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Amnesty’s response on Taliban unsatisfactory February 25, 2010

Posted by amnestyhaslostitsway in Afghanistan.

Harry’s Place reports on Eve Gerrard’s attempts to get a straight answer out of Amnesty regarding its relationship with the pro-Taliban “Cageprisoners” organisation.  Their reponse to Gerrard is typical of the arrogance that has come  to characterise Amnesty — as anyone who has challenged the organisation on other issues will discover.


Suspension of Conscience – by Christopher Hitchens February 15, 2010

Posted by amnestyhaslostitsway in Afghanistan, Christopher Hitchens.
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This organization is precious to me and to millions of other people, including many thousands of men and women who were and are incarcerated and maltreated because of their courage as dissidents and who regained their liberty as a consequence of Amnesty International’s unsleeping work. So to learn of its degeneration and politicization is to be reading about a moral crisis that has global implications.

Read the full article on Slate.

Amnesty Int. & Megagreed Plc – by Nick Cohen February 14, 2010

Posted by amnestyhaslostitsway in Afghanistan, Nick Cohen.
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Imagine an evil corporation; let us call it Megagreed plc. A worker with a fine and principled record speaks out about its directors associating with men who propagate a criminal ideology that has led to the denial of rights to millions in poor countries. Far from listening to her wise objections, Megagreed’s bosses suspend her for exercising her right to free speech on matters of public importance; it is a very evil corporation as I said.  Our brave whistleblower tours the streets looking for a human rights lawyer to represent her. But none will because they are all so frightened of incurring the wrath of Megagreed plc they would rather allow an injustice to pass than run the risk of taking up her cause.

Once men and women suffering at the hands of evil corporations like Megagreed could have turned to Amnesty International for help. Our heroine has been punished for speaking out, she is being denied the basic right to legal representation, surely Amnesty will act as a court of final appeal and give her a hearing? But our heroine can’t turn to Amnesty because in this instance Amnesty International IS the evil corporation.

Read the full article here.

How Amnesty chose the wrong poster-boy – by David Aaronovitch February 9, 2010

Posted by amnestyhaslostitsway in Afghanistan, David Aaronovitch.
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If you were a prisoner of conscience, a dissident, hounded by the authorities, imprisoned without proper process, shut up, shut in and shut down, then an organisation such as Amnesty International might be your one breath of air. Those Amnesty postcards, which seem like flinging a dart from a mountainside, may keep someone from despair. So the news that there is trouble at Amnesty is not welcome, except to tyrants. And yet it is hard not to see these ructions as being Amnesty’s own fault.

The problem came to prominence at the weekend when The Sunday Times reported that one of Amnesty’s senior officers, Gita Sahgal, had circulated a memorandum extremely critical of the organisation’s collaboration with a group called Cageprisoners. Cageprisoners’ most famous figure is the former Guantánamo inmate Moazzam Begg, a man whose three years’ incarceration without trial has helped, for many liberals, to turn him into a kind of Muslim Mandela — an embodiment of the wrongly accused.

Read the full article in the Times.

Facebook group launched: Amnesty International You Bloody Hypocrites Reinstate Gita Sahgal February 7, 2010

Posted by amnestyhaslostitsway in Afghanistan.
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This Facebook group was set up by Nick Cohen and Martin Bright — if you’re on Facebook, join it!