Letter from Kuwait
I didn't find any wisdom in that wreckage. Perhaps the American electorate is right. I've been persuaded about the wisdom of crowds. I certainly hope they are. Living on the edge here in Kuwait, it's a bit more— like —well on the brink about to topple into the abyss.
The writer blames George Bush. Is it George Bush's fault that billions of dollars of oil money was poured into Kuwait and Saudi Arabia after World War II.? Have you ever thought of the consequences of that——what happened to a tribal people as a result of that?
Pity people don't read English literature any more——or American. In Chaucer's the Canterbury Tales, there is the Pardoner's Tale——the story about how money corrupts. Everybody double crosses one another and everybody ends up dead. Do you think the majority of Kuwaits got the money? Check out Forbes list of billionaires. I think there's only 1 or 2 Kuwaitis on it. The Al Khorafi's, I think. The rest are on the socialist dole.The new Amir get a salary increase from KD 8 million to 50 million. Kuwaitis got 200 KD each.
Let's do the math and the geography. How many real Kuwaitis are there? A bit over 500,000? How much oil does Kuwait produce? What is the price of that oil? What is the per capita income of Kuwaits? How big is Kuwait? The size of New Jersey? Why is employment a problem for Kuwaitis but not expatriates? What beautiful public buildings and parks have been built with that oil money?
Come and take a look at what cradle to grave socialism looks like in one of the richest countries in the world, Kuwait. Smell the raw sewage at different spots all over town. Welcome to electricity blackouts. Take some pictures. See the empty high rises. See the trash all over the streets? See the slums? Take a ride at rush hour (any hour). Do check into Mubarak Hospital where you might end up in a coma as a result of traffic laws not being enforced. Would you like to be in that hospital if an ambulance could get you to the hospital——oh, it probably couldn't because it would be stuck in traffic——just call Kuwait "Little Egypt" now. Would your wife like to have a baby in the Maternity hospital? It looks like the ones CNN was blaming the American sanctions for in Bagdad during the Gulf War. No change since then. Nice villas, though. they look like small apartment buildings. And some American style new malls.
Although it was reported that Kuwaiti women got the right to vote, the context of how they got that right was not reported. Iraqi women ran for office in their election and some won. Kuwaiti women had been campaigning at least 20 years for the right to vote. Two weeks after the Iraqi election, Kuwaiti women got the right to vote, which Parliament had denied them (the Amir had granted it to them after Kuwait's liberation). What do you think would happen if the Iraqi people directly benefited from their oil money as Bush has proposed? Would the Kuwaitis not want a similar set up?
Oh, and as a result of the Shia's coming to power over the Sunnis in Iraq, the Shias in Kuwait feel much more powerful. And the Sunnis in Kuwait are somewhat apprehensive about that. I have heard that if America abandons the Middle East to Iranian hegemony over Arabs, they won't welcome Americans back.
I definitely would follow President Bush over a cliff and die for him. He is a man of principle. He does the right thing even if he loses. I am sorry to see Mr. Rumsfeld leave as Secretary of Defense. No one can do the job like he did it. But I don't want to see the Democrats go after him, as they surely have done in the past and would have done if Bush hadn't asked for his resignation and will do even though he has resigned. In this President Bush had the choice of non choice. It's sad that American leaders now face criminal charges for following their judgment on policy. What will happen to Scooter now? I guess he and President Bush will both be in jail.
But the most important point I want to make is this: America did a wonderful, a noble deed, laugh if you will at this language. Americans were attacked. And they liberated the Iraqi people, who played a large part in attacking them. If you don't believe the Iraqis had WMDs, a nuclear program and had a close working relationship with Al Qaeda, I've got some beachfront property in Arizona, I'd like to sell you. The evidence is there. People refuse to access it, read it and acknowledge it. But it's there. I am constantly amazed at the denail of this evidence. But I suppose we see what we want to see. Those who were in Kuwait during the occupation witnessed the brutality. Do you know what it is like to live in fear? Lving next door to a brutal dictator makes these connections seem more plausible.
I was in Kuwait as soon as you could go back after the liberation. As an American I was shocked when I heard Kuwaiti students say they rented the American army...and since they had paid, what need had they to feel grateful to Americans? I was saddened to learn that this is a typical attitude. The outpouring of genuine gratutide and friendship after the Gulf War was very brief and I can't understand why except I know that Kuwaitis wanted to remain a part of the Gulf Arab "family." Or later to read of a "sheika" (princess) complaining about the inconvenience of having American troops in Kuwait...it made it difficult for her to get to her grandmother's chalet (beach house). (The American presence here is almost invisible. Troops are hidden away.)
After the Iraq war, I read the blogs, and sure enough I found Iraqis sneering (as Kuwaitis had) "oh, we would have overthrown Saddam if we had enough time". Now this is what the Arabs call a "mentality"——it's a way of thinking. To counter—act that mentaility our troops and contract workers have worked hard——under the leadership and policy of George W. Bush——to turn that victim and blame mentaility into a take—responsibility mentality. To make people see that taking responsbility gets results. If we had done as the writer of the articler suggested and made a client state, we would have seething resentment, anger and victim mentality and another problem to solve down the road. It might have looked something like the Palestinian "state". A stubborn refusal to cooperate, a fatalistic victim outlook.
Remember the debacle of the Coalition Provisional Authority? That client state didn't work and was replaced quickly and astutely. And remember the "no blood for oil" crowd ——a client state would have justified their position that we were taking the resources for our own use——imperialism. Now, it seems to me that George Bush very wisely chose not to do that because he wanted a long—term solution. But here is the problem with the long—term solution: we——Americans, the electorate——are used to instant solutions. How many months has this Iraqi government been in power? Six months? They still haven't finished fighting with each other——and their fighting with each other means killing each other. And yet nobody acknowledges that Al Qaeda in Iraq has been defeated. The violence in Iraq is the result of criminal elements, Sunni & Shia pay—backs and Irani interference. We've eliminated the jihadi magnet of go—fight—the—Americans—in Iraq——because they've all gotten killed. Tha's HUGE! Who even realizes this? And now we are left with the Iranians who are next door and have a huge population. We haven't defeated them yet. Still, Americans who don't follow what is happening or follow it from one source of information that is biased, are fed up. They want a fresh start. Does anyone know of any problem in the Middle East ever being solved? Much less in record time?
And why is it that Bush/Rumsfeld/Cheney didn't confront Iran and Syria and tell them to stop interfering in Iraq's affairs? Would the international community's lack of support have something to do with this? Would our international prestige have suffered because of our war—mongering? Would the American people's lack of support for casualties in war have something to do with this? Yet is there any doubt we would be able to win if we did fight Iraq or Syria now?
I doubt you'll come up with anything better than George Bush devised because he is a far—sighted and principled man (even though no one gives him credit for it) and he saw that the solution had to come from the Iraqis themselves. Instead of a regional war, Bush chose a limited conflict within Iraq, giving Iraqis enough freedom to work out solutions even if they were messy ones and wrong ones sometimes. But even that was seen as too much of a sacrifice.
I feel betrayed by the Iraqis who couldn't get it together in time to please the Americans. I hope Maliki is happy now that he's his own man and has proved he isn't in Bush's pocket. But I also feel betrayed by Americans who have opinions without taking the trouble to make sure they have adequate knowledge. The internet now gives us the opportunity to access a variety of sources so we get a fuller picture.
But the real reason Republicans lost is Americans still believe they are invincible and the threat isn't real. The war is "over there". Terrorists are like pesky mosquitos. It's not close to home. Except for a brief period when one of those airplane bomb scares almost happens. Americans have invented the technology that can destroy them but they don't realize it. It's like 9—11 never happened.
I hope the American soldiers go home right away. I don't want to see them die for nothing anymore since the terrorists are right that we aren't long term strategists like they are. I can't believe that Americans would elect Democrats when the terrorists said before the election that's what the wanted.——when the terrorists said Americans won't stay——we know they won't stay——just wait, you'll see. When the President of Iran congratulated the Democrats on their victory because now the problem will be resolved. Please let me know what answer the Democrats are giving to that endorsement. Particularly John Murtha. I really would be interested if you featured that as one of the little items on your home page: John Murtha's reply to the terrorists. How are Dems responding to the happiness of terrorists? How is withdrawing from Iraq not in algnment with terrorist objectives?
We win wars spectacularly and then snatch defeat from the jaws of victory because of a lack of patience, fortitude. and knowledge. It's deja vu al over again——just like the Gulf War.
I'm a little hysterical tonight and have violated my rule never to speak out. But it makes me so sad. Mark Steyn wrote America Alone but it's not going to be America Alone. It's going to be Australia Alone. God bless John Howard. I hope he gets better support than George Bush.
Where are your principles? Where is your loyalty? You blame Bush for America's lack of resolve. Where is yours? Can he do it alone? You wnat it done faster? Just try——you'll get that quagmire. I can hardly wiat for the Democrats to put their hand to diplomacy in the region. It's going to be a laugh. Just remember what a fool Yasser Arafat made of Bill Clinton. But Americans never did understand that.
(Clinton broke the rule of jiddam nas——in front of people: he said "we cannot fail" and Yasser Arafat took that up as a mantra and made it fail——jiddam nas——in front of the whole world. It was a joke at America's expense that America never even got.)
Bush did something no Democrat can undo——he upset the status quo in the Middle East. He blew the lid off the deception that is the hallmark of the Arab world. Proxy sponsors of war and terrorism —— Saudi Arabia, Syria and Iran have been outed. But I might be wrong about that: it could be like the emperor's new clothes——we refuse to see what's there. (instead of pretending to see what's not there). We've done a lot of that with the WMD. Let's make up a (superficial) reality we can all live with! The emperor's new clothes!
The author requests anonymity.