None of the Above

I’m not a voter – if I were and there had been a square for ‘none of the above’, I might well have placed my electronic finger on it. I am, I have to say, slightly more relieved than not that after endless marathons on television, fundraisers, advertisements, propaganda and economies of truth, America has let the same guy through the front door of 1600 again, postponing the arrival of the inevitably lavish decoration bill that Mrs Romney would almost certainly have insisted upon. For two billion dollars of advertising revenue, quite a lot can be achieved, or, in this case, absolutely nothing. Same old, same old. But, perhaps, not quite. Washington is a fickle mistress, prone to deceit and revolving door loyalties and much as I would like to believe it, I’m unconvinced that things are going to turn out all right in the end.
The president will almost certainly use his final four years to concentrate more on foreign policy. Mr Netanyahu, despite a phone call of congratulation to Mr Obama, may not even be accorded the civility of further interview – instead, he may find himself being sidelined to the bread and soup line – the expensive menu being offered to Abbas, or members of the Muslim Brotherhood. I rather wonder if the President’s last thoughts before turning out his bedside light might be to swear a private oath to himself that he is going to achieve what Carter, Clinton and the Bushes failed to do – find a solution in the Middle East. After all, it’s only politics. Negotiation and even-handedness ought to be able to solve everything since all the players have been dealt hands from the same pack of cards… Not so. Israel has unique status in the world – the Judaeo-Christian heritage which underpins the entire rule of law and freedom of speech enjoyed by the West began with inscriptions on stones brought down from the mountain.
The greatest satisfaction over the re-election of Obama is not being felt in the Democratic Party, deliriously happy as they must surely be. It is not being felt among the media, whose howling and gibbering no longer qualifies them the status of objective observers since they have shown themselves to be a corrupt, partisan mob, peddling the demonising propaganda that was a hallmark of the campaign. It is not being felt among the smug decadents of the western Left who now scent the blood of all who defy their secular inquisition, remorselessly bullying Mitt Romney who didn’t quite have the stones to stand up to them. No, the greatest satisfaction is surely being felt in Iran.
With four more years of delicate and skilful procrastination afforded them by the American voter, Iran must have breathed a collective sigh of relief since it can be sure that it will be able to complete whatever construction is underway in the bunkers of Tehran and Qom, possibly with the covert help of Iranian-born Valerie Jarrett whose roots lie deep in the Chicago Democratic machine. I’m not going to leave this without stating the case for what might happen if the appeasers prevail. The British writer Douglas Murray is at his compelling best at the Cambridge Union, here.
In addition, who could have possibly predicted that the Arab Spring would have spawned so much Islamism in Egypt and Libya – all quite benign, of course. Had the West been paying attention they might have foreseen what looked almost inevitable since well-organised regimes are much better placed to fill the void generated by a power vacuum.  If power is to be placed in the hands of the people, the people – especially the poor and most easily manipulated – will vote for whomever they perceive is looking after them best, in this case, the Muslim Brotherhood and similar who  along with healthcare and roads will systematically impose their own Shari’a motivated dictatorships on those who have elected them, to which the people submit willingly because the imam told them to and this is how they have been taught that democracy works.
The US, faute de mieux,  is apparently backing al Qaeda affiliates in Syria; refused to come to the aid of Americans being attacked by al Qaeda in Benghazi as a result of which four American officials were murdered; and has repeatedly hung Israel out to dry against Hamas’ genocidal Palestinian attackers and a cacophony of Judeophobic slander. 
Europeans love Barack Obama because in  a surge of schadenfreude, they watch the neutering of US exceptionalism. What they don’t realise is that they too, spavined and  lobotomised by consumer ‘rights’, state dependency, victim culture, sentimentality, postmodern-religion, post-nationalism, post-Holocaust and Empire guilt, are themselves on a slippery slope towards a neutralisation whose irrational and bigoted hooves are already being heard thundering over the ideological landscape.
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6 thoughts on “None of the Above

  1. So you don't like Obama. Is it simply because he refuses to be a puppet like Mitt for the Zionists? It is a fair question. And if so, fine. But for me the truth about this election is that the American people spoke loudly against the corporate money (One Billion Dollars) was spent to prop up Romney who was arguably one of the worst candidates in history. This election was not about Iran, or Israel, it was about America and the populism that Obama represents to those in the rust belt who watched a President,for the first time since Roosevelt, intervene on behalf of the American worker. That is why his enemies call him a socialist, a foreigner and every other thing in the book. He represents leadership of the working and middle classes that is willing to stand up to corporations and special interests. Just like Clinton he was raised in part by a single mother. This is a characteristic I personally share with both men, for better or worse. It shapes your outlook and while I'm more likely to bang a door or confront someone directly about injustice in this world, Obama is not. Not boldly, that would be political suicide at this point, but gently and deliberately behind closed doors.

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  2. continued…I suggest that Obama can succeed where Carter and Clinton failed in helping forge a peace in the middle east. There used to be Israeli politicians who were committed to the same cause. Netanyahu and his party are part of the problem. (Not all, but part) Just like the neocons in America they suffer from a myopic worldview that places their “knight in shining” armor approach to “diplomacy” sharply at odds with the rest of the world and half or more of their own populations.Unless genocide is what you're after, like the one we perpetrated on the native Americans, the frontier cowboy approach will never work.
    We sit at a time in history where the Europeans and Americans have stood by and watched as another “colonial state” was developed post-WWII. Unlike the colonialism that spawned the US or the commonwealth nations this was done under the guise of “religious and cultural rights.” That is a new one in the history of colonialism and while it may have some historical legitimacy I dare you to show me another tribe in the world that has been able to reconquista a chunk of land as the modern Israeli state has done.
    As an American I value our relationship with Israel and their history, especially during the Cold War of supporting US causes and values such as democracy. But ours is not a formal relationship. We have treaties with NATO and ANZUS and many other obligations that are formalized in treaty. I believe it is time for a formal US/Israeli alliance that is part of a larger middle east peace plan that also includes a Palestinian state. Iran can be contained with or without nuclear weapons. Since the US is the only country ever to use them in combat I believe they are militarily little more than expensive paperweights anyways. You want to talk about propaganda in the media? Let us try to just once find some objective media reporting on Iran. You may have to go to a Hindi or Mandarin website because its clear that no media organization in the west will give them a fair shake, crazy as some of their rhetoric may sound to most of us. Look back at some of the Soviet propaganda in the sixties, or even some of the recent Chinese propaganda and you will see the same kinds of things. My point is that we are not getting a true view of the situation. I also question the role that oil prices play in all of this “hysteria” and we see clearly that Iran benefits from high oil prices which are partly caused by their bellicose attitude towards Israel and the west. The best way in my view to moderate Iran is to reduce our dependence on oil. That will force them to develop other sources of income and make it harder to spend the kind of cash they are on nuclear anything and military spending. But as long as we keep oil above 100 dollars a barrel they, the Saudi's, and the rest of the gulf states, as well as Texas neocon country are awash in cash that they can spend freely supporting whatever moron comes along to spout their hate and intolerance. If you want to “drain the swamp” remove the economic incentive to be a rabble rouser. But as Likud and the Republicans have little more to offer than their “protection of innocents” from the “evil ones” it is easy to see why they continue to pursue this as their primary agenda.
    I for one am glad I voted for Obama, warts and all, because I believe his vision of the world is one of PEACE not PERPETUAL WAR. My vote was for peace and my pocketbook. In both cases the price is too high to be the world's policemen.

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  3. There's much to agree with here, except perhaps the 'I don't like Obama', which was a bit unworthy of you, Noah. We become who we are by adsorption. Obama's influences have been varied and sometimes extreme, but he's very bright, a thinker and idealist, and has taken on the Washington behemoth with more skill than most. Romney is a different kettle of fish; the idea that a business tycoon whose stratospheric wealth removes him from everyday experience feels himself able to run a country is sophistry at best and Promethean hubris at worst. Nevertheless, he might well have done a good job, his Mormon faith drives a fundamental desire for the common good rather than exclusive self-interest.

    I do think, however that despite the conspiracists' wild and unnecessary sense of outrage about the ME, there is one thing that the West cosistently overlooks or fails to comprehend. Having lived for a number of years in various countries enjoying – let's say – the benefits of Shari'a law, the conversations and sermons in diwaniyas and mosques often at their heart have the tacit acceptance of the notion that it's OK to deceive the infidel who is perceived as unenlightened therefore second class by definition. It's hard to come up with evidence, on the ground it's simply all-pervasive. In respect of Israel, the muslim is simply toeing the party line which is understandable in some respects since they see relatively modern Zionism overthrowing hundreds of years of occupation. The political reality is that Israel is the flagship of Western democracy in the region, most Arab states can't govern themselves except by dictatorship – benign or otherwise – in some form and the Palestinians are still throwing stones over their neighbour's fence at the behest of those they elected to govern them

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  4. I wrote an absolutely brilliant three paragraph response to both the OP and the comments. It has disappeared into the ether and I am sulking.

    Summarized, Western ideals will not work here, including democracy. People who live here, integrated into the culture without agenda or political power know this, and watch in astonishment as US foreign policy continues to dictate an approach doomed to failure. For perspective on the role the US has played in fomenting the issues of today, check out “Inside the Kingdom” Robert Lacey; “The Taliban” Ahmed Rashid' and “Al Qaeda” Jason Burke. Sooner or later, all these Arab regimes are going to realize the US has been in bed with all of them at one time or another. Shame and dishonour will ensue, followed by unappeasable anger and the whole lot will unite in the face of a common enemy.

    Consequently, it will be necessary to redeem face, but the US is heavily fortified since 9/11, so Israel will be the target. The collective strike will destabilize this region past recovery, the US will gain a very bad, very permanent black eye, and the whole ME (and probably the world with it) will go to hell in a handbasket.

    Won't that be fun?

    I told you I was sulking.

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