Outrage Over Kazemi Missing In Other Cases

Posted on Monday, April 11 at 09:40 by 4Canada
It would be hard to say otherwise given the description of Kazemi delivered on Thursday by Dr. Shahram Azam, the emergency room physician who saw her when she was admitted, beaten and unconscious, to a Tehran hospital in June, 2003. Prime Minister Paul Martin, no slouch when it comes to outrage, says he finds the whole affair "simply unacceptable," and promised to think about doing something. Conservative foreign affairs critic Stockwell Day is outraged. He wants Canada to suspend diplomatic ties with Iran until the culprits behind Kazemi's torture and death are brought to justice. The New Democrats are outraged. The editorial boards of the Toronto Star and The Globe and Mail are outraged. I'm outraged (journalists take the murder and torture of other journalists personally). It's hard not to be outraged since this action, presumably undertaken by Iran's security services, was so ... outrageous. Yet, at the same time, it's worth noting that there does appear to be an outrage gap operating. I don't recall Martin threatening unspecified actions in the wake of the U.S. government's decision in 2002 to deport Canadian Maher Arar to be tortured in Syria. I don't recall Day calling on Ottawa to suspend diplomatic ties with the U.S. until it delivered up to justice those who bundled Arar onto a private jet, transported him to a CIA prison in Jordan and then handed him over to the Syrians for a year of imprisonment and torture. The Iranians have been stonewalling on the Kazemi case. And as Martin rightly says, that's unacceptable. But the U.S. government has been stonewalling equally on the Arar case. It refuses to answer questions posed by Justice Dennis O'Connor's public inquiry. It is trying to derail a civil suit launched by Arar in the U.S. on the grounds of national security. It says it followed its own laws when dealing with Arar and that what it does as a sovereign state is no one else's business. Which is pretty much what Iran says when pressed about Kazemi's death. Realistically, a country like Canada doesn't have much clout with the ayatollahs who run the torture centres of Iran. Nor does it have much clout with those other ayatollahs — like George W. Bush and Donald Rumsfeld — who run the global system of U.S. torture centres described recently in The New Yorker, The New York Times and The Guardian. So, it's hard not to be grudgingly sympathetic to Pettigrew when he whines that cutting off diplomatic relations with Iran over the Kazemi case might be counterproductive. Certainly, it would be counterproductive to the Calgary oil pals of Stockwell Day who want to do business in Iran. Besides, if Canada did cut ties — or if (following the advice of this newspaper) Canada took Iran to the International Criminal Court over its violations of the Geneva Conventions on torture — some bright light might suggest we take similar actions against the U.S. And then where would we be? How could Martin be an effective little pal if he had to defend the interests of all Canadian citizens treated illegally by sovereign states? What if he spoke up not only for Kazemi but for Arar — or even for Omar Khadr, the teenaged Canadian held by the U.S., in contravention of the Geneva Conventions, at Guantánamo Bay. There would be no more invitations to the ranch, that's for sure. original; http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&c=Article&cid=1112395811419&call_pageid=970599109774&col=Columnist969907626796 [Proofreader's note: this article was edited for spelling and typos on April 12, 2005]

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  1. Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:48 pm
    Yep! I see a trend here, and it is- 'profits over,or at the expense of, people.'

    Dave Ruston

  2. Tue Apr 12, 2005 1:35 am
    I see a trend here, too, and it's a classic. We are pushed around by the Iranians and are unable to put any pressure on them because we enviserated our armed forces. So what serious action do we take? The usual -- direct our anger towards the Americans. Thank goodness we have them to blame for all that's wrong. If they weren't around, we might have to actually do something. I think none of our citizens had better put themselves in a hard place because we are both unwilling and incapable of doing anything to help out.

  3. Tue Apr 12, 2005 2:59 am
    Realistically, what can we do more than what we have done in the Kazemi case? We could call home our ambassador, or send the Iranian ambassador back to Teheran. I'm sure that would have them trembling in their boots in no time, just like before.

    Surely, the previous writer is not suggesting we mount a military attack on Iran? Even if we spent double per capita what the US does on our military, and had a modern force twice its present size, with airlift capabilities and the very latest American equipment, attacking Iran would probably be beyond our national ability. We would have to transport a huge force over 10,000 miles, bring some foreign country near Iran onside with us as a staging area, establish an improbably long supply line, introduce a draft to keep up with the certain heavy casualties, then dig in for the long, long haul. We'd need to double our computer capacity to count the dead kids and they still might whip us. They are a nation of twice Canada's population, oil rich and war hardened from years of fighting Saddam Hussien. They have a very good military for their size. For Canada it would be consumate madness. Its madness anyway. I am amazed and appalled anyone would even think about it, much less suggest that we should be able to do it. No wonder we sometimes think the right is crazy.

    Having said that, I think the Iranian leadership is very unwise. They have oil, they are in the Middle East, and they do not have a corporate controlled government. That puts them squarely in the sights of the war machine presently active in that part of the world. They need friends badly. Abusing a Canadian as they did Ms. Kazemi, and then snubbing Canada as they are now doing has quite rightly cost them the closest thing to a friend they might have had in North America, and any public sympathy they might have enjoyed in this country. That's not going to help them at all. They should smarten up, and VERY quickly negotiate with us whatever Canada wants in this case. Anything else is just plain dumb.

    Yes, I agree that Canada is a prince of double standards when it comes to things like torture, abuse of human rights and manipulation of due process. We all know why, and as long as we continue to support either of the two main stream small "c" conservative parties, we should stop pretending to be the good guys. Too many people know the difference now.

  4. by avatar nutter
    Tue Apr 12, 2005 4:32 am
    Iran is a torture state? says who? hollywood? Or perhaps you've been told this by the zionist controlled newsources, like the CBC, or Globe and Mail... lol

    In this world folks, you've got the trend setters and then everyone else. Now, the logic is the trend setters have always controlled what is "outrage" One of their specialties. Now, be a good little puppy and follow the trend setters, y'hear.

    A good example of observing trend-setters in actions, are the know-it-all goofs working the idiot box or squawk box. They get their scrips handed to them by the Public Relations companies working for Big Corporate Government Know-all, See-all, meddle in everything elites.

    Iran is no different. A country that is gaining power and prestige because of technological and political advancement, and they're doing it, Yawhey forbid, without the permission of the above aforementioned group.

    So get out the tar and feathers, and totally focus on one or two things bad about Iran, magnify to 1000 strength!

    Ignore all the murder, theft, corruption, slavery and TORTURE that eminates from israel...

    You guys got the picture now?

    If you don't want government to intervene anywhere, you're an extremist. Joseph Sobran

  5. Tue Apr 12, 2005 3:31 pm
    <i>Iran is a torture state? says who? </i><p> How about, by the people that have been tortured by them?<p> <i>Ignore all the murder, theft, corruption, slavery and TORTURE that eminates from israel...</i><p> What does this have to do with the Kazemi case?<p> <i>You guys got the picture now?</i><p> Yes, you chose an appropriate pseudonym.<p> <p>---<br>"If you must kill a man, it costs you nothing to be polite about it." Winston Churchill<br />

  6. by avatar Spud
    Tue Apr 12, 2005 4:12 pm
    Canada has no right to critisize Iran.
    Just read the book One Dead Indian.

  7. Tue Apr 12, 2005 6:41 pm
    you must not ignore Israel and the US and it's torture, why pick on Iran, is this an excuse for Canada to join the US and Israel to attack Iran ????
    Also how many canadians are being refused help world wide that are locked up in foriegn countries and are being tortured to this day ??
    So why pick on Iran, , there is Russia, South American countires, Israel, the US, Europe, and even in this country, there have been many questionable deaths,of canadians by many differant countires, so let us not be hypocritcs.....

  8. by avatar Spud
    Tue Apr 12, 2005 8:09 pm
    Right on Anon!

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