When “Progressives” Attack*

by Nathan Hamm on 11/26/2004 · 3 comments

They’re like sharks, except when they notice US support, they cry “oil!”

And it gets even better. I’m sure that others who cruise blogs have noticed that some on the left are comparing the situation in Ukraine to the US election.

Meanwhile, I’ve seen some mention the British Helsinki Human Rights Group report on the election. BHHRG is a perfect example of how easy it is to pull the wool over people’s eyes with a simple name. To put it plainly, just because you have “human rights” in your name doesn’t mean that’s what you really care about. I’ve encountered their slime in the past. Then, as now, BHHRG is much more interested in criticizing the West than advancing human rights and they will employ any tools to do so. Their report? In a nutshell, they only observed the vote in western and central Ukraine, show no concern for eastern and southern irregularities, dismiss all other Western observers as hopelessly tainted by bias, and say there was only opposition interference in the vote.

Interstingly, the International Helsinki Federation for Human Rights released their Ukrainian affiliate’s conclusions that state there were massive violations. Lest we get confused though, IHF-HR will point out to you that BHHRG is not affiliated with them.

Well, pictures with pretty colors might be the best way to combat these folks, so look at these maps. The change in voter turnout is particularly interesting.

* Well, BHHRG really isn’t made up of progressives, but it dwells in that shared foreign policy territory of many progressives.

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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Mark Hamm November 26, 2004 at 11:34 pm

I looked at all your links, lots of different opinions out there. The BHHRG is a strange group. Seem to be British intellectuals that seek to take a different view on things. Of course anybody can form an opinion then go look for evidence to back it up. As I’m looking at their site I’m thinking they probably get some good funding and travel around playing out their fantasy character. Wish I could do that.

Martin December 30, 2004 at 10:00 am

It is your right to disagree with the findings of the British Helsinki Group, but to call those people ‘slime’ makes you look petty. Moreover, it makes you sound like a bitter totalitarian who cannot stand divergent views. Your little rant has thus only enhanced my respect for that group, which has the guts to write it as they see it, rather than follow the pre-packaged homogenous news we get every single day.

Nathan Hamm December 30, 2004 at 10:23 pm

Well, Martin, even though you violated my comments policy, I’ll leave that there. If you love them more now, well, I’ve done my job. They’re objectively working against freedom and human progress and walking Russia’s line each and every time they open their mouths. Hope you like the company.

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