Monday, February 27, 2006

Radical Backlash

I have noticed an eerie symmetry between the recent factional fighting in Iraq and the recent Dubai ports uproar in the U.S. The message to leaders from these two should be clear: if you build support by promoting fear and fanning the flames of intolerance, eventually you will create a beast you cannot control.

The Iraqis have done it, as clerics like al-Sadr found that his violent, anti-American rhetoric has been turned into anti-Sunni violence. And Bush has found that promoting fear and distrust of the Arab world makes it hard for your people (and your Congress) to distinguish been friends and enemies.

Like the dark side of the force, fear as a tool of policy is quicker, easier, and more seductive, but ultimately has its own price to pay.

No comments: