Saturday, October 08, 2005

Consistency & Integrity

I believe that the US influence has predominated over Iraq since 1963. The most important thing for the US administrations was to maintain their interests, regardless the way it was achieved. The period (1963-1990) witnessed a firm alliance between those administrations & the baathists. The baathists were useful during the cold war to fight communism & later Islamism. It seems that invading Kuwait in 1990 caused that alliance to end. It took 13 years time to get rid of the previous allies.

Anyhow, the US & the British administrations are changing their beliefs. Mr. Blair, the British PM, introduced a new perspective, about one year ago,
by saying:
"In the politics -- when I was first a member of Parliament and making my way up the greasy pole and all the rest of it, there was a view in foreign policy that you dealt with countries on the basis of whatever attitude they had towards you, but really whatever they did within their own countries, that was up to them, and didn't really make a difference to your long-term relationship."

"I think what we are learning today is that there is not stability of any true, long-term kind without democratic rights for free people to decide their government."

For that:
"We actually had to go there and say, no, we must replace that with a democratic form of government -- because, in the end, if we replace it simply with another dictator, then we'll get the same instability back.That's why in Iraq we decided when Saddam was removed, we didn't want another hard man coming in, another dictator."

Making such decision means to work your way through the whole process, not quitting it before finishing the mission. Mr. Blair is a man of vision when he says:
"The pace of change can either overwhelm us, or make our lives better and our country stronger.What we can’t do is pretend it is not happening."
"The character of this changing world is indifferent to tradition.Unforgiving of frailty.No respecter of past reputations.It has no custom and practice.It is replete with opportunities, but they only go to those swift to adapt, slow to complain, open, willing and able to change."

The majority of people in the Mideast are not willing to change. It is the legacy of centuries of darkness. A perverted perception of religion, dominated by tribal traditions, controls the mind hindering creativity. To join the moving forward world, one should not pretend that change is not taking place. Here, in this region, we are not ready, till now, to seize the opportunity, to be swift to adapt, to stop complain (as I'm doing now), to be open, willing & able to change. We are overwhelmed by the pace of the changing world.
Again, he proves that he is an inelligent man by differentiating between Muslims & terrorists:
"These terrorists do not, never have and never will represent the decent, humane and principled faith of Islam."
And by stating a fact:
"Muslims, like all of us, abhor terrorism. Like all of us, are its victims.It is, as ever, only fringe fanatics we face."

I think there are mutual interests between Iraqis & the coalition nations. One of these is to prepare a killing zone for the global terrorists here in Iraq which causes innocents to die. In return, the coalition nations must sustain backing the Iraqi people in their struggle to build stable democracy. So, calling for withdrawal means to let the Iraqis down and:
"… the way to stop the innocent dying is not to retreat,to withdraw, to hand these people over to the mercy of religious fanatics or relics of Saddam, but to stand up for their right to decide their Government in the same democratic way the British people do."

Another outstanding figure with a marvelous diagnosis is Secretary Condoleezza Rice on her
speech at Princeton University. She says:
"… that the root cause of September 11th was the violent expression of a global extremist ideology, an ideology rooted in the oppression and despair of the modern Middle East, then we must speak to remove the source of this terror by transforming that troubled region."
She agrees with what Mr. Blair said a year ago in the following words:
"For 60 years, we often thought that we could achieve stability without liberty in the Middle East. And ultimately, we got neither. Now, we must recognize, as we do in every other region of the world, that liberty and democracy are the only guarantees of true stability and lasting security."

Mideast regimes have tried to establish and maintain an idea which says 'Liberty & democracy means that extremists will rule'. It is the idea used by the Saudis to persuade the west that they are the best choice to rule Arabia. Ms Rice refutes this idea:
"There are those who worry that greater freedom of choice in the Middle East will only liberate and empower extremism. In fact, the opposite is true: A political culture of transparency and openness is not one in which extremist beliefs can ultimately thrive."

To impose democratic principles may need military backing:
"In a world where evil is still very real, democratic principles must be backed with power in all its forms: political, and economic,and cultural, and moral, and yes, sometimes, military. Any champion of democracy who promotes principle without power can make no real difference in the lives of oppressed people."
The world, especially the Arabs, showed indifference to the sufferings of the Iraqi people for many years. Only the US finally stepped forward to end it:
"The United States and a large coalition of nations finally removed Saddam Hussein. By any moral standards, the liberation of the Iraqi people was long overdue."

Letting the Iraqis down now means to hand Iraq over to the terrorists. Eventually, these terrorists should be faced by the free world. So, withdrawal from Iraq means:
"We will embolden every enemy of liberty and democracy across the Middle East. We will destroy any chance that the people of this region have of building a future of hope and opportunity. And we will make America more vulnerable. If we abandon future generations in the Middle East to despair and terror, we also condemn future generations in the United States to insecurity and fear."


Blogger D. B. Light said...

While you are certainly right that American policy in the Middle East during the Cold War was to promote stability, and that precluded any real confrontation with the Baathist regimes, Saddam's strongest support came not from the West, but from the Soviet Union. Soviet, not American, influence, was predominant. However, I agree with your analysis of the current situation. For America to withdraw now would be both disastrous and shameful.

5:40 AM  
Anonymous nick said...

I also agree wholeheartedly that the USA should stay in Iraq until a democratically elected Iraqi government determines that our presence is no longer necessary.

However the analysis of the period 1963-1990 is flawed, as the Baathists received most support from Russia, France, Germany, China and Arab nations. The US aid was trivial compared to these other sources, and the US motivation was largely to punish Iran for its taking of American hostages.

5:55 AM  
Blogger Rosemary said...

In a speech President Bush gave in the Rose Garden, he even told Saudi Arabia that after 60 years of looking the other way, we were wrong. Things have to change, and that relationship was one of them.

He was also speaking about many other things, such as Iran, other dictators, etc.

I am grateful to be free, and I will fight anyone who tries to take it from me. I hope this for all peoples.

Many people say, "The Arab world is not ready for democracy." To them I say, "Neither was America, Germany, Japan, South America, Hong Kong, etc."

Funny thing, though. The people least ready are those most blessed! I pray for Iraq every day to become more safe and free. I hope you have safe and good elections! Take care.

3:56 AM  

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