Wednesday, October 3, 2012

doublespeak: Baird at the UN

I know I'm supposed to be spending every free moment writing poetry, but I just had to post the following excerpts from Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird's UN speech. Not only was the speech arrogant-- Canada giving a tongue-lashing to the UN for not doing its job? -- but also a prime example of the obscenity of the federal government's hypocrisy. Have they no shame? 

My comments about what he said are in blue. Maybe I'll re-write some of this in poetic form and call it "Have they no shame?" Take the doublespeak and expose it.
You cannot develop understanding by building walls between cultures.
You cannot achieve prosperity by erecting walls between economies.
And you cannot advance a people by putting walls between them and the state.
Have they no shame? What to say? Did he bring his concern about building walls to the Israeli government when he went there early in 2012? Of course not; instead, he confirmed Canada's unwavering support of Israel and its policies.
It is not enough for a society to protect its own security. As members of the global community, global security affects us all.
Or, as Nelson Mandela bluntly put it:
“Freedom would be meaningless without security in the home and in the streets.”
Have they no shame? Quoting Nelson Mandela's ideas of freedom and security--which came out of the struggle against racism and resistance against apartheid and institutional power--to argue for security defined through neo-liberal states like Canada that promote militarism, policing, and institutional centralization contained to politicians and corporations?
The late Martin Luther King Jr. once said:
“He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”
Have they no shame? Obviously, Baird is not familiar with MLK's life's work and he has no shame to pull out a passage for his own rhetorical purposes. Obviously, Baird has never read MLK's sermon/speech "Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence" where he speaks about the growth in America of "the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism"--the very things that are the effects of the Canadian government's neo-liberal neo-conservative ideology and policies. 

Today, the most significant threat to global peace and security remains the regime in Iran.
Um, it is Israel that has 200+ nuclear warheads. Doesn't this present a significant threat to global peace and security? I think so. Go on the world stage and voice that nuclear truth.  
While Canada prizes engagement and open relations, there can be no open engagement with a regime that dishonours its word, repudiates its commitments, and threatens to perpetuate crimes against humanity.
Since 1948, Israel has repudiated the UN Resolutions that have sought to bring justice to Palestine and Israel. But because of US military support and the backing of countries like Canada, Israel has impunity to continue to ignore UN Resolutions, and, as Operation Cast Lead, shows, to perpetuate crimes against humanity with no accountability. Yet, Canada engages openly with this regime. 

The great poet Kahlil Gibran inspired us to remember that, “safeguarding the rights of others is the most noble and beautiful end of a human being.”
This is not simply a question of beliefs and values. It is a requirement for action.
OK, Mr. Baird, your government is required to safeguard the rights of Palestinians: the right of return, the right to be free from state violence, arbitrary imprisonment, and home demolitions (to name a few), the rights of Palestinians to live in Jerusalem and not be expelled, the rights of Palestinians to their land that illegal Israeli settlers are appropriating, ....the list is long of the missing rights of Palestinian people. There is "a requirement for action" on behalf of the Canadian government to speak out for these rights. It's missing. 
As we celebrate Mohandas Gandhi’s birthday tomorrow, let us be inspired by his words:
“You must not lose faith in humanity.
Humanity is an ocean;
if a few drops of the ocean are dirty,
the ocean does not become dirty.”

Have they no shame? Gandhi? Does Baird  even know what ahimsa means? But then again, maybe this passage is a defense of Canada's Tar Sands as Baird et al Conservative government think its environmental footprint is just a drop in the ocean. Just one black dirty oil drop.

1 comment:

Merche Pallarés said...

These neocons are SO biased, it's unbelievable!! In Spain we have them in power and they're destroying all the social rights that we had until now. They're dismantling everything!! and if Romney wins in the States... Watch out!! Hugs, M.