Saturday, September 02, 2006

Progress Can Only Happen in Times of Peace

The following are my comments on the Belgravia Dispatch in the comments section of this post

Pogue,

you say:

The disdain for the idea of arab progress toward freedom and democracy that is applauded

This is the heart of the pernicious lie of Bush supporters. Somehow you all think that the ONLY possible way to support "arab progress toward freedom" is through Bush's idiocy. What a lie. Moreover, the results of Bush's actions are far from creating a free and democratic world in the Middle East. Tell me, are Iraqis free from fear of death? How free are women in Iraq? Are they not still forced into marriages and then discarded on the streets as whores?

Where's the "progress" in Iraq? Elections are obviously not the end all be all of democracies are they, or Republicans would cheer for joy that Palestinians freely elected Hamas into their government, or that Hezbollah was freely elected in Lebanon, or that Moqtada al-Sadr is "freely" elected and part of the Iraqi government.

Bush and his supporters don't want to hear of any other options. In their eyes, it is either them or the terrorists, damned to hell if they are wrong. How can they make any mistakes when they know they are on a crusade, a mission from God to remake the Middle East as they see fit. Anybody that raises rightful and strong questions must be a terrorist appeaser.

Oh the folly and the bamboozlement of Republicans today! You used to call yourselves men of reason and sound understanding! What the hell has happened? How can you be so foolish? How can you not see the elephant in the room? It stares you down and roars, but you plug your ears and say "la la la la, I can't hear you!" At least Mr. Djerejian has unplugged his ears and stared the elephant down to a mouse. The more that do, the better it will be for America.

Standing up to Republicans and removing them from power in America does not equate appeasing terrorists in the least. Republicans want to cling to power and will say anything, including undermining the democratic process right here in America. But as we know from history, Republicans have had a nack for undermining real democracy because they don't agree with the results (Chile in the 70s and Iran in the 50s, for example). I don't particularly have a high regard for Republican propaganda regarding promoting democracy. Your record stinks.

Meanwhile, what American party has successfully pushed Arab nations to sign peace treaties with Israel? Can Republicans claim any such result? Nope. It was a Democrat, Jimmy Carter (all his other many faults aside), who forcefully pushed Egypt to sign a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, something that has lasted now nearly 30 years. No war that Israel has fought produced such a long peace between Israel and one of her neighbors. The Six Day War produced no lasting peace, as just six years later, Egypt attacked Israel again. But notice that since 1979, Egypt and Israel have been at peace. There is no greater success for peace and reform in the Middle East than peace between Israel and her neighbors, including nations you would not think would make peace with Israel. I'm curious for those who are a little older than me, who were cognizant of those days, just what was the thinking? Could anyone forsee a peace between Israel and Egypt?

A war in Iraq has not brought more peace in the Middle East. In fact, with removing Saddam from power in Iraq, we've unintendedly given Iraq over to Iran, which, according to several studies, now rules the day in Iraq. Yeah, nice job Bush. Well done. You gave Iran exactly what it wanted. What do you think, Bush supporters? How do you feel that you, by your support for Bush, are inadvertently supporting Iran? How does that make you feel?

But I've said this before, calls for peace fall on deaf ears in the last days.

People don't want to talk about peace. They cannot see it. They've been blinded. All they can see is their gods of steel and iron. That's who they bow to and worship. "Oh save us, dear missile," you can hear. "Protect us from our enemies, dear warhead."

If you want progress among the Arab world, then it begins with us. We must stop being violent, we must stop punishing the whole Arab world for the sins of the few. Republicans set up false boogiemen (Evil Islamofascists) and like many who fall to the draw of a straw man, many Muslims take the bait and yell back, "yeah, but you're the Great Satan, so there!" By returning the schoolyard insult, they play right into Republican hands, who retort, "Oh yeah, well i'm not going to talk to YOU!" and, pouting, fold their arms, running to get their big brother to pounce the nerd. We've got to stop being so childish.

The thing about progression is that it takes a long time and a lot of patience. Starting wars does not bring about progression. Wars are all about regression and devastation. The only ones who benefit from war are the makers of weaponry. No one else benefits. Tell me, what is the return for our $200 billion we've spent in Iraq so far? What is our profit to this point? America has not profited yet, nor does it look like it will. But warmakers sure have. Boeing is sitting pretty with their military contracts.

Diversion aside, progression in a society can only happen in times of peace, because it takes a long time to change a culture. Stalin and Mao attempted culture changes cold turkey. How did those turn out? Not very well. In fact, they failed miserably. You deride what liberals say about how to change the Middle East, but in actuality, that's the best way, through patience, firm stances, and rewards for good behavior. Forget the bad behavior. Leave them for the past. The only way to change nations and cultures is to reward the good behavior, not punish the bad. The moment we begin punishing the bad, we lose our credibility because we've got bad behavior too, and they will see the hypocrisy, and they'll wonder why we bother with the mote in their eye when we leave the beam in our eye intact. See the problems of fighting? See the benefits of praising the good? There is no hypocrisy and no undermining who we are and what we stand for when we talk of the good vs punishing the bad.

But again, I fear we're long past such understanding, and the world will go up in flames. How sad we humans are. God is weeping over our childishness.

2 Comments:

At 9/02/2006 08:27:00 PM, Blogger Stephen said...

Fun to see an LDS blog that is not Republican, though the posts I saw didn't have much religious content. I got here from Unofficial Manifesto, and thought I'd note that most of the people putting link collections together just have run out of time, energy and interest.

On the other hand, contact DKL, he is still vigorous with his collection, kind of like a young bull in a herd of older ones.

 
At 9/02/2006 09:26:00 PM, Blogger nicolaepadigone said...

Thanks for stopping by Stephen. I'm pretty new to the blogosphere, and to the Mormon blogosphere. Apparently a bunch of Mormons linked to each other and called themselves the Bloggernacle. Clever name.

Yes, there are Mormons out there in this world of ours who are not blinded by the aura of Republicans. ;)

I've conversed with DKL over on BCC but generally have not agreed with him, so I don't know if he would link to my blog. It's okay, I'm not one bothered by not being in the In crowd.

 

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