Thursday, July 27, 2006

America should stop meddling in the Middle East

We should stop meddling in the Middle East. We have nothing to gain and everything to loose. The only thing we should do in the Middle East is what we should be doing around the world: directly supporting our allies and diplomatically supporting countries that are trying to form democracies.

In the case of our allies, support means that if they need our help and ask for it, we give them exactly what they ask for if we can. In the case of fledgling democracies that means we support them publicly and provide them aid as they need it.

It seems to me that our foreign policy as it applies to the Middle East is a lot more than I’ve outlined and it seems to me that that is the reason we have all of our problems. I’m not asking America to be an isolationist nation, I’m asking America to be a nation that deals fairly with the rest of the world and uses its resources in positive ways.

I don’t believe that if we were a nation that was content with ourselves we would have such a problem with Osama Bin Laden. From what I can gather, one of the main catalysts for his fatwa against us was that we had military bases in Saudi Arabia. Why do we have those bases there? Why do we need this heavy military presence in the Middle East? Could it be that we are colonialists and expansionists? Could it be that we don’t want to pay the market rate for Oil?

Now, another part of Osama’s hatred for us is our support of Israel. In that case, I’m sorry, at this point in time they are our ally and we should publicly support them as we would any ally. But they don’t need the help of our military. Israel has the worlds #2 military; they can take care of themselves. And we should let them. It seems to me that we try to influence their policy way too much. Why? Why do we meddle? What makes our nation so smart? Isn’t it obvious that we cause more problems than we solve when we meddle in other nations affairs?

And I really don’t think I’m talking pie in the sky here. I’m just asking us to think more about treating other nations as if they were on the same level as we are and not as bratty little children that we need to baby-sit. We aren’t the adults who know better. Historically in this context I know that much is true.

Now I’ve said before that we should try and influence Israel to move out of the Middle East entirely and I still believe it, but if they want to stay, we should support them in any way they want. If we don’t agree with things they are doing, we have every right to privately try and talk them out of actions, but publicly our stance should be “They are our ally. If they want to attack Lebanon they are fully supported by us”.

If we are allies with multiple nations that are at war what should we do? We should try our best to broker peace or we should choose sides. This stuff is simple although everyone will say: “This stuff is complex beyond all recognition”. You know what? It’s not and I’ll tell you why:

In this context, there are two types of people. There are the leaders of all these nations and factions and then there are the citizens of all these nations. The citizens by and large will go along with whatever their leaders position is. The leaders (of which there are relatively few) are the ones that have differing opinions and it is those differences that cause all the problems in the world that we have today.

Those differences may be huge and they may be based in all kinds of history, but they are still ultimately differing opinions of singe human beings and they are motivated by simple needs and wants. And that, to me, means that it can all be understood. Do you think that if Osama Bin Laden were to sit down with Tony Blair that they would immediately want to kill each other? I don’t think so. I think if they were truly honest and able to really communicate with each other, they would at the worst end up in a situation where they would agree to disagree.

Yea yea, the world isn’t that simple.. I’m telling you all right now that it is. Even you religious people would agree with me if you really understood your faiths. Human life and social interaction while it can get very complex is ultimately simple. We all interact the same ways with each other. We all want and need and feel in relatively the same ways.

So, our country should strive to be more of an entity who if it were a person would be more like a priest and less like a general. How can anyone disagree?

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

from politicalgateway.com:

It's time for Condoleezza Rice to resign or be fired. This condo should be condemned.
Rice is professionally incompetent. She has made a shambles of our Middle East policy.
Three years ago I was the first American in Baghdad to call for the removal of Paul Bremer. Bremer was a joke. But he left a lingering disaster in his wake. I was attacked by the White House but I stood my ground. History has vindicated my original insights and sentiments: Bremer was a loser, and America was the big loser. We are still paying the price of Bremer's incompetence.
Now it's time for truth telling about Rice: she must go. And fast. Like now. She has no credibility and no respect in the world community where she has to function. The fiasco in Rome yesterday, which I predicted, was all too obvious before her plane landed.
Simply put, Rice is unable to influence the psycho samurai in the White House that want war, not peace, in the Middle East. Now their grand scheme to use Israel as the spearhead of American policy has backfired.
Rice makes statements that are ludicrous and advocates positions that are ridiculous. Take, for example, the issue of a cease-fire in Lebanon. Cease-fires are arranged so that parties can negotiate. We have been negotiating with the North Koreans after a cease-fire in 1953. Yup, we're still negotiating.
Rice, on the other hand, has demanded that as preconditions of a cease-fire in Lebanon, Hezbollah surrender and disarm in advance. What would be left to "negotiate?" Why would the military force that is winning (Hezbollah) surrender and disarm in obedience to the forces that are losing (Israel and the United States)?
Rice has allowed Israelis to attack civilian targets because of false claims that Hezbollah men are hiding there. But given the pathetic and incompetent state of Israeli military intelligence, it is clear that Israel is committing mass murder in Lebanon without any military intelligence or political intelligence. By our own statistics, there aren’t enough Hezbollah fighters to fill all of the apartment buildings we have destroyed in Beirut. We are allowing Israelis to commit mass terror.
Simple terror as a policy or as an action seldom achieves its purpose. Terror failed on 9/11, when Americans reacted by uniting and overthrowing the Taliban. Terror did not encourage the British to surrender during the Blitz of London. And so on.
The disclosure that Israel is using CBU's against unarmed civilians is sure to stir more revulsion against the United States. Cluster bomb units (CBU's) contain shards that can cut to shreds anything within large areas, as large as a football field. They are not precision weapons. Since it is obvious that Hezbollah's fighters are inside bunkers and foxholes, the only people vulnerable to CBU's are unarmed civilians.
Israel dropped leaflets demanding that Lebanese flee the border areas, and then apologized for murdering the very people it has urged to flee by bombing them in flight. Where is the outrage? There is none. Instead, Condo mouths platitudes about our "concern for the Lebanese people." What rubbish. A Secretary of State that has become a laughingstock abroad cannot function. Under any theory Rice is useless, counterproductive and incompetent.
Rice has used the right-wing parrot at the U. N., John Bolton, to block a resolution condemning the Israeli murder of U. N. peace observers.
Consider two obvious options: first, posit that Rice actually believes the policy nonsense she is uttering. Then she is completely incompetent and unable to function in a negotiating posture. She doesn't have a clue how to negotiate. Instead of offering a forum for negotiations, the United States has demanded that the bloodshed continue. Now that Israeli blood is flowing, you may see Rice's adamancy reverse.
Second, consider that Rice knows what she is doing is hopeless, and that she is merely holding on because she is an incurable careerist, a pianist whose piano won’t play but who keeps pounding at the keys in frustration because she will not walk away from the recital. Then Rice is a doing a great disservice to dissent and common sense. If she resigned, walked out and condemned the inanity of the Bush foreign policy, maybe she might actually accomplish something.
By all of this criticism I not to mean to say the Democrats would be doing any better. They have been screaming because the Iraqi Prime minister gave a candid assessment of the Lebanese invasion, and called it immoral. The man was pilloried for his position. Both Republicans and Democrats apparently consider Iraq a vassal state when it comes to U. S. support for Israel. Unfortunately for Condo, no one has told the Iraqis. And we wonder why they hate us.
Condo's days are numbered. She will either pay the price for her own incompetence in formulating a policy that is worthless and destructive of America's interests and values, or she will pay the price of being a stooge for policymakers who are themselves useless jerks with a single-minded devotion to supporting Israeli policies at the expense of destroying America's role in the world. These fanatics will dump Rice to conceal their own involvement in the region's chaos.
Condo, it's time to go. To reprise Illinois' Senator Everett Dirksen at the 1952 republican Convention, "You led us down the road to defeat." Come to think of it, we led the Israelis down the same road. And they led us down the same road. Either you are responsible for the disaster in Lebanon in which case you should go, or you are not responsible, in which case you should go.

trace said...

While I pretty much agree with your linked post, I have to ask that in the future people would simply link to text they want to highlight..

In either case yes, Condi is perhaps a bright woman and a hard worker but should she be secretary of state? No. Just like hmn.. who's that guy who ran FEMA?

Seriously, its a shame to me that we lost Powell. But it's obvious now that he quit for very good reasons and he wanted to distance himself from the scum that is running this country.. Some day, his memoirs will be quite a good read.