Posted by: Anonymous Coward
on July 15, 2004 09:07 AM
No, the reason we are antagonized is that at this moment, we are the ones in power. History is replete with challenges by lesser states against the powerful. The main reason the Arab world has a problem with us has nothing to do with who we are, except that as the most powerful nation in the West, the United States is semiotic of the entire West. Many years ago, Arab culture was dominant. It was surpassed by the West, largely because we borrowed from them and capitalized upon the knowledge gained. They refused to borrow from the West and their society has been festering for hundreds of years. What they resent is Western success when they rejected almost everything in our society that led to it.
Incidentally, the main reason France likes to antagonize us is that they were once a dominant power and we are an ever present reminder of the fact that they no longer are, while they thrive on illusions of becoming once again the dominant power. They are so American-phobic that they outlawed the use of the word "e-mail" in official government publicaitons.
The problems in the Middle East wer not caused by the United States. They were caused by the ARABS, the Ottomans, the Germans, the British, and the French. We have done nothing but try to achieve a stable Middle East. We have worked hard to maintain open lanes of commerical communication, because that is the first step to introducing societies to the concepts of individual liberty. We have worked to help Israel remain secure as well as a variety of other Arab countries in the region. We have worked to improve life conditions, and though we have had some successes, we have also had failures.
Finally, for those of you that want to portray the United States as the great aggressor in the Middle East, I might remind you that it was the Arabs that created the conflict with us to begin with. Ever heard of the Tripolitan Conflict? Yeah, we fought a war with them because they were exacting tribute from us and enslaving our citizens. Just who was picking on who?