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The State Department of the United States released its Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011 on May 24, 2012. As in previous years, the reports are full of over-critical remarks on the human rights situation in nearly 200 countries and regions as well as distortions and accusations concerning the human rights cause in China. However, the United States turned a blind eye to its own woeful human rights situation and kept silent about it. The Human Rights Record of the United States in 2011 is hereby prepared to reveal the true human rights situation of the United States to people across the world and urge the United States to face up to its own doings.
On civil and political rights
In the United States, the violation of citizens' civil and political rights is severe. It is lying to itself when the United States calls itself the land of the free (The Washington Post, Jan 14, 2012).
Claiming to defend 99 percent of the US population against the wealthiest, the Occupy Wall Street protest movement tested the US political, economic and social systems. Ignited by severe social and economic inequality, uneven distribution of wealth and high unemployment, the movement expanded to sweep the United States after its inception in September 2011. Whatever the deep reasons for the movement are, the single fact that thousands of protesters were treated in a rude and violent way, with many of them being arrested - the act of willfully trampling on people' s freedom of assembly, demonstration and speech - could provide a glimpse to the truth of the so-called US freedom and democracy.
Almost 1,000 people were reportedly arrested in first two weeks of the movement, according to British and Australian media (The Guardian, Oct 2, 2011). The New York police arrested more than 700 protesters for alleged blocking traffic over Brooklyn Bridge on Oct 1, and some of them were handcuffed to the bridge before being shipped by police vehicles (uschinapress.com, Oct 3, 2011).
On US violations of human rights against other nations
The US has been pursuing hegemony in the world, grossly trampling upon the sovereignty of other countries and capriciously violating human rights against other nations. It "appears more and more to be contributing to international disorder" (After the Empire: The Breakdown of the American Order, by Emmanuel Todd).
The US-led wars, albeit alleged to be "humanitarian intervention" efforts and for "the rise of a new democratic nation", created humanitarian disasters instead. For Iraqis, the death toll in the US-initiated Iraq war stands at 655,000 (Tribune Business News, Dec 15, 2011). According to figures released by the Iraq Body Count, at least 103,536 civilians were killed in the Iraq war (Reuters, Dec 18, 2011). In 2011, there were an average of 6.5 deaths per day from suicide attacks and vehicle bombs (www.iraqbodycount.org). It is estimated that civilian casualties in the military campaign in Afghanistan could exceed 31,000 (Tribune Business News, Oct 17, 2011). According to a news report, on May 28, 2011, a US-led NATO airstrike killed 14 civilians and wounded six others in the southern region of Afghanistan (The New York Times, May 29, 2011). Separately, on May 25, a total of 18 Afghan civilians and 20 police were killed in a NATO airstrike in the province of Nuristan (BBC News, May 29, 2011). The British newspaper The Guardian reported on March 11, 2012, that an American soldier stationed in Afghanistan burst into three civilian homes in two villages in the small hours of March 11, shot dead 16 sleeping Afghan villagers, injured five others and burned the dead bodies. The victims included nine children and three women. According to a Reuters report, witness accounts said there were several US soldiers involved (Reuters, March 11, 2012
The US Patriot Act and Homeland Security Act both have clauses about monitoring the Internet, giving the government or law enforcement organizations power to monitor and block any Internet content “harmful to national security.” Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act of 2010 stipulates that the federal government has “absolute power” to shut down the Internet under a declared national emergency.
According to a report by British newspaper the Guardian dated Mar 17, 2011, the US military is developing software that will let it secretly manipulate social media sites by using fake online personas, and will allow the US military to create a false consensus in online conversations, crowd out unwelcome opinions and smother commentaries or reports that do not correspond with its own objectives. The project aims to control and restrict free speech on the Internet (The Guardian, Mar 17, 2011). According to a commentary by the Voice of Russia on Feb 2, 2012, a subsidiary under the US government’ s security agency employed several hundred analysts, who were tasked with monitoring private archives of foreign Internet users in a secret way, and were able to censor as many as five million microblogging posts. The US Department of Homeland Security routinely searched key words like “illegal immigrants,” “virus,” “death,” and “burst out” on Twitter with fake accounts and then secretly traced the Internet users who forwarded related content