ModernityBlog

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

Posts Tagged ‘Nobel prize

China: Human Rights Getting Worse.

leave a comment »

Liu Xia is a former civil servant, imprisoned in her own home under house arrest in China.

Her crime? Being married to Liu Xiaobo.

Whilst David Cameron is sucking up to the dictators in Bejing, human rights in China are getting worse, as the BBC shows.

The Chinese state is attacking Liu Xiaobo’s family and friends, as the Toronto Star reports:

“Now, with the award of the Nobel, the government has fired up a fresh campaign against Liu, while at the same time targeting his supporters.

Newspapers have carried anti-Liu essays and opinion pieces calling him a “criminal” and “a Western tool” for suggesting an end to the Communist Party’s monopoly on power.

Meanwhile the government has suggested the Nobel is just part of an international conspiracy to bring disrespect to China’s legal system.

And Wednesday it took the extraordinary step of quashing any hope Liu might have had to have his own acceptance speech spoken at the ceremony in Oslo.

Liu’s family said Chinese authorities have cancelled their scheduled monthly visit with Liu, apparently afraid that he might pass on a message to be delivered to the world at the December ceremony.

Liu’s wife, Liu Xia, had said after visiting him Oct. 10 that he intended to draft a message.

But Liu’s two brothers and a brother-in-law told the Hong Kong-based Information Center for Human Rights and Democracy that they expect no further family visits until after the ceremony, thereby ensuring no message gets out.

The government’s vitriol has surprised many observers.

“I think we expected some reaction after the award, but nothing quite as brutal as what we have had,” says Kerry Brown, a former British diplomat and senior researcher at London’s Chatham House, the international affairs institute.

“The Chinese response seems primitive and heavy handed. I am amazed that people we thought so powerful can get so offended.”

While many regard the awarding of the peace prize as “dubious at the best of times,” says Brown, “the Chinese elite are reacting like this actually matters — and evidently it does, to them.”

One of the most recent to feel the government’s heavy hand is Liu’s long-time lawyer Mo Shaoping.

Mo was forbidden to leave the country Tuesday — plucked from a line at Beijing’s sleek Capital International Airport just as he was about to board British Airways flight 038 to London.

Mo and well-known Chinese legal scholar He Weifang were headed to the U.K. to address a seminar hosted by the International Bar Association. The topic: the challenges of being an independent lawyer in China.”

Nor should we forget that China’s political policies, decided by unelected men, are the one reason that dictators in Burma are still in power.

Written by modernityblog

11/11/2010 at 04:40

Will They Boycott Antibiotics?

leave a comment »

The onward march of science must be an eternal frustration to the anti-Israeli, pro-boycotter crowd.

No sooner have they tried to demonize or attack some Israelis, than one of those smart Israelis produces a major scientific development.

So it is with Ada Yonath of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel. She has just won the Nobel prize for chemistry, shared with two other academics who have made a breakthrough in the study of DNA and ribosome.

As the Times puts it:

“The research is also helping the design of antibiotics to treat people who are infected with a bacterium that has developed antibiotic resistance, for example, some of the strains of bacteria that cause tuberculosis.”

I wonder if anti-Israeli types will be boycotting the medical treatments that come out of Professor Yonath’s work? I seriously doubt it.

In other news, that anti-Israeli fanatic,Vanessa Redgrave, shows just how lazy bigots like her truly are? She argues ‘ “Tel Aviv is built on destroyed Palestinian villages.” True., little realizing how false that statement is. Tel Aviv was build in 1909 on sand dunes.

It takes a certain mentality to be so ill informed on the Middle East and in particular Tel Aviv, founded under Ottoman rule, long before 1948, but then again anti-Israeli types are often not too concerned with facts, science or basic history.

Written by modernityblog

08/10/2009 at 02:35