Bush Fantasy Land

Category: Americas, World Affairs Topics: George W. Bush, Iraq, United States Of America Views: 3641
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Welcome to Bush Fantasy Land: The Sequel

It has been said that George W. Bush is in denial of reality, in Iraq and elsewhere. But what of America itself? More particularly, what of the majority of Americans who re-elected him?

They had the right to their democratic choice. Still, what sort of nation rewards a leader who misled it into war, spawned worldwide anger, eroded America's moral authority, turned the Iraqi occupation into a showcase for American ineptitude, and increased terrorism?

The same sort that also:

  • Accepts the death of 100,000 Iraqis as unavoidable road kill by a rampaging giant avenging its 3,000 dead on 9/11, even though Iraq had nothing to do with that terrorist atrocity.

  • Dismisses the missing weapons of mass destruction, the raison d'tre for the war, as irrelevant.

  • Tolerates breaches of the rule of law at home while preaching democracy abroad. 

Of course, nearly half the American electorate is as upset as the rest of the world, if not more so, and has fallen into shell-shocked silence since Nov. 2. Bush promised to reach out to them. But, as usual, his words and deeds never did connect.

Donald Rumsfeld stays on. Colin Powell goes out. Condoleezza Rice gets a promotion. So does Alberto Gonzales, the White House consigliere who justified torture. All will dance to the drumbeat of Dick Cheney's next war, perhaps on Iran.

Tax cuts are to continue, worsening the record deficit (already at 5 per cent of the GDP).

Social security is to be privatized, in the name of fixing it. 

Medicare is to stay private, leaving 45 million citizens uncovered. 

Democracy, too, is being handed over to corporate interests and lobbies. 

Bankrolling much of this week's $40 million presidential inaugural, as also last summer's $200 million Republican and Democratic conventions and the $1 billion election in between, they will get a return on investment through government contracts and licences, along with the policy changes they are bound to dictate.

As the trumpets herald the president's second term, 81 prisoners held in Afghanistan for three years are freed as a gesture of "reconciliation" on today's Islamic festival of Eid - a Bush twist on the old autocratic custom of arbitrary arrest and equally arbitrary release at Christmas and on the king's birthday.

Afghans and Iraqis are yet to get clean drinking water, steady electricity or medicine. Most cannot venture outside without risking their lives.

Those Iraqis who make it to the polling booths Jan. 30 will vote for candidates they have never seen or heard from.

Malnutrition among Iraqi children has doubled under the occupation. The risk of death for Iraqis is 58 times higher, according to the same Johns Hopkins University study that said its count of 100,000 dead is "a conservative estimate."

Equally revealing are America's bilateral relationships.

Bush is at loggerheads with most democracies but closest to autocracies. In the Muslim world, he is chummy with petro-monarchs but distant from the leaders of emerging democracies Turkey, Malaysia and Indonesia.

To neighbours Mexico and Canada, he poses a unique problem. To protect trade, their leaders must do what their publics don't want them to. Paul Martin must sign on to the missile defence shield, tilt toward Israel and censure Liberals who echo their constituents.

Surveying the scenes of these military and political disasters, Bush sees only the need for better public relations and more spin. "We've got to continue to do a better job of explaining what America is all about."

Haroon Siddiqui is the Toronto Star's editorial page editor emeritus. His column appears Thursday and Sunday. [email protected]


  Category: Americas, World Affairs
  Topics: George W. Bush, Iraq, United States Of America
Views: 3641

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Older Comments:
TRIATHALON FROM UK said:
Kim old chap, you missionary mauraders are the ones who need to wake up. You are beneath contempt to take advantage of these innocent victims. Muslims should ban all such charlatans from entering their nations..its obvious their aim isnt charity but deception.
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HUDD D'ALHAMD FROM CANADA said:
Kim Bong Soo, no offence, but this is the most idiotic story I've ever heard in modern times! I don't know how much you know about Muslims in South Korea, but according to your statement I can tell you that both you and Helen Thamarai are supplanters and you wouldn't last a day in Toronto Canada, I don't know about US. Do you think that you can impress anybody on this website with your biased and fabricated "stories" about Muslims? Are you telling us, Muslims on this site what we are and what we believe in? How awfully nasty and disrespectful you can be! The horrific times of the Crussaders are over! Would have Bush voice a Christian mission to his war in Iraq, the world community would have exploded! So wake up and try to perceive the realities that surround you. Get informed and eventually educated so that emancipation might clear your befogged mind. I am a Palestinian Muslim and I have Christian and even Jewish acquaintances. We never had a religious discord or encounter. Be known to you mister, that Jesus Christ is mentioned in the Quran, and Muslims keep him in high esteem alongside with all other prophets including Moses. Now, we Muslims, are not polytheists, rather Christians are,e.g.,The father, The son, and The holy ghost. For us Muslims, God is God, God of everybody and everything, He is the Ruler of the Universe, The One and Only! The god of the Christians? Are you mad? What else? The God of the cats, the God of the dogs? He is one and only, savvy? The Christian and the Jewish communities had never been forced to live in isolation in any known Islamic regimes. Muslims and Jews were persecuted and forced to convert, leave or die at the burning stake when they came under the Christian rule. Would I say that these are the Christians as a rule? I would be wrong, because, today, it would be hard for any Christian to live with the stupidity and cretinism of those by-gone times. In Sri Lanka the majority hit by the tsunami were Christians. Now what did they do?
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KIM BONG SOO FROM S KOREA said:
This letter was sent by one Helen Thamarai of the Salvation Army from Aceh to her folks back home. The facts are indeed verifiable.
Aceh is a devout Islamic province. Christians number fewer than a thousand and are constantly subjected to persecution as in most Islamic countries. This is a true account of how the Lord works. Read on . . .

Subject: Fw: Kesaksian di Aceh (Testimony from Aceh)

This is the translation of the live testimony from Aceh.
As we know that the tidal wave Tsunami destroyed the city of Meulaboh in Aceh Province and killed thousands of Moslems and left others homeless.

This is the testimony from Christians in Meulaboh. About 400 persons who were saved on 26 Dec 2004. They wanted to celebrate Christmas but the Moslems in Meulaboh did not allow them to celebrate in the city and ordered them to the mountain if they wanted to celebrate.

Because of their deep longing to celebrate the birth of Christ the 400 Christians of Meulaboh made their way to the mountain (outside Meulaboh city) on 25 Dec 2004. They spent the night in the mountain after the Christmas celebration.

As we know the next morning the disaster earthquake struck and the tidal wave destroyed the entire city of Meulaboh, and a lots of people perished.

Strangely, the Children of God who celebrated Christmas on the mountain were spared!
The surviving Moslems of Meulaboh were heard saying: The God of Christians has punished us". Some were baffled and asked, "Why thousands of us believers died but the Christians are safe?"

If the 400 Christians of Meulaboh had celebrated Christmas in the city perhaps some of them might have perished too but because of their humbleness and meekness they were saved. Their eyes saw how they were miraculously blessed.

We learn to be humble and not retaliate against the wickedness of man for judgement alone belongs to Yarweh, our God!

Praise the Lord!
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CHARLES JACKS FROM USA said:
It doesn't take an adviser to "spiritual services" to know that when God wishes to destroy a nation, God puts the imbecilic bully-brats of the rich in charge. Nearly anyone with a minor amount of sense would recognize the need to stop when the results weren't what one expected. But that would forestall the destruction. And so the bully-brats destroy what the powerful have created after the powerful refuse the warnings. It is a fitting reminder that the way you create something affects the way those that come after maintain it.
Another aspect of this is that those that worship other than The Creator of all that is, and was, AND WILL BE, will be abandoned to violence to their soul. That moral leadership vacuum does not go unfulfilled in those that purport to seek God. But it is not filled with representatives of The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful. And that which does fill that vacuum will do the maximum damage to the community identifying itself with the abandoned.
But one can be abandoned for other reasons. Zechariah Chapter 5 is a good example.
We will see downward spirals of redefinition of the terms used in moral law. Torture is being redefined from the intentional infliction of pain to, say someone posted on this site, anything less than death or permanent loss of bodily function. Businesses are redefining employees from employees to "human resources" and recently "human capital" moving toward the resumption of slavery, economic or otherwise.
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ABU RAHIM FROM USA said:
We've got to continue to do a better job of explaining what America is all about.

America is all to do about nothing. Under the present type of leadership America will never achieve the greatness it has aspired to gain. America came to be a world power thorough world oppression. Until this awful self-examination takes place, she will continue to struggle until that day of reckoning arrives.

The everyday American goes to McDonalds, watch TV and videos, and gossip about things happing in far away lands- with no real connection to them, with no real connection to anything of substance. We Americans live in a world technologically supreme to anything ever known yet when introduced with a new method of voting in the state of Florida, we had difficulties punching a metal rod through a piece of paper.

We elect our leader based upon their sex appeal, how lovely they dress, how eloquently they express themselves verbally (Present leader not included).

American is fine. Well defined.
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SRD ALBIZU FROM USA said:
Like with any other disease...it is necessary to go through the fevers, chills and stomach ache before the virus goes away. GWB and his administration is that virus that has uncovered the true America. The America(50%) that was dormant but not inactive. This next 4 years will only serve to create more pain to people abroad but it will also serve to open the eyes and the minds of those whom like ME were not seeing clear
until 911 happened and I accepted Islam.
Assalam alaikum
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ABDUL FROM USA said:
It is a surprise that BUSH got re-elected when about 50% of USA people are against.How can democracy US people/Law/Congress justify a person running the country when almost 50% are against him.? One must be elected if they have 70% of electoral or popular vote.

This is not democracy-Democracy in USA and elections are fabricated. It was a big deal recently in UKRAINE elections when that country had similar first election results.

There should be 3 or 4 parties election, Winning party( President) should have 70% vote or other parties support as coalition parties and make up 70%for the president.

The better democratic and elections are elsewhere in the world(eg. INDIA, Sri-LANKA etc).
People are brainwashed and they dont have thinking power, all they want are games, parties, vacations, money etc.
ALLAH bless the WORLD.
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SCOTT FROM USA said:
As you know not all Americans born and raised like Bush, I for one feel he is a failed president who has disgraced my country. His newly created America is nothing to be proud of. I have lost faith in the government and the country and people that I grew up with, America that I now say A country of the rich, for the rich, by the rich.

Scott Ward
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ROMESH CHANDER FROM US said:
Welcome to Neo-Imperialsm, the American Brand. Now, you know, what America is all about.

Author talks about moral authority of US. Sorry. Nations are not moral entities; only individuals are moral entities. Moral Man, Immoral Society.

If Paul Martin cannot show some guts (by not signing on to a useless and wasteful missle defense system, that is not the fault of neo-imnperialist America; that is the fault of Canada and its people; Why can't he just ignore GWB for next 4 years; after all, GWB is not going to be around here any longer than 4 years. In this case, Jean Chretian was smart; he refused to support US on Iraq, refused to bow down to US/GWB, and accepted the penalties; that is the hallmark of a mature leader. Canadaians elected paul Martin, they can unelect him -- far easily than we can unelect GWB.
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