Saturday, July 28, 2007

Terror as a pretext for tyranny

Just in case you might have thought that the United States was the only country where government leaders have used terror as a reason to enact law that limit liberties and intrude into the lives of ordinary citizens, rest assured that the impulse is well-nigh universal. This piece from The New Republic's Joshua Kurlantzick focuses on Asia, but it's happening all over the world.

Thailand, for example, has passed an Internal Security Act that "would allow the government to arrest and hold anyone without charge for seven days, subject to infinite renewal, and the people jailed would have no judicial recourse after their release ..." There has been an insurgency in the Muslim south. The Philippines has a Human Security Act, which makes it a crime to "sow and create a condition of widespread and extraordinary fear and panic among the populace." Malaysia already had a draconian internal security law as a leftover from British colonial days, but they're using it more, and the U.S., which used to criticize the law, remains silent.

Jordan, Pakistan and Uganda also have new laws that vrtually invite abuse like criminal crackdowns on legitimate political dissenters.

Thanks, Osama, for giving them all the pretext.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Very Interesting!
Thank You!