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President of the United States of Collapse - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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A US military study’s admission that the morale of US soldiers in Afghanistan is low comes as now surprise to us. In fact we would have been surprised if US morale had not collapsed. The most difficult situation that any army in the world has to face is that of convincing its soldiers and officers of the importance of a war. Studies such as this one strongly indicate that the soldiers are not convinced of the necessity of the war, and this is why the Taliban are in a better position in terms of morale and fighting strength than the US-led coalition forces. There are an extremely large number of fighters who have volunteered to join the Taliban and who have a high level of morale, and this is something that only serves to further undermine the morale of the US troops. Compare this to the morale of the US troops in Iraq, which has been boosted not because they are in a better fighting position [than their counterparts in Afghanistan] but because the US government has announced its troops will be gradually withdrawn from Iraq.

Another collapse, but this time in the political arena, was that of [Palestinian] President and US ally Mahmoud Abbas who announced that he will not be standing for re-election for the presidency of the Palestinian Authority. Whether this is true or merely political maneuvering, it is enough to recall that Mahmoud Abbas’s decision not to stand for re-election coincides with statements attributed to him in which he expresses his anger at the US. The fact of the matter is that Mahmoud Abbas is not to blame. Abbas has witnessed his arch enemies Hamas dominating public opinion in Palestine, and according to British sources, their popularity has even extended into the West Bank. Mahmoud Abbas was convinced that his friendship with the United States would convince the US leaders to put pressure on Israel to – at the very least – freeze its Zionist settlement building on occupied Palestinian territory. However the US does not care about Mahmoud Abbas or the embarrassment that it has caused him, and the Israeli government continues to build settlement. Therefore two enemies merged victorious; Israel and Hamas. Israel won more settlements, whereas Hamas won more popularity by repeating the slogan “Didn’t we warn you?”

The other collapse took place in Somalia. In one of the latest developments to take place on Somali soil, the US-backed Somali President vowed to regain control of the Somali capital Mogadishu from the Islamist rebels. This is a backwards piece of news, and is akin to reading that “a wolf has been bitten by a human being.” In other words, it might be reasonable to read that the Somali regime had attacked the Islamist rebels, but to read that the president is attempting to regain control of his own capital city, well that is indeed a total collapse.

On the economic front, a number of US banks have recently collapsed and declared bankruptcy, joining the number of banks that had declared bankruptcy in the early days of Obama’s presidency. The unemployment rates are in a chronic state of collapse, and show no sign of recovery. Due to the fact that if the US sneezes, the entire world gets a cold, the political collapse that the US has suffered as a result of its war on terror – in addition to its economic collapse – has placed the entire world in a genuine political and economic predicament. The US’s failures, whether they are in Afghanistan, Iraq, or Somalia, have a dramatic impact on the nations that are battling terrorism and extremism, and these countries must prepare themselves for the post-withdrawal era, as there seems to be no signs that the US will achieve a victory against these forces.

Obama fought a strong campaign to become the first African-American President of the United States, and he emerged victorious. However nobody knows if history will come to know him as the President of the United States of Collapse.

Dr. Hamad Al-Majid

Dr. Hamad Al-Majid

Dr. Hamad Al-Majid is a journalist and former member of the official Saudi National Organization for Human Rights. Dr. Al-Majid is a graduate of Imam Muhammad bin Saud Islamic University in Riyadh and holds an MA from the University of California and a doctorate from the University of Hull in the United Kingdom.

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