sexta-feira, 4 de fevereiro de 2011

Revista de imprensa (4/2/2011)

  • «The great Czech dissident Vaclav Havel outlined the “as if principle”. He said people trapped under a dictatorship need to act “as if they are free.” They need to act as if the dictator has no power over them. They need to act as if they have their human rights. Havel rode that principle to the death of Soviet tyranny and to the Presidential Palace of a free society. The Egyptians are trying the same – and however many of them Mubarak murders on his way out the door, the direction in which fear flows has been successfully reversed. The tyrant has become terrified of “his” people – and dictators everywhere are watching the live-feed from Liberation Square pale-faced and panicked.

    Very few British people would praise a murderer and sell him weapons. Very few British people would beat up a poor person in order to get cheaper petrol. But our governments do this abroad all the time. Of the three worst human rights abusers in the Middle East – Saudi Arabia, Israel, and Iran – two are our governments’ closest friends, showered with money, arms and praise. Why?
    British foreign policy does not follow the everyday moral principles of the British people, because it is not formulated by us. This might sound like an odd thing to say about a country that prides itself on being a democracy, but it is true. The former Labour MP Lorna Fitzsimons spoke as a conference for Israel’s leaders last year and assured they didn’t have to worry about the British people’s growing opposition to their policies because “public opinion does not influence foreign policy in Britain. Foreign policy is an elite issue.” This is repellent but right. It is formulated instead in the interests of elite forces – big business and their demand for access to resources, and influential sectional interest groups.» (Johann Hari)