Sunday, October 03, 2004

U.S. Policies Stir More Fear Than Confidence

The LA TImes writes something everyone already knows: Bush has tainted the US in the eyes of the world. Some telling points:

Much of Europe and the world feel insecure, but a growing number of nations no longer look to the U.S. for leadership and sanctuary. The Bush administration's unilateralist policies in Iraq and its perceived aloofness have left it less trusted at a time of widening global vulnerability, according to polls and interviews in more than 30 countries.


Although his policies have yet to be fully articulated, Kerry is considered by much of the international community as the antidote to a bullying Bush administration. Bush's recent speech at the United Nations, analysts say, reaffirmed that the president was an ideologue with little inclination for building consensus or defusing terrorism by quieter means such as political and economic reforms.

"It is such a great humiliation," said Viktor A. Kremenyuk of the USA-Canada Institute in Moscow, "for other countries to be in a situation where they have to swallow something they do not like. And the one who makes them swallow this doesn't even try to put a decent face on this sorry business."


Roman newspapers last month quoted Britain's ambassador to Italy, Ivor Roberts, describing Bush as "the best recruiting sergeant" for the Al Qaeda terrorist network.


In an essay, "The Five Stages of Anti-Americanism," author Judy Colp Rubin says that suspicion of Washington is so widespread that "many Chinese believe the U.S. deliberately started the SARS epidemic. Islamic leaders in three Nigerian states blocked critical polio inoculations for children, denouncing them as a U.S. plot to spread AIDS or infertility among Muslims."

Probably such paranoid fantasies have always existed about the US. How much have Bush's policies increased these views among other countries?

Think about it: Bush has taken the world from " We Are All Americans " to near universal revulsion and paranoid charges that "Americans are spreading disease."

And he did this amazing hat trick in about three years.

1 comment:

gaw3 said...

It's really tragic to see this happening on the ground in Europe. Even the most hard-core Gaullist has a deep admiration for America's role in keeping the world safer. But I have met no one who is an admirer of the Bush administration, no longer even with respect to the direct aftermath of 9/11.

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