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    Posted May 16, 2014 by
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    Universal Empathy: A Promising Solution to Crises in the World


    The need to develop universal human rights respect and empathy can be a promising solution to the growing oppression around the world. As Social Justice Counselors believe, people can only harm each other when they lose their empathy towards others. Based on such belief many oppressors have tried to disconnect people in order to train forces who can torture, attack, kill and engage in all human rights violations.

    Historically oppressor governments and regimes used foreigners as soldiers to implement so called, “security rules”, to carry tortures in prisons, to investigate anti-government movements and more. Also, they use foreigners as labor forces, not to reduce the labor cost, but in order to prevent the possibility of labor demonstrations. The recent Arab Spring draws a clear picture of such disconnections and how governments are taking advantage of it.

    • Bahraini inmates have always complained that their guards do not speak and understand Arabic and therefore cannot response to their needs,
    • In the unrest of Iran during 2009/10 election , protestors  stated the government used Lebanese soldiers to suppress them,
    • Pakistani forces are used in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain to fight with pro-democracy protestors,
    • In the conflict of Syria people with all nationalities are      fighting pro and against government.

    And the list goes on and on.

    Relying on forces from outside is a politically important strategy by countries with most human rights violations. This strategy factors out the important element of mercy and empathy among people who share same ethnicity or nationality. Soldiers who do not understand the language of the protestors do not understand the rationale behind the protest, foreign guards cannot understand the prisoner when he/she is crying from pain and therefore cannot respond to the medical need of the inmate after torture.

    Besides using foreigners as forces, these governments use foreigners as labor force in order to avoid labor unrest that could impact the economy of the country. Most labor forces in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and almost all countries in Gulf are from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and other unfortunate countries, therefore there no threat of labor demonstrations against governments’ inhuman treatments towards its citizens. 

    Countries with dependency on foreign labor and security forces such as Bahrain and Saudi Arabia lessen their natives’ role in economy, security and over all structure of their country which is a clear violation to the basic rights of the citizens.

    As a counselor, I believe publics and civilians have to feel empathy in order to bring peace back to our communities.

    The belief that governments and authorities are the most powerful forces to change the world is a myth, at least to me as a Shia rights activist and counselor. Most of the times, in order to spread peace and freedom we do not need support from powerful governments because they have their own political agendas, but we need to follow our hearts.

    After all we are all citizen on one world and we can all emphasize with other’s pain and suffering.

    When we empathize, we become the most powerful force that can spread peace and freedom.

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