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View Full Version : What does the U.S. need to do to improve image overseas?


medea
Jul 25, 2003, 01:15 PM
I planned on actually discussing this with my previous thread but it was closed before any real discussion started. So the news reports that a large number of Germans don't belive the U.S. when it comes to 9/11 and our tactics since then (Iraq) have only made it worse. The problem is not that the Germans are "stupid" or merely cynical, the problem isn't Germany or France or Russia at all. Our president needs to improve our image overseas and rectify our relationship with those allies. But what can be done at this point? Is Bush capable of improving our relations or is the American image tarnished to greatly for him to accomplish such a goal?

Personally I don't think he has the personality to do so and things won't begin to straigten out until we have a new president who is more capable of handling foreign relations. Disagree or agree I just want to hear your opinions, and if you disagree with my view on Bush why do you think our image is so bad in Germany etc.
No potshots or direct insults please, keep it mature and clean.
Thank you.

zimv20
Jul 25, 2003, 01:25 PM
the US needs to reinvest in international law, especially the ICC, Kyoto Treaty and the Geneva Convention. adhering to its own ABM treaty would help, too. as would showing its faith in the UN security council.

the problem, imo, is the US' me-first attitude. and bush certainly has NOT helped in that regard.

the quickest way to restoring world confidence in the US is to put bush on trial for war crimes in the Hague. that would demonstrate humility and responsiblity to the world.

(btw, i'm less interested in discussing whether or not bush _should_ be on trial, but rather how that would affect world opinion if he were)

and for christ's sake, let's wean ourselves off our oil dependence. from where i sit, it drives our hated foreign policy.

mcrain
Jul 25, 2003, 01:44 PM
Well, we can do one of two things. We can invade the rest of the world and just take over everything.... or we can start acting like a member of the world community.

The current regime seems hell bent on the first option.

IJ Reilly
Jul 25, 2003, 02:06 PM
The President implementing his own stated policies would be a good start:

If we’re an arrogant nation, they’ll resent us. If we’re a humble nation, but strong, they’ll welcome us. Our nation stands alone right now in the world in terms of power. And that’s why we’ve got to be humble and yet project strength in a way that promotes freedom. We’re a freedom-loving nation. If we’re an arrogant nation, they’ll view us that way, but if we’re humble nation, they’ll respect us. (Second Presidential Debate, 10-11-00)

Ugg
Jul 25, 2003, 07:27 PM
gw has inherited a mess. For the last 3 decades, the US has been hellbent on economic colonization of the world. Music, Movies, Fast Food (is there any other kind of homegrown American Food?), autos, etc have taken over and in many cases decimated endemic forms.

gw is not the type of person who will be able to change the world's opinion of the US nor is he interested in doing so. The fact that those invited to his ranch only appear on his "A" list is proof of that.

While Canada is taking monumental steps; gay marriage, handgun control, environmental protection, GM Food precautions, etc, and thereby transforming itself, the US is stuck in the moral morass of the 50s. To hell with the environment, to hell with minorities, to hell with gays and all those darned "foreigners" can also go to hell.

Americans are increasingly being viewed as the Brits were prior to WWI, snobbish and unwelcoming with American interests taking precedence over all others.

Ok, now that my rant is over ;) the US needs to show the world that it is a part of it, not separate from it. Of the most destructive US policies, I think that trade takes the cake. Malawi is suffering because of enormous US subsidies to US cotton growers, Mexico has become little more than a supplier of cheap labor as a result of NAFTA and it looks as though other trade deals with South America will likely do the same thing for them.

Oil is the next thing. We need to become self-sufficient in the area of energy. Some of the most repressive regimes in the world have become so through their oil revenue. Nigeria, Venezuela, Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia are all examples of this. It is our support of such countries that leads to repression.

A PR campaign just isn't going to cut it. There needs to be substantial change.

Sayhey
Jul 25, 2003, 09:02 PM
I agree with what many of the preceeding posts have stated. Such an effort cannot be a PR campaign, but rather a change in how we view the rest of the world and how we conduct ourselves in it. Here is my two cents on the subject.

1 - Although we have the most powerful military machine we must show the world that will not allow it to be used to dictate to others how they are to live their lives. A very important start would be treaties moving for the elimination of WMDs the world over, including our own. As long as we hold this "hammer" over the rest of humanity they will always view our country with trepidation. The preemptive use of force must be abandon.

2 - We should be leaders, not a roadblock in the developement of "green" technology and environmental protection. The ratification of the Kyoto treaty would be a great first step.

3 - The conduct of US corporations outside of the US must be strictly regulated. Living wages and safe working conditions for workers employed by these corporations must be a part of their being allowed to sell goods and services in the US. Along with this the environmental responsibilities of such corporations should be the same in the US and outside of it.

4 - The result of development in other nations should not just be dictated by the profit needs of corporations, but also in conjunction with the governments and people themselves of other nations.

The list could go on and on, but I think these four would be a good start.

CmdrLaForge
Jul 26, 2003, 05:09 AM
Hello,

I'm from germany and I like to make some comments.

First maybe some background about me. I'm working in a US company and I work together with a lot of people from the US daily. Telcon mainly and a lot of personal visits in the US and we have a lot US citizens working together with us in Germany. With my collegues we have discussed a lot in the past month about the war in Iraq and what is going on.

I think that the most germans still see the US as friends and as allies. From my trips to the US (a lot) I got the image that people in the US think the same way. I have always been treated very friendly and got a warm welcome.

Its more that the governments at the moment do not fit together very well. But remermber, that in both countries the elections have been very close. In the US even more people have voted for Al Gore (complicated election system you have). And in Germany it was very close as well. Just imagine it would have been the other way around in both countries ? No one would then talk about that US and Germany or France are not close friends, because politics would be quite different.

What I said above is true for the friendship between americans and germans, it is not so true for the opinions that germans have about the current US politics. A lot of people do not agree.

But a important finding is that in generell germans and americans have in average the same opinion about the current US politics !

But thats a different story. . .

Cheers
CmdrLaForge

jbomber
Jul 26, 2003, 05:53 AM
resist the urge to bomb brown people. that'll go a long way to help clear things up.


-thanks to George Carlin for saying it first.

Backtothemac
Jul 26, 2003, 10:17 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
the US needs to reinvest in international law, especially the ICC, Kyoto Treaty and the Geneva Convention. adhering to its own ABM treaty would help, too. as would showing its faith in the UN security council.

the problem, imo, is the US' me-first attitude. and bush certainly has NOT helped in that regard.

the quickest way to restoring world confidence in the US is to put bush on trial for war crimes in the Hague. that would demonstrate humility and responsiblity to the world.

(btw, i'm less interested in discussing whether or not bush _should_ be on trial, but rather how that would affect world opinion if he were)

and for christ's sake, let's wean ourselves off our oil dependence. from where i sit, it drives our hated foreign policy.
Now just hold on a minute. You think Germany doesn't have a Germany first attitude? What about the Frogs? Every country does what is in its own best interest. That is why there are different nations. As for Kyoto, it is a joke, and way bias against the US. Would cost friggin 100's of billions of dollars, and bankrupt the economy. As Dennis Miller said,

"... I have done a little digging, and science shows that over the last 100 years, the average temperature of the Earth has gone up 1.8 degrees. No, is it just me, or is that really friggin stable? I mean, I could play with the thermastat in my hotel tonight, all night, and never notice that change. Then the wackos will say, what about you kids, ok, 3.6. Then they go nuts, what about your kids, kids, kids, kids, kids, kids, kids. Sorry, I really don't give a ****. Once you get past kids I will never know, I don't care."

Put the President on trial for war crimes! I cannot believe what I am hearing. FOR WHAT FRIGGIN WAR CRIMES. STATEMENTS LIKE THAT DESTROY YOUR PARTY, YOUR NOBILE CAUSES, AND MAKE MOST PEOPLE LOOK AT YOU LIKE, "QUICK HONEY, GET THE KIDS IN THE HOUSE."

The ICC is unconstitutional, the Geneva convention, we do uphold it. Kyoto, already covered. The ABM treaty. Are you for real. Yea, like North Korea will really adhear to the treatys they are member of. Personally, I would like to have something protecting the country from Ballistic missile attack. :rolleyes:

Man, you liberals love your treaties don't you. Especially the ones that are really good for American families, like NAFTA :rolleyes:

zimv20
Jul 26, 2003, 11:49 AM
Originally posted by Backtothemac
Every country does what is in its own best interest.


agreed, more or less.

everything i wrote in my post was in the spirit of "improving the US' image" abroad. it shouldn't be taken as "let's do all these things now."

specifically, when i mentioned putting bush on trial, i also said i didn't want to discuss whether or not he should, only that it _would_, imo, get the world to calm the ******* down.


As Dennis Miller said,


ugh. there's a guy i used to like, 'til he became a shrill idiot. rather than listening to little rant on hotel room thermostats, i encourage you to read this slightly-less shrill but more fact-based piece from molly ivins, about the effect global warming is having -- right now -- in alaska: link (http://www.sacbee.com/content/opinion/national/ivins/story/7091533p-8039266c.html)

pseudobrit
Jul 26, 2003, 12:15 PM
Originally posted by Backtothemac
What about the Frogs?...Are you for real....:rolleyes:...Man, you liberals love your treaties don't you. Especially the ones that are really good for American families, like NAFTA :rolleyes:

Bringing back civil debate to the Political Forums, one post at a time...

Backtothemac
Jul 26, 2003, 12:15 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
agreed, more or less.

everything i wrote in my post was in the spirit of "improving the US' image" abroad. it shouldn't be taken as "let's do all these things now."

specifically, when i mentioned putting bush on trial, i also said i didn't want to discuss whether or not he should, only that it _would_, imo, get the world to calm the ******* down.



ugh. there's a guy i used to like, 'til he became a shrill idiot. rather than listening to little rant on hotel room thermostats, i encourage you to read this slightly-less shrill but more fact-based piece from molly ivins, about the effect global warming is having -- right now -- in alaska: link (http://www.sacbee.com/content/opinion/national/ivins/story/7091533p-8039266c.html)

Well, the arguement that it would be worth putting our president on trial for war crimes to make the world happy. Personally if that is what the world wanted, I would tell the world to go to hell. Whether it was Bush, Clinton, or any other President for that matter.

billyboy
Jul 27, 2003, 06:26 AM
Goodbye again political forum, too much angry crap!:confused:

Sayhey
Jul 27, 2003, 10:48 AM
Originally posted by medea
No potshots or direct insults please, keep it mature and clean.
Thank you.

Maybe we should, in the spirit of Medea's request, not focus on a trial of Bush -which is never going to happen- and look at the importance of international law. Should our country follow the course Zimv20 outlined when he (? - sorry, don't know for sure) stated,

"the US needs to reinvest in international law, especially the ICC, Kyoto Treaty and the Geneva Convention. adhering to its own ABM treaty would help, too. as would showing its faith in the UN security council."

I agree with all of these proposals. If the US is to be true to its democratic and anti-colonial spirit, embodied in the revolution of 1776, then we must respect the rule of law in international relations. The other alternative is the rule of the strongest. That might appeal to some since we are now the world's only remaining superpower, but times do change. For every Rome there will always be the Visigoths waiting. The answer is not just to have more legions, but rather not to be Rome at all, and have different type of relationship, one of respect, with other nations of the world.

We have a responibility not only to get back to our "better selves," as exhibited in the best ideas of the founders of the US (they had some bad ones too - slavery etc.), but to also leave a better world for our children. That means an emphasis on cooperation and mutual respect, not unilateral diktat.

Oh, and by the way, I worked against NAFTA for many of the reasons stated in my original post in this thread.

zimv20
Jul 27, 2003, 11:10 AM
Originally posted by Sayhey
he (? - sorry, don't know for sure)

i'm male, yes.


The answer is not just to have more legions, but rather not to be Rome at all, and have different type of relationship, one of respect, with other nations of the world.

We have a responibility not only to get back to our "better selves," as exhibited in the best ideas of the founders of the US (they had some bad ones too - slavery etc.), but to also leave a better world for our children. That means an emphasis on cooperation and mutual respect, not unilateral diktat.


yes, i also have those sentiments. we have so much opportunity and resources available to do massive good in the world. we should be the (no orwellian pun intended) "big brother" to the world. if the world loved us, the returns would be amazing. what would it really cost us?

jelloshotsrule
Jul 27, 2003, 11:23 AM
stop being hypocrites... stop saying one thing and doing another....

own up to our past mistakes and try to make right of them, or at the very least, not commit them again.

stop worrying about getting our hand in every possible cashcow everywhere in the world.

use our power for good MORE often than we use it for bad....

lots of things.

Sayhey
Jul 27, 2003, 11:42 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
yes, i also have those sentiments. we have so much opportunity and resources available to do massive good in the world. we should be the (no orwellian pun intended) "big brother" to the world. if the world loved us, the returns would be amazing. what would it really cost us?

Very little. And you're right "the returns would be amazing."

macfan
Jul 27, 2003, 07:57 PM
Ugg,
How can you insult American cuisine as being merely "fast food?"

Folks,
Having 30 percent of young Germans thinking that the US might have been behind the 9/11 attacks is a problem for the Germans to deal with. Back in the 1980s, when the US was deploying missiles in Europe, they marched in very large numbers against the US policy. Where were the apologies when the policy worked and the wall came tumbling down?

The US already does massive good around the world. Where there are US troops, freedom and prosperity usually follow in short order. Removing Saddam was a massive good. In addition, the US provides much aid around the world, both through government agencies and the private acts of citizens.

Overall, Bush is carrying out a solid foreign policy. It is visionary, and it is a strategy to make the world a safer, more free place. Doing the right thing is not going to be popular all the time with everyone, and sometimes only history will judge a policy in a better light.

zimv20
Molly Ivins is not an expert on weather or climate. She is an expert in complaining about Republicans. She is no more credible than Ann Coulter.

zimv20
Jul 27, 2003, 08:18 PM
Originally posted by macfan

zimv20
Molly Ivins is not an expert on weather or climate. She is an expert in complaining about Republicans. She is no more credible than Ann Coulter.

ack! comparing anyone to ann coulter is just plain mean :-)

i'm open to non-api and non-alaskan-oil-worker evidence that ms. ivins made some bad arguments.

and -- do you dismiss out of hand what's in her article? what if it's true, even in part? does that cause you concern for the environment _and_ for the future health of our species?

Backtothemac
Jul 27, 2003, 08:21 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
ack! comparing anyone to ann coulter is just plain mean :-)

i'm open to non-api and non-alaskan-oil-worker evidence that ms. ivins made some bad arguments.

and -- do you dismiss out of hand what's in her article? what if it's true, even in part? does that cause you concern for the environment _and_ for the future health of our species?

See, I use that same logic with people that are not Christian. What if it is true. You cannot live your life in belief of what if's. Sure, I think it is bad, but I also think that we have to get away from oil, however, the last 80 years has made it difficult to stop it all at once. ALL of the administrations over the last 50 years are to blame. Not just republicans.

zimv20
Jul 27, 2003, 08:21 PM
Originally posted by macfan

The US already does massive good around the world.

i'd argue that that doesn't matter a bit if no one outside the US believes it. terrorism is based on its own version of reality, not ours.

as an example, i'll offer our macs. compared to wintel, we know what the better solution is. but the rest of the world lives in ignorance. here, the truth isn't giving apple marketshare.

another example: your neighbor mistakenly thinks you're sleeping w/ his wife. now he's got a shotgun pointed at your head. which is more important? that you know you're right, or his version of the reality?

bond003
Jul 27, 2003, 11:31 PM
The real question should be.

What does the US need to do to improve image with those left wing posters in these forums? If you don't think you are one of those then don't even bother responding.

And electing a democrat is not the easy answer.

It is trivial to wonder why we need to improve our image around the world when there are plenty here who seem ashamed to be Americans.

This is not flame bait but simply calling as it is.

The day when we no longer have long lines at our embassies for visas to this country is the day I would worry about our image in the world.

Ugg
Jul 27, 2003, 11:43 PM
Originally posted by bond003
The real question should be.

What does the US need to do to improve image with those left wing posters in these forums? If you don't think you are one of those then don't even bother responding.

It is trivial to wonder why we need to improve our image around the world when there are plenty here who seem ashamed to be Americans.

The day when we no longer have long lines at our embassies for visas to this country is the day I would worry about our image in the world.

I think we've all responded to the first question.

The reason for your second statement is that as an American there is plenty to be ashamed about. Our foreign policies for the past 50 years have been mostly disastrous and fostered a lot of unrest that currently exists around the world. I, for one, am not proud to be an American for that very reason. Too many people have died or been sold down the river for the sake of American "pride".

Ah, you make a very good point and it ties into what I said above. If we hadn't helped create such miserable conditions for so many people around the world they might not want to escape.

It has been said many times before that emigration to the US provides us with a steady supply of cheap labor. Hardly something to be proud about.

zimv20
Jul 27, 2003, 11:53 PM
Originally posted by bond003

It is trivial to wonder why we need to improve our image around the world when there are plenty here who seem ashamed to be Americans.


The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.
--H.L. Mencken

bond003
Jul 28, 2003, 12:40 AM
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Ugg
[B]I think we've all responded to the first question. [QUOTE]

So if I understand you correctly, the day that the world loves us (based on some of the very general proposals posted), is the day you will be a proud American again.

[QUOTE][The reason for your second statement is that as an American there is plenty to be ashamed about. Our foreign policies for the past 50 years have been mostly disastrous and fostered a lot of unrest that currently exists around the world. I, for one, am not proud to be an American for that very reason. Too many people have died or been sold down the river for the sake of American "pride".[QUOTE][

Do you realize that your sentiment is what is making candidates like Howard Dean a darling of the Democratic Party? Does this bother you, or does it make you feel that as a result we will be one step closer to implimenting the suggestions given?

[QUOTE]Originally posted by Ugg
[B]Ah, you make a very good point and it ties into what I said above. If we hadn't helped create such miserable conditions for so many people around the world they might not want to escape.[QUOTE]

You have me there, since there is no way for me to counter the idea that we are great simply because we make the world terrible and everyone wants to come here as a result. How many other people here really feel this way about this country?

[QUOTE]Originally posted by Ugg
[B]It has been said many times before that emigration to the US provides us with a steady supply of cheap labor. Hardly something to be proud about.[QUOTE]

I hate to break it to you but this argument was used often in the former Soviet Union to justify the wealth and power of the US. But that does not explain why some of the best professionals in all fields have come to America for the past 100 years. Nor does it explain why even those who support terrorsim send their kids over here for a better college education. And the cheap labor you mention usually does not get here via a visa request.

bond003
Jul 28, 2003, 12:44 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
The notion that a radical is one who hates his country is naive and usually idiotic. He is, more likely, one who likes his country more than the rest of us, and is thus more disturbed than the rest of us when he sees it debauched. He is not a bad citizen turning to crime; he is a good citizen driven to despair.
--H.L. Mencken

What are you implying? Since I don't agree with you, then you have become a radical and I am a naive idiot for questioning your ideas?

What does that say about your ability to influence and change the opinions of others?

SPG
Jul 28, 2003, 12:48 AM
You guys have to remember that the USA is still a good country filled with good people. The only problem is that much of what the government does that we wouldn't like is hidden by the flag waving and the spin. If the average american citizen really knew what was going on, and has gone on for the past 50 years, they would be none too pleased that it was done in their name.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 12:56 AM
Originally posted by bond003
What are you implying? Since I don't agree with you, then you have become a radical and I am a naive idiot for questioning your ideas?


not at all.

rather, if i find something wrong with what's going on in this country, you conclude that i am ashamed of america.

that would be an erroneous assumption. i felt the mencken quote nicely describes my feelings about my country.

i am ashamed of the bush adminstration.

pseudobrit
Jul 28, 2003, 01:12 AM
Why waste your time replying? He's been banned once...

ignore the trolls.

IJ Reilly
Jul 28, 2003, 01:22 AM
Cripes. Sometimes I feel like my life is flashing before my eyes. I mean, the way some people are talking, it might as well be 1969. The only thing missing (so far) is, "why don't you go back where you came from?"

The Mencken quote is timeless, but then so much of what he said was. More to chew on:

"Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it." --George Bernard Shaw.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 01:30 AM
Originally posted by pseudobrit
Why waste your time replying? He's been banned once...


what was his username?

macfan
Jul 28, 2003, 02:31 AM
Originally posted by Ugg
I think we've all responded to the first question.

The reason for your second statement is that as an American there is plenty to be ashamed about. Our foreign policies for the past 50 years have been mostly disastrous and fostered a lot of unrest that currently exists around the world. I, for one, am not proud to be an American for that very reason. Too many people have died or been sold down the river for the sake of American "pride".

Ah, you make a very good point and it ties into what I said above. If we hadn't helped create such miserable conditions for so many people around the world they might not want to escape.

It has been said many times before that emigration to the US provides us with a steady supply of cheap labor. Hardly something to be proud about.

Ugg, saying that US foreign policy for the past 50 years has been mostly disatrous is mostly BS. The guiding principle of US foreign policy over the second half of the 20th century, the Truman Doctrine, actually worked. The Soviet Union is gone, Eastern Europe breathes the sweet air of freedom.

abdul
Jul 28, 2003, 06:28 AM
i feel the US media has a responsibility to play here. they are meant to show what is happening in the world, from a non-biased view as possible.

instead they do not explain the whole story (including why people act like they do, the history behind their actions and what reasons they have for their actions. instead they just say what they have done making them out to be very weird, and a need for them to be sorted out.)

an example is the is GM foods, eventhough some reports say that GM foods are ok in the short term other case studies have shown that they increase the chances of bacteria in your gut to mutate. That is why EU hasnt let all GM foods in yet because it is contenplating the future health of their public, and that is not how it is portrayed on news channels such as Fox and MSNBC (or whatever its called) wgich see it as an attac on your economy.

Another example is the war on Iraq, weapons of mass destruction, and of al-qaeeda training camps, they made headline news on your news channels, but a day later when the proposed wmd was a pesticide and training camp was in the no-fly zone which is monitored by the US/UK on american news channels it wasnt shown. As well as that the media were reluctant when it matters to critise the governement.

Also i know this is going to make some people want to argue...but in europe as a whole the population is backing the palestininans, in the US its Israelis why? is it because american people agree with bulldozing peoples homes, setting curfews and sending warplanes to fire missiles in heavily populated areas? (no sane person would) is it because the jewish popultion in America is higher and more influencial? is it because they agree with the torah that that land was fought over in around 300bc (guess) against the palestinian tribe and the Jews won control, so it should remain theres about 2500years later?

and in europe do you think that they agree with people blowing themselves up in harming civilians? could it be that the muslim population is higher in europe? is it because the european public are less religious therefore dont takes the words of the torah literally?

the answers to the questions i dont know, but what i do know is the media is Europe is very different showing both sides of the story while in America they always show it lob-sided. it always critises it government when needed, therefore the public being more aware of whats happening.
the media inthe US therefore doesnt do a good enough job in educating, therefore american views are distorted, making them either to be stupid or not understanding (....or stupid)

just get rid of FOX news please thats more of a comedy channel, the way they read the news it hilarious and soooo factually incorrect it funny. Do that and the world would br grateful :p

just to prove it again...why are there rebels fighting the governement in Liberia? look to your news channels for answers and no where alse.

MOFS
Jul 28, 2003, 06:50 AM
One analogy I have heard about the USA is with the Roman Empire. As with the Roman Empire, it had it's own set of member states, and a set of "satelite states" - friendly states which allowed troops to reside etc.

For me, as a Briton, this is a fair analogy, and unfortuantly, Britain is one of those satellite states - we have agreed to be a site for one of those "Son of Star Wars" base stations! This is the crux of the matter; in the view of many Europeans, the manner in which the USA tried to coerce the European side of the UN to going to war with Iraq would have made these countries (in their view) satellite states. The French are already reknowned for trying to prevent the anglicisation of their language and culture in general.

Another problem is this perceived "War on terroism". Or, as some people have noticed thusfar, a war on two Islamic states (Afghanistan and Iraq). The way in which the Allied forces have colonised Iraq is not unlike the way us Brits did before WW1. Unfortuantly for the Yanks, it was wrong for the Brits 90 years ago. If the American government really supported a war on terrorism, it would stop the selling of arms from the USA to the opposing parties in Northern Ireland, and try and sort out the Israeli peace process and acknowledge the need to sort out a Palestinian state. There is little point in calling the Palesinians and Yasser Arafat terrorists when there is effectively state funded terrorism (in the form of the Israeli army and police) attacking innocent people - women and children.

One final point - everytime Bush goes abroad, he should stop his spiel on a war on terrorism. In the field of foreign politics, there is no "Me" in Earth...

Sayhey
Jul 28, 2003, 10:30 AM
Originally posted by Ugg
The reason for your second statement is that as an American there is plenty to be ashamed about. Our foreign policies for the past 50 years have been mostly disastrous and fostered a lot of unrest that currently exists around the world. I, for one, am not proud to be an American for that very reason. Too many people have died or been sold down the river for the sake of American "pride".

Although I probably agree with your assestment of most of the foreign policy ventures of the US, I refuse to be ashamed of being an American. To do so gives over the "title" of "true" American to those who blindly follow whatever is wrapped in the flag. Too many great Americans fought and died to make our nation a better place againsts the conservative bigots of their day to just allow that misappropriation of "American" to take place. One only has to look to the lives of MLK,jr. or Medgar Evers to see people who really deserve that title. The pride of being American should be in the many changes that have taken place in US history to bring the dream of the freedom to more and more people. Those changes were brought about by Americans who fought for them, for example, in the Anti-Slavery, Women's suffrage, Union rights, Feminist, and Gay rights movements. I take pride in those Americans not in the blowhards in the White House who cynically place "Old Glory" in every photo op.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 10:37 AM
Originally posted by Sayhey
I take pride in those Americans not in the blowhards in the White House who cynically place "Old Glory" in every photo op.

i found a particularly acerbic quote for your blowhards:

There are few more sickening sights than George W. Bush wearing a lapel pin bearing an image of the American flag. Bush and his creepy henchmen can wrap themselves in nationalistic symbolism all they want, but these right-wing thugs aren't patriots. They may pledge allegiance to the flag, but they despise the republic for which it stands. - Ted Rall

IJ Reilly
Jul 28, 2003, 10:37 AM
Originally posted by macfan
Ugg, saying that US foreign policy for the past 50 years has been mostly disatrous is mostly BS. The guiding principle of US foreign policy over the second half of the 20th century, the Truman Doctrine, actually worked. The Soviet Union is gone, Eastern Europe breathes the sweet air of freedom.

Both of these statements are overly simplistic. Certainly the last 50 years US foreign policy wasn't an unmitigated disaster, but in the end, it can also be argued, the Truman Doctrine won out only after a half-century of death and destruction on a mass scale, and after soaking up a huge proportion of the world's wealth and resources.

Sayhey
Jul 28, 2003, 10:43 AM
Originally posted by MOFS
...The way in which the Allied forces have colonised Iraq is not unlike the way us Brits did before WW1. Unfortuantly for the Yanks, it was wrong for the Brits 90 years ago.

Indeed the policy of Wolfowitz seems to be straight out of the playbook of Cecil Rhodes or Sykes & Picot. It's "Great" Power politics of hopeful empire-builders of the 21st century.

Sayhey
Jul 28, 2003, 10:48 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
i found a particularly acerbic quote for your blowhards:

There are few more sickening sights than George W. Bush wearing a lapel pin bearing an image of the American flag. Bush and his creepy henchmen can wrap themselves in nationalistic symbolism all they want, but these right-wing thugs aren't patriots. They may pledge allegiance to the flag, but they despise the republic for which it stands - Ted Rall

Excellent! I wouldn't limit it to Dubya, or just Republican Presidents for that matter, but he is a true example of the problem.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 11:00 AM
Originally posted by Sayhey
Indeed the policy of Wolfowitz seems to be straight out of the playbook of Cecil Rhodes or Sykes & Picot. It's "Great" Power politics of hopeful empire-builders of the 21st century.

wolfowitz's mentor was albert wohlstetter. some of his writings can be found here. (http://www.rand.org/publications/classics/wohlstetter/)

and check out this:

"Albert believed he was put here on earth to be a man who would increase the security of the United States at the expense of those who threatened that security, and he was never going to be satisfied until there was nobody around at all who owned a slingshot that would allow them to be a potential David against the American Goliath," says Jude Wanniski, the father of supply-side economics and a former Wohlstetter acolyte who broke with his fellow hawks after the Cold War. "He basically believed that was the only way for a truly secure peace and that America was the only country that could get a secure peace for the world. And part of that means, if you look down the road and see a war with, say, China, 20 years off, go to war now."


link (http://www.prospect.org/print-friendly/print/V12/19/vest-j.html)

Sayhey
Jul 28, 2003, 11:23 AM
Originally posted by zimv20
"...And part of that means, if you look down the road and see a war with, say, China, 20 years off, go to war now."

That just about sums it up, doesn't it?

The links are very informative. I've posted it before, but if anyone hasn't seen the Frontline documentary about the neoconservatives and the struggles in the administration around the war in Iraq it is located at:
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/twenty/watch/
and is entitled "The war behind closed doors." It can be watched on line and is well worth your time to see it.

medea
Jul 28, 2003, 02:41 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
wolfowitz's mentor was albert wohlstetter. some of his writings can be found here. (http://www.rand.org/publications/classics/wohlstetter/)

and check out this:


link (http://www.prospect.org/print-friendly/print/V12/19/vest-j.html)
Thanks for the link.

pseudobrit
Jul 28, 2003, 04:57 PM
Originally posted by zimv20
what was his username?

take your pick, he was sanfelipe and Ovi.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 06:46 PM
Originally posted by pseudobrit
take your pick, he was sanfelipe and Ovi.

i can't tell if you mean 'in spirit' or ip-match-has-confirmed-it the actual same person.

Rower_CPU
Jul 28, 2003, 06:54 PM
bond003's IP matches sanfelipe's. sanfelipe's is close enough to Ovi's to be suspect.

zimv20
Jul 28, 2003, 07:06 PM
Originally posted by Rower_CPU
bond003's IP matches sanfelipe's. sanfelipe's is close enough to Ovi's to be suspect.

that must be a pretty thin getting-banned-again line he's walking.

Ugg
Jul 29, 2003, 07:52 PM
Originally posted by bond003
I hate to break it to you but this argument was used often in the former Soviet Union to justify the wealth and power of the US. But that does not explain why some of the best professionals in all fields have come to America for the past 100 years. Nor does it explain why even those who support terrorsim send their kids over here for a better college education. And the cheap labor you mention usually does not get here via a visa request.

Well, here is some proof: CSM article (http://www.csmonitor.com/2003/0730/p01s01-usgn.html)

Overall visa applications dropped from 10.4 million in 2001 to 8.3 million in 2002. Visa approvals fell from 7.5 million in 2001 to 5.7 million in 2002.

It looks as though people are searching out alternatives to medical care, education, business and travel. You've spoken about the past but the present and probably the future might well tell a different story.