Do as we say
On behalf of the Obama administration, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a statement this week regarding the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests, and demanded that China do the following (h/t sysprog):
A China that has made enormous progress economically, and that is emerging to take its rightful place in global leadership, should examine openly the darker events of its past and provide a public accounting of those killed, detained or missing, both to learn and to heal.
Compare that moving defense of transparency to what the Obama administration — as I wrote about earlier today — is currently doing in Congress in trying to round up enough Democratic votes to vest the Pentagon with a new secrecy power, whereby it can unilaterally suppress all photographic evidence relating to our own abuse of detainees. Or compare it to our current President’s repeated insistence that we Look to the Future, Not the Past and his fervent opposition even to a Truth Commission.
What’s there even to say about this? I didn’t think it was possible to top — for pure irony and hypocrisy — the Bush State Department’s 2006 condemnation of Russia for engaging in illegal warrantless eavesdropping on its own citizens and failing to impose accountability on those who did that. But Clinton’s righteous injunction to China about the need for “examining openly the darker events of [China]’s past” — “both the learn and to heal” — comes very close.