What is This War About?

(Jerusalem Post) - Editorial This war is in large part about 9-11, not because the Iraqi regime was behind the attacks, but because, by Osama bin Laden's own admission, that attack was in large part inspired by a lack of U.S. credibility, demonstrated by the Clinton administration's withdrawal from Somalia, its failure to respond meaningfully to terrorist outrages such as the bombing of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and, above all, by its willingness to allow Saddam to flout UN disarmament resolutions and economic sanctions and to toy with U.S. ultimatums. Without U.S. credibility, America's power to influence events in the Middle East to mediate a peace between Palestinians and Israelis, to demand an end to Syrian support for terror and so on, is essentially nil. The second large consideration is regional democratization. For decades, successive U.S. administrations have treated the Arab world as a zone of democratic exclusion, even as they pushed democratic reforms in Latin America, East Asia, and Central and Eastern Europe. At some point, this double-standard had to end. U.S. support for such corrupt and repressive regimes as Egypt and Saudi Arabia furnishes more than a kernel of truth to the Islamist case. Forceful U.S. advocacy of Arab democratization is not just a moral endeavor but a strategic priority. The Bush administration can apply itself to the task by insisting that genuine Palestinian democratization precede, rather than follow, a declaration of statehood.

2003-04-10 00:00:00

Full Article


Visit the Daily Alert Archive