29 December 2009

The U.S. under seige

The United States is under siege by angry Muslims from within and without. In November, U.S. Army psychiatrist Major Nidal Malik Hasan opened fire at Fort Hood, Texas, killing 12 people and wounding 31. On Christmas day, Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to blow up Northwest Airlines fight 253 as it approached Detroit.

What is fueling this madness? It may have something to do with the United States fighting wars in two Muslim countries and supporting Israel as it continues to oppress the Palestinians. If I was a Muslim, I too might be starting to lose my sanity as more Muslims suffered and died from American aggression.

President Obama's reaction to the latest outrage is predictable. "We will continue to use every element of our national power to disrupt, to dismantle and defeat the violent extremists who threaten us ... anywhere where they are plotting attacks against the U.S. homeland." Ho hum. When isn't the U.S. president threatening retaliation and counseling fear? Such is the nature of empire. There is always a threat.

Perhaps it's time they tried another approach. Like not constantly getting in other peoples' faces. Like pulling their troops out of Muslim countries and ending funding of Israeli aggression. Like winding down the empire and minding their own business. Does it not occur to them that their homeland might be threatened because they are constantly interfering in other peoples' homelands?

I'm sure it has occurred to Obama. But what can he do? The leader of a militant empire must strut his militarism or lose face. He, and his fellow Americans, are trapped in a cycle of violence as the madness increases on the other side. According to Nigerian human rights activist Shehu Sani, "There is a serious and growing problem of Islamic fundamentalism in this part of Nigeria. Young people are getting very aggressive and intolerant. Hundreds of young men ... are currently studying in the Middle East. [Abdulmutallab] is a product of this type of hatred and intolerance."

As long as the American empire fuels this kind of hostility, the United States will be under siege. The choice is theirs.

No comments:

Post a Comment