What was the joke?
America is denounced and demonised at every turn,
mostly by ungrateful pedants
August 6, 2003
An American official recently called North Korea's "Dear Leader"
tyrannical dictator and his communist country a hellish nightmare. I
thoroughly condone such plain, exhilarating discourse from American, and
usually Republican, administrations. These people speak a language I, the
"man on the Clapham Omnibus", can understand. This is in marked contrast
the oily insinuations of the Europeans, especially the French, whose
double-speak is but a sheen to hide their thirst for business with any old
piece of filth on the international market: they are -- someone once
political tarts ("faahesheh-ye siaasi").
The Bush administration is ridiculed of course for calling a
spade, as the Reagan administration was for calling the Soviet
"evil empire". What was the Soviet Union if not an empire and if
thoroughly, thoroughly evil? Lenin and Stalin, just two men, elaborated a
system that was nothing less than a mass killing machine, ostensibly for
better future [for those not shot, tortured, starved or traumatised to
death]. This evil state made it its secondary business to eliminate, nay
uproot, civil society and replace it with a populace: needy, desperate,
in mind, desirous of trivial rubbish like Coca Cola, pizza and jeans.
yet a common type of phrase in many dailies, and I dare say many
undergraduate essays, is one like "half a century on, the debate
around the Stalin phenomenon", or "hero to some, a monster to others",
that type of clichéd rot. Excuse me? There is a debate about Lenin
Stalin -- in contrast to the universal consensus, say, on the badness
General Pinochet? Who is debating? The Demented Association?
Ronald Reagan said "evil empire" because as a plain-speaking
man with a
good deal of common sense, unlike the "an-telectuels" ("An
shodan," as a friend once said, though he meant Iranians on that occasion),
he was horrified by the prospect of a society that deprived one,
of such basics as the ability to speak the truth, or freedom to travel
read as you please -- never mind the luxuries of life like commerce,
and good television.
I remember my seminar group at the University of Bristol laughing
"evil empire" joke -- all of them except myself ("mad Ali"),
cleverest in the class, now a London barrister, and a girl from Miami
Jennifer who missed classes to go skiing or shopping ("Now that I'm
might as well go to Milan," she used to say, the dear). So what was
the joke? I have no idea. The Reagan administration and the government
Margaret Thatcher, by their intransigence before communism, helped bring
down the Soviet hellhole. Where is the joke?
The way people fulminate against America you would think it the
social and political concoction ever. Why does nobody show the
indignation at North Korea's regime and its tin-pot Hitler, the
civilised society? Why does nobody laugh at his laughable demand for
bilateral talks with America, which America rightly refuses, as if
psychopath with a finger on the nuclear button is a bilateral matter?
One might concede that people condemn America because, as a democracy,
they expect higher or the highest standards from it, and expect
the North Koreans, Taliban and Saddams of this world. But is this
or vocally expressed? Does anyone ever say, America should be a shining
example but we condemn it because it fails to reach standards we
know it can attain -- and as for the rest, they're so bad we won't
comment on them?
America is denounced and demonised at every turn, mostly by ungrateful
pedants who forget they enjoy the privilege - the immense privilege,
fortune and luxury - of living in free-market liberal democracies.
verdict on "progressive" regimes -- a motley lot of left-wing
revolutionary states that have been as beneficial to humanity as
- appears to be silence laced with indulgence born of dogged ignorance.
must be the last legacy - the parting shot - of socialism: mass
And such silence is all these mafia (formerly Non-Aligned) states
It nicely complements the deathly silence they impose at home,
thank you very
much. Meanwhile, they parade as respectable members of that costly,
lumbering "thing", the United Nations. What is that other than
of "regimes", keen to uphold state sovereignty when they're
their own peoples, but not when they're begging for more cash
from G7? What
is the value of a UN human rights panel including states that
are the first
to violate law, human rights, social rights, morality... you
name it? What is
state sovereignty worth when it serves Zimbabwe, Libya, North
Syria: scumbag mafia states?
Again, we all know, nobody hates the United States. To condemn
the United States is to say, "I have morals, ethics; I'm not
just a lump
only of his stomach and the stuff below... I care, my brain works..."
Deep-down, we are grateful though and relieved that there is
a global gendarme, blowing
the whistle on demented megalomaniacs, doing the dirty
work, assuring the collective security of democracies. So let
it take the oil...
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