Check out these racist anti-Arab cartoons from the American press. One compares Arabs to John Wilks Booth. Another compares giving the ports to an Arab owned company to giving the American nuclear program to North Korea. Two cartoons describes the deal as a "Trojan Horse". Another does exactly what I said the left is trying to do with this deal: make Bush out to be a sort of un-patriotic "race traitor" to the Arabs. The drawing depicts George Bush wearing Arab garb with a line reading "Bush's latest cover up..." A Bulgarian cartoon says it outright, giving the ports to an Arab company is giving the ports to terrorists. This one does much of the same. These two really highlight the attitude displayed by this contraversy well, in my opinion. The second one there is from one of my local newspapers, the Hartford Courant.
I would not be surprised at all if the Democratic Party began to use blatantly racist rehetoric in its effort to win the next election. I don't mean the sort of overt racism of past eras, but the more subtle racism of the Progressive Era and other leftist movements. Anti-Arab, Chinese and Indian sentiments will all be used to lead the backlash against outsourcing, the "leveling of the playing field" in the world market (to use Thoomas Friedman's terminology), free trade and the liberal internationalism of the Bush administration and the Republicans. Perhaps the rehtoric will not be as racist, it will be justified by terms like "homeland security" and "unfair trade policies" or "outsourcing". All will simply mask the real problem; there is a new Industrial Revolution going on and it cannot be stopped. Protectionism will not save Americans and wishing that "American jobs" would stay "American" will not either. Americans will have to adapt and evolve, as will the rest of the world. There are good articles about American isolationism and the new Industrial Revolution (based off of information technology and the shift in the developed world from manufacturing to service industries) in the February 11-17th issue of the Economist ("The isolationist temptation," pp. 27-28) and the latest issue of Foreign Affairs (March/April 2006 vol. 85, no. 2, "Offshoring: The Next Industrial Revolution?" by Alan S. Blinder, pp. 113-128). The Economist article is particularly worth reading. It notes that 42% of Americans believe that
the United States “should mind its own business internationally and let other countries get along the best they can on their own.” That figure had jumped by 12 points in three years to its highest level since the mid-1970s (after the humiliation of Vietnam).
In addition it reminds the reader that the number of Americans who view free trade an opporunity for growth is falling alon side the percentage of Americans that believe the Iraq War is worth fighting. It quotes Pat Buchanan, who represents an overall shift to the isolationist and bigoted vision of previous years, totally driven by emotion and a lack of willingness to do hard work on the international stage:
Iraq never attacked America, argues Mr Buchanan, so America did not have to attack it. As for the idea that America's security depends on ending foreign tyranny, that is “noble-sounding nonsense”, writes Mr Buchanan. “Our security rests on US power and will, and not on whether Zimbabwe, Sudan, Syria, Cuba or even China is ruled by tyrants. Our forefathers lived secure in a world of tyrannies by staying out of wars that were none of America's business.” Mr Buchanan thinks foreign aid is “the looting of America for the construction of the New World Order”. He is proudly protectionist and he fears that Hispanic immigration threatens not only America's survival as one nation but also Republican dominance of American politics, since Latinos usually vote Democrat.
Mr Buchanan has been singing this song for some time: it was part of his pitchfork rebellion against Mr Bush's father in the Republican primaries in 1992. But in damning the Iraq war and the use of force to spread democracy, Mr Buchanan is part of a much broader (and potentially more potent) movement.
On the right, there are two main groups: small-government conservatives and foreign-policy realists. The former point to the huge cost to the taxpayer of the Iraq war and the Pentagon (see article). The latter, typified by Brent Scowcroft, the first President Bush's national-security adviser, think that the old policy of propping up Arab strongmen brought “50 years of peace” to the Middle East.
This is the storm I see brewing in America. Instead of facing threats head on, pretty soon, America is going to be running away from challenges and become ever more emasculated. Just as the "Quit Mesopotamia" movement forced Britain to abandon Iraq to Sunni chauvanism, the educational practices of Sati al-Husri and as a result genocidal Arab nationalism, the Anti-War movement in America, with its short sightedness is forcing America to decrease troop numbers in Iraq, exasperating the biggest problem with the occupation there; the lack of troops on the ground. The latest issue of Foreign Affairs has an article on this topic too ("How the British Quit Mesopotamia" by Joel Rayburn, pp. 29-40), showing that the British in the 1920s were faced with the same sorts of challenges the Americans are facing today in Iraq and how the anti-war movement crippled British efforts, forcing that nation to cancel its mandate of that country prematurely, allowing it to spiral into what it was for nearly 70 years. History is repeating itself before our eyes. Decreasing troop numbers is the wrong idea, withdrawl in general is the wrong idea. There needs to be a serious effort made, in order to restore order there. Squash the rebellion. Re-establish military rule. Do something.
I can see things getting worse for Arabs/Iranians/Middle Easterners in the Middle East and America if hardline Democrats and isolationists have their way in America in coming years. As America shows that it cares less and less about democracy, regimes like those in the Gulf, Iran, Egypt and Libya will become more emboldened and powerful over their people. Iran will get the bomb easily with a Democratic/anti-war government in power in the US than it would if there were Republicans in office. When the calls of revolution were being made in Lebanon, Democrats scoffed, as if it were illegitimate and phoney; when these come in other countries, perhaps Iran, Syria (heh), Algeria or where ever else, they will do the same, and snap their fingers, "Aw shucks, there goes stability!"
The same attitudes shown towards Asian Americans after the Viet Nam War and to Middle Eastern people during and after the Hostage Crisis will be continued. I can hear it now, "Fuckin' Eye-rakis". Internationalism is dying along with American self-confidence. When this dies, the prospect for democracy in the Middle East and Africa will die too. No motive will be given to despots to change, because there will be no teeth behind the words. Democrats don't care, in fact they are indifferent and even spiteful of Middle Easterners. Support for Democrats by Middle Easterners will soon be, as a comedian one said of the other Party in America, like "Roaches For Raid". Democrats = Mullah/NDP/Ba`athi/Saudi appeasers and buddies. Day by day I see America slipping backward in time a little further.