No personal grudges against the USA, but [Archives:2004/793/Opinion]

November 25 2004

Hassan Al-Haifi
One of the most distressing characteristics found in much of the feedback emanating from those who seem to have a strong appreciation for just about anything that the Bush Administration does or says is that it take any dissenting or opposing opinion as manifesting a strong grudge by the opinion maker or critic against the United States. In addition, it appears that the Bush dictum: “Either you are with us or against us”, is firmly implanted in the minds and hearts of such rejecters of anyone having differing views on the policies of the United States, either at home or abroad. This rather simplistic and premature judgment is neither healthy or reasonable from people who supposedly believe that they are actually working or backing the efforts to promote and disseminate democracy and human rights (Very seldom, though, has the Bush Administration cited the human rights side of their self-assigned international mission in their claims of undertaking this messianic mission). Even if these critical opinions come from the people who are the most concerned or affected by the American actions here and there, it is always viewed as unacceptable and portraying a demonic grudge on the part of the critic.
In most cases, the negative feedback referred to above, does not actually argue the case for the US, or attempt to stick to the subject under discussion. More often than not, such feedback veers off on tangents and leans towards the personal; i.e., the defenders of the Bush Administration or US policies take it for granted that any criticism thereto is tantamount to an inescapable animosity harbored by the critics of the US towards anything or everything American. Seldom have those who view criticism against Mr. George Bush as purely anti-Americanism seek to convey a true familiarity with the actual situation on the ground, where the policies involved are at play, or simply underscore the uncompromising stance of many ultra right-wing thinkers that only their positions have any form of acceptability and all else simply should be thrown to the incinerator (They would not even accept the recycle bin). In fact, the unfortunate attitude as such, seems to show look of any concern, if not contempt for the viewpoints of those who would stand to be directly affected by the actions associated with US foreign policy. Nor do they display any consideration for the awful consequences that arise out of these supposedly messianic missions that the ultra right in the United States have taken upon themselves to deliver.
This rather simple and premature attitude towards the opinions of others, in some cases goes beyond just rejecting differing viewpoints, but is carried further, in some cases, to insults or insinuations that are irrelevant, bigoted and reflective of an intolerance that points to a considerable degree of naivety and uncompromising dogmatic position: totalitarian tendencies.
As such, one would like to say to such defenders of the Bush Administration and the ultra right wing agenda that the neo-cons in the United States seem to be espousing that their attitude only reinforces the contention that perhaps the American people are indeed loosing their capacity to reason and to judge events in their right perspective. What is also ironic in such attitude is that, that those criticizing US current policy, view such attitude as really being un-American and tend to work to foment stronger anti-US feeling.
If the recent elections in the United States have proven anything, it is that half the people of the United States have shown that they are opposing present US policy at home and abroad and feel that the Bush Administration is neither representing the values that Americans are expected to stand for (which to many people throughout the world were worthy of praise and even emulation), nor the directions they wish for America to be set upon. This 50/50 split is not healthy in any given society, and is bound to lead to significant complications in determining the trend that the US should embark on. Yet, it seems that the Bush Administration actually interprets its very narrow win (irrespective of the obviously unorthodox tactics that might have been used to reach such results) as an indisputable mandate from the American people that the course that they are on is the only right course to pursue. So, their attitude is now, well America and World, “you ain't seen nothing yet!”
When reason and prudence tend to take a back seat in any regime that is blessed with the awesome might of the United States with such polarized tendencies in the society, one is bound to conclude that the world is in for some serious pondering: What do the American people really want from the rest of the world? Is America simply turning into a big bully that has little regard for the hopes and aspirations of the rest of humanity? Should any nation, even with the might of the United States, simply be allowed to unleash its destructive power wherever and whenever its inconsiderate dogmatic leaders take it.
Often, there is discussion of how the United States presidential race was decided because of the strong “moral” convictions held by the right wingers, etc. They point to the attitude towards abortion and gay rights, which the latter presumably oppose, and which won over many “Catholics” to the right wing electorate. Are the moral issues of abortion and gay rights more significant than the senseless and premature daily death of tens and sometimes hundreds of Iraqis killed (by Americans and “insurgents” alike) by the venue created by a hastily arranged military adventure, which lacks any logical or rational justifications, and underscores the misuse of power and might. Furthermore, there is the tragic misuse of institutional arrangements and media to direct public opinion based on deception, innuendos that have no basis and the tickling of arrogant sentiments that belie any inclination to moral suasion and shows contempt for the intellect of the human mind to determine where true morality lies.
So, the observer at this juncture, deems it necessary to reintroduce some sense to those who blaspheme critics of the current US Administration and to remind them that we are all living in this world together. Morality and submission to the will and dictates of God Al-Mighty certainly go beyond saving unborn babies or accepting or rejecting social deviates, who have lost all sense of natural instinct because of the complexities created by a military industrial complex that needs ongoing death to thrive.