Saturday, November 17, 2007

With Friends Like These...

I have never quite understood our current President's insistence that spreading democracy throughout the middle east will be the best thing since white bread.

They don't want it. They are not ready for it. And we have chosen the strangest bed fellows as "allies" in order to make it happen.

In the photo you see President Bush holding hands with Saudi King Abdullah. This is a sign of "I'm important and recognize that you are too". At least that's a loose translation of a middle eastern custom. Odd symbolism to us. Cultural difference.

That I can accept. What I cannot is insisting on friendship with a culture, Islam, that treats it's women like dirt. The media, today, is full of the story of a nineteen year old gang rape victim. The court case has been dragging on for a year. The seven rapists were sentenced from ten months to five years in prison. The rape victim was sentenced to 90 lashes!

She had met with a man who was not a relative. Was raped 14 times by 7 men. And she gets 90 lashes.

Her attorney appealed the decision. The rapists sentances were lengthened - and so was hers! It was upped to 6 months in prison and 200 lashes.


Yes. It is Islamic law. I don't begin to understand it nor do I care to. What I would like to understand is why we stand behind these governments if the reason isn't really all about oil. Why don't we just admit it? We won't drill in our own pristine areas so we need them. Is it really worth the cost in dollars and of our men in women in the military who are being killed and maimed?

My thoughts go back to women as leaders. The lack of success of our current Secretary of State. Other than a lot of trips on a big plane, I haven't seen much come from her time in office. And Candidate Clinton. I am still very skeptical that she will be able to command the respect necessary to be an effective leader for our country.

Yes, she has met many of these leaders during her years as first lady. But we best not forget it was just that, as first lady. The wife of President William Jefferson Clinton. Big difference between wife and President.

It's a world gone mad. Thanksgiving is just around the corner. I find myself being thankful that a friend in the Army was hurt in a training accident that requires surgery thus delaying his redeployment to Iraq. Imagine being thankful for someone being injured! It's horrible! But that's the way it is.

And to think there is a movement in Australia to have department store Santas greet little ones with "Ha Ha Ha!" instead of "Ho ho ho" so as not to offend anyone's sensibilities.

Think about it.

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