Billionaire-backed Human Rights Watch lobbies for lethal US sanctions on leftist governments as COVID-19 crisis rages
Regime change-hungry HRW is proudly taking credit for crushing new US sanctions on Nicaragua while pushing to escalate Washington’s economic war on Venezuela. The Grayzone presents a deep dive into the “human rights” arm of US empire.
by Ben Norton
Part 8 - Lionizing Ecuador’s repressive right-wing leader Moreno, while demonizing leftist Correa
José Miguel Vivanco’s hypocrisy was also apparent when he held a friendly meeting with the repressive, US-backed leader of Ecuador, Lenín Moreno, in July 2019.
“It was an honor to meet today with President Lenín,” Vivanco said, heaping praise on the US-backed leader.
HRW and Vivanco had little criticism to offer towards the Moreno administration, even as it has systematically rounded up, arrested, purged, and exiled members of the progressive Citizens’ Revolution movement, which was founded by former leftist President Rafael Correa, now Moreno’s implacable enemy and favorite bogeyman.
Moreno has imprisoned numerous democratically elected politicians, including mayors and other senior officials from the Citizens’ Revolution party, liquidating his political opposition. All along, Moreno has enjoyed the staunch backing of the US government, which successfully encouraged him to end the asylum protections afforded to journalist Julian Assange and hand him over to British authorities, violating national and international law.
Moreno’s security forces also killed, wounded, and detained thousands of Ecuadorians protesting neoliberal economic reforms he tried to push through in October.
Instead of criticizing the overtly repressive Moreno government in Ecuador, Vivanco has praised it. And at the same moment, Vivanco has even referred to Ecuador’s former democratically elected President Correa as “authoritarian,” with no explanation whatsoever as to how he violated democratic norms.
As with Nicaragua and Venezuela, Vivanco has adopted the most extreme position of Ecuador’s right-wing. “Lenín and Correa are like water and oil,” he asserted. “One [Correa] is an autocrat; the other [Lenín], a democrat. One is a messianic narcissist; the other, a leader who listens.”
For any other so-called human rights organization on the planet, such transparent double standards would cause a fatal crisis of credibility.
But for Human Rights Watch, a billionaire-backed regime-change-lobbying organization that supports coups against elected governments, hypocrisy is the inevitable outgrowth of constantly catering to Washington.