In her guest-post yesterday Nidra Poller discussed the protests surrounding the visit of the Olympic torch to Paris, and the preening hypocrisy of the French Left concerning Tibet.
Some of our commenters took Ms. Poller’s article to mean that the suffering of Tibet doesn’t matter, or that there’s something wrong with protesting against the Chinese occupation of Tibet.
Nidra Poller replies:
The comments show that our work is never done.
I think your readers are intelligent, and would recognize PC hype on a subject they are familiar with. I think they are outraged when Muslims say they are offended by this or that.
But I am not allowed to make fun of these professional French protesters? Do you know what happened afterward? The Chinese protested back. They boycotted Carrefour. the French government sent three emissaries, high ranking people who kowtowed and apologized.
Reporters without Borders gets money from big corporations. They calmed down suddenly. The professional protesters were on the president’s case again this week. He was in Tunisia; he didn’t stomp and holler for civil rights. They interviewed civil rights advocates in Tunisia who happen to be Islamists. That doesn’t count.
Anyone who claims to be for civil rights is worthy of support. What is their idea of defending civil rights? Protest marches. Period. They wouldn’t lift a finger to defend anyone against a bully.
And when the Americans do it, they trash the Americans.
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Can you see someone with a keffiyeh protesting against Chinese mistreatment of Tibetans? Well, that’s what you saw in Paris. Ask these people six months from now what they intend to do about Tibet. They won’t even know what you’re talking about.
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The article is not about Tibet; it is not about Tibetans fighting for their rights. It is about protest chic as I saw it that day in Paris.
It is about the hypocrisy of pols and pundits who think that France should not risk a hair on its head to protect the Afghans from a Taliban takeover and, at the same time, act as if hanging a few banners on the parade route and pressuring the president to boycott the opening ceremony is taking a stand for Tibet.
Am I wrong? These same professional protesters sent around petitions deploring the fate of Afghan women… until the U.S. decided to go in and take out the Taliban. Then they protested against the war.
I find it ridiculous to hang a banner on the City Hall claiming that France defends human rights all over the world when you belong to the political party that voted to censure the government for sending more troops to Afghanistan.
Can civil rights be defended with posters?