July 15, 2008

The importance of word choice

In a story from Reuters today, China voiced its reservations about the recent ICC decision to charge the president of Sudan with genocide.

I'll leave aside for a moment whether China might be better off, considering its own record and behavior in the arena of human rights and treatment of its citizens, just staying very, very quiet on this particular matter; instead I will simply highlight a small piece of the statement released by the Chinese Foreign Ministry:

They expressed "grave concern" about the charges of genocide.

Just take a second and read that again, it should come to you.

Grave concern. About genocide.

The only response I could think of was to wonder: what if they needed to take a stronger position?

Would they express "mass grave" concerns?

Note to the Chinese Foreign Ministry: in future press releases, avoid referring to the ICC as a regulating "body," and if you have reservations about the fairness of any upcoming prosecution, do not under any circumstances say that you fear that President al-Bashir is going to get "bulldozed."

And get an editor. Like, right now.


Lisa said...

Grave concern. Mass grave concern. You are excellent.

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