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Olympics Causing Further Human Rights Abuse

Ironically, human rights abuses in China are actually getting worse because of the upcoming Olympics in Beijing. Amnesty International warns that China's pre-Olympic clean up is not good for dissidents. With all eyes on China, it is certainly trying to appear more stable and harmonious, but the latest report says:

It is increasingly clear that much of the current wave of repression is occurring not in spite of the Olympics but actually because of the Olympics.

China has already announced that it plans to control a natural phenomenon — rain— with a technique that involves dropping chemicals on clouds. If this is the sort of approach the government takes toward unruly weather, I can't imagine how it will control an unruly population.

So, I'm not surprised by Amnesty International's assessment that a positive legacy for the Beijing Olympics looks unlikely. Apparently China wasn't surprised either, as the foreign ministry spokeswoman said: "The organization holds prejudice against China, so you can imagine what kind of report it will release."

Do you still have any hope that the Olympics, with all the attention, might inspire reform in China? Or could they be heading in the opposite direction?


Join The Conversation
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Happy ending for whom? the people in Tibet? I think not
DigitalChick DigitalChick 9 years
What does controlling the weather on the opening ceremony having anything to do with human right? Stop BS. You people here has never been to China, not interested in knowing how Chinese live, having no idea what kind of country China is. All you could do is say there is no human rights in China. But you won't do anything about it. Olympic will go on and have a happy ending, just wait and see!
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Is anyone suprised that the olympic committee gave the games to China, one of the world's worst violators of human rights? This is the same committee who gave the 36 games to Germany because of Hitler's rise, and his appearant reunification of the country
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 9 years
hypno, I also have problems with us doing business with China. I'm mostly free market, but China doesn't play by any of the current rules--witness the recent product contamination problems. Also, sending our manufacturing jobs there just exports jobs. So, it isn't good for our workers or our consumers. We need to stop doing business with them until they get with the program.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
The only way China is going to change to the world community's satisfaction any time soon is if the 1 Billion + people rise up and whoop some kung pao @$$! I feel that we should participate because no bad will come of it but there is a chance although be it so slim that some good diplomacy and discussion will come of it. The U.S. really has no leverage when it comes to China like we had with the former Soviet Union and now Russia. Because of our public and private economic decisions China has got us by the balls for all intents and purposes and is prepared to use that grip to pull their way into economic superiority over the U.S. We need to bring investment back home and compete head to head but right now as far as I'm concerned we're China's economic lap dog.
Cassandra57 Cassandra57 9 years
I've been opposed to giving China the Olympics from Day 1, for exactly this reason. It's a chance for them to grandstand for the world, so of course it's going to be all about appearances. I've heard references to a number of deaths during construction of the new facilities, too, because they're trying to work fast and are shortcutting safety measures. It's just plain common sense. You don't bribe someone to change their behavior *in advance*. Doesn't work, because then you have no leverage.
freegracefrom freegracefrom 9 years
I agree with janneth. I'm always optimistic and hopeful for change in China. There's always a hope that by China embracing economic opportunities from around the world, they'll eventually be more receptive to some ideas and mores from their new trading partners as well. However, if nobody's willing to even speak up, nothing's going to happen. We need to put pressure on them and gradually increase that pressure, even if that means we need to reevaluate our economic/business plans.
annebreal annebreal 9 years
I love what stephley said - they're going to flex their muscles, not change their ways.
lizrocks lizrocks 9 years
What Jude C said.
janneth janneth 9 years
Why in heavens would China change? They do as they please, they are awarded the Olympics, and the entire world runs over there to $pend money.
stephley stephley 9 years
China's not a small country that needs a gentle push to join the rest of the world, so the Olympics weren't going to be anything but a chance for China's leaders to flex in front of the world. I just hope they're not a disaster. I really wish we'd sit them out.
Jude-C Jude-C 9 years
Do you still have any hope that the Olympics, with all the attention, might inspire reform in China? I didn't have any hope for that in the first place. This is the country that equates cleanup with rounding up the homeless and dissidents and throwing them in jail. Or could they be heading in the opposite direction? Yep.
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