Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

2006, 2007: What Happened and What Will Happen to the Arabs - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
Select Page

In his Press conference, Bush described the American Economy in the end of 2006 as “strong, productive and prosperous” as an outcome of his Middle Eastern policies and their consequences on the Americans. “We continue our development policy to make our economy stronger and raise the standard of lives”, Bush stated. He then discussed the importance of oil and Gas for the US economy and scientific development. This is how Bush summarizes the real objectives of his policies of wars, occupation, sanctions and unsettlement in the Middle East. Few days later, American military officials announced that new military vehicles will move in the Gulf to enhance US permanent existence in the Area. This was media justified as “To be close to Iran”. The Minister of Defense declared during his first visit to Iraq that “Iraq’s neighbors should understand that we will stay long in the Gulf “.

This comes with the confession of an ex-diplomat in UK mission to the UN that “the British government has never considered Iraqi Mass Destruction Weapons a threat to UK and the Americans have always agreed with this”. There is no doubt that the same applies to Iran. UK & USA start talks with North Korea after its nuclear bomb, and both made nuclear agreements with India and Pakistan who have nuclear weapons.

However, the American talk about “Freedom, Democracy and Human Rights,” as pretexts for interferences and wars, seems to be an expression of American official belief that Arabs are political ignorant of what is going on around them. this becomes clear when bush did not even refer to the killing of 1000000 Iraqi Civilians and 3000000 displaced nor to the infrastructure damage in a country that it is about to go into civil War and partition. These were not in Bush Lose/win formula. We, Arabs, should stop adopting US measures of “Humanity”,” Freedom” and “Democracy “. Bush admitted that he is neither loosing nor winning the war. He concluded 2006 by honoring Natan Sharansky who called the American Administration to concentrate on ” Democratizing the Middle East “before talking about peace to distract Arabs attention away of fighting Israel on lands, rights and peace, till Israel deals with what it calls the ” the Demographic Threat” and all other files like 1948 Arabs and the right of return.

Arab public opinion is not that stupid to believe Bush claims on his objective to spread “Freedom” since it sees the bloody occupation. Statistics showed that Arabs opinions towards US administration, culture, products become more negative in 2006 because of war in Iraq and Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

What about Democrats success in the election, Backer-Hamilton Report, Collen Powell regretting statements? All were faced by strong resistance by the American decision-makers on the Middle East. Reactions on Backer-Hamilton report showed that Israel is defending certain policies that Americans do not agree to. Israel declared that occupying Iraq is in the Israeli Strategic Interest and that dividing Iraq is an Israeli target while the report insisted on the need of keeping Iraq united and that war in Iraq damaged Us status, interests and reputation. The report underlined the importance of solving the whole situation in the area. Israeli Foreign minister replied that “Palestine case has nothing to do with what is going on in the area “.

After American-Israeli war against Lebanon, some Americans start to understand the difference between Israeli interest and the American ones. But they are still not in charge yet. Arabs should be aware of what the Israelis are promoting for the area in 2007.

Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper revealed few days ago that Israel launched an intensive secret diplomatic campaign to gain the European countries approval to impose sanctions on Iran. The campaign is silent to avoid showing any international sanctions – If approved- as an Israeli Initiative. Olmert gave Bush a book about the Israeli military strike on the Iraqi nuclear facilities in the 80s as an indirect hint on an intended Israeli military action against Iranian nuclear facilities according to Ha’artez newspaper.

A group of American and European Jews, in addition to some western Decision-makers, become aware of this situation. It is the right time for the Arabs to see the real facts and American intentions behind words like “Freedom” and “Democracy”, putting aside their ethnic differences and illusions about “Friendship” with their enemy.

Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban

Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban

Prof. Bouthaina Shaaban is political and media advisor to the Syrian presidency, and the former minister of Expatriates. She is also a writer, and has been a professor at Damascus University since 1985. She received her PhD in English Literature from Warwick University, London. She was the spokesperson for Syria. She was nominated for Nobel Peace Prize in 2005.

More Posts