Senator John McCain (R-AZ) took to Twitter today to call out President Trump for refusing to even mention human rights issues during his trip to Vietnam, where he attended the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit and met with Vietnamese President Trần Đại Quang.
— John McCain (@SenJohnMcCain) November 11, 2017
While the President told the press that he was going to discuss Vietnam’ human rights record while he was there, he evidently became distracted by the “many other things” he had to discuss while he was there.
“Vietnam has truly become one of the great miracles of the world, and it’s very impressive, no matter where you come from, no matter who you are. If you look at what’s happened in Vietnam, there is nothing more impressive. Thank you very much for this honor, and I look forward to seeing you, Mr. President, many, many times” effused Trump while in Hanoi.
Vietnam’s human rights record is described as “dire in all areas” by Human Rights Watch, but it is laughable for Senator John McCain to be chastising Vietnam about their human rights, since the last time he was in Vietnam he was dropping bombs on heavily populated urban centers like Hanoi – which led to his getting shot down and imprisoned as a POW for the next five years.
McCain was also a strong backer of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the wide-ranging trade agreement that Human Rights Watch warns does not contain adequate human rights protections for the perpetually abused workers of Vietnam and the nations around it.
So while President Trump is right to be criticized for his flagrant disregard for human rights, McCain doesn’t have much ground to stand on himself.
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