To carry ya'll inta the long weekend, today we have a brilliant display of American hyopcrisy. I have been intending on writing more about Middle Eastern politics, but two things hold me back: the complexity of the subject, and this blog is named Progressive Winnipeg, for a reason.
Once in awhile something falls on your lap so squarely that it is impossible to ignore. This is where I introduce to you former Speaker Newt Gingrich, who has officially gone beyond the pale. Yesterday he stated that America has only gone after one of the three "Axis of Evil" countries outlined by George Bush Jr, and suggested going after the other two (Iran and North Korea).
To mention "American hypocrisy" and not mention nuclear weapons somehow, is a hypocritical statement in and of itself. You can watch his speech on Youtube though I have not found a complete video of it, just many bits and pieces.
In it he states, amongst many others but these in particular, two completely unbelieveable things:
"One of things I am going to suggest today, is a federal law which says no court anywhere in the United States, under no circumstance is allowed to consider Sharia a replacement for American law."
Which is strange, given that this is an outright conspiracy theory that sounds like it belongs on Alex Jones' website. I'm baffled by how a former House speaker could honestly think that Sharia law will somehow replace American law. Or that there is some subversive plot to undermine American law by radical Islamists. The current day definition of "that's fucked up" has just been set in stone.
"Why is it that the other two parts of the Axis of Evil are still visibly, cheerfully making nuclear weapons?"
Nuclear weapons. The guaranteed "ace in the hole" for any American politician, it would seem. The hypocrisy in their speech and actions is abhorrent and nobody seems to mind or notice.
George Bush Jr blasted Hussein's regime for potentially having nuclear weapons, which as we all know turned out to be false. Currently they are in the process of accusing Iran of the same things. North Korea has been condemned for as long as I've been alive. They take a crack at Pakistan over nuclear weapons occasionally, but right now they can't afford to as they are supposed to be allies. Sanctions have been imposed and re-imposed on both Iran and North Korea.
The most striking omission from all of these accusations and condemnations over nuclear weapons, is the leeway they give Israel. Both Pakistan and Israel are not part of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Moreover, it is no secret that Israel does have them. I'm positive that Newt has an answer for why Israel is "visibly, cheerfully" making nuclear weapons, and would find some way to defend it.
I would love to hear an American politician, be it Newt, or President Obama, or Sarah Palin, or Nancy Pelosi, or whomever, explain why Israel's nuclear program is not criticized, not monitored, and never mentioned. Meanwhile, they continue their hardline stance on all other non-members of the Proliferation Treaty.
How anybody can suggest going to war with Iran and North Korea after creating a giant clusterfuck on the other side of the world in the wake of an illegal war, is beyond my capacity to understand. In essence, this man is suggesting that the US conduct two more illegal wars, as no country, certainly not Canada or the UK, would back an invasion of Iran or North Korea. Neither would the UN, and they would have no hope in hell of getting any help from NATO.
I thought the prospect of Sarah Palin becoming president was scary, but there are reports suggesting Newt Gingrich is considering running. To ask a couple more hypothetical questions, how would Newt go about getting himself elected with a foreign policy lke this, or even just this mindset? After the Wikileaks publication this past Sunday showing cross inaccuracies over the account of Afghani casualties, and the current status of the US's economy and debt, how could two more wars concieveably be funded? $860 biliion dollars a year isn't enough, apparently.
After spending all afternoon mulling over this, I think I've come to the conclusion that Mr Gingrich has not read The Fall of Rome. Nor have many other politicians studied any history relating to empire building and maintenance.