Saturday, June 25, 2005

Day off

It's difficult to post today. Hopefully I'll have something tomorrow.

In the meantime, I thought I would leave you with an oldie but a goodie. This, from Bryan Appleyard in the Sunday London Times, has as much relevance today as it did when I first read it in September of 2001. It also ought to put to bed the myth that the anti-Americanism we see so much of today was born when George Bush decided to remove Saddam.

Why do they hate America?


Anonymous Mark said...

It's interesting that the article talks about anti-Americanism even in the UK shortly after 9/11. All we heard about was the sympathy, the playing of our national anthem at Buckingham Palace, with Brits waving American flags and crying at the tragedy. I was most heartened to hear Blair's speeches of strong support for the U.S., and condemnation of the terrorists. I still remember one of his lines, "Their barbarism is their shame." Indeed, while Bush spoke for the nation, in general terms of values, as our politicians often do, Blair was surprisingly articulate about the threat that us Americans faced, and collectively in the West, and what we, together with the UK, must do to defeat it. Along with Bush's speeches, to see the solidarity was inspiring.

The article is accurate in saying that there were those American anti-Americans who almost immediately piped up and said we deserved it. I truly resented them. What I resented as well was that the media even bothered to give them voice at such a time. I'm sure the media would say, "But how could we ignore them?" They were prominent individuals in the intelligentsia. In the minds of these people, even though they acknowledged the loss of the thousands of people on 9/11, the terrorists were the true victims, because of American foreign policy, our "oppression" on the rest of the world. There were others who said that we must try to understand why they did this to us. Some liberals wanted to "embrace them with our love." They were ignored, for the most part, or railed against by people such as myself, who felt it was the wrong time for such sentiments.

I live in a liberal bastion of sorts, the town I live in. Two days after 9/11 a local rag ran a cover story titled, "Why Are We So Hated" with the now famous picture of 3 firemen raising an American flag up a makeshift flag pole on the WTC site. It was much in line with the liberal critics--they acknowledged the loss on 9/11, but then blamed America and our policies, along with the IMF, and World Bank for it. In large part the article was written by a few professors from the local university. I was incensed!

Years later we in the Colorado find out that a professor of Ethnic Studies, the head of the department in fact, wrote a lengthy missive on the day of the attack titled "The Justice of Roosting Chickens: Why Some People Push Back". The most incindiary part of which diminished the honor of those killed in the WTC, saying they were not innocents, but technocrats who were as guilty in the deaths of thousands of Iraqis as the infamous Nazi Adolf Eichmann was in the extermination of the European Jews. Further, he excused the terrorists for their attack, saying it was a natural consequence of our actions, and further that they would be fully justified in attacking us again with a biological or nuclear weapon. What rubbed it in was when this was discovered, and there was a public uproar over it, some faculty at the university, and a couple thousand students stood up for him, and what he said! This just goes to show that there are some parts of our universities that are truly dedicated to indoctrination, or perhaps brainwashing. I can say though there is some justice. This same professor is now under investigation by the university for academic fraud. While under investigation, he is still allowed to "teach", if you can call it that. Some are skeptical, including myself, that he will ultimately lose his job. Call me a cynic, but as I've read more about the thinking of many college faculty across the country, they actually sympathize with his message.

Not to bash all liberals, there are some of sound mind who have openly spoken out against this anti-Americanism. Every time I hear from one of these kooks, I am also reminded that there are those on the left who are critical of the Republicans and/or our policies, yet love America even with its faults, and say so. Seeing the extreme makes me appreciate the "loyal opposition" more. It makes me think that while I may strongly disagree with them, and sometimes resent them, at least they're not with the crazies way off in...well, you know. :)

9:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You just dont understand. You feel angry, but you dont try to learn WHY. Why does 80% of the world hates your country. You keep reading al this BS and that just fuels your arrogance instead of your humility. Dont whine. LEARN.

10:36 PM  
Anonymous Maureen said...

Anonymous--Dude, really, go back to school. First, please think of some other term than "Moron" when you read something you don't like. You'd be able to come up with other terms if you had an education. Also, learn to spell--& maybe learn a bit of grammar. "Why does 80% of the world hateS your country." Cough.

By the way, we're not whining. We really don't give a f*** what the rest of the world thinks. I notice that you're the one here reading--& commenting--constantly. Same with the world about America. People may hate it, but they sure spend an inordinate amount of time trying to get us to pay attention to them. Hey, if you hate us so much, just ignore us.

Am I arrogant? You'd better believe it bubba!

4:46 PM  
Anonymous Mark said...

To anonymous:

I read all the time, so I've learned a lot. I don't focus too much on "why they hate us", because I've listened to some of the rantings of those who hate us and I find them to be woefully ignorant, easily taken in by propaganda. I have found reason to believe that some of the dislike for our foreign policy over the past 50 or so years is legitimate in the sense that we have crafted policies on weaker nations that was heavily slanted in our favor and very much to their disadvantage, not because we're inherently mean people, but rather because we were greatly concerned for our own national security, following the Great Depression and WWII. Initially such policies were promulgated to halt the spread of communism, but more recently have been used for strictly commercial interests, a kind of cruel corporate welfare. So yes, there's room for criticism, but there's a lot of flailing of arms and hysteria over concerns that have no basis in fact as well.

1:11 AM  

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