Thoughts on the Middle East situation
Posted by Lissa on September 14, 2012
In no particular order. . .
– Christopher Stephens seemed like a good and decent man (see LawDog for some background). Keep his family in your thoughts and prayers.
– I thought of his family when I saw those terrible pictures of Stevens’ body being paraded/escorted through the streets. (If you’re not aware, what looks awfully like a triumphant displaying of the slain ambassador through the streets has been alternately presented as a crowd trying to carry him to the hospital. I fervently hope it’s the latter and think the pictures look much more like the former.) I came down on the side that the pictures are newsworthy, but I shrivel to think that his loved ones saw them and know that the world is seeing them.
– Our ambassador was slain when his poorly-defended and not-so-secret consulate in Libya was attacked. Our sovereign soil in Egypt was invaded. Our official Twitter feed from the Egyptian embassy was full of unbelievably f***ing stupid and craven apologies before and after the attack. And what’s shocking about all this is … that Mitt Romney commented harshly on it? Do we live in bizarro world??
– Also, it’s about as clear an example of press bias as I’ve seen in the last decade. You see, they had no problem with a certain Candidate of Hope of Change took to CNN to blast the current president and his opponent in 2008 directly after deaths of our servicemen. Needless to say, the story did not suddenly shift from the actual situation in the Middle East to What This Particular Candidate Said About It, How He Said It, and Doesn’t He Regret It.
– I think the proper response when asked about that infantile, badly-produced film about Islam that *supposedly* sparked the latest protest party is, “Yeah, it’s stupid and disrespectful. SO F***ING WHAT? We’re Americans! The right of private citizens to say stupid, infantile, offensive things is very well established. Sod off.”
– I say *supposedly* because I find it unlikely to the point of pure gullibility that spontaneous protests arose in two different countries on the anniversary of 9/11 due to a short film with clips on YouTube that practically no one had ever heard of before. Doesn’t it remind you of the Danish cartoon stuff? You know, the event where a Danish newspaper published cartoons of Mohammed. . . and not much happened. UNTIL some supposedly pious Muslims decided that the actual cartoons in the newspaper just weren’t all that bad (they weren’t) — so they added a few more that were FAR, FAR worse than anything published and went on a Middle East rage-grievance tour. As far I’ve heard, the imams haven’t had to go into hiding or been attacked by crazies, so I guess when THEY do it it’s okay, but if someone ELSE does it it’s time to burn flags and maybe kill people.
I’m not usually isolationist, but times like these make me want to wash my hands of the whole region. (Except any countries with a proven commitment to rule of law, democracy, free speech, women’s and homosexual’s rights, etc. I can only think of one country over there that fits that criteria but I’d be glad to hear of more.)