Almost seven decades after the end of the World War II and even with the advent of a New Millennium, we Americans are still standing, step-parenting the illegitimate off-springs of European Colonialism.
That is shameful considering the fact that ours was the first nation to sound the death knell of colonialism 300 years back when nobody in the world ever thought of getting rid of colonialism.
Many of us Americans may have European ancestors. That does not mean that we have to hold the garbage bags of their successors elsewhere.
If our great founding fathers thought otherwise, USA would not be free today.
Remember, George Washington and his contemporaries did not flinch even once in fighting against the army of their own forefathers. Such considerations were never allowed to cloud their single-minded devotion for freedom, not only theirs but that of their posterity.
So, no American President should think he is subservient to Europeans. The founding fathers of this great nation have already severed that “fraternal duty” right at its birth.
Part of the blame for the residual “love of colonialism” should rest with some of our politicians who encourage “ethnicism” for garnering votes. Such myopic “self-service” may suit them but will undermine the founding principles of this nation.
Encouraging misdirected loyalties will make new immigrants still loyal to their lands of origin and not to USA.
In fact, many new immigrants are under the mistaken impression that the US army is under the disposal of their lands of origin.
President Obama committed a great mistake by ignoring Robert Gates and listening to the warmongering of Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden.
Yes, there is bravery in war.
That bravery happens during war but not before war.
Not in starting a war.
There is no “for oil” justification too for the present war except the “colonial aspirations” of the Europeans. Because, most oil companies in the area were our own “American oil Companies.” They were quietly doing their jobs and getting oil for us.
Then there was absolutely no justification for President Obama to tail the British and French.
Instead, whatever advantage our oil companies had in the area are soon going to be cornered by Europeans.
This “helping-our-allies” business does not translate into interests of American companies.
It is shameful that American taxpayers are being duped into financing “failures” for long time now:
– Causing wars in areas being managed by American companies
– Sharing the major expense of European colonialists losing all oil contracts ultimately
– Leading to ousting of American companies and increasing the price of oil.
The policy of we can do “oil business” only if we have “allied despots” in power in Africa and Middle East is a non-starter as proved in Iraq and Somalia.
Somalia is a lesson in the fallacy of “looking for allies” in an already vitiated atmosphere of tribal rivalries.
We cannot establish a “favorite tribe” in power in such countries by creating disgruntled opposing tribes.
The Iraq government will soon face the unsavory and formidable responsibility of appeasing the Tikritis, the formidable tribesmen of Saddam Hussein.
We can just walk away thumping our chests crying, “Yeah, we got rid of the despotic Saddam.” But, the headaches of Iraqis are just beginning. That is why the Iraqis want us to leave as early as possible. Then only they can take up their real internecine problems for permanent solution.
TRIBALISM. That is a concept we Americans won’t understand because our nation was started by groups who ran away from the political and religious aspects of European tribalism.
That doesn’t mean that we should ignore tribalism in other lands; that is not something under our control.
Tribal instinct or pride in Africa and Middle East is not something we can just wish away because that is something innately born with those people. We cannot get rid of the inherited tribal characteristics with guns, missiles and F-16 or by dangling the “democracy” carrot.
The dangers of imposing “democracy” at one stroke on unprepared people were proved beyond doubt when the female journalist was sexually abused by “democracy” aspirants in Egypt.
The dangers of taking sides in tribal rivalries were exposed recently when leaders in exile returned to Haiti and was given heroes’ welcomes.
Tribalism will end only through centuries of inter-marriages, integration in schools, colleges and workplaces.
There is no point for our administrations and Presidents getting impatient with that aspect just because tribal integration will not happen in Africa and Arab lands during their tenures and lifetimes.
Instead, they should use their moral power to invite all the involved tribes in each of those countries to Washington to accelerate the pace of tribal integration. There is nothing cowardly in that approach.
That was what our ancestors were doing after the Civil War and until dragged into the World War by Winston Churchill who covered up the advance information on the Japanese attack Pearl Harbor.
In fact, European leaders who have failed their voters should resign rather than drag USA into wars to attain fake success and cover-up activities at the expense of American lives and taxpayers. If they want to fool their voters, that cannot be at the expense of USA.
Mediation by our pre-World War Presidents or their emissaries stopped many potential “tribal” wars in Europe. They were so successful that mediation by our leaders were eagerly sought after many times in history. Some of the troublemakers were so resourceful that they counted on USA to end wars if they did not succeed in the wars they created.
Even today, USA is the only country that can play the intermediary because we have no natural enemies. Whatever enemies we have now are actually the enemies of our so-called allies.
Our natural enemies should have been Canada and Mexico but they are not. If at all we have any problems with Mexico, it has nothing to do with military but are of socio-economic origin like the drug trade. Our northern and southern borders are two of the longest international boundaries on this planet.
The western border is protected naturally by the Pacific Ocean as is the East protected by the Atlantic.
Thus, all the enemies we have now are in far away lands – the enemies of our so called allies, based on “the enemy-of-my-friend-is-my-enemy” principle, good for ears but not for the brain.
Our Soviet-era advisers and think tanks too will have to learn new tricks. Otherwise, we are bound to repeat the same mistakes repeatedly, thanklessly burning abroad whatever money the US taxpayer gave for custodial keeping at Fort Knox.
So, what are the changes needed in our foreign policy?
1. Let us first have the honesty to admit that ignoring tribalism in Africa and Middle East with the false confidence provided by sophisticated, hi-tech weapons has not extinguished tribalism.
2. Accept the fact that tribal instincts are part of the way of life in Africa and Middle East. Our rejecting that truth made it easy for religious extremists like Taliban and Al Qaeda to take control of the leaderships in some of those nations.
3. Taking sides with one tribe in a nation does not snuff out the aspirations of other tribes. This failed in Somalia and created further headaches by the advent of anarchy and piracy.
Unless Iraqis have the brains for consensus among tribes including those of Saddam’s Tikrit, Iraq also will go the Somali way. Our ego should not make us interfere in those peace-making moves by Iraqis.
4. Instead, try to bring out all parties to the negotiating table in Washington and encourage integration.
5. Oil and trade are no justifications because even without any formal political treaties in existence, most oil companies digging in Libya were American oil companies or their affiliates.
6. Our allies have no business to be part of these negotiations because these are talks requested by the American people on their land. If they were colonialist in the past, that is history. It is not the job of the American taxpayer to soothe the egoistic wounds of their colonial past.
Yes, a long drawn out process taking decades, if not centuries, but we have to start today.
Skeptical in our ability to do that?
Then remember, one of the former staunch foreign opponents of USA was asked in a combined session of American Congress, “Do you love USA?” That was the time some thaw had happened in our relationship with that country during Reagan’s administration.
The answer was, “As the leader of my nation, I have visited many countries. Nowhere have I seen people who do not love the people of USA, though they may have differences with the American leaders.”
Yes, USA has no direct enemies: all our so-called enemies are enemies created by our so-called allies at the expense of the lives our brave warriors and the money of our taxpayers.