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Saudi Arabia, jewel of the Middle-East

Oppression! Religious zealotry! Multiple victimization by the state! Gotta love the Saudi system!

These are our closest allies in the region? Along with Musharraf's Pakistan? Oh, and Israel, our proxy and every Arab's friend. What a nightmare place to live, and the US is at least partially culpable for these systems staying in place.

Um, I have an idea: Let's get the hell out of the Middle-East entirely. That would require eliminating our additiction to oil. So let's do that, then let the Middle-East go ahead and destroy itself in whatever spectacular fashion they prefer. Or - hey, here's a thought! - leave them alone long enough so that the people living there realize that most of their problems are due to having religious-dictatorial governments. Maybe then they'd stop blaming the rest of the world for their problems and, y'know, actually change the system.

Just a thought.

Chris

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
fortyozspartan
Nov. 16th, 2007 07:41 pm (UTC)
I certainly agree that we should at least take away one reason they can blame the rest of the world:

US

I genuinely believe those people need some United States Civil War style shit to figure out wtf they want to do with themselves. Who knows, maybe when it's all over they'll be one giant religiously zealous nation with 1/3 of the population driving around with the equivalent of a confederate flag in the back of their pickup.

I was looking at a bit about the cost of the Iraq war and at one point they made a claim we could've converted every car in the US to a clean-fuel burning vehicle. There was a graph that compared the cost of Iraq with research into alternate sources of energy. I have a 23" widescreen monitor and I had to scroll down to find the alternative sources.

It was pretty incensing. I want to build a giant fucking solar panel with a big ole ass battery onto my apartment and cancel my power bill. But you know, gotta make that dollar. Unfortunately, and probably in part due to lack of research, solar panels are expensive.
mckitterick
Nov. 16th, 2007 07:45 pm (UTC)
I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the result being a bunch of redneck-equivalents in the region. *sigh*

And re: what we could have done with the money spent invading and occupying Iraq... I started a post a while back, only to stop part-way through when depression set in. I should go back and at least update it enough to post publicly.
clevermanka
Nov. 16th, 2007 07:55 pm (UTC)
As someone who has some fairly strong affections for some certain aspects of Middle Eastern culture, the whole situation makes me sad and nauseated. In general, I agree with you, but sentences like this:

let the Middle-East go ahead and destroy itself in whatever spectacular fashion they prefer

Make me want to put my head in my hands and cry.
mckitterick
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:06 pm (UTC)
I hear you, but they're going to do it sooner or later regardless of our intervention. All we should really do as a nation is stand back and let them sort things out, or else the explosion will only be bigger.

Edited at 2007-11-16 08:07 pm (UTC)
clevermanka
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:56 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I know. After all, I'm always the one saying "You can't solve other people's problems for them!" But it doesn't make me feel better about culture collapse.
weaselmom
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:21 pm (UTC)
In the immortal words of PJ O'Rourke*: "The Middle East: God's Monkey-House."

*Before he got old and crotchety and unfunny.
mckitterick
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:31 pm (UTC)
See, now I've always attributed that quote to you.
weaselmom
Nov. 16th, 2007 10:08 pm (UTC)
That SOB O'Rourke has been cashing my royalty checks!
fjm
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:49 pm (UTC)
leave them alone long enough so that the people living there realize that most of their problems are due to having religious-dictatorial governments.

Don't be so goddam patronizing.

There have been several secular regimes in the Middle East. The United States (and Britain, and France) went out of its way to destroy them. All three countries continue to insist that secularist resistors to these regimes are illegitimate, and deport them.

The people of the Middle East have asked for democracy in the past. They are not stupid. That there are now so many religious fanatics is partly because those are the only resistant organisations that were allowd to flourish.

Israel, for example, funded Hamas as an alternative to the secularist Fatah movement.

So yes, I agree with your overall argument, but you need to rethink your very strange ideas about people who are, in the end, just like you. And given that large numbers of people in the US seem to think that only government worth electing is a Christian authoritarian one, maybe you should start that revolution at home?

mckitterick
Nov. 16th, 2007 08:57 pm (UTC)
I hear you, and I should have worded that differently. I was just so disgusted by that story.

This post in no way clears our Western governments of our culpability here - in fact, without our support, Saddam would never have risen to power or stayed in power had he found it; same for Musharraf and for the current regime in Saudi Arabia and even for the bad-boy of Iran. I wouldn't be surprised if, should we pull completely out of Middle-Eastern sphere, al-Quada loses its reason to exist and Islamic terrorism against the West vanishes.

(And I still hold that Bush was never "elected." I would welcome such a revolution if they manage to steal the 2008 election.)
fjm
Nov. 16th, 2007 09:02 pm (UTC)
Saddam was a secularist. A horrible, nasty piece of work who murdered thousands.

And oversaw the best educated state in the Middle East with the most rights for women.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )