Friday, November 05, 2004

Outside Looking In

From Back to Iraq
I'm in Beirut now, and I've had a couple of people -- Lebanese and British -- tell me that the American people have validated the last three years, years which are seen as universally disastrous. Before, there was a distinction drawn between the American government and the American people. A few nights ago, one cabbie told me that he thinks American people are very nice, but the American government is “very bad.” Now, as one of my friends said, “The American people are the problem.”

This will translate into increased hostility against Americans, especially in the Middle East. (I'm in Beirut at the moment.) The American government is seen as hopelessly biased against Arabs and Palestinians, but now the American people are culpable as well. I long thought America's European allies would welcome her back into the family of nations if Kerry won. Instead, they will hold the American people in even greater contempt than they already do.

After 9/11 I was damned scared of the future. Now I'm even more anxious about what lies before the world.

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