Hillary Clinton on China

Supports MFN for China, despite concerns over human rights

Clinton supported most favored nation trade status despite concerns about China’s human rights record. “We have to use our our moral and material strengths in ways that serve our evolving interests,” she said. “We have to ask ourselves what hope does the global market hold for the tens of millions of victims of child labor, or for the 100 million street children without homes or families whom I’ve seen everywhere from Brazil to Mongolia who are being left to fend for themselves.”
Source: Dean Murphy, NY Times Oct 20, 2000

Criticized authoritarian practices with women & children

Could the First Lady of the US go to China and criticize its government for authoritarian practices in dealing with women, children, and political activists? The very thought made traditionalists in the White House and the State Department shudder. Her chief of staff said, “More people thought she should not go. Hillary felt strongly she should.”

[At the conference], the First Lady lambasted China’s Communist government for suppressing free speech and the right to assemble at the grassroots women’s forum [of the UN Conference]. She inspired the women there to make their voices heard against selling girls into prostitution, against rape as a tactic of war, against forced abortion or sterilization. “Human rights are women’s rights. And women’s rights are human rights, once and for all.”

Source: Hillary’s Choice by Gail Sheehy, p.275-277 Dec 9, 1999

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