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Margolis: America's loss of image

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  • ummyakoub
    America s loss of image ... By Eric S. Margolis Last week, Bush received a scornful reception at the United Nations that symbolized the world s growing dismay
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 6, 2003
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      America's loss of image
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      By Eric S. Margolis

      Last week, Bush received a scornful reception at the United Nations
      that symbolized the world's growing dismay over his administration.
      Not since Nikita Kruschev pounded his shoe on the speaker's rostrum
      has a major leader so embarrassed himself and his nation before the
      world body.

      In his UN speech, Bush again claimed that Iraq had weapons of mass
      destruction and 'ties' to terrorism. Only days later, US
      intelligence teams that scoured Iraq for four months reported no
      traces of weapons or terrorism links - the pretext used by Bush and
      his neo-conservative handlers for unprovoked war against Iraq.

      The White House was left choking on its own grotesque lies.

      Incredibly, vice-president Dick Cheney, a prime architect of the
      Iraq war, actually claimed recently that Iraq still had mobile germ
      labs, though the US and British inspectors debunked this phoney
      claim last June. The 'special' intelligence network created by neo-
      conservatives in Washington and Israel is still apparently feeding
      disinformation to America's leadership. It staggers the imagination
      that Cheney is so ill informed. How isolated from reality are he
      and the president?

      Yet none of this has stopped the White House and its pro-Israeli
      neo-conservative string-pullers from raising new alarms about
      Iran's nuclear program and issuing threats of war against the
      Islamic republic. A crisis with 'nuclear armed Iran' will be an
      excellent way of boosting Bush's declining popularity before the
      2004 elections. If Iran does not work out, then Pakistan offers
      another handy bogeyman. The phoney claims, promoted by Pentagon
      neo-conservatives, that Pakistan was supplying North Korea with
      nuclear technology was the first salvo in the upcoming scare
      campaign about Pakistan.

      Cheney's bizarre behaviour came only days after Bush finally
      admitted Iraq was not, as most Americans were misled to believe,
      behind the September 9, 2001 attacks on the US. No wonder world
      leaders gave Bush the cold shoulder, and even usually timid UN
      secretary-general Kofi Annan warned against 'dangerous acts of
      unilateralism,' a pointed reference to the bellicose Bush
      administration.

      Unfortunately, many Americans still do not understand how gravely
      White House has damaged the nation's once noble reputation. Recent
      polls show that even among the traditional best friends abroad,
      America is no longer regarded as a champion of freedom, democracy,
      and human rights, but, increasingly, as a hegemon bent on imperial
      domination and exploitation.

      America's most precious and proudest asset, its moral reputation,
      has been gravely damaged by White House. The only positive note:
      rising anti-Americanism is largely associated in the eyes of non-
      Americans with the persona of George Bush, a man who incarnates
      almost all the negative stereotypes foreigners hold of the
      Americans.

      Bush's blinkered core supporters simply don't understand or don't
      care to know what the rest of the world thinks of their nation,
      which, since 9/11, has wrapped itself in a cocoon of anti-foreign
      feeling and self-righteous rage.

      The White House's mouthpiece media, led by Fox News, have simply
      blanked out world opinion and endlessly chorused administration war
      propaganda.

      A fascinating March study of network TV news by New York's fairness
      and accuracy in media shows how Americans were misled into war by
      outrageously biased programming on Iraq.

      The Fair's analysis found: 76 per cent of all TV commentators on
      Iraq were current or former government officials. Only six per cent
      of the commentators expressed scepticism regarding the need for a
      war - when 61 per cent of the public favoured more time for
      diplomacy and inspections. On the four major TV networks, less than
      one per cent of the sources were identified with anti-war groups.

      Over two-thirds of the commentators were from the United States, 75
      per cent either current or former government or military officials.
      The small number of foreign commentators mostly came from nations,
      like Britain and Israel, backing Bush's war policy.

      In short, the major networks, under White House prompting, beat the
      war drums and blatantly excluded commentators with contrary views,
      presenting a distorted account of world events. No wonder so few
      Americans understand what is going on abroad, how the outside world
      really sees them, or why America has so many enemies overseas.

      The 'citizens of the old Soviet Union suffered the same information
      isolation. Like the Americans since 9/11, they were force-fed
      propaganda disguised as news and deprived of all knowledge of the
      real world around them.

      Back to reality. Bush's UN speech was another attempt to mislead
      the Americans into believing the horrid mess in Iraq - entirely the
      creation of George Bush and the extremist neo-conservatives.

      French President Jacques Chirac proposed that the US hand over Iraq
      to the UN. But Bush, still lusting for Iraqi oil and fearful his
      family foe, Saddam Hussein, would return to thumb his nose at him,
      foolishly scorned this wise proposal. Bush is praying that his hit
      teams will assassinate Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein before
      next year's elections. But even that may not save Bush from the
      growing anger of defrauded Americans who are slowly realizing that
      Mr Bush's Iraq war was a political version of the giant Enron
      financial swindle. - Copyright Eric S. Margolis 2003.



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