Friday, September 09, 2011

Bush's Tragic Legacy

From all around this planet write ups by journalist and others have been reaching out with similar messages and thoughts all this past week as we get closer to this tenth anniversary, the World waits for the accountability that should already have been as we took many of them down with us!

How 9/11 Triggered America's Decline

09/09/2011 - The events of Sept. 11, 2001 led to a wave of solidarity with the US. But the superpower has lost that goodwill over the course of the wars it subsequently waged. Now America is mainly seen not as the victim of terrorism, but as a perpetrator of violence itself.

The smoke was still rising from the rubble of the World Trade Center when Richard Armitage, at the time the US deputy secretary of state, spoke in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. "History begins today," he said.

In the coming decade, Armitage would turn out to be right -- except the politician could not have foreseen how tragic the history would be following the epochal event.

It is the history of the decline of the USA as a superpower.

Immediately before the attacks, this country was in full bloom -- like Rome at its peak, as TV host Joe Scarborough recalls today.

The Republican President George W. Bush had inherited a fat budget surplus from the Democrat Bill Clinton. In Kosovo, the US, which Madeleine Albright dubbed "the indispensable nation," had just shown the Europeans how it could resolve conflicts, even in their own backyard. Bill Gates and Microsoft were still cool.

Then came the planes, piloted by the followers of Osama bin Laden -- and for a brief moment, the superpower seemed even more powerful than ever. Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat had himself photographed donating blood for the victims. Even the French all suddenly wanted to be Americans. German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder promised "unlimited solidarity."

What followed was an unlimited mistake. Bin Laden had hoped to entangle the Americans in bloody wars. How well he would succeed in doing this, he probably could not have imagined himself.

Bush's Tragic Legacy

Ten Lost Years

09/09/2011 - Ten years have passed since Sept. 11, 2001, and today only losers remain. Islam has been taken hostage by blinded ideologues. The West has betrayed its values in its struggle against terror, and we are now burdened with Islamophobes. Without 9/11, the crimes of Anders Behring Breivik and the rise of right-wing populists in Europe would be inconceivable.

What remains etched in our minds, 10 years after the fact? Two images tell the entire story. One is of the burning Twin Towers and the other of a prisoner being tortured in Abu Ghraib. This is the iconography of human insanity: the horrific crime in New York and the horrific crime of the war against terror.

Violence was fought with violence, only to generate even more violence.

Anyone who believed that people had learned something from the wars of the 20th century was promptly disabused of that notion at the beginning of the new millennium. In fact, we have learned nothing. We are still all too willing to exterminate each other, even with our bare hands. And we always have good reasons to do so. We are always in the right.

What remains, 10 years later? The realization that those who pursue the law of revenge are condemning themselves. And that a record of horror never adds up. The policy of the United States after 9/11 wasn't merely immoral. It actually damaged the country. read more>>>

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