Vinoth Ramachandra

We should welcome Charles Taylor’s recent conviction by a UN War Crimes Tribunal. While president of Liberia, Taylor fomented violent uprisings in neighbouring countries with the aid of brutal militias in order to extend his regional influence. It was during his rule that the term “blood diamonds” was coined, referring to the lucrative stones from Sierra Leone that financed his arms purchases. Many of these reportedly found their way onto the shelves of such signature stores as Cartier and Bulgari. None of the prominent diamond retailers who purchased “blood diamonds” without enquiring into their origins have been held morally and legally accountable. Nor the governments and companies from whom Taylor bought his arms.

It is noteworthy that the UN tribunal was funded mostly by the United States and Great Britain.  As I have often observed on this Blog, absent from the public discourse of the USA and Western Europe is…

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