The Null Device

Whither Iwo Jima?

Coming second to Saddam Hussein in a popularity contest seems like a bad joke; yet, as this Guardian article argues, that's what the US is doing; to the point where the US flag, which flew over Iwo Jima as a symbol of liberation, is now seen as a liability:
To some in the Arab and Muslim countries, Shock and Awe is terrorism by another name; to others, a crime that compares unfavourably with September 11. To the homespun folks in Middletown, California - recorded by the BBC the other day singing patriotic songs around their dinner table - such perceptions may be utterly incomprehensible, but they are real and cannot be ignored. They explain why the American flag has become a liability and why westerners in Yemen, for example, have taken to flying the blue-and-gold European flag from their cars to discourage attackers.

Oh, and those stories of relieved Iraqis welcoming their Allied liberators and asking what took them so long? Well, apparently that's not the whole story:

Two Reuters correspondents, travelling independently of the military, told a different story: "One group of Iraqi boys on the side of the road smiled and waved as a convoy of British tanks and trucks rolled by. But once it had passed, leaving a trail of dust and grit in its wake, their smiles turned to scowls. 'We don't want them here,' said 17-year-old Fouad, looking angrily up at the plumes of grey smoke rising from Basra. 'Saddam is our leader,' he said defiantly. 'Saddam is good'."

Though if you have God and superior force on your side, you don't need to be liked, just feared and respected.

There are 5 comments on "Whither Iwo Jima?":

Posted by: T http:// Tue Mar 25 04:25:04 2003

You sure are fixated on this God thing. Don't the Arabs hate us because we are so Godless?! Ah yes, we are all evil devils, in love with computers, technology, money. Feel free to exercise your domination (control) by modding my post :)

Posted by: acb Tue Mar 25 04:33:22 2003

Osama bin Laden hates the US because they're Godless. Falwell/Robertson and many in the Republican Party hate Islam because it's a false religion. So it's a case of "my god can beat up your god".

And if you want to be modded out, you'll have to post something more stupid and/or offensive.

Posted by: acb Tue Mar 25 04:35:18 2003

And it's Bush who's fixated on the whole God thing. Honestly, some of the rhetoric he uses sounds like the sort of thing you'd expect from Saddam Hussein or someone. (Mind you, perhaps both presidents are trying to reach out to the same sort of demographic?) See the Richard Dawkins article for more details.

Posted by: mitch http:// Tue Mar 25 06:23:08 2003

On why a 17-year-old Iraqi might say Saddam is good:

Posted by: Simstim http:// Tue Mar 25 11:29:59 2003

Don't forget that in the Arab world, Iraq under Hussein is considered a "secular" state. Indeed, that's one reason why someone like Bin Laden probably welcomes this war (it being a free recruitment drive another).

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