CHINA’S HUMAN RIGHTS REPORT ON THE USA–take it with grain of salt but interesting read.


Full Text of Human Rights Record of the United States in 2010
Facts and Figures: U.S. human rights situation

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2011-04/10/c_13822320.htm

BEIJING, April 10 (Xinhua) — China’s Information Office of the State Council, or cabinet, published a report titled “The Human Rights Record of the United States in 2010” here Sunday. Following is the full text:

Human Rights Record of the United States in 2010

The State Department of the United States released its Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2010 on April 8, 2011. As in previous years, the reports are full of distortions and accusations of the human rights situation in more than 190 countries and regions including China. However, the United States turned a blind eye to its own terrible human rights situation and seldom mentioned it. The Human Rights Record of the United States in 2010 is prepared to urge the United States to face up to its own human rights issues.

I. On Life, Property and Personal Security

The United States reports the world’s highest incidence of violent crimes, and its people’s lives, properties and personal security are not duly protected.

Every year, one out of every five people is a victim of a crime in the United States. No other nation on earth has a rate that is higher (10 Facts About Crime in the United States that Will Blow Your Mind, Beforitsnews.com). In 2009, an estimated 4.3 million violent crimes, 15.6 million property crimes and 133,000 personal thefts were committed against U.S. residents aged 12 or older, and the violent crime rate was 17.1 victimizations per 1,000 persons, according to a report published by the U.S. Department of Justice on October 13, 2010 (Criminal Victimization 2009, U.S. Department of Justice, http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov). The crime rate surged in many cities in the United States. St. Louis in Missouri reported more than 2,070 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, making it the nation’s most dangerous city (The Associated Press, November 22, 2010). Detroit residents experienced more than 15,000 violent crimes each year, which means the city has 1,600 violent crimes per 100,000 residents. The United States’ four big cities – Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York – reported increases in murders in 2010 from the previous year (USA Today, December 5, 2010). Twenty-five murder cases occurred in Los Angeles County in a week from March 29 to April 4, 2010; and in the first half of 2010, 373 people were killed in murders in Los Angeles County (www.lapdonline.org). As of November 11, New York City saw 464 homicide cases, up 16 percent from the 400 reported at the same time last year (The Washington Post, November 12, 2010).

The United States exercised lax control on the already rampant gun ownership. Reuters reported on November 10, 2010 that the United States ranks first in the world in terms of the number of privately-owned guns. Some 90 million people own an estimated 200 million guns in the United States, which has a population of about 300 million. The Supreme Court of the United States ruled on June 28, 2010 that the second amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives Americans the right to bear arms that can not be violated by state and local governments, thus extending the Americans’ rights to own a gun for self-defense purposes to the entire country (The Washington Post, June 29, 2010). Four U.S. states – Tennessee, Arizona, Georgia and Virginia – allow loaded guns in bars. And 18 other states allow weapons in restaurants that serve alcohol (The New York Times, October 3, 2010). Tennessee has nearly 300,000 handgun permit holders. The Washington Times reported on June 7, 2010 that in November 2008, a total of 450,000 more people in the United States purchased firearms than had bought them in November 2007. This was a more than 10-fold increase, compared with the change in sales from November 2007 over November 2006. From November 2008 to October 2009, almost 2.5 million more people bought guns than had done so in the preceding 12 months (The Washington Times, June 7, 2010). The frequent campus shootings in colleges in the United States came to the spotlight in recent years. The United Kingdom’s Daily Telegraph reported on February 21, 2011 that a new law that looks certain to pass through the legislature in Texas, the United States, would allow half a million students and teachers in its 38 public colleges to carry guns on campus. It would become only the second state, after Utah, to enforce such a rule.

The United States had high incidence of gun-related blood-shed crimes. Statistics showed there were 12,000 gun murders a year in the United States (The New York Times, September 26, 2010). Figures released by the U.S. Department of Justice on October 13, 2010 showed weapons were used in 22 percent of all violent crimes in the United States in 2009, and about 47 percent of robberies were committed with arms (www.ojp.usdoj.gov, October 13, 2010). On March 30, 2010, five men killed four people and seriously injured five others in a deadly drive-by shooting (The Washington Post, April 27, 2010). In April, six separate shootings occurred overnight, leaving 16 total people shot, two fatally (www.myfoxchicago.com). On April 3, a deadly shooting at a restaurant in North Hollywood, Los Angeles, left four people dead and two others wounded (www.nbclosangeles.com, April 4, 2010). One person was killed and 21 others wounded in separate shootings around Chicago roughly between May 29 and 30 (www.chicagobreakingnews.com, May 30, 2010). In June, 52 people were shot at a weekend in Chicago (www.huffingtonpost.com, June 21, 2010). Three police officers were shot dead by assailants in the three months from May to July (Chicago Tribune, July 19, 2010). A total of 303 people were shot and 33 of them were killed in Chicago in the 31 days of July in 2010. Between November 5 and 8, four people were killed and at least five others injured in separate shootings in Oakland (World Journal, November 11, 2010). On November 30, a 15-year-old boy in Marinette County, Wisconsin, took his teacher and 24 classmates hostage at gunpoint (abcNews, November 30, 2010). On January 8, 2011, a deadly rampage critically wounded U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Six people were killed and 12 others injured in the attack (Los Angeles Times, January 9, 2011).

Copyright 2010 Xinhua News Agency

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About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
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2 Responses to CHINA’S HUMAN RIGHTS REPORT ON THE USA–take it with grain of salt but interesting read.

  1. eslkevin says:

    I am disappointed that the USA cannot appropriately punish the terrorist mastermind of the murder of hundreds of people in the first terror attack on an airline in the Western Hemisphere in 1976.

    Alleged Cuban Airline Bomber Free After Acquittal on Immigration Charges

    http://www.democracynow.org/2011/4/11/cia_trained_airline_bomber_set_free

    Luis Posada Carriles, a former CIA operative best known as the suspected mastermind of the deadly 1976 bombing of a Cuban airline jet, was acquitted Friday. He wasn’t facing terrorism charges, but 11 charges of perjury, immigration fraud, and obstruction of justice. Although the U.S. government believes he is an international terrorist, Posada Carriles was freed on Friday. Will the Obama administration let him walk the streets of Miami? [includes rush transcript]

    Filed under Luis Posada Carriles
    Guest:

    Peter Kornbluh, director of the National Security Archive’s Cuba Documentation Project
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    RUSH TRANSCRIPT
    This transcript is available free of charge. However, donations help us provide closed captioning for the deaf and hard of hearing on our TV broadcast. Thank you for your generous contribution.
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    CIA File on Luis Posada Carriles
    AMY GOODMAN: A former CIA operative best known as the suspected mastermind of the 1976 bombing of a Cubana airline jet was acquitted Friday. But instead of terrorism charges, Luis Posada Carriles faced 11 charges of perjury, immigration fraud and obstruction of justice. The 83-year-old Cuban exile and anti-Castro militant was accused of lying under oath during an immigration hearing. Prosecutors say Posada Carriles lied about how he entered the United States in 2005, lied by denying his role in a series of bombings in Havana in 1997 that killed an Italian tourist and wounded 12 others. Posada Carriles had formerly admitted on tape to his role in the hotel bombings but later recanted.

    After a 13-week trial, a jury in El Paso, Texas, deliberated for just three hours Friday and handed down a unanimous verdict of “not guilty” on all counts. Posada Carriles was facing a maximum of five to eight years in prison. His acquittal marks the end of a fourth attempt by the United States to convict him.

    Cuba and Venezuela would like the United States to extradite him so he can be tried for his role in the bombings, but the U.S. has so far refused. Posada Carriles says he now plans to return to live with his family in Miami.

    In a statement released after the verdict, the Cuban Foreign Ministry said, quote, “The U.S. government’s protection of Posada Carriles has become an emblematic case of the U.S. double standard in the international fight against terrorism.”

    To speak more about the trial and the history of Luis Posada Carriles, we’re joined by Peter Kornbluh in Washington, D.C., director of the National Security Archive at the George Washington University and the Cuba Documentation Project.

    Peter, welcome to Democracy Now! Talk about what happened in this trial.

    PETER KORNBLUH: Well, I was at the trial for its opening week and followed it very carefully. It was a difficult sell. It was hard to present all the evidence in a coherent way. The defense lawyer, Arturo Hernandez, was very professional, very obstructionist, very, very effective. And over the course of three months, the jury, I think, simply lost the ability to follow the evidence and to care that much. I mean, we had a three-month trial, massive amounts of evidence, and the jury deliberated less than three hours.

    I mean, first and foremost, Amy, this is an insult to Posada’s many victims and their families, who were hoping for a small modicum of justice to come out of this one prosecution of Posada. Beyond that, it is a disaster for the U.S. legal system in its ability to prosecute terrorists, even on moderate, low-level charges. It is a blow, as the Cuban government pointed out, to the credibility of the U.S. effort to lead a fight against international terrorism, because we’re now in a situation we’re going to be harboring a well-known terrorist in the United States of America. And finally, it really does blow—deal a blow to U.S.-Cuban relations. The Cuban government really did cooperate in this case. They provided access to evidence, access to witnesses. They sent witnesses to the trial to testify. And so, this is a real hard blow to the future of U.S.-Cuban relations, as well.

    AMY GOODMAN: Explain exactly who Luis Posada Carriles is, Peter Kornbluh.

    PETER KORNBLUH: Well, he is at the top—well, Luis Posada Carriles is certainly on any terrorist expert’s list of top 10 most prolific purveyors of violence over the last 30 or 40 years. He was a Cuban, left Cuba after the revolution, started to work with the CIA, was a paid asset and trainer in sabotage, in explosions—in explosives for the CIA, training other Cuban militants in the mid-1960s. He was on the CIA payroll from 1965 through 1976. He left the United States in 1967 and moved to Caracas, Venezuela, where he became a very high official in the Venezuelan secret police, DISIP.

    And while he was in Caracas, in October of 1976, according to CIA and FBI declassified secret documents, he was one of the two masterminds of one of the most heinous acts of international terrorism in the Western Hemisphere before our own 9/11: the bombing of a Cubana flight, mid-air, killing 73 men, women and children on October 6, 1976.

    He has a long history beyond that. He went on to orchestrate a series of hotel bombings in Cuba in the late 1990s. He was arrested in Panama in November of 2000 with a car full of C-4 explosives and dynamite in an effort to blow up Fidel Castro during a Iberian-American summit. I mean, the list goes on and on and on.

    And we had hoped that he would actually be convicted and, at 83 years old, spend the rest of his life in prison. Instead, it may be that he is able to live in retirement in Miami, which is, you know, a complete stunning turn of events for anybody who cares about the security of U.S. citizens and justice for the victims of international terrorism.

    AMY GOODMAN: Peter Kornbluh, I wanted to go back to that Cubana Flight 455 from Barbados to Havana, the first mid-air bombing of a civilian airliner in the Western Hemisphere. The plane was brought down October 6, 1976. All 73 people, as you said, were killed, including the Cuban national fencing team. The airline’s black box recorded the final moments of Flight 455. The audio is difficult to make out, but it begins with the sound of the explosion. One of the pilots is heard saying, “We are descending immediately. We have fire on board.”

    CUBANA AIRLINES PILOT: Four-five-five.

    AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL: Four-five-five, [inaudible].

    CUBANA AIRLINES PILOT: We have had explosion, and we are descending immediately. We have fire on board.

    AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL: Cubana 455, [inaudible].

    CUBANA AIRLINES PILOT: [inaudible] Cubana 455, we’re requesting immediately, immediately landing.

    AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL: Cubana 455, you are cleared to land.

    CUBANA AIRLINES PILOT: La puerta. Cierra la puerta. [inaudible]

    AMY GOODMAN: That audio captured in the final moments of Cubana Flight 455, brought down by an on-flight bomb, October 1976, en route to Havana. Peter Kornbluh, how did Luis Posada Carriles end up in the United States? Why is he living in Miami now?

    PETER KORNBLUH: Well, Amy, just let me say that after the “not guilty” verdict on Friday, I was in touch with the sister of one of the Guyanese medical students who was on that plane and who died on that plane, a 19-year-old science student named Raymond Persaud, and he was on his way to Cuba for a scholarship to study medicine to become one of the few doctors in Guyana at that time. And, of course, he was killed along with 72 other people. And it’s just a very sad state of affairs for his family, that had hoped that Posada would finally, you know, be convicted on terrorism charges.

    You know, Posada escaped from prison in Venezuela, where he was being prosecuted for blowing up that plane, in 1985, with the help of anti-Castro, Miami Cuban Americans who sent money to him. He bribed his way out. He immediately went to Central America and joined Oliver North’s famous Iran-Contra operations, working surreptitiously with the Contras in El Salvador. He eventually orchestrated the hotel bombings, as I said. And then he was arrested in Panama for trying to kill Fidel Castro. He served four years in prison there and then was pardoned—another story that hasn’t really been told—by the outgoing right-wing president. And he was a fugitive for a year, and then he simply came to the United States.

    He was brought, according to the evidence presented in court over these last 13 weeks, in a boat by one of his benefactors from Miami, a very wealthy Cuban American named Santiago Álvarez. He was brought surreptitiously from Mexico on a boat, just came into the country. And he thought, during the Bush administration, that he could simply appear, ask for asylum, ask to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, and he would be welcomed. We posted the CIA and FBI documents about his role in the plane bombing, and eventually he was arrested and detained for a couple of years, while he was undergoing this kind of whole long process of immigration charges.

    But I just want to let your listeners know, here’s an individual who’s on the no-fly list. He can’t even get on a plane, a commercial airliner, from El Paso, where he was prosecuted, and fly back to Miami, because he’s considered a danger to aviation and to the security of American citizens. And that is documented in the papers from the U.S. government that are part of this case. And the issue now is, what is the U.S. government going to do with this individual? They’ve just presented a case in court that he’s an international terrorist. And now, are we just going to let him go back to Miami? You know, it really is an issue that has to be addressed.

    AMY GOODMAN: If the U.S. government has made a case that he’s an international terrorist, can they arrest him under the USA PATRIOT Act?

    PETER KORNBLUH: They could detain him under the PATRIOT Act. I mean, I, as a progressive person, don’t want to be supporting the PATRIOT Act and the violation of civil liberties that it portends; but on the other hand, it does seem to be tailor-made for a case like this, where you have great difficulties in the bombing of the plane, in the hotel bombings, even in the case in Panama—you have great difficulties in presenting a case in a U.S. court that can bring this man to justice. And so, he could be detained under the PATRIOT Act.

    He is still an illegal alien here, whether he was acquitted of lying or not. He came here illegally. He doesn’t have papers to be here. He doesn’t have a visa. He doesn’t have any resident papers. I mean, he still can be deported, if the U.S. government wants to deport him and can find a place to deport him to. And Venezuela, where he escaped from prison in 1985, has a valid extradition request into the Obama administration for his extradition to Venezuela to be prosecuted for the plane bombing, and the Obama administration could grant that request, if it wanted to. So, it has many options other than letting him return and live freely in Miami, to address the issue that we have—that the U.S. government’s position is this man is an international terrorist and should be treated as such.

    AMY GOODMAN: Peter Kornbluh, I want to thank you very much for being with us, director of the Cuba Documentation Project at the National Security Archive. Thanks for joining us from Washington, D.C.

  2. Pingback: american government | violent crimes | nuclear war 2011

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