Black Agenda Radio Commentaries
News, analysis and commentary on the human condition from a black left perspective.

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

Human rights” has become a tortured term. The most prominent names in the western human rights business behave, essentially, as “weapons in the imperial arsenal. Their value to the empire increased exponentially when Barack Obama adopted humanitarian intervention as a pillar of American war doctrine.” Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch spend much of their energies “advocating that the U.S. and its friends trample on the national sovereignty of weaker states – as if human rights can exist outside the framework of international law.”

 

Mercenaries for Empire: Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

Who better than self-styled human rights activists to justify humanitarian wars?”

Under President Obama, U.S. imperialism masquerades as the protector of the planet’s peoples. Each American aggression, every violation of centuries of international law, is couched in the rhetoric of humanitarian intervention – a gift from the strong to the weak. Wars of pure pillage and conquest are heralded as acts of nobility and service to humankind. The former colonizers from Europe and their cousins from the United States, the nation that grew rich from indigenous genocide and African slavery, have assumed a Responsibility to Protect the very same Asians, Africans and Latin Americans they were slaughtering…it seems like only yesterday.

But, if yesterday, these Europeans and Americans had no regard for the lives and liberties of any of the colored or non-Christian peoples of the world, in today’s geopolitical configuration human rights has become the imperial watchword. And, therefore, the western so-called human rights organizations take on strategic importance.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch are, essentially, weapons in the imperial arsenal. Their value to the empire increased exponentially when Barack Obama adopted humanitarian intervention as a pillar of American war doctrine. Who better than self-styled human rights activists to justify humanitarian wars?

They provided much of the propaganda ammunition for the U.S. and European war against Libya.”

In mid-May, as thousands of anti-war activists protested the NATO summit meeting in Chicago, Amnesty International hosted a so-called “Shadow Summit” of apologists for the U.S. war in Afghanistan. They were joined by the ghoulish Madeline Albright, the former Clinton Secretary of State who said “the price [was] worth it”, when questioned about the death of thousands of children as a result of U.S. sanctions against Iraq. Albright, the warmonger, and Amnesty International agree that the U.S. should remain in Afghanistan as long as it takes, for the sake of Afghan women. Of course, it was the United States that spent billions of dollars in a joint venture with Saudi Arabia and Pakistan to empower Islamists to overthrow the left-wing, Soviet-backed government that had pursued full equality for Afghanistan’s women. Yet, only a few decades later, Amnesty International trumpets the Americans as great defenders of Afghan women’s rights.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch denounce Russia and China as enemies of human rights in Syria, because they have resisted a catastrophic western military assault on that country. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch actively campaign for wars – and they always turn out to be the same wars that Washington is planning to wage. They provided much of the propaganda ammunition for the U.S. and European war against Libya, giving credibility to lies about an imminent massacre in Benghazi. Both organizations are imposters on the world scene, pretending to care for human rights while advocating that the U.S. and its friends trample on the national sovereignty of weaker states – as if human rights can exist outside the framework of international law. As far as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch are concerned, human rights are whatever the empire says they are.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch are simply mercenaries for empire, and sworn enemies of international law.

For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, go to BlackAgendaReport.com.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

Direct download: 20120606_gf_HumanRightsMercenaries.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:37pm EDT

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

For nine years Luis Moreno-Ocampo has dedicated the resources of the International Criminal Court to the exclusive task of prosecuting Africans. In the process, he has actively fomented imperial wars on the continent and encouraged the breakdown of fundamental principles of international law. He ends his term in office as he began it: as a lawyer for neocolonialism.

Good Riddance to the African-Hater on the International Criminal Court

A Black Agenda Radio commentary by Glen Ford

He has committed the ICC’s resources almost exclusively to concocting indictments against Africans.”

Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court, leaves the ICC at the end of this month. The entire Black world ought to say “Good riddance.”

Moreno-Ocampo is from Argentina, and took office as the Court’s first prosecutor in 2003. He has committed the ICC’s resources almost exclusively to concocting indictments against Africans, while kissing Uncle Sam’s butt at every possible opportunity. Indeed, even as his term expires, Moreno-Ocampo continues to try to pin an ICC Marshal’s badge on the United States, even though the U.S. isn’t a signatory to the treaty that created the Court. In his last days in office, he remains determined to use the superpower to arrest Sudanese President Omar Hassan al-Bashir. This, of course, would require that the U.S. commit acts of war against Sudan, in clear opposition to the will of the African Union. But, that appears to be Moreno-Ocampo’s purpose: to use the American superpower as a stick to threaten Africa.

The ICC prosecutor tried to enlist the U.S. as the Court’s enforcer back in June of 2010. Moreno-Ocampo had already indicted President al-Bashir for alleged crimes against humanity in Darfur, and was attempting to add a charge of genocide. However, the year before, the 53 member nations of the African Union had agreed that none would honor the ICC’s demand that the Sudanese leader be arrested if he set foot on their soil. Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi presided over the African Union’s 2009 summit meeting. Apparently, this display of African dignity and independence enraged Moreno-Ocampo, who began asking countries with “special forces” and “rare and expensive capabilities that regional armies don’t have” to enforce ICC arrest warrants. Clearly, he was talking about United States, which has always refused membership in the International Criminal Court, preferring to remain a law unto itself.

The ICC chief prosecutor joined in baseless claims that Libyan soldiers were imbibing vast quantities of Viagra in order to rape women.”

Moreno-Ocampo made himself useful to Washington and its European allies in 2011, during the NATO war against Libya. He also got a chance to get back at Gaddafi for standing up to the ICC in 2009. In the absence of any credible evidence whatsoever, the ICC chief prosecutor joined in baseless claims that Libyan soldiers were imbibing vast quantities of Viagra in order to rape women, which would be a crime against humanity. As later became apparent, it was all a fiction, but truth means nothing in Moreno-Ocampo’s political court.

He may be retiring as ICC prosecutor, but Moreno-Ocampo will always be a yapping puppy for imperial power. This week, he went before the United Nations Security Council urging countries that are not members of the ICC to go into Sudan to seize President al-Bashir by force – a blatant request that the United States commit an act of war against a sovereign African state. Moreno-Ocampo says al-Bashir cannot be allowed to defy the ICC with impunity. This, from an international prostitute of a lawyer who prosecutes only Africans while rich white nations rum amuk in the world. For Black Agenda Radio, I’m Glen Ford. On the web, to go BlackAgendaReport.com.

BAR executive editor Glen Ford can be contacted at Glen.Ford@BlackAgendaReport.com.

Direct download: 20120606_gf_OcampoLeavesICC.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:26pm EDT