Living a new era of colonialism [Archives:2004/749/Opinion]

June 24 2004

Martin Dansky Bsc.
[email protected]
For Yemen Times

Recently because of the intention of the US to remain as an occupier of Iraq after its incursion last year, I had an ongoing debate with another poet on a poetry website who took a hawkish opinion. The debate began when I replied to his on-line poem on the theme of American involvement there and stated that if I were in Iraq then, I'd pull out fast. There job, to overthrow Saddam, was done, I said. I was accused of not realizing that Saddam, a tyrant had to be removed from power. But Saddam had been captured several months before, I rebutted!
Now that the end of June is approaching fast and the Americans want to leave 100,000 troops after Saddam has been removed, I am still galled. And I became more vehement after rebutting the other poet who likened me to a weak democrat and a tree-hugger, someone who'd be an armchair advocate of peace at the expense of poor American soldiers fighting for American liberty and freedom! I thought this is the epitomic status of American self-centeredness that many of you in Yemen realize. Granted there have always been powers that have dominated, but I am irked at the means at which America comes across as a savior of peace when in reality it is only looking after its self-interests and the oil trade in the region. And the country is steeped in lies and deceit with no weapons of mass destruction found there, followed by the resignation of the CIA chief over that.
I am also aware that the President of Yemen has opted to co-operate with the American government to ebb the flow of 'terrorism'. I think the word terrorist has been largely misused. It doesn't just refer to promoters of arms flown to destabilize Western governments but it also refers to just about anybody who stands up to resist the continued American involvement in Iraq. At least this is the image that pro-American media channels depict here, and that is anybody standing up for their rights not to have their home squandered by an American soldier, is dubbed a terrorist supporter. I am terribly dismayed by their attempt to replace Iraqi textbooks with their own in an effort to paint a brighter picture of how America treats it 'friends.'
All this is being done by a country where slavery was abolished only 150 years ago. Apparently colonialism never finished with the French and the English, sadly a new era of colonialism has occurred.