Monday, November 01, 2004

George W. Bush and the "Politics of Fear"

More from the Daily Star, a Middle Eastern newspaper.

It's useful to see America from another point of view, through the looking glass as it were. It confounds me how someone can appear to be both reasonable and so confused as this man seems to be.

He makes a number of valid points, adjusting for the natural exaggeration an opinion piece has. But then he begins to almost equate prisoner abuse at Abu Ghraib with the kidnapping and beheadings. He says numerous times that America is "demonizing" and at war with "global Islam." He acts as if Islamic extremism does not exist, and is not a threat in itself, to his country as well as ours. He explains: "This American failure to acknowledge that the political sources of terrorism lay in America's own behavior rather than in Arab failings was an error even more fundamental than the military switch from Al-Qaeda to Iraq." He explains that civil liberties in America have been "gravely curtailed" by the "Orwellian" Homeland Security Department and the Patriot Act.

The fact is, this man's column is as one-sided a look at the problem of terrorism as is Bush's. Like Bush, he offers real insight into the problem of terrorism. Like Bush, he is not intellectually honest enough to allow himself to be challenged by facts. Unlike Bush, Patrick Seale seems to dance around the border of anti-Semitism; suggesting rather than stating that malicious intents and conspiracies. He ignores facts that Bush has incorporated into his strategy--like the fact that the Al Qaeda was a global force before we invaded Iraq, having already launched attacks at the U.S. all over the Middle East and in America, and having contacts through their camps in terrorist groups around the world.


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