Human Rights abuses in the Third World : U.S. and Britain au fait


Amnesty International

A common misconception among journalists and political activists in Third World countries like Sierra Leone is that leaders of Western countries may not be aware about what is going on in their countries socio-politically and economically, especially human rights abuses .

The Presidents of the United States, Britain and the West are fully au fait about human rights abuses going on in any country in Africa and the world, though on the surface it may seem like they do not know and do not care.

Western leaders are not like many African leaders. Every morning, part of the protocol at the White House , No.10 Downing Street and other offices of the Western leaders is an intelligence briefing of the President and the Prime Minister about the state of security in the world. They have a team engaged in daily intelligence collection and analyses of security information and the President or PM receive security briefing every morning.

In the geopolitical rivalry still festering in the world and the quest by the major powers to control the world, it is imperative that the leaders are fully au fait with the state of affairs in all countries . The U.S and Western countries believe that political conflicts and regional tensions anywhere in the world affect their geopolitical interests and this is why they are at times compelled to intervene to protect their interests.

Journalists and political activists are often carried away and misled by diplomatic gestures and pronouncements by foreign ambassadors and diplomats. What the U.S Ambassador says in Freetown or Accra or Abuja , for instance, is not a full reflection of their country’s view and thought about the client country. Ambassadors very rarely publicly transmit their government’s displeasure with other countries openly, because it is against diplomatic protocols and convention.

An ambassador of the U.S. or Britain or Russia could be assuring a country about the imperatives of maintaining and strengthening socio-economic, political, cultural and diplomatic ties while undercover they may be contemplating or engaged in covert operations against the government of that country.

Countries that have fallen out of favour with a Western nation because of their poor human rights records could be denied aid or loans or socio-economic breakthroughs without their knowledge . The West may also work covertly with opposition elements, opponents of the government, political activists etc. to seek to bring down the government.

African governments must therefore be very careful. The fact that the U.S,or Britain are not vocally opposing their human rights abuses in public does not mean that records are not being taken or that there will not be consequences in the future. The only reason the U.S or Britain may be acting in seeming lethargy is that their national and security interests have not been directly hit, as yet. But Western nations know that when things fall apart in any country and it results in war, it fuels the interests of terrorists who might use such a war as a springboard to destabilize the U.S. or Britain or undermine their geopolitical, economic or military interests.

With the U.S and Britain fully engaged with the war against terror, they will not turn a blind eye to human rights abuse for long from countries that depend on them for aid or that they are using as satellite states to rule the world.

Sierra Leone, Liberia, Guinea and Nigeria may want to take note.


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