Posted February 13, 2008 in News • Tags: ,

Uh… what?

Rights groups on Wednesday praised Hollywood director Steven Spielberg’s decision to shun involvement with the Beijing Olympics opening and closing ceremonies because China was not doing enough to help end the crisis in Darfur.

I can think of a lot of reasons to condemn China’s corrupt, murderous regime without dragging the Sudan into it.

China is believed to have special influence with Sudan because it buys two-thirds of the country’s oil exports, while selling the regime weapons and defending Khartoum in the U.N. Security Council.

Oh, it’s about oil. Well that explains it.

But one has to wonder whether some are finding it easier to criticize China via its propensity to stir up trouble in third-party proxies like Darfur than to directly address the even more appalling way it treats its own citizens. They probably know that China’s leaders tend to go ballistic at any direct criticism of the motherland, and resort to nonsensical cries of “victimization” (“It is hard to see Western bias dying down in the short term”), as if basic human dignity is a “foreign”, “Western” concept.

Look for more tip-toeing around China’s dreadful human rights record both at home and abroad in the run-up to this summer’s Olympics. This ought to be interesting.

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