Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Lack of Influence | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page

The US President delivered his State of the Union address to the US Senate and House of Representatives last week. This is his third address since he ascended to power.

The state of the union, in the sense of the domestic and foreign situation of the United States, is disturbed, and fluctuating, and presents more question marks than satisfactory answers.

The US President talks about the situation of the country, while everything is in a crisis: the economy, the people’s contentment, the performance of the legislative council, the situation within his Democratic Party, and the emergence of competing powers from the opposition Republican Party.

With this address of his, Obama launches his presidential campaign for a second term. The experts expect that every action, decision, statement, or stance by the President from now until Tuesday 6 November 2012 will be purely an election stance!

Since the time of the first US President until the upcoming election of the 45th president of the United States the behaviour of the president who enters the battle for a second presidential term is subject only to the battle itself and nothing else.

On 17 December 2012 we will know who the upcoming president is, who his vice president is, and who the new elected members are for the third of the UN Senate and House of Representatives.

The president is mortgaged to the electoral forces, be they financing forces, trades unions, pressure groups, or political marketing. This makes him live on “another planet” of his own. This is what we have learned from previous experience.

Whether the competing Republican candidate is businessmen and former Governor of Massachusetts Mitt Romney, Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, or former US Congress Speaker Newt Gingrich, President Obama enters the race while he is the least popular US president competing for a second term.

What is sad on the Arab level is that we – as usual since the elections of the first US president until the current one – enter without having an “Arab lobby” of any weight or relative influence over the decision making of the master of the White House.

We are outside the calculations of the upcoming US president except in three issues: the security of Israel, the price of oil, and the arms sales. Other than that there is nothing that interests the US Administration. The battle for influencing the US decision making ought to be managed from within Washington, New York, Texas, and Los Angeles.

This battle ought to be managed within the corporations whose interests are linked to us financially and commercially, and within the US television stations, newspapers, and mosques and churches.

Will we have an influence over the upcoming president, the one after him, or after 101 presidents?!