2004/12/07

Defense Science Board weighs in on WOT

Report (PDF) from the Pentagon's Defense Science Board
Article from DailyKos, also featured in Malaysia, The BBC, Australia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates. Naturally, nothing except a few alternative media sources in the US.

  • Muslims do not "hate our freedom," but rather, they hate our policies. The overwhelming majority voice their objections to what they see as one-sided support in favor of Israel and against Palestinian rights, and the longstanding, even increasing support for what Muslims collectively see as tyrannies, most notably Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Pakistan, and the Gulf states.

  • Thus when American public diplomacy talks about bringing democracy to Islamic societies, this is seen as no more than self-serving hypocrisy. Moreover, saying that "freedom is the future of the Middle East" is seen as patronizing, suggesting that Arabs are like the enslaved peoples of the old Communist World -- but Muslims do not feel this way: they feel oppressed, but not enslaved.

  • Furthermore, in the eyes of Muslims, American occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq has not led to democracy there, but only more chaos and suffering. U.S. actions appear in contrast to be motivated by ulterior motives, and deliberately controlled in order to best serve American national interests at the expense of truly Muslim selfdetermination.

  • Followed by much more. Basically, the US has majorly hosed up and as with employment figures, is way behind where the US was on January 2001.
    The Kos article talks about how everything is the State Department's fault. Does that mean Colin Powell is to blame? I doubt it. It doesn't seem likely to me that the State Department was given the resources it needed to do the job. I also suspect Bush has managed things there by remote control and with an extremely heavy and clumsy hand.

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