Posts Tagged UN

UN Steps-up Syria Intervention

Now Kofi Annan AND Ban-Ki Moon have issued a JOINT STATEMENT, condemning Syria in the “STRONGEST POSSIBLE TERMS”. Hold onto your seats guys, this shit just got serious!

Fighting Assad one strongly worded statement at a time | Article | The Punch.

The Secretary-General and the Joint Special Envoy condemn in the strongest possible terms the killing, confirmed by United Nations observers, of dozens of men, women and children and the wounding of hundreds more in the village of El-Houleh, near Homs.  Observers from the United Nations Supervision Mission in Syria have viewed the bodies of the dead and confirmed from an examination of ordnance that artillery and tank shells were fired at a residential neighbourhood.

It seems that the UN observers are doing a great job observing more things for the UN to condemn, and the UN leadership is issuing condemnations right on cue. As Tory Maguire said in that rather aptly titled post that I linked to, “well that ought to do the trick.”

I think Jeffrey Goldberg had the best critique of this devastating strategy being employed by the UN, the US and the rest of the international community:

Obama Hits Syria With Brutal Blast of Adverbs – Bloomberg.

Almost 10,000 people [now over 13,000] have died in the current Syrian uprising, and each passing day brings the killing and torture of more civilians, including many children.

Some critics say the U.S. has shamed itself by not intervening aggressively on behalf of Syria’s rebels and dissidents.

They’re wrong. The Obama administration hasn’t helped to arm the rebels, nor has it created safe havens for persecuted dissidents. But it has done something far more important: It has provided the Syrian opposition with very strong language to describe Assad’s various atrocities.

The administration’s unprecedented verbal and written sorties against the Assad regime have included some of the most powerful adjectives, adjectival intensifiers and adverbs ever aimed at an American foe. This campaign has helped Syrians understand, among other things, that the English language contains many synonyms for “repulsive.”

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Covert racism and the people we don’t want to know about

Sobering stuff from former South Sudanese Slave Simon Deng. Here is a record of the things that the world tends to ignore through our “we don’t care about black people” policy.

If you’re about to tell me you do care about black people, I call bullshit. The $20 you threw into a Somalia aid relief basket does not count. Look at this, I bet you had no idea this kind of thing was happening:

Everybody at the United Nations is concerned about the so-called Palestinian refugees. They dedicated a separate agency to provide for them; this agency, UNWRA, treats them with a special privilege.

Meanwhile, my people, ethnically cleansed, murdered and enslaved, are relatively ignored. The UN even resisted using the word “slavery” to describe the enslavement of tens of thousands of my people. Why? Because slavery is a crime against humanity, apparently no one committing it wanted to end up before an international court. When Khartoum insisted that the term “abducted people” be substituted for the word “slaves,” the UN, caved to Arab pressure and agreed. Try that in America. Try calling Frederick Douglas an “abducted person.” It is outrageous.

The UN refuses to tell the world the truth about the root causes of Sudan’s conflicts. Take Darfur, for example. Who knows really what is happening in Darfur? It is not a “tribal conflict.” It is a conflict rooted in Arab colonialism, as it has typically been practiced in Africa. In Darfur, a region in the Western Sudan everybody is Muslim. Everybody is Muslim because the Arabs invaded the North of Africa and converted the indigenous people to Islam In the eyes of the Islamists in Khartoum, the Darfuris are not Muslim enough. And they also do not want to be Arabized. They like their own African languages and dress and customs. They resist Arabization. The Arab response is genocide. But nobody tells the truth about Darfur.

In the Nuba Mountains, another region of Sudan, genocide is taking place as I speak. The regime is targeting the black Africans — Muslims and Christians. This happened to the Nuba people before. In the 1990’s hundreds of thousands were murdered; a large number of women were raped; children were abducted and forcibly converted to Islam. Nobody at the UN told the truth about the Nuba Mountains.

See? We don’t care about the Africans.

Look at the pages of the New York Times, or the record of the UN condemnations, What you will find is “Israeli crimes” and Palestinian suffering. My people have been driven off the front pages by the exaggerations of Palestinian suffering. Why? Because what Israel does is portrayed as a Western sin that we are all supposed to address.

The truth is that the West commits a real sin when it abandons us: the actual victims of non-Westerns. Our suffering has become almost taboo.

And there’s more. We also don’t care about atrocities carried out by Arabs. We care about things done to Arabs, but not about things they do.

That means that when Arabs do things to each other, we’re in an awkward position. We don’t know whether we should care, so we care selectively. We care about Libya and Egypt but not Bahrain and Syria. We don’t particularly care about Arab women, but we will jump to defend Muslim sensibilities.

And while we’re navigating this convoluted web of post-colonial guilt and patronising racism, this kind of thing is happening to people like Simon Deng:

I was only nine years old when I was made a slave. An Arab neighbor named Abdullahi tricked me into following him to a boat destined to Northern Sudan where he gave me as a gift to his family. For three and a half years I was their slave going through something that no child should ever go through: brutal beatings and humiliations; working around the clock; sleeping on the ground with animals; eating the family’s left-overs. During those three years I was unable to say the word “no.” All I could say was “yes,” “yes,” “yes.”

The United Nations knew about the brutal enslavement of South Sudanese by the Arabs from the early days of the conflict. Human Right Watch issued extensive reports about the issue. These reports gathered dust on UN shelves. It took UNICEF – under pressure from the Jewish –led American Anti-Slavery Group — sixteen years to acknowledge what was happening.

As soon as the Sudanese government and the Arab League pressured UNICEF, the UN agency backtracked, and proceeded to criticize the Non-Governmental Organizations that worked to liberate Sudanese slaves. In 1998, Dr. Gaspar Biro, the courageous UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Sudan who reported on slavery, resigned in protest of the UN’s actions.

And who do we really care about?

Well, it’s been going on for millenia and why break a good tradition? The Jews of course.

So, yes … my claim may be a radical claim: I claim that the victims who suffer most from the UN’s anti-Israel policy are not just the Israelis but all those people who have to be ignored in order for the UN to tell its big lie against Israel: all those victims of non Western abuse, especially all those victims of Arab and Muslim abuse: women, ethnic minorities, religious minorities, homosexuals, in the Arab and Muslim world. These are the biggest victims of UN Israel hatred.

Everyone reading this is racist (you don’t care about black people), sexist (you don’t care about Arab women) and totally ignorant (you have no idea what’s really going on in Africa and in large parts of Asia). I challenge anyone to prove me wrong.

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Violence in Syria over?

Maybe, maybe not. See HERE for more information.

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Lemons: the secret ingredient?

Thomas Friedman reckons he has a recipe for peace all figured out – just re-word the Palestinian’s UN stehood bid to sound more like Obama’s policy and all will be well.

What to Do With Lemons – NYTimes.com.

How about a different approach?

If the Palestinians want to take this whole problem back to where it started — the U.N. — I say let’s do it. But let’s think much bigger and with more imagination.

On Nov. 29, 1947, the U.N. passed General Assembly Resolution 181, partitioning Palestine into two homes for two peoples — described as “Independent Arab and Jewish States.” This is important. That is exactly how Resolution 181 described the desired outcome of partition: an “Arab” state next to a “Jewish” state.

So why don’t we just update Resolution 181 and take it through the more prestigious Security Council? It could be a simple new U.N. resolution: “This body reaffirms that the area of historic Palestine should be divided into two homes for two peoples — a Palestinian Arab state and a Jewish state. The dividing line should be based on the 1967 borders — with mutually agreed border adjustments and security arrangements for both sides. This body recognizes the Palestinian state as a member of the General Assembly and urges both sides to enter into negotiations to resolve all the other outstanding issues.” Very simple.

Each side would get something vital provided it gives the other what it wants. The Palestinians would gain recognition of statehood and U.N. membership, within provisional boundaries, with Israel and America voting in favor. And the Israelis would get formal U.N. recognition as a Jewish state — with the Palestinians and Arabs voting in favor.

Moreover, the Palestinians would get negotiations based on the 1967 borders and Israel would get a U.N.-U.S. assurance that the final border would be shaped in negotiations between the parties, with land swaps, so theoretically the 5 percent of the West Bank where 80 percent of the settlers live could be traded for parts of pre-1967 Israel.

Both sides would have the framework for resuming negotiations they can live with. Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu of Israel told the U.S. Congress that he was prepared for a two-state solution and painful compromises, but wants Israel accepted as a Jewish state with defensible borders. The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, has insisted that the 1967 border be the basis for any negotiations, and he wants to negotiate with Israel as a sovereign equal.

Meanwhile, the U.S., rather than being isolated in a corner with Israel, can get credit for restarting talks — without remaining stuck on the settlements issue.

And then we could all hold hands and sip lemonade under a rainbow, right? I feel like this could be less a magic ingredient and more a columnist losing his grasp on reality…

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Well…so much for that unilateral statehood idea

In his original Middle East speech, Obama spoke-out against this idea that the Palestinian Authority would unilaterally declare a state in September and be accepted into the UN, affirming that a negotiated settlement is the only way to find a peace deal. I completely support this position – declaring a state without solving the key issues (borders, refugees, security and Jerusalem) would probably just result in another war.

Well, it seems as if the President of the UN General Assembly has put that little doozy to bed. Unlucky Abu Mazen.

‘Palestinian state bid at UN can’… JPost – Diplomacy & Politics

The Palestinians cannot circumvent the UN Security Council to avoid a likely US veto if they try to join the United Nations as a sovereign state later this year, a top UN official said on Friday.

But the official made clear a US veto would not put the issue of Palestinian statehood and UN membership to rest.

And almost symultaneously, the G8 released a statement to a similar effect. Pay particular attention to the lines in bold.

Renewed commitment for freedom and democracy – French Presidency of the G-8.

67. We are convinced that the historic changes throughout the region make the solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through negotiations more important, not less. Aspirations of the peoples in the region need to be heeded including that of the Palestinians for a viable and sovereign State and that of Israelis for security and regional integration. The time to resume the Peace Process is now.

a. Negotiations are the only way toward a comprehensive and lasting resolution to the conflict. The framework for these negotiations is well known. We urge both parties to return to substantive talks with a view to concluding a framework agreement on all final status issues. To that effect, we express our strong support for the vision of Israeli-Palestinian peace outlined by President Obama on May 19, 2011.

b. We appreciate the efforts and the progress made by the Palestinian Authority and the leadership of President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad as they are building a viable State as recently commended by the IMF, the World Bank and the ad hoc liaison Committee.

c. We look forward to the prospect of the second donors’ conference for Palestine in Paris, also in view of the resumption of negotiations.

d. We call on Israel and the Palestinian Authority to abide by existing co-operation agreements and to abstain from unilateral measures that could hamper progress and further reforms. We call for the easing of the situation in Gaza.

e. We demand the unconditional release of the abducted soldier Gilad Shalit without delay.

Why is this particularly significant? The G8 includes the US, UK, France and Russia – four out of the five permanent Security Council powers (excluding China), who all have veto power. This puts the Palestinian chances of unilateral statehood at slim to nil. Ah well, back to the negotiating table?

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The last month in Cut and Paste

Goldstone Report

Judge Richard Goldstone commented in the Washington Post on an 18-month review of the UN-mandated report that he prepared in September 2009 investigating Israel’s Gaza incursion.

He recognised that Israel did not deliberately fire on civilians and condemned Hamas for doing so and then failing to investigate it.

Our main recommendation was for each party to investigate, transparently and in good faith, the incidents referred to in our report…Israel has done this to a significant degree; Hamas has done nothin

At minimum I hoped that in the face of a clear finding that its members were committing serious war crimes, Hamas would curtail its attacks. Sadly, that has not been the case. Hundreds more rockets and mortar rounds have been directed at civilian targets in southern Israel.

That comparatively few Israelis have been killed by the unlawful rocket and mortar attacks from Gaza in no way minimizes the criminality. The U.N. Human Rights Council should condemn these heinous acts in the strongest terms.

Funny thing is, Hamas had promised to investigate it – as Mousa Abu Marzook, the deputy chairman of the Hamas political bureau in Damascus said last year when the report was adopted by the UN Human Rights Council.

We thank our people, all those who support to submit again this report to the human rights committee and all the countries who voted for the report…We will co-operate with this report and we will establish a new committee to investigate.

In fact, take another look at that:

The UN human rights council has endorsed the Goldstone report on Israel’s war on Gaza, which accuses the military of using disproportionate force as well as laying charges of war crimes on Israeli occupation forces and Hamas.

The council’s resolution adopting the report was passed in Geneva by 25 votes to six with 11 countries abstaining and five declining to vote.

Terror attack in Gaza

Apparently, firing on a school bus was in self-defence, so said Hamas spokesman Fauzi Barhum on April 7 while taking responsibility for a rocket attack on a school bus in Southern Israel.

The resistance movement’s response to the enemy’s massacre comes as self-defense, and to protect the citizens. It aims to pressure the occupier to stop committing crimes.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague didn’t quite agree:

This is a despicable and cowardly act that stands in stark contrast to people’s desire for peaceful reform across the region. Violence will never deliver peace. I reiterate that Hamas must halt these strikes immediately, and rein in other militant factions in Gaza.”

Neither did the US State Department:

We condemn the attack on innocent civilians in southern Israel in the strongest possible terms as well as ongoing rocket fire from Gaza. We have reiterated many times there is no justification of the targeting of innocent civilians and those responsible for these terrorist acts should be held accountable…We are particularly concerned about reports that indicate the use of an advanced anti-tank weapon in an attack against …Any attack on innocent civilians is abhorrent but certainly the nature of the attack is particularly so.

Neither did Netanyahu, although he did offer to stop escalating tensions on April 10:

No other country would be willing to countenance the intentional firing of an anti-tank missile at a children’s bus, to say nothing of criminal attacks against civilians, and Israel is certainly not willing to accept it.

Today, the Cabinet instructed the IDF to do whatever is necessary to stop the firing at our people and restore quiet to the south. This is our intention. I hope that this will be Hamas’s intention as well. If this is what it intends, then quiet will return. If it steps up its aggression, it will feel our arm and our response will be much harsher.

According to Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri, Hamas also wants a ceasefire. Although, he admitted that the military wing is a little out of control.

The Palestinian groups are only defending themselves and our people. We do not intend to inflame the situation but we can not keep quiet when faced with aggression…We didn’t know that the bus was carrying children. It was driving on a road which is often used by Israeli military vehicles, which is often targeted by armed Palestinian group

There is coordination with the political leadership over the bigger picture but on the ground, it is the armed wing which decides the appropriate time to respond to the Israeli aggressions. We give general guidance about what stance to take in response to Israel’s position, but the armed wing has freedom of action and decisions made in the field are not the responsibility of the political leadership.

The military wing, of course, don’t particularly want a ceasefire. They are pretty keen to boast about their terror attacks though:

Al-Qassam Brigades’ operations during the last Forty-Eight hours:

First: Targeting a bus was traveling between the Zionist military sites on the strip border, east of Gaza City, at around three o’clock on Thursday, 07.04.2011, ​​near the so-called “Kfar Saad,” the bus was passing in the way of tanks and artillery.

Second: Al-Qassam Brigades within forty-eight hours pounded the Zionist military sites adjacent to the Gaza Strip with 68 rockets and mortars (28 rockets and 40 mortar shells).

Al-Qassam Brigades emphasize the following:

First: The Zionist enemy is responsible for these crimes and escalation in the Gaza Strip, the Zionist arrogance and aggression will not deter us from doing our duty to respond to aggression.

Second: There is no opportunity to talk about calm between us and the occupation at a time Zionist entity bombs our people and committing massacres, but the blood of our people will not be wasted.

Third: We will continue our revolution and our jihad against the occupiers, rand our entire nation and the free world with us until liberating Palestine.

Meanwhile, Israel continued trying to stop weapons reaching Gaza by capping the guys who are smuggling them in, according to this Hamas spokesman:

”He was in Sudan co-ordinating new smuggling routes for weapons arriving from Iran, which then pass through the border into Egypt, across to the Sinai and into Gaza. No one but Israel could have been responsible for the attack.”

BDS

Bob Brown figures that BDS might have cost them Marrickville:

I think it had an effect on [the election] – that’s my feedback from the electorate and it’s no doubt something that the NSW Greens will be looking at.

Lee Rhiannon, however, reckons that BDS just wasn’t explained well:

Months before the election we needed to explain why the Greens backed BDS and we needed to work closer with our allies on BDS – academics, the Arab community and social justice movements in Sydney and MelbourneCollectively we didn’t do enough to amplify support for BDS and show that this is part of an international movement.

Kevin Rudd, however, doesn’t agree:

Senator-elect Rhiannon’s stand on a boycott of Israel is just plain loopy. But it’s more than just loopy. It verges on the dangerous. It’s dangerous because it reflects no analysis of the complexity of the Middle East peace process, nor of what Israel and the Palestinian Authority are trying to do, nor of what (Palestinian President) Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister (Salam) Fayyad are doing with their own direct engagement with Israel. This is the stuff of foreign policy being made by pre-schoolers. The whole principle of BDS…is unacceptable to Australia and ineffective in driving any real outcome in the peace process.”

Syria and the UN Human Rights Council

Last but not least, it’s ok that Syria is going to be voted onto the UNHRC unopposed, because it really cares about human rights, at least according to its UN ambassador.

The so-called turmoil does not affect our candidacy, these are two different issues… Syria considers that the protection of human dignity and fundamental rights are the base of freedom, justice and peace. Promotion and protection of human rights are of the highest importance to Syria.

Again, the US doesn’t quite see eye-to-eye:

We are deeply concerned by reports that Syrians who have been wounded by their government are being denied access to medical care. The escalating repression by the Syrian government is outrageous, and the United States strongly condemns the continued efforts to suppress peaceful protesters. President Assad and the Syrian government must respect the universal rights of the Syrian people, who are rightly demanding the basic freedoms that they have been denied.

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Why a Palestinian state is an awful idea

 

 

I bet you’re all outraged right now, I would be too. For the record, a Palestinian state is not only a very good idea, but a necessity – there is no way this conflict will ever be solved otherwise.

But there’s one little caveat: it has to be reached through some sort of agreement. Not even a bilateral agreement, I woud argue that it has to be an agreement between Israel and the Palestinian authority, as well as the US, the Arab League, the UN and possibly the Hamas and the EU. Without all of those parties agreeing, there won’t truly be a solution. This is why the idea of Palestine unilaterally declaring a state scares me so much, but they keep threatening to do it:

Abbas: Palestinians to ask for UN recognition if peace talks fail – Haaretz Daily Newspaper | Israel News

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has been dropping hints that he will leave his post in September should negotiations with Israel not resume by then, and should there be no agreement about the establishment of a Palestinian state.

During a meeting in Ramallah with members of the Council for Peace and Security (who include former top IDF officers ), Abbas declared that the PA intends to work toward the establishment of a Palestinian state, and to win Israeli recognition for such a state. However, he indicated, if no accord is reached between the two sides, and if serious talks do not resume, the PA will turn to the UN General Assembly in September and request recognition of an independent Palestinian state.

Let me take you back to 1987. A lot of stuff happened in that year, good stuff. For instance, your humble author was born, meaning that you get to be reading this right now.

One thing that happened in 1987 is that Arafat declared a Palestinian state and had it recognised by a bunch of other UN states and was bringing it to the General Assembly (GA).

The next thing that happened was the first intifada.

You know what’s going to happen when the UN votes on this? If the UN rejects it, the Palestinian people will not be happy. If the UN accepts it, nothing will change on the ground, the Palestinian people will not be happy. What happens when the Palestinian people, en-masse, aren’t happy? An Intifada.

This also kind of means that Israel would no longer be in a grey area and would be actually breaking international law. Except that under international law, when one sovereign nation attacks another, that is mandate for a war of self-defence, which justifies occupying territory until the conflict is no longer a concern. Rocket attacks from Gaza? Hey, now Bibi has a mandate to re-occupy the territory. It’s also a great way to see checkpoints and curfews re-instated and life getting much worse for Palestinians in the West Bank. Plus there will be more terror attacks in Israel, which are never fun.

On the other hand, the GA has passed so many sanctions against Israel by now that if anything the GA ever did actually had an effect, Israel would have been abolished many times over. Regardless of a GA motion recognising Palestine, as long as the US still supports Israel in the Security Council, nothing will come of it.

Remember that every state who cares boycotts Israel anyway – all Islamic states have had official boycotts going back decades, most won’t even permit anyone to enter the country if they have an Israeli stamp in their passport. The only two with any kind of relationship with Israel are Egypt and Jordan.

If the US does stop supporting Israel over this (which is a possibility with Obama), that will make Israel completely isolated, which will make it feel alone and attacked. What do Israelis do when they feel alone and attacked? Vote Likkud – look at 1997, 2003, 2009 etc. What will Likkud do? change nothing. What happens then? Intifada.

This path will lead to war. That will undo all of the progress that the PA has made to get to the point where it could maybe run a state and bring us right back to 1987. It’s a very bad move, I sincerely hope that Abbas and Fayyad are just posturing.

A Palestinian state is necessary, but the way to get there is through cooperation and dialogue, not unilateral moves and certainly not violence.

For a little more background, see: Co-operation, not collision, with Israel is the only route out for the Palestinian Authority – On Line Opinion – 13/1/2011.

 

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Syria on the Human Rights Council – proof that the system works

And you thought all of the news on Syria was about authorities beating protesters to death and the president firing the government to hold on to power. No, apparently they’re about to be elected to the UN Human Rights Council too.

Don’t you love the UN?

Syria Seeking Seat on Human Rights Council at UN Amid Turmoil – Businessweek

March 29 (Bloomberg) — Syria’s government, accused of shooting peaceful protesters, is bidding at the United Nations for a seat on the Geneva-based Human Rights Council less than a month after Libya was suspended for attacking demonstrators.

Syria is one of four candidates for four seats on the Human Rights Council that will go to Asian nations when the UN General Assembly votes on May 20 for new members. The so-called clean slate endorsed in January by the UN’s so-called Asian Group of countries puts Syria in a position to win a three-year term on the 47-member council unless another Asian nation seeks a seat.

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Hamas trying to prevent Holocaust in Gaza

Or at least the teaching of it. With all the other stuff going on at the moment, it’s easy for things like this to slip under the radar.

The UNRWA, the UN agency dedicated to working with Palestinian refugees (and apparently maintaining their refugee status without allowing them to be settled), also the only UN agency in the world that exists solely to deal with one people, has been teaching the Holocaust in its schools since 2002. Hamas, apparently, is a little nonplussed:

 

Hamas fights UN’s ‘poisonous’ Holocaust lessons in Gazan schools | World news | The Guardian

“We cannot agree to a programme that is intended to poison the minds of our children,” said a statement from the ministry for refugee affairs.

“Holocaust studies in refugee camps is a contemptible plot and serves the Zionist entity with a goal of creating a reality and telling stories in order to justify acts of slaughter against the Palestinian people.”

It said UNRWA should focus on the human rights of Palestinian refugees.

UNRWA makes the valid point that the Palestinian refugees are only afforded refugee status, and therefore afforded an entire international organisation, funded by the international community and dedicated to maintaining their poor standard of living, because of the International Convention on Human Rights and that this Convention only exists because of the Holocaust.

No Holocaust, no UNRWA; no UNRWA, no schools, ergo, UNRWA is kinda obligated to teach about the Holocaust to its students.

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Human rights abuses? The Taliban? Really? But I thought the US was the evil one?

Christopher Hitchens said it better than I ever could:

Taliban war crimes: Human rights groups finally notice. – By Christopher Hitchens – Slate Magazine.

Even in a week that concentrated all eyes on the magnificent courage and maturity of the people of Cairo, a report from Kabul began with what must surely be the most jaw-dropping opening paragraph of the year. Under the byline of the excellent Rod Nordland, the New York Times reported:

“International and local human rights groups working in Afghanistan have shifted their focus toward condemning abuses committed by the Taliban insurgents, rather than those attributed to the American military and its allies.”

The story went on to point out that the Taliban was culpable for “more than three-fourths of all civilian casualties” and informed us that some human-rights groups are now so concerned that they are thinking of indicting the Taliban for war crimes. “The activists’ concern,” Nordland went on, “would have been unheard-of a year ago,” when all the outcry was directed at casualties inflicted by NATO contingents.

I encourage all of you to read the whole article. It seems that the turning point was a recent bombing of an up-scale supermarket that killed a high-profile aid worker. It wasn’t even the kidnapping and murder of 8 aid workers last year. Or, you know, the violent reign of terror, applying 7th century morality with the stoning of adulterers, cutting hands off thieves and pouring acid on little schoolgirls’ faces to scare people away from educating women. Or the random roadside bombings and suicide terror.

Or, for that matter, the attempt to systematically exterminate the Shia Hazaras. One would have thought that little things like that would have tipped them off, but apparently glaring evidence is not enough to get through that thick veil of post-colonial guilt.

No, this taps into what I’ve written about Paul McGeough and the rest of the Western hard left. These people have such a warped view of the world that they’ve spent 10 years investigating Western “war crimes” and driving the rules of engagement to become harder and harder and putting our soldiers more and more at risk, while showing nothing but sympathy for the Taliban and their allies, despite the fact that they cause 3/4 of all civilian casualties.

But no, all civilian casualties are naturally America’s fault. After all, who started the war? Right? And don’t say Bin Laden, because you’re wrong! America just wanted an excuse to colonise a backward, dirt-poor, sectarian nightmare of a country with a long history of defeating the toughest armies in the world and no particular influence or importance in global affairs. You know, for their imperialist agenda…

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