President George W. Bush continues to mislead the American people as to the cause of terrorism directed against the United States.
This week he guaranteed that more Americans will die from terrorist attacks due to his stabbing the Palestinians in the back. He has from the beginning acted as if he were a ventriloquist’s dummy and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon were the ventriloquist.
He proved it again by buying into Sharon’s scheme to steal great globs of Palestinian land in the West Bank, and by arrogantly denying the right of Palestinian refugees to return home or be compensated. Israel has no legal right to the land occupied by settlements; the whole world recognizes this and has for decades. The United States used to recognize it until Bush decided to kiss the most ample part of Sharon’s anatomy.
How dare George Bush tell Palestinian refugees, ethnically cleansed in 1947—48 and again in 1967, that they have no rights? What unmitigated gall and arrogance he shows, what contempt for the Palestinians and indeed for the whole Muslim world. When did God give George Bush the power to abolish the human rights of other people?
It’s no wonder he has to lie through his teeth to try to explain terrorism. We are not victims of terrorism because terrorists hate us or democracy or freedom. We are victims of terrorism because George Bush’s policies inflict grievous harm on Palestinians, on Afghans and on Iraqis.
One hates to say it, but Osama bin Laden makes more sense than Bush. If you doubt the role of our support for Israel’s brutalizing Palestine in causing terrorism, listen to what bin Laden says:
"The greatest rule of safety is justice, and stopping injustice and aggression. It was said: Oppression kills the oppressors, and the hotbed of injustice is evil. The situation in occupied Palestine is an example. What happened on 11 September and 11 March (the Madrid bombings) is your commodity returned to you."
In plainer English, the more the Israelis shed Palestinian blood with our unadulterated support, the more of our blood bin Laden hopes to shed. He says quite plainly — addressing himself to the people instead of politicians — why don’t you stop shedding our blood so we can stop shedding yours?
He scoffs at being called a terrorist and says, "Our acts are reaction to your own acts, which are represented by the destruction and killing of our kinfolk in Afghanistan, Iraq and Palestine."
He goes on to say that rational people would not sacrifice their security, their money and their children "to please the liar of the White House. Had he been truthful about his claim for peace, he would not describe the person who ripped open pregnant women in Sabra and Shatila (a reference to Sharon) and the destroyer of the capitulation process (a reference to the peace process) as a man of peace."
Bin Laden says further: "He also would not have lied to people and said that we hate freedom and kill for the sake of killing. Reality proves our truthfulness and his lie. The killing of Russians was after their invasion of Afghanistan and Chechnya; the killing of Europeans was after their invasion of Iraq and Afghanistan; and the killing of Americans on the day of New York was after their support of the Jews in Palestine and their invasion of the Arabian Peninsula."
As much as you might hate bin Laden, he is telling the truth about the cause of the conflict, and Bush is lying.
Bush ought to come clean and tell the American people the truth about why we are in this war instead of spreading the lie that we were just innocent bystanders picked on by madmen. Even terrorists have rational reasons for what they do.
Bush is following the Israeli example. Rather than address the cause of the problem, he just tries to kill his way out of it. That policy has failed the Israelis, and it will fail us.
Charley Reese has been a journalist for 49 years, reporting on everything from sports to politics. From 1969—71, he worked as a campaign staffer for gubernatorial, senatorial and congressional races in several states. He was an editor, assistant to the publisher, and columnist for the Orlando Sentinel from 1971 to 2001. He now writes a syndicated column which is carried on LewRockwell.com. Reese served two years active duty in the U.S. Army as a tank gunner. Write to Charley Reese at P.O. Box 2446, Orlando, FL 32802.
© 2004 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.