Internet access *is* a Human Right

English: Emblem of the United Nations. Color i...
Emblem of the United Nations (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Thus sayeth the UN after a resolution was passed unanimously by their Human Rights Council.

This is a Good Thing, as the resolution declared that the right to be able to get online and express oneself freely was a right of every person on the planet. Wonderful, and something I wholeheartedly agree with.

However…

a) How could China, with it’s famous “Great Firewall“, sign this with a straight face? While Chinese people can access the internet, they do not get access to the same level of information as people in the West. They also certainly cannot express themselves freely as many recent news stories have demonstrated, with people being arrested for even drawing attention to certain topics let along going into detail about them.

b) France has a “three strikes and you’re cut off” policy for those accused of (note: not necessarily “found guilty of”) downloading copyrighted material. The UK has been looking at similar plans as have other countries. This resolution is going to knock that kind of legislation for six, surely? It’s worth pointing out that neither France nor the UK are current members of the United Nations Human Right Council, so did not sign the resolution.

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OK, enough’s enough

United Nations Human Rights Council logo.

I’ve avoided commenting on this story because it covers so many bases that get me riled: politics, human rights, children, foreign aid… It’s the Burmese / Myanmaran disaster caused by Cyclone Nargis. I just need to get a lot of things off my chest and also – amazingly – tip my hat to our foreign secretary for his very public statement today that perhaps we should use military force to help those in need.

Frankly, this whole story is making me more angry than sad; more helpless than I felt during the aftermath of the Boxing Day Tsunami. The scale of this natural disaster is being compounded hugely by the uncaring attitude of the fuckwit bunch of bastards who are apparently running this country. Ideas have been bandied around of dropping aid directly onto the country. Unfortunately, these cunts in uniform would see it as an act of war, most likely. Because that’s what countries at war do. Drop food on each other.

Each time a relief aid worker gets a visa, it’s a major headline. For fuck’s sake, the embassy in Bangkok was shut for a fucking holiday at the start of this week, so no visas could be issued. People within the country who have money have been told to give it to government offices if they want to make a donation – only they’re not that stupid. Those with cars are having to make umpteen return trips in small groups to ferry helpers around – large convoys of Burmese people, let alone foreigners, are being prevented from moving around to help their fellow citizens. External nations have been told to send supplies, not people, and that the government would deal with things.

Problem one – they don’t have enough resources and people to deal with the distribution. Problem two – who here is retarded enough to believe that those supplies wouldn’t go directly to the cunta…. sorry junta in charge, while the poor got fuck all?

David Miliband‘s argument is to use the UN charter that we and other nations have signed up to. It’s designed to allow our military forces to “invade” (for want of a better term) where we have evidence of war crimes, genocide, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. Refusing to help well over a million people from dying certainly classes as a crime against humanity – and I would be very easily persuaded to see it as effectively passive genocide. They’re killing their own people by refusing to be helped, for no good reason other than they’re frightened that they might lose some of their own, pathetic grip on power.

If any good comes of this horrendous mess, I can only hope that the people will rise up and crucify these greedy bastards. It seems they have 400,000 troops. But how many of these have lost family as a result of this tragedy? And how many of them could have been saved? I bet nobody in power, or their families was harmed as they would have acted on the intelligence they received far in advance of anyone else.

I still want to visit this country. I so wish I could do something to help. I so wish we were allowed to. And for once, I’d fully support an army involving our troops “invading” a country to provide aid. This isn’t Iraq or Afghanistan with a fortune in oil reserves. Let’s see how the Western governments deal with it.