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And we wonder why they “hate us”?

In the NYT today, there’s this article about how our embrace of Pakistan’s Musharraf “irks” Pakistanis.

The obvious point being we (the United States) are supporting a repressive and unelected dictator who forcibly replaced the legitimate president and has since ousted a large portion of the Pakistani Supreme Court to keep further hold on the government.

To note, when I say “support” it isn’t simply verbal support either. We provide funding, particularly military funding, to Musharraf’s government which is in turn used at least in some respects against his own people. The net effect being that that much of what Musharraf does is simply seen as a proxy for American power.

That also shows just how hollow our rhetoric about “democracy” in Iraq (or anywhere else) really is, since if we really cared about democracy in an Islamic republic, the obvious first place to start might be Pakistan.

The sad thing is the only ones believing our rhetoric is the American people themselves. That enables the widely unquestioned support of these self defeating policies.

Of course “irks” is a bit of a joke in itself – if my son or daughter, fighting for democracy I may add, was imprisoned with effective American support, I think the term would be a lot stronger – perhaps, well, “hate”.

As a final comment, I admit I am not addressing realpolitik or our strict American interests, just the dichotomy between what we say and what we do. I might (well, probably not) be able to swallow our behavior toward Pakistan if we were at least honest about it and it didn’t make utter bull shit out of the rhetoric spewed by our leadership daily.

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