Saturday, March 01, 2008

Ethics

In 2000, former Chilean dictator General Augusto Pinochet boarded a military transport plane to Belgium after being told the UK would extradite him on torture charges.

Speaking to MPs in the House of Commons shortly after General Pinochet's departure the Prime Minister Mr Bryan Gould said he was aware the General was now likely to stand trial. 'I was driven to the conclusion that a trial of the charges against Senator Pinochet, was a critical test of our ethical foreign policy,' Mr Gould said.
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The essence of the dispute is the ethical foreign policy deviced by Mr Gould and his Foreign Secretary, Mr Robin Cook. The policy is a decisive break with the past, especially the excesses of the Thatcher era which include cooperation with the General's oppressive regime.

The Conservatives challenged today's decision. Leader William Hague accused Labour of incompetence, he said £4m of public money had been wasted on 'moral posturing' which had achieved nothing.
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In 1888, the Convention of Constantinople was signed by Great Britain, Germany, Austro-Hungary, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Russia, and Turkey, guaranteeing a right of passage of all ships through the Suez Canal during war and peace. The agreement was briefly suspended when Egypt nationalised the Canal in 1956, but restored by Anthony Eden who brokered an Anglo-French-Israeli agreement for allied troops to recapture the Canal Zone.
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In 1969, Soviet and Chinese forces clashed at the Damanski. Zhenbao border outpost on the Ussuri River. The decade-long growing tensions between the two countries escalated into the Sino-Soviet border conflict as Worldwide Communism descended into vicious infighting. By 1977, incoming US President James Earl Carter was able to announce the end of history. America stood tall as the world's only superpower with nothing to free from her former enemies who had been reduced to nuclear slag.
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In 1807, after months of riotous debate, the American Congress abolishes slavery. Northern representatives joined with a surprisingly large number of southern politicians to pass the Writ of Emancipation. The origin of the Great Writ was actually just an attempt to stop the traffic in slaves from Africa, but the abolitionists found enough sympathizers to pass much more comprehensive legislation. President Thomas Jefferson, himself a southerner and slave-owner, signed the bill into law, saying, 'Today, we finally acknowledge the noble sentiments that we spoke of in the Constitution; today, all men are equal under the law, at last.' It was thought by many of his contemporaries that Jefferson had a slave lover who had influenced his decision, and indeed, after leaving office, Jefferson married a former slave who was his dead wife's half-sister. As to the Great Writ itself, although the southern leadership had considered slavery to be of little importance to their region, hundreds of slave-owners felt that it was an attack on them, personally. Minor rebellions flared in the south for decades as the former slave-owners attempted to take their revenge on the US for what they perceived as a usurpation of their sovereignty, and pockets of slavery existed until the 1840's before the government could finally track them all down.
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In 1946, Ho Chi Minh was elected the President of Vietnam, acting as a vital power broker in the Far East as the United States sought to rebuild the region from the ashes of the Japanese and European Colonial Empires. Uncle Ho had been a trusted ally since President Woodrow Wilson met with him at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, and was persuaded to extend the definition of self-determination to indigenous people outside of Europe as intended by the British and the French. Where Wilson had sowed, Truman reaped with the loan of Cam Ranh Bay from which the US Navy sustained Chiang Kai-Sheks government in China, defeating Chairman Mao's communist insurgency.
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In 1836, Generalissimo Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna overcomes the treachery of the rebel Texicans and finally crushes Sam Houston and his army in their little encampment they called Washington-On-The-Brazos. The rebels had attempted to lull Santa Anna away with the charms of a lovely young woman, but the Generalissimo was too clever for them.
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In 12-11-0-11-3, the Caddo, Apache and Tejas, banded together a mere two years before, achieve the impossible, and free themselves from the rule of the Oueztecan Empire. For the next 9 years, their tiny nation holds off the mightiest country in the world, but the economic boycott Ouezteca enforces against finally leads them to rejoin the empire in 12-11-10-3-15.
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In 1836, the Texican People's Republic, under the leadership of Thomas Skidmore, declares its independence from imperialist Mexico in a ceremony at Washington-On-The-Brazos. Skidmore, a labor organizer back in the United States, turns the new nation of Texas into a place where people are proud to work, and know that their labor is the real foundation of wealth.
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In 1836, Santa Anna's forces, reeling from their defeat at the Alamo, are crushed by the combined forces of Houston, Travis and Fannin at San Antonio. Colonel William Travis, the hero of the Alamo, accepts the surrender of the Mexican leader, and promises him that Texas and Mexico will 'live side-by-side in peace as long as you respect the sanctity of our borders.' Travis became the first president of the Republic of Texas in elections held that year.
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In 1836, Texan rebels at Washington-On-The-Brazos receive word that U.S. troops are on their way; President Andrew Jackson has agreed to annex them into the United States, and declare war on Mexico. Sam Houston, leader of the rebels, halts work on the independence proclamation and instead produces the treaty that will join the Texas Territory to the United States.
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BuddhaIn 1815, by signing a binding treaty indigenous headmen of the Kingdom of Kandy (Sri Lanka) forced representatives of the British Crown to permanently withdraw the Royal Navy from the total exclusion zone of 200 nautical miles around the Island and southern tip of the subcontinent of Hindustan.

The British were also forced to accept that the Kingdom of Kandy would be governed according to its customary Buddhist laws and institutions.
Buddha - Protector
Protector
The British had been transfixed by giant sized images of Buddha in recumbent, standing and sitting postures cut in the rock caves in various parts of the country. By now the British were convinced that certain calamities which fell upon the invaders were due to his displeasure.
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In 1970, the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe, declared his country a republic, cutting its last link with the British Crown.

Mr Mugabe signed a proclamation officially dissolving the current parliament and introducing a new Republican Constitution. The new Zimbabwean Republic, came into being at 2301BST yesterday, unrecognised by Western Governments apart from Canada.
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The core of the dispute sprung from the Victoria Falls meeting in late 1963, in which then Rhodesian Deputy Prime Minister Ian Smith extracted a key promise from British Foreign Secretary Rab Butler. Butler grandly declared that the British Government were 'very pleased to agree' to independence at least on the same time scale as Zambia and Malawi.

This unscrupulous commitment was a clear abrogration of No Independence Before Majority African Rule, devised by the forward thinking Canadian Government. This precipitated a civil war, with Ian Smith and the White Settler Government defeated before the decade was out.
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