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Offlinemntlfngrs
The Art of Casterbation
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Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models
    #1450648 - 04/11/03 08:42 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models
Hamza Dushgani, Special to Arab News



I am against the war. I grieve for the civilians whose only crime was to be in the path of the onslaught. I abhor the targeting of non-embedded journalists. I am fearful of what is now in store for Iraq. I am also enough of a cynic to know that someone else is next. We live in anxious times. Our present is grim and our future a plethora of wildly speculative scenarios. Yet, in spite of the doom and gloom within which we somehow exist these days, I could not help but feel that a heavy weight had been lifted from my consciousness when an inert twelve-meter statue came crashing down in central Baghdad last Wednesday. We in the Arab world are used to walking around with excess baggage. Some of it is our own, but mostly it is inherited. In one electrifying moment, I actually lost weight ? Gain without pain. The causes for the colossal collective weight of the Arab nation?s mental state is rooted in an endless array of missteps, miscalculations and missed opportunities. Leaders that don?t lead; schools that don?t teach; civil service that renders none; clergy that preaches hatred; a press that excels at pointing fingers at the outside, while closer to home it gets decidedly myopic.

We all know what we want, but who is willing to work for it? We delight in conspiracy theories which mercifully whitewash our own shortcomings. Our self-indulgences are all somehow the fault of everyone else: The Crusaders, the Mongols, the British, the communists, the Zionists, and lately, of course, the Yanks. The latter first invaded us with their burgers and jeans. Now, they do so with armies.

Do I really believe the coalition when I hear it declare that Iraqis will soon taste the elixir of self-determination? And will this hapless nation finally become the prime beneficiary of its bountiful resources? As always, there is no black and white, and answers to the above are necessarily gray. The Americans will no doubt maneuver some Iraqi Karzai into power. He will oblige by ensuring that their companies will get the lion?s share of the chance to improve the lot of impoverished Iraqis. In their goodness, the offspring of the now-aging seven sisters will hold in trust Iraqi oil for its people.

But back to that fallen statue, which had more people step on it in one day than walked before it in wonder for the preceding decade. As I stated earlier, I am against the war, but I was never for Saddam. It was not incongruous that I should wish for Saddam?s demise while ferociously opposing an embargo which only heaped yet more suffering on the innocent. Conversely, I see no contradiction in opposing the coalition?s invasion, yet also daring to hope for Iraq?s future, courtesy of their invaders.

Under Saddam, there was no question of passing by unnoticed. He was on every corner, on every building, in every room. We all knew he was not just one of many, but the meanest of the lot. Who can forget the images of his speech to terrified parliamentarians, as he read the names of declared enemies of the state who sheepishly walked out of the assembly to certain death? Who could blame those remaining in the hall for the rapturous applause with which they greeted the reading of the last name on his list? And that was only the beginning. With Saddam in power, there was only one word in town. Today, and in spite of the unacceptable circumstances that led to it, I know that this is no longer the case.

Many will not be happy with what they will perceive as appeasement, or some romantic longing for a modern form of colonialism. A wolf in a nationalist sheep?s clothing. Worse yet, a Yankee stooge. Or, maybe, I am just no longer willing to carry on the charade.

Those most vociferous in their opposition to the invasion might just be those most scarred by our own failings. For my part, I readily admit that we have simply blown it. We are so entangled with our own psychological demons that we can effortlessly (and callously) ignore that Iraqis have endured a real living hell for decades. Those old enough to remember Suez, the ?67 debacle and Harb October (the Yom Kippur War) will no doubt remember the standing joke of Arabs boldly declaring that ?we will fight Israel until the last drop of Egyptian blood.? How different is this war?

We all knew from the start what the outcome would be, so how come many wished the war to be prolonged? Wouldn?t this in reality only result in many more Iraqi deaths? Is there more to this war than just support for our brethren across the border? Just as the coalition?s agenda no doubt goes beyond the name coined for it, Iraqi Freedom, could the Arabs? cause also have secret compartments?

The sputtering start by the coalition gave false hope to the Arab nation, which had great expectations of the looming battle that would pit the much vaunted Republican Guard against the invaders. In the meantime, every coalition loss of life and any setback in the field, one downed helicopter or one ambushed vehicle, did much to restore some vestige of lost honor. That this much anticipated battle now seems unlikely to take place because our side has suddenly vanished without a trace is causing no end of angst and confusion, which in turn has led to a collective psychological free fall.

Saddam is not the only negative force in the Middle East, but there can be no doubt that he accounted for much of it. How confused and off the track are we when a man who has led more than one rich Muslim nation to near ruin, caused the death of hundreds of thousands of Muslims and ultimately caused the invasion of his country, can be the subject of prayers and blessings by more than a few amongst us? I am now much relieved that he will soon exit our arena (if he hasn?t already, courtesy of a bunker buster) and that my share of the excess baggage will be lessened accordingly.

Coalition propaganda notwithstanding, Saddam and Bin Laden have little in common except for the fact that they make for terrible role models. Both have squandered valuable resources by promoting policies which have only led to more burdens being placed on an already stressed Islamic Ummah. Had these vast sums been spent on providing a measure of dignity by addressing man?s basic needs of food, shelter and health care, wouldn?t we be the stronger for it? These are the lessons governments need to learn from these bankrupt policies. Ignoring them will surely condemn us to eternally playing catch-up.

No longer must we cling to these anti-heroes who falsely and maliciously claim to lead us to the rebirth of our former glories. For starters, have they brought us any closer to freeing Palestine from its Zionist shackles? No amount of posturing, burning of flags or stomping on effigies will defeat the enemy, for the enemy is within us. It is time we took stock of the sad state of affairs in our own backyard. Streamlining of government and fighting corruption must be accompanied by an invigorated work ethic. Meaningful dialogue between the rulers and the ruled can lead to the reversal of capital flight. Increased local investment will create critically needed new jobs for our burgeoning young population. A modern education need not come at the expense of religion and family values. Putting aside petty regional differences will lead to a stronger regional union that will not easily be marginalized by the WTO and global conglomerates.

There is nothing so stifling as the arrogance of unchanged might. Yet I don?t exclusively blame the West for their continued interference in our affairs many decades after the supposed end of colonial rule. More to blame and worthy of derision is our own bumbling and bungling, which have made us easy prey for manipulative outside forces. Lest we take charge of our future, our only consolation (and a small one at that) will forever remain the greatness of our long distant past. We may never need to defeat the West in battle, but we do need to compete economically on a more level- playing field. Our ascent toward that field will be directly proportional to our level of commitment; there are no free rides to success. And to return to that by now much-defaced statue for the last time, let this be more of a wake-up call, and less the superficial notion that it is an affront to the Arab nation.

Today I rejoice for Iraq, for now there is at least a glimmer of hope. Not so long ago there was none.

(hamza_dushgani@hotmail.com)

Arab News Features 12 April 2003
http://www.arabnews.com/Article.asp?ID=25074


I see a change in the Arab world happening already. I hope many there listen to this guy.


--------------------
Be all and you'll be to end all


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Invisibleluvdemshrooms
Two inch dick..but it spins!?


Registered: 11/29/01
Posts: 34,214
Loc: Lost In Space
Re: Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #1451027 - 04/11/03 11:05 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Very nice.


--------------------
You cannot legislate the poor into prosperity by legislating the wealthy out of prosperity. What one person receives without working for another person must work for without receiving. The government cannot give to anybody anything that the government does not first take from somebody else. When half of the people get the idea that they do not have to work because the other half is going to take care of them and when the other half gets the idea that it does no good to work because somebody else is going to get what they work for that my dear friend is the beginning of the end of any nation. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it. ~ Adrian Rogers


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InvisiblePsiloKitten
Ganja Goddess

Registered: 02/13/99
Posts: 1,617
Re: Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #1451159 - 04/11/03 11:54 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Meet the New Boss,
Same as the Old Boss...

We'll be fighting in the streets
With our children at our feet
And the morals that they worship will be gone
And the men who spurred us on
Sit in judgement of all wrong
They decide and the shotgun sings the song

I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again

The change, it had to come
We knew it all along
We were liberated from the fold, that's all
And the world looks just the same
And history ain't changed
'Cause the banners, they are flown in the next war

I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again
No, no!

I'll move myself and my family aside
If we happen to be left half alive
I'll get all my papers and smile at the sky
Though I know that the hypnotized never lie
Do ya?

There's nothing in the streets
Looks any different to me
And the slogans are replaced, by-the-bye
And the parting on the left
Are now parting on the right
And the beards have all grown longer overnight

I'll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I'll get on my knees and pray
We don't get fooled again
Don't get fooled again
No, no!

Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!

Meet the new boss
Same as the old boss

http://198.65.147.194/English/News/2003-04/10/article06.shtml
http://www.observer.co.uk/business/story/0,6903,925325,00.html


--------------------


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InvisibleXlea321
Stranger
Registered: 02/26/01
Posts: 9,134
Re: Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #1451639 - 04/12/03 02:50 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

But back to that fallen statue, which had more people step on it in one day than walked before it in wonder for the preceding decade.

LOL! Yes, all 150 of them.

All flown in from Washington the week before...


--------------------
Don't worry, B. Caapi


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InvisibleinfidelGOD
illusion

Registered: 04/18/02
Posts: 3,040
Loc: there
Re: Anti-Heroes Don’t Make for Good Role Models [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #1451769 - 04/12/03 05:40 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

Today I rejoice for Iraq, for now there is at least a glimmer of hope. Not so long ago there was none.

This is sad for so many reasons. we fuck them over and they rejoice. This is going to be easier than we thought...



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Offlinemntlfngrs
The Art of Casterbation
Male User Gallery

Registered: 07/18/02
Posts: 3,937
Last seen: 1 year, 9 months
Re: Anti-Heroes Don?t Make for Good Role Models [Re: Xlea321]
    #1451958 - 04/12/03 10:43 AM (14 years, 5 months ago)

You are referring to the link to that bogus picture?

This guy was against the war and is extremely suspicious of American motives as he should be. But as an Arab he has brought to the surface some possible truths about the Arab mentality. Are you saying that the changes he would like to see in that mentality would not benefit the Arabs. He sounds like he wants the Arab would to wake up and build strong countries that can resist the US. I thought you guys would appreciate that.


--------------------
Be all and you'll be to end all


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InvisiblePsiloKitten
Ganja Goddess

Registered: 02/13/99
Posts: 1,617
Re: Anti-Heroes Don’t Make for Good Role Models [Re: infidelGOD]
    #1453082 - 04/12/03 06:41 PM (14 years, 5 months ago)

http://ourownmedia.com/copper/AfghanPOWsKilled.mov

Wonder if these pictures of capture Afghani soldiers will ever come out. Good thing Iraq has this in store for them

Thats a good humanitarian role model


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