5-15-05 - 2


When we went to war in Iraq I repeatedly raised the point of how ridiculous our president's black & white rhetoric was. We say we're doing it to support democracy, to bring down dictators, to stop human rights abuses, and yet we are the ones who put Saddam in power, we've supported dictators all over the world, we ignore human rights abuses in Rwanda, Sudan, etc. etc. This is pure hypocracy, but now an amusing situation has come up where this hypocracy is embodied in a single nation - Uzbekistan. For some time we have been sending terrorism suspects caught in the Middle East for "interrogation" in Uzbekistan (aka torture; Uzbekistan is a well known violator of prisoner's rights, for example ). This is part of a larger CIA policy to use other countries to do the dirty work that would attract too much attention if we did it ourselves. Uzbekistan is our ally in the war on terror, and in exchange for torturing people we want them to, we have normalized relations with them and established trade and aid deals. In the mean time, there is currently a pro-democracy uprising in Uzbekistan, where mobs of people and semi-terrorist groups are trying to get international attention and fight the rule of the authoritarian President Karimov. The reality of the world is a complex political web, and GW's black and white rhetoric is naive and untrue; there are certainly cases where we need to ally with evil people in order to meet greater goals (Pakistan's Musharraf might be one example), however, Uzbekistan is not really a difficult case - we should not be using foreign states to hold our prisoners, and we should not be supporting dictators. So, I ask you, Mr. Bush - Are we for democracy, or against terrorists? Are we against authoritarians who abuse human rights, or are we with anyone who helps us against terrorism? If you're "with us or against us", which one is Uzbekistan?

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