Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa is actually going to do it: He’s ordered his foreign ministry to prepare a report on human rights abuses in the United States, in retaliation for similar reports released regularly by the U.S. State Department.
Correa had threatened to do this when the State Department report on Ecuador was first released. Now I guess Chávez egged him on sufficiently during their recent bilateral meeting that he’s pulling the trigger.
When these reports are thorough and more or less even-handed (like the lengthy one produced by China this year) they can be pretty damn interesting. After all, from its treatment of minor drug offenders, illegal immigrants, and “illegal enemy combatants,” to its invasion of other countries and use of trigger-happy private military contractors unaccountable to domestic courts, the U.S. has a lot to answer for.
So what’s the report going to look like?
I’ve ordered the foreign ministry… to prepare a report on the human rights situation in the United States and denounce the existence of political prisoners, five Cubans who received only a pantomime, a monstrosity of a trial.
The Cuban Five? Really? You have to go and beat that old, worn out drum? The poor, innocent Cubans who were also international spies? Aside from being tenuous, it’s not even Ecuador’s fight, and it completely misses the point of human rights reports, which is that they criticize countries for the way they treat their own citizens. Like, you know, when they jail journalists for insulting government officials.
Color me disappointed.