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February 9, 2004
The Arab League Discovers Humor

The Arab League, of all things, issued a report this morning critical of the US-led coalition's administration of Iraq -- on human-rights grounds:

Violations of human rights and international law by U.S.-led forces in Iraq have embittered the populace, an Arab League report obtained Monday said. ... "It (the treatment of Iraqis) is not in conformity with relevant international legal rules or with human rights documents in general," said the report obtained by Reuters.

The report quoted some Iraqis who were critical of Arab indifference toward their plight under the brutal rule of former President Saddam Hussein and said a change in methods by U.S.-led occupation forces could ease tensions.

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black! Perhaps our response should be, "When you can announce these reports filled with your concern over human-rights abuses from the door of synagogues and Christian churches, then we will listen to your complaints." These are the same governments who rule by decree and torture and execute their citizens on the whim of their presidents-for-life. Even those closest to the West diplomatically, such as Egypt and Jordan, do not allow dissent or freedom of religious expression. Egypt has been under "emergency" suspension of even the pretense of democratic rule for decades now. They openly support the deliberate targeting and murder of Israeli citizens by suicide bombers. Lastly, the Arab League never lifted a finger to help Iraqis when they were brutally oppressed by Saddam Hussein under far, far worse conditions. Their concern fails to move me.

If we can soften our approach without endandgering our security and the security of the large majority of Iraqis who work with us to build a free and democratic Iraq, then we should by all means do so. But the Arab League would do better to focus on themselves if they want anyone to take their concerns about human rights seriously.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at February 9, 2004 11:06 AM

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