Thug state Syria on UN Human Rights Cuncil?

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  • #26
russ_watters
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I believe OP posted wrong link which is not related to Syria's acceptance in Human Rights Council.
It wasn't well cited, but I believe the point is to ask (rhetorically): how can we keep Syria off the HRC if we can't even get an on-the-record criticism of them by the UN?
I don't think Syria "must" join the HRC to learn something. I see it as a part of involvement in the international community. More involved Syria is with international community, more it depends on international community, easier it will be to see reforms in it. Isolation and condemnation of it cannot improve things.
Well that's a nice sentiment, but it just plain isn't what the HRC is for. The HRC's mission is to advance the cause of human rights and having on it a country that doesn't have any concept of human rights can only undermine that goal globally even if there is a small chance (I doubt it) of advancing the cause for Syria. Being on the HRC means they'll have the opportunity to make policy statements and write rules. It would be extremely bad for the world if Syria was writing the rules on human rights.

As arildno said, despotic regimes don't typically respond to cajoling. Their power is based on force/conflict and they typically only change when shown force (see: Ghadaffi a decade ago)..... if at all. As we've seen with the current conflicts in the ME, more often than not, they'll fight just about to the death to keep their dictatorships.
 
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  • #27
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It wasn't well cited, but I believe the point is to ask (rhetorically): how can we keep Syria off the HRC if we can't even get an on-the-record criticism of them by the UN?

I think that was part of confusion on my part. I was only responding to the harsh language used for Syria and that link.

I would have to look for what works better condemnation or opening rogue states to international community (while I understand that HRC is not for that purpose). Currently, I was only relying on Libya example from the article I posted a while ago (need to go look for it)
 
  • #28
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To cap it off, Syria will probably be accepted as a new member of UN's Human rights Council tomorrow.

Honestly, the United States lost any moral authority to criticize the membership of the human rights council when we decided to systematically torture prisoners.
 
  • #29
arildno
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I apologize for having linked to an article that only directly addressed one-half of my complaint, namely the Security Council's inability/unwillingness to condemn Syria.

The UN WAtch grouphas put together a pressure group to squash Syria's election to the Council, where the election will take place May 20th.

Syria is on the so-called "closed list" of 4 Asian countries "contending about..4 seats.

So unless Syria is actively rejected on suitability grounds (such caveats exist in a vague manner), Syria will be voted in:
http://www.unwatch.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=bdKKISNqEmG&b=1330815&ct=9371761 [Broken]


This case highlights, once again, the deep structural flaws in the UN system that apportion power to states on basis of regional&demographical grounds, rather than apportioning power relative to, for example, proven commitment to uphold human rights beyond making a signature on the UN Charter.
 
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  • #30
arildno
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Honestly, the United States lost any moral authority to criticize the membership of the human rights council when we decided to systematically torture prisoners.
Why?
Is there any rhyme or reasoning behind this effluvescence?? :confused:

Let's see:
A rapist has lost his right to criticize a murderer?

A thief must keep his mouth shut if witnessing a case of child abuse?

Really, your statement is just meaningless.

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A moral criticism remains valid, whoever issues it.
What you are arguing is simple ad hominem, namely that what a provably bad person says must be invalid, because the person is bad.

Logic doesn't work that way, though.
 
  • #31
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Why?
Is there any rhyme or reasoning behind this effluvescence?? :confused:

Let's see:
A rapist has lost his right to criticize a murderer?

It's not the criticism, it's the supposed indignation.

Really, your statement is just meaningless.

-------------------------------------------------------
A moral criticism remains valid, whoever issues it.
What you are arguing is simple ad hominem, namely that what a provably bad person says must be invalid, because the person is bad.

Logic doesn't work that way, though.

You cannot apply logic in that fashion to morality, which is based upon commonly-agreed upon standards of behavior.

If person A commits a "bad act" but then claims it's not worthy of criticism, then he has no grounds for criticizing when person B commits a comparable bad act.

By his own willingness to exonerate himself of his own bad actions, Person A is implicitly stating that his previous "bad" actions were not actually bad. So therefore he is being inconsistent when he attempts to apply a different moral standard to Person B. That is illogical.
 
  • #32
arildno
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1. Whenever did torture of prisoners become "comparable" with shooting down your own citizens waving flags and chanting slogans??

Do you have private access to some magical line, or square, perhaps, on which those acts can be compared?

You can't compare incommensurable quantities.

2. Furthermore, being guilty of hypocrisy in strictly comparable cases does not in any way invalidate a moral condemnation.
Instead, hypocrisy removes any praise from the condemnator, because he is as guilty himself. But that is a long shot from invalidating the condemnation as such
 
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  • #33
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Honestly, the United States lost any moral authority to criticize the membership of the human rights council when we decided to systematically torture prisoners.

I believe main subject of this thread as restated more clearly by OP is in #29 post. Things like morality and what US does are not related.

I do see some concerns over Syria in HRC. It is (very) wrong time for that. Currently, I have not seen this much in main stream media (at least in BBC):
The UK broadsheets and the BBC have as yet failed to cover Syria’s candidacy to fill the vacant seat on the UN Human Rights Council, in elections for 15 of the council’s 47 seats to be held on 20 May.
http://justjournalism.com/the-wire/syrian-candidacy-for-seat-on-un-human-rights-council-unreported/ [Broken]
 
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  • #34
arildno
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I believe main subject of this thread as restated more clearly by OP is in #29 post. Things like morality and what US does are not related.

They're certainly not strict opposites (since that would make them related), but thy are not orthogonal quantities, either.

Rather, they have a skewed relationship..:smile:
 
  • #35
arildno
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I do see some concerns over Syria in HRC. It is (very) wrong time for that.

Care to expound why the timing would be so very wrong??
 
  • #36
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Care to expound why the timing would be so very wrong??

Currently, Syria is quite unstable and the government's harsh crackdown of protesters is well covered in the media. It harms the UN credibility: timing is wrong for UN.

However, HRC does have a http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/4810538.stm" [Broken] (accepting notorious members).


http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/row/RL33608.pdf
 
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  • #37
arildno
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Currently, Syria is quite unstable and the government's harsh crackdown of protesters is well covered in the media. It harms the UN credibility: timing is wrong for UN..
Eeh?
How would it harm UNs credibility to refuse Syria entry at the Human Rights commission?

Because media on the liberal left has the moral monopoly on coverage of Syrian outrages, and that UN therefore should not "interfere" with a condemnatory resolution/candidacy refusal????

Really, was there here some valid argument, deeply buried?
 
  • #38
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Eeh?
How would it harm UNs credibility to refuse Syria entry at the Human Rights commission?

accept not refuse.


Earlier, While I pointed out few things that might make accepting Syria less negative however I never claimed that such decision is good:
It might not be as negative because at best it could open up Syria ....
 
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  • #39
arildno
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Perhaps the best thing would be if, say, some 30-40 democracies threatened to leave the UN, with immediate withdrawal of funding (they stand for about 70%) unless the other countries move to throw Syria out of UN altogether?

And then repeat that threat to kick out some more countries, alternatively crippling the UN by leaving it en masse?
 

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