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Seeking agreement with our own opinions | 3 comments
[new] What matters (Avg. Score: none / Raters: 0) (#2)
by Aileen on Fri Jun 6th, 2003 at 07:36:18 AM EURODISCORDIA TIME
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Over the past few days I have been working on translating an article discussing Guantanamo Bay, Basram and Diego Garcia (coming soon on republicart), exterritorial camps maintained by the US military, where "aggressive interrogation" is carried out using "stress and duress techniques" (of course, the US military does not use torture), where the prisoners have no basic human rights, because they are not "prisoners of war", but "unlawful enemy combatants", a special status not covered by international law.
This information is not new. It was covered in an article published by the Washington Post last December and has been widely quoted since then, as it appears from the results of a simple Google search on "Guantanamo Bay, Basram, Diego Garcia".
So anyone can know this, but why should anyone care? What motivation could there be for attempting to protest, to "do something"? And what kind of something anyway? As Monica Ross has already suggested, "dissent as the spectacular performs a show of democracy, demonstrating it as real time images which counter the suspicion that democracy may now only be an illusion."
Since this is where I live, it would seem more urgent to address the Austrian government's current attempts to pass even more restrictive asylum laws - especially now when people who already live (and potentially vote) here are striking and demonstrating against the planned "pension reform" and thus too concerned about their own problems to be very concerned about "foreigners". What bothers me is the way the US is cited by conservative politicians here as an example to be emulated - modern, dynamic, prosperous, free... So if the US (government/military) can invent new terms to circumvent laws ensuring basic human rights, and can justify that in terms of "internal security needs", then why shouldn't an insignificant little country like Austria follow suit?
So what would it take to counterbalance this idealized and highly exploitable image of the US, and what could art have to do with that?

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Seeking agreement with our own opinions | 3 comments


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