Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Human Rights?

So Obama is going to meet the Dalai Lama...and (surprise) China is not happy. I remember back when Chinese/American relations were at their peak. There was an instance when the Dalai Lama visited Washington, and Obama refused to visit him. Why? Because he did not want to upset China. Economics won that exchange. Now that China is not so high on our butt-kissing list, it is okay to see the Dalai Lama.

And China is clearly losing favor with America. It has been a while, but think back before the big "Google" fiasco. Anyone remember when China tried to map the electrical grid of the US? Chinese hackers did not act alone, nor did they necessarily lead the attack. They were assisted by the likes of Russian hackers, among others. There again, economics wins over practicality. If I caught a friend trying to gain access to my laptop, I would not pursue further dealings with the person...would anyone else? Now fast-forward to the "Google" fiasco. Chinese hackers hacked dozens of corporate and personal e-mail accounts affiliated with Chinese human rights activists based in a few countries, including the US. That is not mentioning the new currency problem between China and the US. Then, Hillary Clinton tried to lecture China on human rights.

Now, Clinton has moved on to Iran. In July of 2009, three American hikers were arrested in Iran and accused of spying. A fourth hiker was present, but he stayed behind in Iraq because he felt sick. When the other three hikers crossed the border (innocently or knowingly), they were arrested by Iranian authorities. Recently, the Iranian President (Mahmoud Ahmadinejad) voiced wishes to trade the three US captives for Iranians currently resting in US prisons. Clinton, in her infinite wisdom, has decided not to swap prisoners with Iran. Iran is doing exactly what it should do to get its citizens back [EDIT: By "citizens," I mean "operatives"]. Hillary Clinton has dropped the ball. Instead of the US defending the rights of citizens overseas, she is hoping the Iranian government will suddenly come to its senses and release them. I am not saying they should exchange prisoners without question, but she cannot expect the Iranian government to release the captives based on humanitarian grounds...this is ignorance at its finest. Unless there is an Iranian election, that region has no reason to make any attempts to gain favor with the US. I think past failed negotiations have shown exactly how opposing forces view the human rights of Americans...Nick Burg proved this when he was kidnapped and killed after the US government refused a similar prisoner exchange with terrorist groups in Iraq. And recent convictions showed how the American government views the human rights of its opposition when multiple CIA agents were convicted on kidnapping and torture charges in Italy. An earlier blog I posted referring to John Gotti also shows how, at times, the American justice system does not support human rights. The Patriot Act is further proof. How, then, can the Obama administration so brazenly declare that America is the pillar of human rights? America is a lot more advanced than other countries (thank you [partially] free speech) in this regard, but everyone knows that problems exist...there is no denying that. There is no such thing as a righteous government, that I have seen.

Furthermore, the captives (reportedly students) just happened to go out for a stroll in that area. Why? It is a warzone over there. Common sense tells me not to wander in such areas. The fourth hiker, who did not cross the border, has reportedly told his grandmother not to talk to reporters. Why not? Seems a little strange. I would want my story to be known. America needs to protect its citizens, but its citizens need to know that America will, obviously, not do for them what they cannot do for themselves.

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