Saturday :: Dec 11, 2004

Bu$hCo Speak With Fork-ed Tongue


by pessimist

I found these two stories this morning, and was struck that they had contrasting themes on similar topics. I'm going to try something different to try to display this contrast.


Powell says Islamic countries need reform to end despair[1]

Secretary of State Colin Powell told a gathering of Islamic leaders on Saturday that they must join hands with industrialized countries on political and economic reforms to ease the "despair and frustration" that afflicts much of the region.

Powell was one of several speakers who addressed a "Forum of the Future Conference" aimed at bringing greater dynamism to Islamic societies and make them less of a breeding ground for political extremism.

Resistance if futile - you will be assimilated? Not if things like this keep happening!


U.S. soldier gets three years in prison for killing wounded Iraqi[2]

The charges relate to the Aug. 18 killing of a 16-year-old Iraqi male found in a burning truck with severe abdominal wounds sustained during clashes in Baghdad's Sadr City, an impoverished neighborhood that was the scene of fierce fighting between U.S. forces and Shiite rebels loyal to anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr. A criminal investigator had said during an earlier hearing that the soldiers decided to kill him to "put him out of his misery."

Don't they call that Dead Checking? Maybe it's only OK to do it in Fallujah.

Several Arab delegates used the occasion to blast American support for Israel. Saudi Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal said the United States could do a better job of winning the "hearts and minds" of the Islamic world by a shift in its policies toward Israel. He said U.S. policies toward Israel are the "real bone of contention" with the Muslim community. [1]

As one critic puts it:

"It doesn't help you win the hearts and minds of the public if you put a bullet in their hearts and another in the minds," said Mark Garlasco, senior military analyst for Human Rights Watch. [2]

Here's the issue:

"Arab culture is directly influenced by other situations," Arab League Secretary General Amr Moussa said. [1]

So how can Bu$hCo approach the Muslim world with olive branches in one hand offered to those at the top, while arrows are the response to the man in the street? Do these two opposing strategies not work against each other?

That's how it looks to this web pundit.


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