Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Countries such as Israel and Apartheid South Africa are/were particularly vociferous in their complaints of Double standards. Whatever their failings, weren't Idi Amin, Pol Pot, Rwanda etc. far more egregious violations of human rights? Objectively yes.  But if you claim to be a "western democracy" upholding "western" standards, you will also be judged by those standards.

Aside from Israel's claims to be a democracy, there is the far more compelling case that The WestTM is complicit in Israel's crimes, by virtue of active support for them, where it was merely a spectator - and a comparatively impotent one - to Pol Pot's crimes.

The WestTM had no power to compel Pol Pot to respect human rights. Having no economic or diplomatic relations worth speaking of with a regime rather limits your range of sanctions. But The WestTM could compel Israel to respect human rights by the simple expedient of withdrawing the generous support extended to it.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 12:43:39 PM EST
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I don't think I'd say that the west was a spectator of Pol Pot.

Pol Pot was a consequence of the greater Vietnam War. He came out of - for lack of a better term for this discussion - extreme violations of human rights and international law by the US.

aspiring to genteel poverty

by edwin (eeeeeeee222222rrrrreeeeeaaaaadddddd@@@@yyyyaaaaaaa) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 02:48:22 PM EST
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One of the consequences of Kissinger's "your either with us or against us" policy towards Cambodia. Henry is first in line in my books for the blame for Pol Pot. Kick around a weak country for your own domestic and international agenda goals and sometimes you get blowback. It might have been fairer had some of that blow-back landed on those who supported Nixon and Kissinger instead of on the average sane Cambodian.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 03:12:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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