(Updated 2 July 2013 — correcting minor typos)
Ashgabat, 1 July 2013 (nCa) — Jennifer Lopez performed in a concert in Turkmenistan on 29 June 2013 and it caused severe trauma to the self-appointed defenders of all kinds of things — as if she needs their permission to sing a song.
The critics, imitating each other like parrots, say that JLo should apologize and return the money she received from the concert because Turkmenistan is a country with serious human rights issues.
Probably they are quite confused as to which country is currently of main concern for the violation of human rights. They also seem to have a garbled sense of human rights.
If they think that provision of free gas, free petrol, free communal services, complete cradle-to-grave welfare system, provision of house building loan at 1% interest, provision of loan for marriage or buying a car at 1% rate, free education from nursery to university for all, free healthcare, guaranteed pension for all whether they have worked for the public sector or not, special stipend for newborn babies and university students, no death penalty, maximum prison sentence of no more than 15 years, and gifts to all the female population of the country on the international women’ day is serious violation of human rights, then of course that country is Turkmenistan.
However, assuming that a few molecules of sanity are still left in their putrid brains, if they can see that spying on the phone calls, emails and other communications of ALL the citizens, profiling of people on the base of their religion and race, holding the prisoners indefinitely without any charge or court process, deporting the people who have lived in their country for more than 30 years just to save on their medical bills, propping up the banks that have stolen everyone’s life savings, letting people die because they don’t have health insurance, charging $ 1000 just for the ambulance to carry a seriously ill patient to the hospital, denying education to those who cannot pay for it, and an endless list of other such atrocities are serious violations of human rights then that country is their own dear, sweet homeland: United States of America.
If they really believe that the right to life is the most basic right of every human being, they must be blind if they cannot see that the bloodshed in Syria is being fueled by their own governments who are funding and arming the butchers and cannibals.
They are not only blind but also have a severe case of amnesia because they cannot remember how much depleted uranium has been showered on Iraq and Afghanistan.
They are not only blind and amnesic but also insane because they have not cheeped a single word against the silent economic genocide of the Iranian people who are being crushed under illegal and immoral sanctions.
More than being blind, amnesic and insane, they are deep-dyed hypocrites because their sense of right and wrong kicks in only selectively.
If it is a matter of shame to perform in Turkmenistan, it is a matter of thousand times more shame to perform in any concert where any government official of the USA or NATO countries are present because they are the ones with still fresh, still increasing, blood of innocent people on their hands. Turkmenistan has not started any war; they are the ones that started absolutely unjust wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and are diligently working on starting the WWIII by putting fuel on the burning fire in Syria.
The furor at the JLo concert in Turkmenistan has brought to surface a question that we have been avoiding for long, much too long: Does the west have the capacity to be a sincere and genuine friend of the east?
It is not a theoretical question anymore. It is here and now, staring us right in the face. Being a friend to the west is a dangerous and expensive hobby; it has become quite untenable to befriend the west. One must do it on their own peril.
As soon as Qaddafi extended a hand of friendship to the west he was torn to pieces, literally. His country has been bombed adequately to set back the clock of progress by about 30 years. Saddam was a friend of the west and he found himself hanging at the end of a rope. When Assad warmed up to the west, he got a gift of ‘freedom fighters.’ The lifetime service award for Hosni Mubarak is a small cell in the jail. The presidents of Tunisia and Yemen paid comparatively smaller price for their sin of befriending the west.
Every leader in Central Asia must decide for themselves whether it is possible to befriend the west and still stay alive and free?
Every country in Central Asia must assess carefully, based on their own interaction with the west, whether the west really understands and appreciates the concept of equality and mutual respect?
As far as friendship is concerned, there is no dearth elsewhere.