Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What We Say And What We Do - A Study In Incongruity

In the linked article by Noam Chomsky, the following quote appears: "The U.S. and its Western allies are sure to do whatever they can to prevent authentic democracy in the Arab world." It seems that events have shown this to be tragically prescient.

The U.S. government has taken few, if any, steps towards supporting actual democracy in the Arab world. Aside from the obvious, such as continuing support for dictatorships like Saudi Arabia, we see a failure to support a democratic government in Egypt (the military still runs that country). We chose the Saudi dictators over the people of Bahrain, and turned a blind eye the Saudi intervention against the Bahraini people. We continue to thwart Palestinian self-determination, under the guise of being a neutral arbiter of the conflict. As to that last link, I have to note that Obama's statement that “Peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the U.N. If it were that easy, it would have been accomplished by now” is absolutely rich, in light of innumerable U.S. vetoes of Security Counsel resolutions against Israel (one example here). When one consistently throws a wrench into a machine, it quite something to make speeches about the ineffectual nature of the machine you've routinely sabotaged.

I think the reason for this American inaction (or action) is quite simple. Democracy means self-determination. And the United States government, despite all the rhetoric about wanting "freedom," has no interest in allowing certain people the right to make choices about their own government for themselves. Examples abound, too may to link here. While one can fairly argue that the U.S. ought to advance what it perceives as its interests, around the world, I suggest doing so in a nakedly hypocritical way undermines our credibility.

Link below the fold.

Is the world too big to fail?

1 comment:

  1. Obama has also said that he would continue to veto any UN vote for Palestinian self-determination which angers me greatly. He's been such a poor representative of a forward thinking liberal as to prove himself not even middle of the road.
    Part of the problem, from a historian's POV is that the US and the British still suffer from so much guilt over not helping the Jews (and they certainly knew what was going on in Germany almost immediately). On a personal level, if I screw up I own it, and if governments did the same it would go toward honesty and integrity. I'm assuming that's too large a dichotomy for government to have at this point.
    The second part of the problem is fear-based which leads to the racism that this reflects. Whether or not our government truly thinks that Arabic self-determination means power for our enemies or whether it's to satisfy the ignorant masses, I don't know. I do know that this is certainly NOT the way to have a peaceful middle-east region.