Syria: The human rights industry in ‘humanitarian war’ (2018)

A proliferation of self-appointed watchdogs and ‘human rights’ agencies have helped market the idea of ‘humanitarian intervention’, in recent years. This can be seen most starkly in the long proxy war on Syria. These advocacy groups have argued the extreme pretexts thought necessary to ignore conventional international law against intervention and foreign support for armed groups. Yet most such groups are paid or co-opted by the same governments which back military intervention. Continue reading “Syria: The human rights industry in ‘humanitarian war’ (2018)”

HIV/AIDS in Cuba: A rights-based analysis (2009)

The common assertion that Cuba’s achievements in HIV/AIDS control have come at a cost in human rights is reinforced by US hostility toward its small neighbour. Nevertheless, a rights-based analysis may be one useful way of exmining the actual Cuban experience. By reference to the United Nation’s Guidelines on HIV/AIDS and Human Rights, this paper examines the Cuban experience as it relates to the themes of quarantine and person freedom; privacy in testing and tracing; education, participation, and non-discrimination; and the availability of AIDS treatment. Continue reading “HIV/AIDS in Cuba: A rights-based analysis (2009)”

The political economy of human rights (2002)

Contemporary political economy can make an important contribution to the human rights debates which have come to dominate political relations over the past half century. These debates hide a wide variety of political agendas. The traditions of political economy may help reinterpret the evolving phenomenon of human rights. What is needed is a means to interpret the relationship between language and social interests, as well as to make this relationship relevant to praxis – in this case, human rights activism. Continue reading “The political economy of human rights (2002)”

Criminal oversight: A human rights review of recent criminal justice law in New South Wales (2001)

This paper analyses eight criminal justice laws applicable in New South Wales – six are matters of state legislation, one is the absence of state legislation and one is a High Court decision. The cases were chosen for their currency and the degree of concern expressed about them. In each case the law about which there was concern is identified, the suggested human rights breach is noted, some background to the development of each law is given, and then the international jurisprudence is applied, leading to a provisional conclusion. Continue reading “Criminal oversight: A human rights review of recent criminal justice law in New South Wales (2001)”