More From Alder's Ledge

November 12, 2012

Will Obama Visit Rohingya Ghettos?

Or Will Barack Skip The Death Camps?
(Part of The Darkness Visible series)

As the date of Barack Obama's visit to Myanmar draws near the lives of thousands of Rohingya continue to hang in the balance. In ghettos, imprisoned in concentration camps, and if lucky... in refugee camps; the Rohingya are struggling to survive this latest round of ethnic cleansing. They have little to no access to food in all three camps. They have hardly any access to clean water. And medical aid is limited due to the Myanmar government's intentional denial of relief workers and aid to the Rohingya.

In the 1990's the United States remained silent as a similar situation played out in Bosnia. The White House under another Democrat president sat silent on the sidelines as Serbian forces rounded up Muslims and sent them off to European death camps. The President said nothing as Bosnia's Muslims were denied food and water as their cities were laid siege to. The media in the United States tried to cover up the level of the atrocities within Bosnia so that their doll in the White House would not have to dirty his hands to stop the killing.

Today we watch as the United States remains silent as the Myanmar does the same thing. The White House under a so called "humanitarian" Democrat says nothing as Burmese police and military round up Rohingya for death camps. The President says nothing as Myanmar's Muslims are denied food and water as their homes are torched and their villages wiped off the map. The media remains loyal to the president as they willingly leave out news of the atrocities and word their reports so as to avoid the word genocide.... a word they know could force Obama's hand.

In Bosnia the United States betrayed our commitment to uphold the basic human rights that we claim to believe in so dearly. Some have speculated that Clinton simply did not want to commit troops to a foreign war because of political posturing. There is also the likely possibility that Clinton did not want to directly face off with the fourth largest standing army in Europe. This would have ultimately led to the deaths of several American soldiers. This would have lost credibility withing Washington for the Clinton administration. But more importantly, for Clinton, this would have made a Democrat president be seen as "war mongering" in an area of the world few Americans even cared about.

Today in Myanmar we are betraying those same principles. And it is more than likely that many of the same reasons Clinton had in Bosnia can be carried over and applied to the Obama administration. It is likely that Obama does not want to be seen as a "war hawk" and fighting a fight not our own.

But there is the problem with the hypocrisy of the Obama administration. Here is a president who was willing to fight the rebels' fight in Libya. Here is a president who claims that the political civil war in Libya was a "genocide" (note Obama did nothing to stop the rebels in Libya from killing black Africans on the basis of their race). And on the flip-side here is a president who has done absolutely nothing to stop the actual genocide in Syria (Assad targets his victims on the basis of the differing religious sects within Islam). This is the president who did absolutely nothing to stop the genocide withing Bahrain (where the minority sect of Islam call their opposition "cockroaches" as they target their victims). This is the president that has watched the Uzbeks were targeted in a spat of ethnic cleansing in 2010. And this is the president who has refused to uphold his promise to recognize the Armenian genocide.

So even in his actions abroad, in which Obama has committed acts of war for political gain, the president appears weak when approaching the issue of human rights. When Obama lent troops to help track down the Lord's Resistance Army in the Congo he gave explicit limitations on the ability of the United States Troops to cross borders in pursuit. This meant that the LRA, a guerrilla army that readily crosses borders to evade capture, could simply dodge our troops without fear of being caught by the technologically advanced American troops. When the political gain was capitalized upon back home... Obama pulled the troops and abandoned the Congo.

In the Sudan Obama has used the excuse of "national sovereignty" to keep his cult of personality untainted by the genocide in Darfur and the Blue Nile. Not once has a member of Obama's administration visited the refugee camps in the genocide stricken Sudan. Instead Obama decided to lift sanctions on South Sudan as they too commit war crimes and employ child soldiers to continue the war with Sudan.

So will Obama be visiting the Rohingya ghettos? Will our president bother to ask about the concentration camps?

It is hard to imagine that Obama's interest in Myanmar has little more to do with anything but the economic boost he wants to gain from patting Thein Sein on the back. This is the only motive Obama has in releasing the might of American economic muscle loose on Burma. And in doing this the Obama White House will be funding this era's Nazi regime. Our tax dollars, our commerce, our food and exports... all will be readily available to a government that is currently using these to keep up it's wholesale slaughter of the Rohingya people.

Join Alder's Ledge and many more like us in telling President Barack Obama that no amount of economic gain is worth this. Tell Obama that we will not stand silently by as his White House help fund genocide.

You can do this by engaging the President's twitter account. After all, this is the first President to make his staff readily accessible 24 hours a day (if you take him at his word). Or you write you representative in Congress and tell them the same thing. This will help put pressure on both Congress and the White House. This will help get the Rohingya peoples' voice heard... all you have to do is exercise your rights to help gain theirs'.

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