The Report of the United Nations Human Rights Chief contains more truth in 3 short columns of print, than the entire New York Times newspaper for Friday, March 6th, 2015. No one can hear the misery of the sufferers of torture and arbitrary detention prisoners around the world except through the Human Rights’ chief’s words, as they are not given any voice in the Times.
The external threat of ISIS or terrorism is responded to with fear instead of with understanding that terroristic extremists are the expected response to injustice, humiliation, inequality, and discrimination in addition to poverty brought upon victims of predatory business practices. Fear instead of compassion.
The response of the threatened is fierce but deadly because it lingers in policies and laws which further produce more humiliations and injustices which lead to more extremists and their acts of terror. There is plenty of accountability for any terrorist or terrorist- like behavior. There is torture in black sites. There is arbitrary detention and indefinite imprisonment. There is mass surveillance which suppresses the free speech of all global citizens with the promise that someday, somewhere a bad guy might get caught, but not today or not just yet. There are drone bombings and countries which are bombed and invaded. Even on the streets of America, Americans fear that they can be shot at any time by police, any day for any reason.
There is no accountability for those who commit human rights violations. Torture? No one has gone to prison for degrading and destroying the psyche of torture victims. Arbitrary killings of suspected persons who fit a certain algorythm; death by drones? No one has gone to prison for lack of due process for any drone victims, and most drone victims were civilians. Terrorizing civilian populations through check point searches, arrests and interrogations, and drone strikes without any warning go unpunished. Mass surveillance curbs free speech and political dissent, yet no one is arrested for violating these human rights to privacy and to freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of association. The constant monitoring of the global population is never confronted as an egregious violation of everyones’ human rights. Police have been given permission to spy on anyone without probable cause, to arrest anyone even if mistaken in their suspicions, and to shoot anyone ‘they feel threatened by’. Anybody go to jail for that? No.
When the Human Rights Chief confronted the global powers for violating human rights in the name of protecting ‘national security’, he stated what no government-fearing newspaper editorials have dared to say. Bravo.
Updated: Brits okay mass surveillance in violation of Article 8 of Human Rights Law. They got away with this sleight of hand by calling their mass surveillance, bulk collection. Now to the European Courts!