The West's "Guilty Until Proven Innocent" Mantra Is Wrecking Lives & International Relations

Authored by Robert Bridge, op-ed via RT.com,

Western society is flirting with a disturbing trend where people are being denied the time-honored 'presumption of innocence'. The same undemocratic method is even being used against nations in what is becoming a dangerous game.

Imagine the following scenario: You are a star football player at the local high school, with a number of college teams hoping to recruit you. There is even talk of a NFL career down the road. Then, overnight, your life takes an unexpected turn for the worse. The police show up at your house with a warrant for your arrest; the charges: kidnapping and rape. The only evidence is your word against the accuser’s. After spending six years behind bars, the court decides you were wrongly accused.

That is the incredible story of Brian Banks, 26, who was released early from prison in 2012 after his accuser, Wanetta Gibson, admitted that she had fabricated injurious claims against the young man.

Many other innocent people, however, who have been falsely accused in the West for some crime they did not commit, are not as fortunate as Brian Banks. Just this week, for example, Ross Bullock was released from his private “hell” – and not due to an accuser with a guilty conscience, but by committing suicide.

“After a ‘year of torment’… Bullock hanged himself in the garage of the family home, leaving a note revealing he had ‘hit rock bottom’ and that with his death ‘I’m free from this living hell,’” the Daily Mail reported.

There is a temptation to explain away such tragic cases as isolated anomalies in an otherwise sound-functioning legal system. After all, mistakes are going to happen regardless of the safeguards. At the same time, however, there is an irresistible urge among humans to believe those people who claim to have been victimized – even when the evidence suggests otherwise. Perhaps this is due to the powerful emotional element that works to galvanize the victim’s story. Or it could be due to the belief that nobody would intentionally and unjustly condemn another human being. But who can really say what is inside another person’s heart? Moreover, it can’t be denied that every time we attempt to hunt down and punish another people, tribe, sex, religion, etc. for some alleged crimes against victims, there is a real tendency among Westerners to get carried away with moralistic zeal to the point of fanaticism.

A case in point is last year’s scandal that rocked the entertainment industry as the movie mogul Harvey Weinstein was accused of sexually assaulting numerous women over the span of a 30-year career. Eventually, over 80 females, emboldened by the courage displayed by their peers, drove Weinstein straight out of Hollywood and into the rogue’s gallery of sexual predators. Few could deny this was a positive thing.

But then something strange began to happen that has been dubbed the ‘Weinstein effect.’ Powered by the social media #MeToo movement, women from all walks of life began to publicly accuse men for all sorts of sexual violations, some from decades ago. Certainly, many of the claims were legitimate. However, in many cases they were not. Yet the mainstream media, which has taken great delight in providing breathless details of every new accusation, has shown little interest in pursuing those stories of men who went on to suffer divorce, ruined reputations, and the loss of jobs without so much as a fair hearing in a court of law. 

As far as the mainstream media is concerned, and to be fair they don’t seem that concerned, the victim’s story is the only story that matters. Indeed, it was almost as if the victim had become judge, jury and executioner. This is, in reality, just one step from mob rule, and woe to anyone who questions the motives of the movement, as French star Catherine Deneuve discovered.

The (female) writer, D.C. McAllister, described the poisonous “environment of suspicion” that has beset relations between men and women.

“While women’s willingness to hold men accountable for criminal sexual behavior is to be applauded, the scorched-earth approach we are seeing today is destructive because it undermines trust,” McAllister wrote in The Federalist.

“When anything from a naive touch during a photo shoot to an innocent attempt at a kiss is compared to rape and sexual abuse, we are not healing society but infecting relationships with the poison of distrust.”

In other words, neither men nor women have gained anything from this otherwise-well-intended campaign against sexual improprieties. However, this is not the first time the West has allowed raw emotions to knock the train of progress right off the tracks. History books are replete with examples of Western campaigns rising out of sheer mass hysteria. But at least in those wild times there was still some semblance of justice, complete with trials and investigations. Now compare that with our ‘modern’ times, when all it took for the United States to win approval for an illicit attack on Iraq was for Colin Powell to shake a vial of faux anthrax in front of the UN General Assembly.

With these historical hiccups in mind, it is possible to argue that the West has truly forgotten the lessons of history because they are certainly repeating them today.

By way of example, consider where the great bulk of US troops are encamped today – in and around the Middle East – and then ask yourself how they got there.

The answer is by hook and by crook, and not a little public manipulation and chicanery. That is because, in our insatiable desire to defend victims – the good guys, we are told – we are allowing ourselves to ignore crucial evidence while placing blind faith in what we are being told is the truth. Clearly that has not been the case to date.

From the accusations that Iraq was harboring weapons of mass destruction to launch against innocent people, to the current claims that the Syrian government of Bashar Assad is using chemical weapons against his own people, the West is gambling that claims based on zero evidence will always work to fulfill ulterior motives. So far, the ploy seems to be working with the gullible public, but sooner or later truth will catch up, indeed, as truth usually does.

Just this month, for example, an assassination attempt was made against Sergei Skripal – a former double agent who had moved to Salisbury, England following a spy-swap in 2010. Any guesses as to who the British authorities have ruled – without a trial, evidence or motivating factor – is the main culprit? Yes, Russia. Yet, even the usually loyal British press has started expressing reservations over the dubious claims.

This should come as no surprise since the UK, a member of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), has staunchly refused to provide samples of the alleged nerve agent to Russia for analysis. Why would it do that? Would anyone be surprised if this investigation goes the same way it did for all those Russian athletes who were, unjustly, banned from the Winter Olympic Games this year? 

Or perhaps the same way it went following the 2016 US presidential elections, when Russia was accused of meddling on behalf of Donald Trump – zero evidence to back up the slanderous accusations, which are responsible for putting US-Russia relations into a free fall.

In conclusion, the unsightly spectacle of Western capitals backtracking on legal precedent – from domestic cases to international – makes it all the more clear why it is so anxious to win back the media mountaintops – it has no evidence whatsoever to support the reasons behind its increasingly illicit behavior. It is therefore incumbent upon them to own the narrative, as well as the justice system. How long this democratic charade can last is anybody's guess.

Comments

Looney TheBigCluB Sat, 03/24/2018 - 19:03 Permalink

 

Expelling "Dozens of Russian Diplomats" from the US has nothing to do with the Skripals’ poisoning.

The whole Skripal Affair, the poisoning and Theresa May’s fake outrage, was supposed to distract the Brits from the UK-EU divorce negotiations.

As y’all remember, at first, Macron, Merkel, and Trump were openly giggling at her – when was the last time the leaders of the US, France, and Germany said, “Let’s wait for the results of the investigation” when it comes to Russia?

At the same time we, the US, were ready to pull a false flag in Syria:

- We delivered 20,000 lbs. of chemical warfare agents to the “moderate” terrorists in An-Tanf, Syria.

- We trained them how and where to deploy it, so it can be blamed on Assad.

- We supplied some props too: a few new White Helmets, a box of medical Face Masks, a Chemistry Set for kids from Toys”R”Us, so an immediate chemical analysis can be performed and attributed to Assad right there, on the spot.

- Professional filming crews from Reuters and the Associated Press were ready to film not only the well-rehearsed aftermath, but the chemical attack as well.

- Meanwhile, our missile cruisers were already deployed to the East Mediterranean to “punish Assad” immediately.

And THEN, the Chief of Russia’s General Staff warned that Russia will attack any and all missiles and the launchers (drones, planes, ships) if Syria is attacked.

That warning/threat put the end to it, at least for now.

So now, we realize that Theresa May’s laughable Skripal Affair can be used to distract the plebs by expelling “Dozens of Russian Diplomats”. The Russians WILL reciprocate, of course, and this diplomatic tit-for-tat will keep everybody on both sides of the pond well entertained.

Looney

In reply to by TheBigCluB

Mr. Universe Beam Me Up Scotty Sat, 03/24/2018 - 19:52 Permalink

Word is that more than a few NATO operatives are in the area as well. They already made one botched attempt at their chemical false flag. Right now the militants are busing out of there as fast as they can. It seems the US and the IDF are worried about the increased measures Russia has installed. This include multiple S-400 units as well as advanced electronic warfare helicopters. It appears they have yet to figure out counter measures, which could be a huuuuge disgrace for the boy's from Zion.

In reply to by Beam Me Up Scotty

vato poco Mr. Universe Sat, 03/24/2018 - 20:06 Permalink

the author is wrong. it's not "the west" that operates on a 'guilty til proven innocent' mindset ..... it's the left. and their deep state and MSM wings.

how do we know this? simple. is there any time, ever, that a left/deep state/MSM favored constituent group - women, negroes, hajiis, homos, etc etc - are THEY ever held to that standard? 

no. they're not. neverunless they reveal themselves to be 'western' and/or 'conservative'.

odd how a professional author would "miss" seeing that. 

even odder how an intelligent (well, at least not blatantly moronic) publication like RT would

In reply to by Mr. Universe

SilverRhino vato poco Sun, 03/25/2018 - 02:37 Permalink

#metoo is actually the straw that broke the camel's back.   

 

A LOT of men I know are pissed about all this and have started using Pence's Rule about no un-witnessed meetings with females behind closed doors.   Women are being cut from extracurricular activities with executives and left behind on business trips.   Why?  Women can't accuse if they are never around.   

 

#metoo will go down as A Bridge Too Far in hindsight.   

In reply to by vato poco

Akzed beemasters Sun, 03/25/2018 - 08:59 Permalink

"A. Western society is flirting with a disturbing trend where people are being denied the time-honored 'presumption of innocence'."

B. "The same undemocratic method is even being used against nations in what is becoming a dangerous game."

A. This presumption is not social, but legal.

B. We'll know we have won when people get scolded for being unrepublican.

In reply to by beemasters

Ace006 Whoa Dammit Sat, 03/24/2018 - 22:18 Permalink

The SWTs are what you might call a statistical outlier, WD.  We have a ton of legal doctrine to guard against such things and, again, exceptions are statistical outliers.  When politics gets mixed up with the legal process (St. Trayvon, Duke Lacrosse team, Waco, Ruby Ridge) it's going to stink but the overall system is just amazing unless absolute human perfection is your gold standard.  What are you talking about, this "100,000s" of lives lost?

In reply to by Whoa Dammit

Kfilly SoDamnMad Sun, 03/25/2018 - 09:25 Permalink

Heck, ABC's website has a story about Operation Northwoods still up. I have read it several times. They recently changed the text on a 2001 story. The original story talked about how the government plotted to blow up passenger airliners. The new version stated how the government planned to hijack passenger airliners. Why the sudden edit on such an old story?

PS-Any government that plans to hurt its own citizens to justify a war is evil.

In reply to by SoDamnMad

Sapere aude HowdyDoody Sun, 03/25/2018 - 12:32 Permalink

 

Except you leave out the fact that Operation Toxic Dagger is a yearly training course?

So not exactly a coincidence is it.

It was held at a specially built unit in Wandsworth about 89.6miles away from Salisbury.

It had scientists from Porton Down, but was not at Porton Down, but then would you not expect scientists working in Chemical Warfare Defence to be present?

In reply to by HowdyDoody

I am Groot Looney Sat, 03/24/2018 - 19:14 Permalink

Just like Iraq, not once but twice. Looking for "weapons of mass destruction. Funny, nobody ever mentioned in the MSM that we were the ones who gave them to him.

 

Rinse, lather, repeat. The lies change but the dishonesty never does. And nobody is ever held accountable. What is laughable are the trumped up kangaroo charges against service members for killing people in combat. Yet every night, the local police go on shooting sprees against civilians. None of them are ever gang member or drug dealers. Just ordinary civilians. And the cops are never,ever held accountable for anything they do.

In reply to by Looney

SoDamnMad EuroPox Sun, 03/25/2018 - 02:22 Permalink

They tell me Russia poisoned Sergei and Yulia Skripal  BUT they show me absolutely no proof.

The Chemical Weapons Convention entered into force in 1997 and with 96% of declared stockpiles destroyed by Jan 2018 and we find in this new $1.3 trillion budget deal  $961 million to destroy our chemical weapons which won't be completed until 2023.  The Russians however destroyed their weapons in line with the agreement and as vertified by the Chemical Weapons Convention verifiers.

Our new and improved John Bolton  has proceeded to attack nearly every major multilateral convention, including the 1997 Kyoto Protocol on Global Warming, the Land Mines Convention in Ottawa and the International Criminal Court. Over the years, he also has taken on the Biological Weapons Convention and the World Trade Organization, among other multilateral treaties, and continues to do so.

So I guess Russia did it with the stockpiles they don't have but we negotiate to destroy stockpiles but we don't.

In reply to by EuroPox

thisandthat Looney Sat, 03/24/2018 - 19:47 Permalink

My guess is this is an act of sabotage against the world cup in Russia.

This will be a major event, way bigger than the Sochi Olympics, and it will bring tens of thousands from all over the world, and hundreds mllions more will watch it and, with word of mouth on top, people around the world will start to see Russia and Russians for what they are, not the way they're painted to be, worst, ostensively ignored and silenced, so that needs to be prevented at all costs, and so here we are.

In reply to by Looney

RationalLuddite thisandthat Sat, 03/24/2018 - 19:56 Permalink

I fear you are prophetic, for both reasons. Anything a narcissist cannot be or steal, it must destroy. And character savaging - can't let the world see or experience Russia as on the up-and-up and Russians as half-decent people. No. The narcissistic mindset is envy and self delusion.  It is certain that several nasty events are being planned. Pathetic weasels.

In reply to by thisandthat

OverTheHedge RationalLuddite Sun, 03/25/2018 - 05:22 Permalink

I think that there may be lots of supporter violence, all of it started by Russian supporters. At least, it will be reported as such. I also think that the Russians might have a few surprises in store for anyone who tries to start some mayhem for effect, especially if they have that "military on leave" look about them.

i remember from long ago - "I counted them all out, and I counted them all back again". Perhaps we need to do this with football supporters, just in case a few go missing during all the commotion.

In reply to by RationalLuddite

52821740 Looney Sun, 03/25/2018 - 05:47 Permalink

For the few on ZH  that  are not Russian trolls  It's no accident that there are never any ZH articles critical of Russia and it's allies but concentrates on publishing negative and misleading articles on western countries.
  It seems that those Russian trolls on here that aren't bots are either ignorant to the amount of wealth Putin has either because the Russian media is no longer independent due to the 11 or so journalists that have been murdered in recent years or just don't care if he (and the system) is corrupt as they overlook his crimes because he is viewed as a pathway to restoring Russia to its former glory. 

I hope there is not a prevailing culture in Russia of acceptance of corruption in order to restore Russian glory but I'm more inclined to think that the Russian public are just ignorant due to predominantly viewing only state run media. 

The trolls on this site will make all sorts of comments obfuscating mine by claiming the western MSM is also propaganda but there is hardly any comparison from what I can gather from my conversations with Russians I've met.

There is a valid reason why Russia is way down the list on Transparency International 's  Corruption perception list.

Having been on this site (different login before) for about 10 years I now suspect it is Russia run due to the overwhelming biases it has and those of the commentators.

Sadly the dominate Russian trolls here do not value Democracy and equality only Putin's paycheck and protection from being added to the list of those who have disappeared or been murdered.

From Wikipedia :

'Former Zero Hedge writer Colin Lokey said that he was pressured to frame issues in a way he felt was "disingenuous," summarizing its political stances as "Russia=good. Obama=idiot. Bashar al-Assad=benevolent leader. John Kerry=dunce. Vladimir Putin=greatest leader in the history of statecraft." Zero Hedge founder Daniel Ivandjiiski, in response, said that Lokey could write "anything and everything he wanted directly without anyone writing over it."[20] On leaving, Lokey said: "I can't be a 24-hour cheerleader for Hezbollah, Moscow, Tehran, Beijing, and Trump anymore. It's wrong. Period. I know it gets you views now, but it will kill your brand over the long run. This isn't a revolution. It's a joke."[2]

Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman describes Zero Hedge as a scaremongering outlet that promotes fears of hyperinflation and an "obviously ridiculous" form of "monetary permahawkery."[21] Krugman notes that Bill McBride of Calculated Risk, an economics blog, has treated Zero Hedge with "appropriate contempt".[22]

Craig Pirrong, professor at the Bauer College of Business writes that "I have frequently written that Zero Hedge has the MO of a Soviet agitprop operation, that it reliably peddles Russian propaganda: my first post on this, almost exactly three years ago, noted the parallels between Zero Hedge and Russia Today."[6][23][7]'

 

In reply to by Looney

52821740 52821740 Sun, 03/25/2018 - 12:03 Permalink

There's an example right now on RT of it misrepresenting the facts trying to present once again the US as a bully: 

https://www.rt.com/news/422255-us-china-garbage-recyclables-import/

Both in the headline and the body of the text RT states that the US 'Demands'  China  reconsider a ban but this is incorrect. The US 'Requested ' the reconsideration not demanded it.  There is a difference.  Although subtle it is typical of the way RT renders a story. 

BTW I'm not saying the US isn't a bully but pointing out the misrepresentation even though minor in this example. 

In reply to by 52821740

52821740 52821740 Sun, 03/25/2018 - 12:27 Permalink

There's an example right now on RT of it misrepresenting the facts trying to present once again the US as a bully: 

https://www.rt.com/news/422255-us-china-garbage-recyclables-import/

Both in the headline and the body of the text RT states that the US 'Demands'  China  reconsider a ban but this is incorrect. The US 'Requested ' the reconsideration not demanded it.  There is a difference.  Although subtle it is typical of the way RT renders a story. 

BTW I'm not saying the US isn't a bully but pointing out the misrepresentation even though minor in this example. 

In reply to by 52821740

52821740 oncemore1 Sun, 03/25/2018 - 10:34 Permalink

I'm not claiming to have a clear overall picture I can't read Russian nor do I live in Russia but if RT is the face that Russia presents to the world and  never seems to contain any articles critical of Putin or Russian statecraft then you have to ask why.  Furthermore some of those that have worked there as journalists at RT have left because they were directed on the need to present the Kremlin's case and not the negatives then it becomes clear that RT has an agenda - a pro Russian narrative. 

Western media such as that in Australia (where I live) has plenty of articles critical of Australian government action both internally and externally and reports for example the Russian and Chinese counterpoints. There is freedom to report whatever criticism you like.   Are you seriously telling me the same environment exists in Russia considering the number of journalists critical of Putin that have been murdered?

In reply to by oncemore1

thisandthat 52821740 Sun, 03/25/2018 - 12:30 Permalink

Idiot: RT was created precisely to give Russia's point of view on world events; it doesn't even requires 17 "intelligence" agencies to guess that; they themselves will/did tell you that... but same goes for the BBC, etc., though those are obviously inherently 100% truthful, accurate, impartial and unbiased, 100% of times, of course...

Ironically, most of RT's content is not only not even made in Russia, or about Russia, but not even made by Russians. Most of it is actually third-party US made by US citizens/outfits, then come other non-Russian origin, and the actual Russian content is actually a tiny minority — and I'm not even talking about RT America, but RT International.

In reply to by 52821740

52821740 thisandthat Sun, 03/25/2018 - 13:02 Permalink

Fuckwit: that's exactly my point. RT was created to present the Russian point of view.  I didn't think that needed to be pointed out but the ramifications did.

And the same doesn't go for the BBC etc. Yes you are correct that they are not 100% accurate or 100% unbiased but there is a great difference as you pointed out by stating that RT has an agenda. 

In reply to by thisandthat