British Public would be up in arms if an attack went ahead.

Now that's, if you like, positive spin. But, although it's harder to spot in the British than the American media, negative spin nonetheless exists. And part of it is playing down the kinds of things that A Conscience refers to. Knowintg the context in which we operate is important, to me at least.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 07:48 AM
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Originally posted by Atomic
The post is about China


Wrong, wrong, wrong. The post is about disinformation, that's why it's in the disinfo forum. Please try to keep up. The context is information about China, whether it's correct, and whether the reporting of it serves the agenda of our political masters.

I suggest you read up on the goings on in Tibet during the past month

You think we don't know about the abuses in Tibet? It's just that we're doing just the same thing in two countries at the moment. Iraq in particular has been brutalised and asset-stripped but our media portray it as though, yes, it's been difficult, and the Iraqis are a shiftless, thankless bunch... but we're getting there! Hooray for the surge! Hooray for nation-building! Hooray for our boys! (who are also victims in this sorry deal.)

I'm just trying to pick apart the nature of the reportage which is a subtly different matter from what is actually occurring on the ground.

In this instance, what's emerging is that if anything, the Mail is under-reporting the seriousness of the situation. The fact of the prominence and placement of this reportage, and the agendas it serves, is a separate issue.


Imagine Texas being closed down to everyone for 1 month.


Having lived in Galveston for a while, I don't think it would be much of a loss.


China has issues, I think the thread needs to discuss it.


That's what The Lass' original post was for. There's plenty of discussion of the issues that China has, there. The purpose of this thread was to offer the article she referenced as an example of spin. It's not, after all, such a perfect example as I had thought, but what is on-topic in this thread is a discussion of whether there's an agenda being served, and, indeed, of whether Amnesty serves that agenda.


I don't think "deflecting" the subject towards the US is what this board section is about. Perhaps you should create a new thread to explain your dislike for US policy.


It's not a deflection at all. This thread is about possible spin. That means that US policy (because the UK is simply an instrument of that policy, let's not have any illusions about this) is absolutely on the table.

And I think you should perhaps research connections between the CIA, the Dalai Lama, and those organisations that support Tibet. Bear in mind that the moral rights and wrongs of the situation and the political agendas being worked out are separate issues and not to be confused or conflated.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 08:19 AM
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Originally posted by visible_villain
Ok, so maybe you're serious - but, in that case you've gotta be less than 30-years old


No, I'm rather older than that, and probably know rather more about recent history than you seem to.

You also don't seem to quite get the point of this thread. I'll say it again (sigh), I'm not defending China.

And if you read the article that details the spin behind Tiananmen Square and how it was presented in Western media, you might start to understand why I take such a jaundiced view of articles like the one in the Mail.

The article (linked by A Conscience) details not merely the way the incident was spun: it draws on a long history of misrepresentation of events to suit Western political agendas:


This is not the first time Beijing has been condemned for something that did not happen. Perhaps the worst example was the Sino-Indian 1962 frontier war. As China desk officer in Canberra's foreign affairs bureaucracy at the time, I had to watch on impotently as the world, including Canberra, accused China of making an unprovoked attack on India when the evidence in front of me proved clearly that it was India that had first attacked China, across even the furthermost line of control demanded by India. It would be more than a decade before that evidence finally found the light of day. In the meantime, the myth of Chinese aggressiveness would be used to justify a raft of Western atrocities in Asia, the Vietnam intervention especially.


source



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 10:25 AM
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reply to post by rich23
 

Here's what the same author said in another article the same newspaper -


Birth of a massacre myth

When armed troops were finally sent in, they too met hostile crowds, but they kept advancing. Dozens of buses and troop-carrying vehicles were torched by the crowds, some with their crews trapped inside. In the panicky fighting afterward, hundreds, maybe even thousands, of civilians and students were killed. But that was a riot, not a deliberate massacre. And it did not happen in Tiananmen Square. So why all the reports of a "massacre"?
Source :

So, even he admits that thousands of unarmed civilians ( and again, IMHO, at least that many were ) were killed by Chinese army troops in Tienanmen.

If you want to split hairs over what is a massacre and what is not a massacre I would prefer not to play that game.

And let's not dispute whose knowledge of so called history is bigger than the other's, either.

As far as the track-record of Chinese policy on organ-harvesting goes, I have heard credible first-hand accounts of the Chinese harvesting of organs from unconsenting Tibetan prisoners being housed in Chinese jails, for instance.

And why ? Because they can ...

In a sense you are correct - western governments do seem to be getting more and more each day like their elder national brother, China.

In that vein, I'd guess we'll be expecting to soon see over here in our neck of the woods some pretty shocking non-massacres committed by government troops against unarmed citizens engaging in rightful protest activities ...


You also don't seem to quite get the point of this thread. I'll say it again (sigh), I'm not defending China.

Please review what I quoted before from your OP, since you seem to have ( sigh ) forgotten it again -


that China is demonised for doing things that other countries do as a matter of routine. I'm not saying that these things are good, but that China's being singled out where other countries (including the US) are similarly culpable.

For the person who made this statement to keep claiming he is not dending China is just silly ...

And, fine, defend China all you want to. It's your right to do so. But at least be honest, first with yourself and then by extension everyone else that defending China is precisely what you're doing ...

Have a good one



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 12:10 PM
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Originally posted by visible_villain

that China is demonised for doing things that other countries do as a matter of routine. I'm not saying that these things are good, but that China's being singled out where other countries (including the US) are similarly culpable.

For the person who made this statement to keep claiming he is not dending China is just silly ...


No, it isn't.

The US committed war crimes in Fallujah twice since the start of the occupation. A peaceful demonstration was fired upon. After a while, tactics familiar from Nazi-occupied Europe were used. Then came the white phosphorous.

The US has been running death squads in Iraq since John Negroponte was sent in in 2004. He'd organised similar squads in Central and South America. That's the indiscriminate murder of civilians. Where was your outrage then? These are governments a lot closer to home, using your money and mine to commit atrocities on which our media is silent.

Now our media is telling us to get hot under the collar about China. Forgive me for not being obedient and being suspcious of the propaganda our side puts out. Forgive me for not being servile.

Where was your outrage then? No, you save it for our official enemies like a good little boy.

To say that we concentrate on China when we ourselves do things that are just as bad, if not worse, is not defending China. Do try to keep up with the premise of the thread, there's a good boy.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 12:39 PM
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reply to post by rich23
 


Thank you, Rich, for another great contribution. It clarifies many things & provides a better illustration of your line of thought, for that I'm grateful.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) is probably the one document from which most would associate those rights and freedoms to which all of us are entitled from birth.

The Declaration pre-dates the establishment of the People's Republic of China by a year. However, one major contributor to its drafting was Dr. Pen-chun Chan, a Confucian scholar. It was his strong belief that supposedly Western concepts of human rights, those we know today and as advocated by Voltaire and Diderot, had in fact been hugely influenced by Chinese philsophy. Serving as Vice-Chairman of the Human Rights Commission he brought a singularly unique Chinese perspective to their proceedings.

So I doubt we can claim that human rights, as we see them today, are a particularly Western concept, that they were drafted by the Judeo-Christian world without any due regard to the sensibilities of others. Perhaps this Chinese contribution was actually more valuable than most of us appreciate. And it perhaps negates some of your criticism about cultural assumptions driving the agenda against the current Chinese authorities. If anything it requires of the Chinese to uphold some of their own core values, morality, virtue, peace, health, naturalness & vitality being but a few.

And on all counts these death trucks are an epic fail by even their own standards, let alone ours.

But do we have the right to criticise others when we're hardly innocents ourselves ? I think we do, in fact we must. We must subject foreign governments to scrutiny when it comes to human rights abuses because those oft abused seldom have freedom of expression.

If not us, who ?

You've mentioned organ donation and the issue of consent. On that too I disagree. A person facing death cannot give proper, informed consent for his organs to be removed after death, I think any reasonable person would appreciate that. Such a thing is a desperate cruelty for a condemned man & I simply cannot condone that at all. It's an abominable practice.

The Daily Mail does actually have a fairly good track record when it comes to condemning the human rights abuses of our friends in Saudi, you know. I'm old enough to remember the furore caused by the TV drama documentary“Death of a Princess”, an account of the life and death of Princess Masha'il bint Fahd al Saud. She was executed by the Saudi authorities for adultery, when in fact all she had done was fall in love & have relations with a man outside marriage. The Mail & its contemporaries were ruthless in their condemnation of the Saudi regime for the backwardness of their legal system, and were as equally excoriating in their condemnation of a British Foreign Secretary who apologised to the Saudis for the broadcast being shown at all.

Even today, a cursory glance through the Mail reveals many stories where our Saudi friends are routinely damned for their excesses, whether it be their public beheadings for robbery, to women beheaded for being witches to rape victims being lashed. The Mail, that harlot of Fleet Street and the newspaper I'd never buy, is as condemnatory of the House of Saud as it is of China, and rightly so, they deserve nothing less.

I honestly don't consider the Mail's article to be part of a general campaign against China. If China adhered to international agreements such articles would never be written.



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 12:48 PM
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reply to post by rich23
 


Where was your outrage then? No, you save it for our official enemies like a good little boy.

Conjecture, off-topic and ad-hominem - please keep it clean, my friend.


Obviously you're a well-informed and intelligent person - if what you're trying to say is that western cultures are becoming like the Chinese communists, then just come out and say it !

Who knows ? Some here may even agree with you



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 03:14 PM
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Originally posted by visible_villain
Conjecture, off-topic and ad-hominem - please keep it clean, my friend.


No. It's based on your mote-and-beam approach. Condemn China from a moral high ground we don't occupy. Did you get similarly angry when the US laid siege to Fallujah and used chemical weapons on it? I note that you haven't answered that question.


Obviously you're a well-informed and intelligent person - if what you're trying to say is that western cultures are becoming like the Chinese communists, then just come out and say it !


This displays a disheartening lack of both perspective and historical knowledge, and an ideological commitment to "Communism"="evil" worthy of any well-indoctrinated American. Perhaps you'd like to tally the number of countries invaded by China v. those invaded by the US since the Communists have been in power? Or evaluate the relative death toll caused by the two countries? And then reflect which of those policies you yourself might be in a position to influence through dissent?

"Becoming like the Chinese communists", indeed. Perhaps you should look at the life and career of Smedley Butler for an education in the reality of the way the US relates to the rest of the world.

Let's just briefly review how many countries the US and China have each attacked since 1948, when the communists under Mao took control.

China: Tibet, Vietnam
US: Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Nicaragua, Panama, Grenada, Haiti, Iraq, Afghanistan. Plus fomented coups and ran death squads in Iran, Iraq, Greece, Chile, Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, El Salvador, Haiti, Guatemala, Dominican Republic...

Let alone the number of countries where the US has interfered in internal politics.

By comparison, China's negative effects around the world are insignificant.

That list is just off the top of my head. I did a very quick search on China to try and bulk up their side, but couldn't come up with anything. I cheerfully admit I might have missed something off their side of the equation, but it's ignorance, not wilful omission. I'm happy for you to add things to their side. But you'd have to add rather a lot to avoid the conclusion that if the US, as "leader of the free world" (what a joke) became more like China, that would be no bad thing. It wouldn't make them "good", because the Chinese government is not, as we've seen. It just might make them substantially less of a malign influence throughout the world.

As I say, the thread is not about defending China. They have done, and are doing, all sorts of appalling things. I'm concerned, in this thread and in this forum, with the way information about that is manipulated to influence opinion about our "enemies" and our "friends". If you think I'm defending China, please point to any occasion on this thread where I've said how wonderful they are.



that China is demonised for doing things that other countries do as a matter of routine. I'm not saying that these things are good, but that China's being singled out where other countries (including the US) are similarly culpable.


For the person who made this statement to keep claiming he is not dending China is just silly ...


No, it isn't. I'm trying to point out, repeatedly, that there is often an agenda behind news stories, which is something you keep confusing with "defending China". Please try and grasp the difference. If you're not capable of seeing that distinction, you don't understand why this thread is in the disinfo forum.

[edit on 30-3-2009 by rich23]



posted on Mar, 30 2009 @ 04:35 PM
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reply to post by rich23
 

Certainly when I started to 'wake-up' from the MSM induced 'stupor' which the vast preponderance of individuals eventually ( if they're 'lucky' ) find themselves immersed in, I went through the following stages -


Based on my own experience and the nature of our dialog so far, I am thinking you may be somewhere in the stage 2-to-4 area, maybe 'bouncing around a little.

Hang in there, it gets better.



posted on Mar, 31 2009 @ 01:06 AM
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reply to post by visible_villain
 



Obviously you're a well-informed and intelligent person - if what you're trying to say is that western cultures are becoming like the Chinese communists, then just come out and say it !


No, Western cultures will never be like the the Chinese communists for one big fundamental reason. The Chinese communists has not yet mastered or lacked the ability to sanitise dastardly actions with fanciful words. For eg.

Collateral damage (bomb the #s out of the civilian population)
Rendition (torture the living daylights out of the poor bastard, but do it somewhere else)
Friendly fire (Oops sorry! Blown you to smithereens by mistake)
Shock & awe (make sure even the earth worms are dead)
Neutralize (Make sure he's really dead and one more to the head)
Embedded Journalist (You bloody well report what I tell you to!)
Unilateral Journalist (Don't want to be embedded? Hey guys, see who can shoot one first.)
Operation Iraqi Freedom (We want the freedom to take your oil)

This is one big fundamental difference in the culture. If the Chinese communist had called the vans Mobile Utilities for Improvement of Society, it may have had a better reception from the west.

The art of cloaking inhuman actions with manipulative jargon to justify actions as morally righteous and above reprieve with forgivable consequences. This is far from the mindset of the Chinese communists which, I presume, prefers crude and efficient methods. With over a billion people, you can't get too finicky about things.

It is just like execution with a firing squad (barbaric) or the bloodless method of lethal injection (morally right) favored by the US. Never mind that lethal injection sometimes takes as long as 30 mins to kill with immeasurable pain suffered by the poor bastard. At least it doesn't stain the bed with blood. But oh, on the other hand, it is so messy with the bullet. Blood everywhere!

What it all boils down to is western hypocrisy. It's time you guys open your eyes in front of the mirror.

As I said before, I'm not condoning the actions of the Chinese communist, and if I may add, find it repugnant on many issues.

However, how can you start criticizing others when there's so many skeletons in your closet? Wouldn't the logical thing to do is to clean out your own closet first and then start moralizing on others?

The danger of this practice is that the West will keep on its present path while scapegoating on other countries.




[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]

[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]

[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]



posted on Mar, 31 2009 @ 03:09 AM
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reply to post by The Lass
 



But do we have the right to criticise others when we're hardly innocents ourselves ? I think we do, in fact we must. We must subject foreign governments to scrutiny when it comes to human rights abuses because those oft abused seldom have freedom of expression.


I do admire your passion in campaigning for human rights issue. I'm behind you all the way on that. What I can't understand is why this particular issue? Would you have a list of most urgent need for action and this one is right at the top? And would there be on that list some that involves the US?

I'm not trying to be facetious. I am trying to understand where you position yourself, and if you are looking at the whole thing with an honest unbiased viewpoint. In your comments, you seem to skirt or avoid putting any opinions on the west

I know its not right for me to compare my ideology with that of yours. In my case, the Palestinain issue rankles me greatly. The situation is so unjust and one sided, that I find it inexplicable that the US (champion of the free) find it fit to be a partner in crime with Israel to inflict so much cruelty, death and destruction on one of the world's most impoverished nation. On top of all that, it sees fit to be complicit with Israel sanction on Gaza that is producing a humanitarian crisis of immense proportions.

Movement is now all but impossible and supplies of food and water, sewage treatment and basic healthcare has either collapse or on the verge of doing so. The economy has disintegrated, unemployment is expected to rise to 50%, hospitals are suffering 12-hour power cuts and schools are failing - all creating a "humanitarian implosion", according to a coalition of eight UK humanitarian and human rights groups.

To put the icing on the cake, if you could perversely put it that way, It sees fit to use the IDF as a means to test its latest weapons on a helpless and hopeless civilian population. How much more can one kick a dead donkey!!

Tibet and China's human rights pales to incomparison when you consider the poorest nation on earth pitted against the full might of the US and Israel.

How could this genocide be happening with the full consent or disinterest from the righteous western world? The main culprit to this unfathomable state of affairs being the US and its unquestioning support of Israel criminal actions.

Has Israel owned the exclusive right to the term holocaust?

I would genuinely like to know your opinion on this almighty injustice or at least give some thought to why the US & UK chosed to ignore this gross violation of human rights while at the same time zeroing on China and Tibet, etc.



[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]

[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]

[edit on 31-3-2009 by A Conscience]



posted on Mar, 31 2009 @ 07:39 AM
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reply to post by visible_villain
 



In that vein, I'd guess we'll be expecting to soon see over here in our neck of the woods some pretty shocking non-massacres committed by government troops against unarmed citizens engaging in rightful protest activities ...


You don't have to wait at all, conveniently hidden in the annals of history, the seldom mentioned Kent State shootings, also known as the May 4 massacre or Kent State massacre (1970).

The Ohio National Guards opened fire on students protesting about American Invasion of Cambodia (from 1969 to 1973, US bombs killed between 50,000 and 150,000 Cambodian peasants).

Four students were killed and nine others were wounded, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis. Correction. Not all the students that was shot was protesting. Some were just walking by or watching from a distance.

Of course, its best to forget unpleasant incidents like this. Its better to look overseas and find more barbaric events to condemn and commemorate.




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