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De toestand in de wereld

zutman

Triumph des Glaubens

5 december 07:36, 2005
[the President] has been criticized inside the country for his seeming lack of tact and his confrontational style on the international stage. His comments about his mystical experience at the UN could well lead to further criticism.

Reeds in een eerdere aflevering van Alt-f4 ('Het Spiegelpaleis') werd kond gedaan van een zekere parallel tussen een Amerikaanse en een Iraanse president. De laatste tijd hebben zowel president Bush als president Ahmadinejad duidelijk gemaakt dat het wat hen betreft niet bij een toevallige Alt-F4-analyse blijft. Bovenstaand citaat, bijvoorbeeld, gaat niet over Bush.

Het geloof van Bush

I believe that America is called to lead the cause of freedom in a new century. I believe that millions in the Middle East plead in silence for their liberty.
De acceptatiespeech van Bush voor zijn presidentskandidatuur op de Republikeinse conventie 2 september 2004.

Deze toespraak valt, als vele toespraken van Bush, op door de verhulde boodschap aan de Religious Right: 'Ik ben als jullie, stem op mij'. De bijbelse verwijzingen zijn talrijk. Dit was echter nog voor zijn herverkiezing. Sindsdien heeft een andere vorm van religiositeit de overhand genomen, en klappen officials bij journalist Seymour Hersh uit de school: de uitverkorenheid van de gelovige is vervangen door uitverkorenheid van Bush zelf. Bij uitstek om de democratie naar Irak te brengen.

Current and former military and intelligence officials have told me that the President remains convinced that it is his personal mission to bring democracy to Iraq, and that he is impervious to political pressure, even from fellow Republicans. They also say that he disparages any information that conflicts with his view of how the war is proceeding. Bush’s closest advisers have long been aware of the religious nature of his policy commitments. In recent interviews, one former senior official, who served in Bush’s first term, spoke extensively about the connection between the President’s religious faith and his view of the war in Iraq. After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the former official said, he was told that Bush felt that “God put me here” to deal with the war on terror. The President’s belief was fortified by the Republican sweep in the 2002 congressional elections; Bush saw the victory as a purposeful message from God that “he’s the man,” the former official said. Publicly, Bush depicted his reëlection as a referendum on the war; privately, he spoke of it as another manifestation of divine purpose.
Seymour Hersh, New Yorker, 28 november 2005.
Gevaarlijk spul, zeker als je Irakees bent. Of Amerikaan. Het gaat verder:
“The President is more determined than ever to stay the course,” the former defense official said. “He doesn’t feel any pain. Bush is a believer in the adage ‘People may suffer and die, but the Church advances.’ ” He said that the President had become more detached, leaving more issues to Karl Rove and Vice-President Cheney. “They keep him in the gray world of religious idealism, where he wants to be anyway,” the former defense official said. Bush’s public appearances, for example, are generally scheduled in front of friendly audiences, most often at military bases. Four decades ago, President Lyndon Johnson, who was also confronted with an increasingly unpopular war, was limited to similar public forums. “Johnson knew he was a prisoner in the White House,” the former official said, “but Bush has no idea.”
Seymour Hersh, New Yorker, 28 november 2005.
Afgelopen woensdag gaf Bush een grote toespraak, ditmaal om publiekelijk zijn Irak-beleid voor de komende tijd uiteen te zetten. Onder de noemer: Bush's speech on the war of Terrorism. De timing van Hersh' verhaal is dus niet toevallig, en de grote lijnen van Bush' speech daarmee ook niet. Eerst defineert hij de connectie tussen terrorisme en Irak:
Yet the terrorists have made it clear that Iraq is the central front in their war against humanity. And so we must recognize Iraq as the central front in the war on terror.
In het licht van de historie en de feiten hoe die hele oorlog tot stand is gekomen, moeten we hier toch echt met een believer te maken te hebben. Het is immers niet dat hij een bestaand sentiment verwoordt: 54 % van de Amerikanen vindt de inval in Irak inmiddels een 'mistake'. Bush gaat verder op het terrorismepad:
Their objective is to drive the United States and coalition forces out of Iraq and to use the vacuum that would be created by an American retreat to gain control of the country.

They would then use Iraq as a base from which to launch attacks against America and overthrow moderate governments in the Middle East and try to establish a totalitarian Islamic empire that reaches from Indonesia to Spain.

That's their stated objective. That's what their leadership has said.
Uiteraard haalt Bush hier oorzaak en gevolg door elkaar. Als de feiten geheel anders liggen, en er zonder die Irak-inval weinig Al-Qaeda zou bestaan, dan moeten bovenstaande uitspraken toch echt vanuit een geloof in eigen uitverkorenheid voortkomen.
Waar komt de naam Al-Qaeda eigenlijk vandaan?

'Al-Qaida, literally "the database", was originally the computer file of the thousands of mujahideen who were recruited and trained with help from the CIA to defeat the Russians.'
Robin Cook in The Guardian

'In the mid-1980s, Al Qaida was a database located in computer and dedicated to the communications of the Islamic Conference's secretariat.'
Wayne Madsen, rense.com
Bush gaat overstoorbaar verder:
They're trying to shake our will to achieve their stated objectives. They will fail.

America's will is strong. And they will fail because the will to power is no match for the universal desire to live in liberty.
Een Triomf van de wil, of triomf van het geloven in de eigen wil? En als laatste:
Setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would send a message across the world that America is weak and an unreliable ally.

Setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would send a signal to our enemies that if they wait long enough, America will cut and run and abandon its friends.

And setting an artificial deadline to withdraw would vindicate the terrorist tactics of beheadings and suicide bombings and mass murder and invite new attacks on America.

To all who wear the uniform, I make you this pledge: America will not run in the face of car bombers and assassins so long as I am your commander in chief.
Heeft Bush het hier over Amerika, of over zichzelf? Of over hoe hij door anderen gezien wil worden?

Tezamen met deze toespraak werd een begeleidend pamflet gepubliceerd. Dit pamflet, gevuld met wat statements uit verleden en heden, gecombineerd met wat strategische/tactische prietpraat, was zelfs in staat om de adspirant-beleidsambtenaren van Sargasso tot lichte ergernis te drijven.

Het geloof van Ahmadinejad

Deze week haalde president Ahmadinejad van Iran ook het nieuws met zijn godsbeleving. Het draait hier om de toespraak die hij hield voor de assembleé van de Verenigde Naties. Deze toespraak was op zich niet exceptioneel: zoals te verwachten was had hij de toespraken van Bush goed doorgelezen (Engelse vertaling):

On the other hand, the prevalence of military domination, increasing poverty, the growing gap between rich and poor countries, violence as a means to solve crises, spread of terrorism, specially state terrorism, existence and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the pervasive lack of honesty in interstate relations, and disregard for the equal rights of peoples and nations in international relations constitute some of the challenges and threats.
Apart wordt het pas deze week, toen nieuws naarbuiten kwam dat Ahmadindejad deze toespraak toch wel op een heel aparte manier had ervaren:
Ahmadinejad said that someone present at the UN told him that a light surrounded him while he was delivering his speech to the General Assembly. The Iranian president added that he also sensed it.

"He said when you began with the words 'in the name of God,' I saw that you became surrounded by a light until the end [of the speech]," Ahmadinejad appears to say in the video. "I felt it myself, too. I felt that all of a sudden the atmosphere changed there, and for 27-28 minutes all the leaders did not blink."

Ahmadinejad adds that he is not exaggerating.

"I am not exaggerating when I say they did not blink; it's not an exaggeration, because I was looking," he says. "They were astonished as if a hand held them there and made them sit. It had opened their eyes and ears for the message of the Islamic Republic."
Dit alles tot consternatie van enkele Iraanse geestelijke adviseurs:

Baztab.com reported that during the meeting, Ayatollah Amoli said that "carrying out promises and restraining from fooling people" is the most important duty, presumably of officials . However, it is unclear whether that comment is made in reaction to the claim made by Ahmadinejad.

Iranian legislator Akbar Alami has questioned Ahmadinejad's apparent claims, saying that even Islam's holiest figures have never made such claims.

Alami told ILNA news agency that it is hard to imagine that someone who is delivering a speech can at the same time focus his attention on the eyelashes of all the people sitting at a distance from him and categorically tell a leading Qom cleric that they did not blink.

Hoe loopt dit af?

Sy Hersh's mening over de toekomst is van dezelfde zwartheid als die van Scott Ritter. Dus hielden ze vorige maand op gepaste wijze de lol er in:

[...] and basically we're going to try to have some fun. Consider Scott and I your little orchestra playing on the deck of the Titanic as it goes down, because we're all in grave trouble here.

Van het roddelfront: Mama is boos. Barbara Bush is naar verluidt zeer ontevreden over de wijze waarin Dick Cheney en de anderen verantwoordelijk zijn voor de impopulariteit van haar oudste zoon. Zal The Enforcer proberen Fitzgerald rechts in te halen en daarmee Cheney et al. voortijdig wippen?
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