Παρασκευή, 15 Αυγούστου 2008

Neocons Now Love International Law

γράφει ο Robert Parry

How can some justify the United States attacking Grenada or Nicaragua or Panama or Iraq or Serbia yet condemn the Russian involvement in Georgia? While major US news outlets may be comfortable wearing blinders that let them see only wrongdoing by others, the rest of the world views the outrage from Bush and the neocons over Russia as a stunning double standard.

It’s touching how American neoconservatives who have no regard for international law when they want to invade some troublesome country have developed a sudden reverence for national sovereignty.

Apparently, context is everything. So, the United States attacking Grenada or Nicaragua or Panama or Iraq or Serbia is justified even if the reasons sometimes don’t hold water or don’t hold up before the United Nations, The Hague or other institutions of international law.

However, when Russia attacks Georgia in a border dispute over Georgia’s determination to throttle secession movements in two semi-autonomous regions, everyone must agree that Georgia’s sovereignty is sacrosanct and Russia must be condemned.

US newspapers, such as the New York Times, see nothing risible about publishing a statement from President George W. Bush declaring that “Georgia is a sovereign nation and its territorial integrity must be respected.”

No one points out that Bush should have zero standing enunciating such a principle. Iraq also was a sovereign nation, but Bush invaded it under false pretenses, demolished its army, overthrew its government and then conducted a lengthy military occupation resulting in hundreds of thousands of deaths.

The invasion of Iraq also wasn’t a spur of the moment decision. In the months after the 9/11 attacks, Bush proclaimed an exceptional right of the United States to invade any country that might become a threat to American security or to US global dominance. [For details, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Bush’s Grim Vision” or see our book, Neck Deep]

When asked questions about international law, Bush would joke: “International law? I better call my lawyer.”

The neocons’ contempt for international law goes back even further – to the 1980s and the illegal contra war against Nicaragua and the invasion of Panama. Only in the last few days have the neocons discovered an appreciation for multilateral institutions and the principles of non-intervention.

Despite this history, leading US newspapers don’t see hypocrisy. Instead, they have thrown open their pages to prominent neocons and other advocates of US-led invasions so these thinkers now can denounce Russia while not mentioning any contradictions.

originally posted at Byzantine Blog. Read the whole article here: 

update #1, 16/08/08: As things fall apart, by Max Bergmann, Democracy Arsenal:

... Perhaps the biggest foreign policy challenge for the next President is attempting to restore U.S. credibility and prestige around the world. McCain this week has shown exactly the wrong way to go about it. His recent over-the-top rhetoric about Georgia is exactly the wrong approach and reeks of the same neoconservative inspired thinking that emanated from Bush's first term. Making hollow promises and defiant threats, when the Bush administration just showed that such rhetoric to be completely hollow, only makes the U.S. look less credible (Of course, if McCain were actually serious about following through on his reckless rhetoric and militarily confronting Russia then that would not only be insane but would further imperil our superpower status)...

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