mandag 25. januar 2021

Opinion: Recognizing the Uighur Genocide was the Right Decision

On January 19th––the last full day of the Trump administration––the State Department announced its determination that the Chinese government is committing a genocide against the Uighurs in Xinjiang. Prospective secretary of state Antony Blinken confirmed the genocide determination. The facts on the ground made this an easy call, but we shouldn't take the consequences of the decision for granted.

Recognizing genocide has been the exception, not the rule, for the United States. When Talaat Pasha slaughtered the Armenians, the United States stayed silent rather than risk entanglement in the First World War. When Hitler's Germany was gassing, shooting and starving the Jews of Europe, President Roosevelt prioritized the military campaign rather than divert any resources to save the Jewish people. In 1975, the U.S. sat idly by as the Khmer Rouge hacked Cambodians to pieces, rather than return to Southeast Asia or challenge an enemy of Vietnam. The list goes on and on; whether it was Hussein gassing Kurds, Milosevic butchering Bosnian Muslims or Hutus murdering thousands of Tutsis every day, the U.S. was largely and woefully inactive.