Thursday, May 19, 2011

Hypocrisy watch

U.S. Imposes Sanctions on Syrian Leader and 6 Aides
WASHINGTON — President Obama imposed sanctions on Syria’s leader, President Bashar al-Assad, and six other senior Syrian officials on Wednesday, ratcheting up American pressure in the wake of a bloody crackdown on political protests in the country.

New York Times, May 19, 2011


Afghanistan: 12 die in Afghanistan protest over U.S.-led raid
Furious anti-American protesters poured into the streets of a city in northern Afghanistan on Wednesday, shouting out objections to an overnight U.S.-led military raid that killed four people, including two women. Subsequent clashes with security forces trying to quell the demonstration killed 12 people, provincial officials said. ...

The Taloqan raid and its explosive aftermath pointed up the striking degree of discord between the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and ordinary Afghans over nighttime operations aimed at capturing or killing insurgent figures.

Many people here are skeptical of Western military claims that the targets are carefully vetted, and believe in any case that such home invasions carry too great a risk of harming or killing innocent people in the confusion of nighttime. They particularly fear that U.S. forces, flush with success over the raid that killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan this month, will increasingly rely on the tactic of swooping down in darkness on residential compounds.

Los Angeles Times, May 19, 2011

What's to say? One country is a designated enemy, so shooting protesters is grounds for penalties. It can even be grounds for siccing NATO to overthrow a dictator in Libya. In the other case -- and in such "friendly" jurisdictions as Iraq, Bahrain, and Israel -- shooting people who protest brutality is just an unfortunate necessity to keep order.

I wonder what President Obama can say to an international audience less inured to these contradictions? He tries to square circles today.

Photo from Afghanistan protests by way of IndiaVision News

1 comment:

MadPriest said...

Any word yet from Obama about the Israeli massacre of demonstrators asking for their own land back, the other day?

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