An astonishing letter from a member of a humanitarian organization who has worked all over the Middle East:
Every time I went to Afghanistan, Pakistan or Iraq on humanitarian missions the people begged me to assure them that Bush would be elected. These weren't a few people, as I'd first hoped (as a committed left winger,) but hundreds, thousands. They saw their struggle as I saw Cuba, Angola or Kosovo. I'm now forced, albeit with some personal reservations and resistance, to see their point. The people in these countries even begged me to tell the Americans to bomb their neighborhoods to kill the 'Taliban' that live there. Heartbreaking--but a heartbreaking admission of how sick they are of living under totalitarianism. They see America as freedom.
While watching the elections in Afghanistan I never saw such joy. Such hope. The people would come and shake my hand, hug me, just because of my nationality. What a success, I had to admit.
Even we on the left have to start coming to grips with the world, and that means coming to grips with the fact that unlike us liberal/left, a lot of people in the world admire, even love, George Bush, their 'liberator.' I hear even more passion for Bush in Iraq, worse (or better, depending on your point of view) from the people than even the soldiers, and the military are at least 5 to 1 for Bush...this would make the indigenous population maybe 9-1 for our current administration.
I was coming back from the Middle East when Bush was elected and saw the Iranians with the 'V' for victory claiming the streets in the thousands, the hundreds of thousands celebrating the Bush election.
We're going to have to rethink a lot of issues, positions, prejudices and fears, folks...it's a sad fact for some of us, but the future of the Islamic world seems to be in democracy. And we're more loved than our media and politicans are telling us--even Bush! Weird, maybe. True, unfortunately. Honest, indubitably.