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One can take the view that the duty to combat capital punishment and similar violations of human rights arises from an innate obligation towards one's fellow man - an obligation countries cannot simply abscond from by changing their laws. Just as countries are held (in principle) to be bound by their human rights obligations to their own citizens regardless of what their domestic laws say.

But whatever one's stance on European human rights activism outside our own borders, we clearly cannot take any action against China that we demonstrated a lack of will to employ against the Americans on precisely the same issue less than a decade ago. So I guess we're down to the well-worn diplomatic sanction of Sternly Worded Letters.

Particularly when, from the press reports, it looks like the Chinese actually did less of a run-around of our diplomats than the Americans did in their case.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Dec 31st, 2009 at 08:49:01 AM EST
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