ModernityBlog

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Archive for August 8th, 2008

No To A Boycott.

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I have been meaning to write a post on why boycotting the Beijing Olympics would be futile but for a number of complex and boring reasons I haven’t, so I will cover some of the issues briefly.

Given China’s appalling human rights record, occupation of Tibet, rape of the countryside, ruinous environmental policies, suppressing internal dissent, lack of basic worker’s rights and defence of the Sudanese ruling elite a strong case could be put for the boycotting of the Beijing Olympics. A very strong moral case.

However, I think that such a boycott plays straight into the Chinese dictator’s hands by allowing them to dismiss any protest as not being concerned with the issues and as essentially being “anti-Chinese”, even though that might clearly not be the case.

Rather, I think, that these issues should be brought to Beijing’s leaderships’ attention during the Olympics, as it is politically a far shrewder tactic and doesn’t allow them to close down discussion.

Winning athletes should be encouraged to display small tokens of solidarity with the Tibetans (as was the case during the Olympic torch’s procession through America), much like the salute of Tommie Smith and John Carlos in 1968.

The issues of Tibet, human rights, power and dictatorship should be placed before the massive TV audience, so that it cannot be ignored or brushed aside by State propagandists.

You will often hear from apologists that China doesn’t commit genocide in Tibet, or how their rule is comparatively benevolent, Eric Reeves answered those points in February 2007:

“LEFT CIVILIANS IN DARFUR AT RISK
•China abstained from UN Security Council Resolution 1706 (August 2006), compromising international support for a critically needed peace support operation in Darfur

SUPPORTED THE KHARTOUM REGIME
•China has repeatedly and uncritically supported claims of national sovereignty by Khartoum, emboldening the regime in its defiance of the UN and international community

IGNORED ATROCITIES THROUGHOUT SUDAN
•In pursuit of Sudan’s oil riches, China has for many years ignored massive human rights abuses and atrocity crimes by the Khartoum regime throughout Sudan

SUPPLIED THE WEAPONS
•China has been Khartoum’s leading weapons supplier over the past decade and more; many of these weapons have been used in Darfur

GAVE THE NOD TO GENOCIDE
•China has sent the diplomatic signals which, in their tepid nature, convince Khartoum it can complete its genocidal counter-insurgency war in Darfur without serious consequences

*******************************************************

TIME FOR CHINA TO PRESSURE KHARTOUM TO STOP THE GENOCIDE
•It is time for China to recognize that it cannot be a legitimate host of the 2008 Olympic Games while remaining complicit in Darfur’s genocidal destruction. China must use its enormous leverage with Khartoum to secure consent for the deployment of international forces fully capable of protecting civilians and humanitarians in Darfur and eastern Chad.

•If China refuses, Beijing must face an unprecedented, unwavering, unstoppable campaign of shame—one that will attach an unbearable opprobrium to genocidal complicity.”

More on the Olympics later.

Written by modernityblog

08/08/2008 at 19:21

Posted in Uncategorized