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"Chuck Norris doesn't read books; he stares them down until he gets the information he wants out of them."
- ChuckNorrisFactsdotcom

Wednesday, March 31, 2004
Ok the system that I had for the comments was bogging down the load time. So I've removed them. Very few comments were made anyway. If I feel the need and have the time I may find a new system.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
I want
this investigated. If this is true I want him brought up on charges.
"US president Bill Clinton's administration knew Rwanda was being engulfed by genocide in April 1994 but buried the information to justify its inaction, classified documents made available for the first time reveal.

Senior officials privately used the word genocide within 16 days of the start of the killings, but chose not to do so publicly because the president had already decided not to intervene.

Intelligence reports obtained using the US Freedom of Information Act show the cabinet and almost certainly the president knew of a planned "final solution to eliminate all Tutsis" before the slaughter reached its peak.

It took Hutu death squads three months from April 6 to murder about 800,000 Tutsis and moderate Hutus and at each stage accurate, detailed reports were reaching Washington policymakers.

The documents undermine claims by Mr Clinton and his officials that they did not fully appreciate the scale and speed of the killings.

"It's powerful proof that they knew," said Alison des Forges, a Human Rights Watch researcher and authority on the genocide.

The National Security Archive, an independent non-governmental research institute based in Washington, went to court to obtain the material.

It discovered that a secret CIA briefing circulated to Mr Clinton, his vice-president, Al Gore, and hundreds of officials included almost daily reports on Rwanda. One, dated April 23, 1994, said rebels would continue fighting to "stop the genocide, which . . . is spreading south".

Three days later the secretary of state, Warren Christopher, and other officials were told of "genocide and partition" and of declarations of a "final solution to eliminate all Tutsis".

However, the administration did not publicly use the word genocide until May 25 and even then diluted its impact by saying "acts of genocide".

Ms des Forges said: "They feared this word would generate public opinion which would demand some sort of action and they didn't want to act."

The administration did not want to repeat the fiasco of intervention in Somalia, where US troops became sucked into fighting. It also felt the US had no interests in Rwanda, a small central African country with no minerals or strategic value.

Many analysts and historians fault Washington and other Western countries not just for failing to support the token force of overwhelmed United Nations peacekeepers but also for failing to speak out more forcefully during the slaughter.

Mr Clinton has apologised for those failures but the declassified documents undermine his defence of ignorance.

On a visit to the Rwandan capital, Kigali, in 1998 Mr Clinton apologised for not acting quickly enough or immediately calling the crimes genocide."
I can think of few graver accusations than that someone concealed genocide. I want a congressional inquiry now. And while we're having inquiries on the Oil for Food program let's look into this too. The US provides about 20% of the funding for the UN. We've loaned them the money to build them a new headquarters and they're pissed we're charging interest. Let's start looking at the effectiveness of the organization that was formed on the principle of "Never Again."

Decades after the holocaust we still haven't learned. Human Rights Watch correctly points out the lessons from Rwanda. I say these things should have been obvious 50 years ago.
*Lesson One: Stop the genocide before it becomes a genocide.

*Lesson Two: React promptly and firmly to preparations for the mass slaughter of civilians.

*Lesson Three: Pay close attention to the media in situations of potential ethnic, religious, or racial conflict. In cases of impending genocide, be prepared to silence broadcasts that incite or provide directions for violence.

*Lesson Four: Be alert to the impact of negative models in nearby regions.

*Lesson Five: Obtain accurate information about what is happening on the ground.
*Lesson Six: Identify and support opponents of the genocide.

*Lesson Seven: Call the genocide by its rightful name and vigorously condemn it. Commit to permanently opposing any government involved in genocide, including by refusing it assistance in the future.

*Lesson Eight: Impose an arms embargo on the genocidal government.

*Lesson Nine: Press any government seeming to support the genocidal government to change its policy.

*Lesson Ten: Be prepared to intervene with armed force.
When has the UN ever followed even half of these rules while watching genocide unfold?

This is going on right now. Yet the UN focuses on Israel and Iraq and does nothing about the rest. Notice that 5 of the 6 countries listed as having "active genocides or politicides" currently sit on the UN Human Rights Commission?

And my taxes pay for 20% of this shit. Ugh.

US out of the UN now! Let's work on this as a new organization. The UN is too compromised.

[For those who are interested: the man who may have started the Rwandan genocide currently sits as president.]

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
Instapundit is talking about
Sudan now. Good. It needs more exposure. He also links to an older column of his on the subject.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
You want to lay blame for the misery in the third world? Blame
corruption. Think of all that money could have accomplished if it were actually used for the benefit of the people. And this only covers the leaders, not all the other sticky fingers that may be in the till.
"British-based Transparency International...
...gave a corruption "top 10" for global political leaders over the past 20 years, released to coincide with the release of its annual Global Corruption Report, a round-up of government graft worldwide.
The complete top 10, with the dates of the rule and estimated sum stolen, are as follows:

1. Mohamed Suharto, Indonesia, 1967-98, 15 to 35 billion dollars

2. Ferdinand Marcos, Philippines, 1972-86, five to 10 billion

3. Mobutu Sese Seko, Zaire, 1965-97, five billion

4. Sani Abacha, Nigeria, 1993-98, two to five billion

5. Slobodan Milosevic, Serbia/Yugoslavia, 1989-2000, one billion

6. Jean-Claude Duvalier, Haiti, 1971-86, 300 to 800 million

7. Alberto Fujimori, Peru, 1990-2000, 600 million

8. Pavlo Lazarenko, Ukraine, 1996-97, 114 to 200 million

9. Arnoldo Aleman, Nicaragua, 1997-2000, 100 million

10. Joseph Estrada, Philippines, 1998-2001, 78 to 80 million"
Though they left off Kim Jong Il who owns the world's largest Daffy Duck collection while his people starve and his scientists build and sell nuclear weapons.

Or there's Robert Mugabe who's built himself a $9 million retirement home at public expense while Zimbabe crumbles.

Or Yasser Arafat who appears to have billions. (He also won the Nobel Peace Prize.)

And I don't know if we'll ever know the extent of Saddam's looting but he surely belongs on the list.

So I'd say that Saddam, Arafat, and Kim Jong Il, should be in the top 10 here but apparently it's only ok to point out the corruption of officials who are out of power and uncontroversial. Meanwhile, we give money to Arafat and are expected to give food and oil aid to the North Koreans. Zimbabwe sits on the UN Human Rights Committee.


posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
And California wonders
why they have a budget crisis. If the system were transparent and corruption and incompetence dealt with appropriately, public servents would be allowed the discretion to deal appropriately with cases like this, instead of requiring the public to pay for a 5 year incarceration for a toolbox in addition to 2 million dollars trying to get the woman to go back for 65 days. I would be so pissed if I were a California taxpayer. Then again, that's precisely why they elected Aaahnold. Good grief!

From another excellent legal blog.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
[Very graphic. Not while eating. Not for kids.]
photos of inhuman atrocity comitted against civilians. Yet these people support just this.

This was written before this particular incident took place but it's so very relevant.
"Burial rites or their counterparts have been respected in almost all civilizations from time immemorial. See generally 26 Encyclopaedia Britannica 851 (15th ed. 1985) (noting that "[t]he ritual burial of the dead" has been practiced "from the very dawn of human culture and . . . in most parts of the world"); 5 Encyclopedia of Religion 450 (1987) ("[F]uneral rites . . . are the conscious cultural forms of one of our most ancient, universal, and unconscious impulses"). They are a sign of the respect a society shows for the deceased and for the surviving family members. The power of Sophocles' story in Antigone maintains its hold to this day because of the universal acceptance of the heroine's right to insist on respect for the body of her brother. See Antigone of Sophocles, 8 Harvard Classics: Nine Greek Dramas 255 (C. Eliot ed. 1909). The outrage at seeing the bodies of American soldiers mutilated and dragged through the streets is but a modern instance of the same understanding of the interests decent people have for those whom they have lost. Family members have a personal stake in honoring and mourning their dead and objecting to unwarranted public exploitation that, by intruding upon their own grief, tends to degrade the rites and respect they seek to accord to the deceased person who was once their own."
People who do this and people who think this is ok are barbarians in our midst.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
Wow. Just...

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
Well it's good to see that they're finally
admitting that there's a problem even if they refuse to see the scope.
"Tens of thousands of euro of EU funds may have been diverted to people linked with Palestinian terrorism, according to a report from the European Parliament, obtained by the EUobserver.

The report cites documentary evidence seen by a Parliamentary working group- set up last year after allegations that EU funds to the Palestinian Authority (PA) had been misused - that between 21,500-39,000 US dollars of EU funds may have been transferred to terrorists.

It is the first time that the EU has judged its own funds to Palestine may not been used for their intended purpose.
The group says it does not yet have enough evidence to show funds were transferred directly to terrorists, but can show that monies were transferred from the PA to members of the Fatah group, which is linked to the 'Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades' - a group on the EU's terror list.

The Israeli intelligence services say that evidence yielded from military operations in the Palestinian territories show 2.5 million euro which was "requested and delivered" to the PA fell into terrorists hands, of which 39,000 US dollars can be proven to have been actually paid out.

"Examination of the documents by the European Commission showed that payments to alleged Fatah activists had been authorised for a sum of 21,000 US dollars", according to the report.

Although it adds: "a link between the Palestinian Authority budget structure and the financing of Fatah is difficult to clearly picture".
But of course, it's not a problem now.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
Yet another example of the UN demanding that we
violate our own laws. See most of the world is ruled by fiat so when the UN says that we shoud do something they just can't comprehend the notion that we can't violate our own laws to please them. The worst part is that they have a legitimate gripe. I cannot imagine why our court system is unable to post a list of consular numbers by the one-3-minute-phone-call phone. I'd be super pissed if I was arrested in another country and wasn't allowed to contact the US embassy. Then again, I'd have asked to contact the embassy.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
I stumbled across
this again this week. That one is going down in the history books.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .
The enemy's incompetence saved them
this time. What will save them next time?

Get ready.

posted by Rachel 3/31/2004
. . .

. . .


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