Abdul Ghani Mahfouz
A Cairo-based researcher and writer who works as a freelance journalist.
It may sound ridiculous, stupid or even bizarre idea, but it’s a target not for today or tomorrow or the next week; it’s a project for the long-haul.
It’s a call directed not to the states, governments or political organizations in the Middle East, but to NGOs, the wide masses, and the common man who has always borne the brunt of the U.S. intervention in the form bloodshed, money loss, or a lifelong suffering under a dictator supported by the U.S., the first and foremost oppressor of nations.
Let it be ridiculed or laughed at now, but someday it would appear in the natural course of things as an inevitability, just as it is supposed to be a far-fetched possibility now. However, it has to remain in sight for the people of the Middle East to whom I like to address this appeal. If every Arab citizen put it in his mind and gave it some thought from time to time, it would be someday achieved.
If we look at the history of the Middle East region since World War II, we would definitely reach an indisputable conclusion: The people of the Middle East would never be able to lead a healthy, decent and human life without eliminating the U.S. influence on their lives. If they have suffered enough because of the U.S. intrusion on their lives, at least they can spare their children and grandchildren this macabre fate.
The U.S. has never engaged with the people of the region or even treated them as humans but has always been doing business very fine with the regimes. The two parties’ interests are always opposed to those of the Middle East people, who are in most cases victims to the two oppressors’ like-mindedness. The U.S. supports autocratic regimes in return for favors and privileges it would never have access to by a democratic regime. In return these regimes are given free reins to trample on the presumably cherished Western values day and night, sometimes by instigation of the Western superpower and its allies.
The well-being of the peoples of the region can only be achieved by dismantling the US military bases and doing away with the local stooges who charge their nations huge costs for such an anachronistic relationship.
In 1980, the U.S. – which felt insulted and helpless during the siege of its embassy in Tehran after the Islamic revolution in the country – instigated Saddam Hussein the late strongman of Iraq to wage a meaningless war against Iran that lasted eight years. The war killed at the very least half a million and possibly twice as many troops were killed on both sides. At least half a million became permanent invalids, some 228 billion dollars were directly expended, and more than 400 billion dollars of damage (mostly to oil facilities, but also to cities) was inflicted, mostly by artillery barrages.
Once more in 1990 the U.S. encouraged the same dictator – through her ambassador in Baghdad April Glasby – to invade the tiny Sheikhdom of Kuwait. Then it assembled a coalition to liberate Kuwait and destroy Iraq.
Few years later it claimed that Iraq supports terrorism and has biological and chemical weapons and invaded the country. The war killed so far almost 200,000 and the U.S. withdraw its troops at the end of 2011 without building a strong security force to secure the country against the dangers it helped to create like the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). The Iraqi security forces trained and equipped by the Americans fled away before the less equipped and outnumbered ISIS group. Now the Americans are clamoring for a new coalition to beat ISIS which has been portrayed in U.S. and Western media as endowed with supernatural powers. And that’s the reason it needs a gigantic coalition from the U.S. down to the Republic Nauru and Belize.
In 2001 the U.S. invaded Afghanistan to avenge the attacks on its cities. But after 13 years of the invasion, the prospects of peace and stability in the country are as far as they were on the eve of the U.S. initial strikes.
In Egypt, the U.S. instigated – or at least tolerated – a coup d’état by General Abdul Fattah Al-Sissi, a US trained mediocre army officer, against the first ever democratically elected Egyptian president Mohammed Morsi. In the bloody process thousands of Egyptians lost their lives with many more wounded in what Human Rights Watch described as “crimes against humanity”. The new regime turned life in Egypt into a real nightmare and dashed the people’s dreams of stability and prosperity. Had the U.S. learned lessons from its stupid actions in Spain, Chile, Indonesia, or Iran, it could have spared Egypt many of the dark and painful years ahead.
The weapons used by the Egyptian security forces to kill innocent citizens are supplied by the U.S. which implies the people have no consideration when it comes to their geopolitical interests.
The U.S. engagement in the Middle East has been always a recipe for destruction for nations one way or another. If we have to look closely at the pernicious implications of this relationship, we would realize soon it’s based on exploitation of autocratic regimes which leads directly to depriving people of any decent life, while it benefits both: the Americans and their puppet regimes.
Since the demise of the Soviet Union the Middle East has been a battleground for the U.S. in which they test their new weapons. Ironically, the region has also been the largest buyer of US weapons that has no real value when it comes to defending real issues or interests of citizens. Weapon deals are largely considered a reward by the regimes in return for protection.
The summer Israeli war on Gaza highlights more prominently the alliance of the U.S. and the ugly regimes in the Middle East. Almost all the authoritarian Arab regimes had to conspire against the poor Gazans for the benefit of Israel because Gazans are revolutionary and as such they represent a threat to their lethargic regimes.
Consequently, life of the normal citizen in the Middle East would never be a normal life unless any U.S. personnel in uniform leave the whole region.
What are described as terrorist organizations by the U.S. are opposition and resistance movements under colonial occupation or in nations governed by autocratic regimes protected and exploited by the U.S. Both parties are very happy with their disgusting friendship which excludes peoples. When the U.S. says Egypt is a close ally to our country it means literally the dictator in power but not the Egyptian people.