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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media


Last week George W. Bush delivered his fifth State of the Union Address and to no surprise, he once again managed to upset more than half the international world with his updated blueprints on the war on terrorism. “There are still regimes seeking weapons of mass destruction-but no longer without attention and without consequence,” he stated. Bush then arrived at what many believe to be the tone of his current term: “To promote peace and stability in the broader Middle East, the U.S. will work with our friends to fight the common threat of terror….We must confront regimes that continue to harbor terrorists and pursue weapons of mass murder.”

It seemed harmlessly rhetorical until he said, “Syria still allows its territory…to be used by terrorists who seek to destroy every chance of peace in the region.” Out of left field Bush continued, “Today, Iran remains the world’s primary state sponsor of terror-pursuing nuclear weapons while depriving its people of freedom.” Say what? Bush may as well have looked straight into TV cameras while pointing his finger and declared: “Iran and Syria, you’re next!” Monday, February 7, David Kay, who led the search for WMDs in Iraq, stated in The Washington Post that there’s “an eerie similarity to the events preceding the Iraq war.” That is to say, previous to the strikes against Iraq, American intentions were framed around humanitarianism.

More disturbing is that he used one sentence to address North Korea: “We’re working closely with the governments in Asia to convince North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions.” Why is it that Bush is only “working closely” with Asian governments while openly defiant North Korea waves it’s nuclear capability in the face of the entire world, but then hurls preemptive threats to nations possibly “pursuing” nuclear capability? Other nations in the “broader” Middle East, Egypt, and Israel possess nuclear capability.

The Bush administration doesn’t appear too worried about them. Furthermore, countless human rights abuses all over the world remain unchecked. In the “broader” Middle East, Egyptians are currently outraged by last week’s senseless arrest and abuse of liberal reformer, Ayman Nour, head of the al-Ghad party, a grassroots party aiming to create a parliamentary system of government chosen in a democratic fashion-a movement the United States should theoretically back.

However, Bush’s cabinet suggested that the Egyptian government only “re-examine” the situation. So what’s with the double standard? Under the Bush doctrine, there are nations posing an obvious threat to the security of the world owning WMDs, abusing human rights, and harboring terrorists such as North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Israel, and Egypt, to name a few. But Afghanistan? Iraq? Iran? Syria? With the exception of Afghanistan, the remaining don’t seem to be obvious targets.

Leaders around the world have been critical enough of the present wars. But the strongest opposition has been in response to the threat of potential wars looming in the future with Syria and Iran because many doubt the alleged threat of the existing Syrian and Iranian governments. In addition, Syria assisted the United States’ post 9/11 by providing intelligence about Al-Qaeda, while Iran provided support in the Afghan war.

For months, Britain, France, and Germany have actively encouraged diplomacy between Washington and Tehran only to have their pleas rejected by Condoleezza Rice-a move strongly suggesting that the Bush administration is hell bent on attack. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw went as far as to call Bush’s declaration “madness.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stated, “We are concerned about the situation surrounding Syria. It is important not to provoke further tension in a region already overflowing with crises.”

The current administration’s fixation on the Middle East is apparent and Bush has been repeatedly accused of trying to seize Mid East oil under the pretense of spreading freedom. However, not all the nations Bush has gone to war with are part of OPEC, nor do all the nations have oil. The only thing that is clear is that the actions of the Bush administration are glaringly contradictory and the Bush doctrine leaves the real intentions of the presidency hidden and buried deep beneath the Middle Eastern sands.