Hypocrisy's Universal Appeal

Friday, July 24, 2009
This month, the Organization of American States ("OAS") expeditiously suspended Honduras for violating the terms of the Inter-American Democratic Charter; the same Charter the OAS intentionally chose to ignore in its June resolution revoking the Castro regime's suspension.

Just yesterday, the European Union's Commissioner for External Relations delivered millions of euros to the Castro dictatorship, while on the same trip eliminating aid to Honduras' non-democratically elected, de facto government.

Tragically for democracy activists everywhere, hypocrisy seems to be having a universal appeal, as columnist Celestine Bolen points out in this weekend's International Herald Tribune:

Here's an example: the European Union withdrew its ambassadors from Honduras after a relatively bloodless coup d'├ętat there this month, but left them in Tehran during the violent crackdown against the post-election demonstrations.

"What's good for Honduras should be good for Iran," Jean-Pierre Brard, a deputy in the French National Assembly, said at a recent press conference. "Or maybe the real difference is that Renault, Total and Areva are not so well represented in Honduras?"

The same logic applies to the muted response in Washington to the ethnic unrest in China's Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, which left more than 190 people dead earlier this month. Human rights groups have called for an independent investigation into the clashes and the Chinese government's handling of them; the U.S. State Department called for "calm."

The fact is that human rights violations in China don't get much attention in the United States these days, not when China holds so much of the U.S. national debt and when Washington is looking to Beijing to help pull the global economy out of recession.