Is there an anti-liberal bias on Western media outlets? What you think?
Since even before what has been pinned — by mostly the Western community — as the ‘Arab Spring’, the rhetoric we’ve heard from President Bashar al-Assad is rather anti-western.
Mr. Assad has accused Western nations, from the U.S. to the U.K. of meddling in Syrian affairs, of trying to destabilize his country, of supporting Israeli expansionism in region as well as arming and mobilizing various extremist and/or terrorist groups in the region.
He has criticized the West for what he deems a continued policy of imperialism and colonialism that endured through the entirety of the twentieth century and for centuries before.
President Assad also argues that forces within Western societies (and governments mainly) are bent on portraying all movements for national sovereignty in the Middle East and elsewhere as a security threat to the international community. He points to Western media conglomerates, lobbyists, and spies and blames them for fabricating lies as pretenses for war, as in the case of the war in Iraq, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the cold-war between Iran and the West.
President Assad has also criticized the West for its double-standards, championing democracy on one end and supporting anti-democratic, extremist terrorist groups on the other. He looks to the West’s strongest Arab allies in the Middle East, and notices that only kings and democracies get along.
The question of whether President Bashar al-Assad is anti-western is a complicated one, especially because the man is a champion of secularism, social liberalism, liberal Islam, and economic prosperity. His main opponent is extremism, which spills over from the Gulf, and armed conflict, which is mainly instigated by Israel.
Therefore it seems that President Bashar al-Assad is not anti-Western, but rather, that he is opposed to the foreign policies of Western nations which, he argues, are contrary to the philosophical foundations of Western society.
What is moral?
All our skills are different. We are all different. We all need each other.
In the days of President Harry Truman, relations between the United States and the Middle East weren’t so sour.
In 1952, everything changed.
The United Kingdom was planning to depose the newly democratically elected prime minister of Iran: Prime Minister Mossadegh. He is the man seated in the photograph above.
Mossadegh had quickly become the archenemy of the UK.
Tensions worsened when he began making calls for the nationalization of Iranian oil. For so long, foreign nations, or colonialists, as they were called, had been exploiting the Iran’s vast oil wealth, leaving the majority of the population extremely impoverished (All the Shah’s Men, Kinzer).
Through the sly tactics of English government officials, the United Kingdom convinced the Americans to tag along. The key word was communism, which was all the Americans needed to hear.
After the Cold War however, it became increasingly clear that communism was not the threat. It was a much deeper issue.
For centuries, the West exploited countries for their resources. Nations like Iran, Syria, and countries outside the Middle East like Venezuela and Cuba, did not embrace communism simply to spite the West. On the contrary, they were doing the exact opposite. Iranians and Syrians alike began making the same demands that their American counterparts made in their early history – that they be granted the right to collect the fruits of their labor and to profit off the wealth of their natural resources. Both of these demands are fundamental principles of free market economics.
Ironically though, the U.K., with the help of the U.S., did what ever they could to prevent these countries from doing just that. They did this by conducting covert coup d’etats and assassinations. They financed monarchies and even bribed foreigners to stir uprisings in their own countries (All the Shah’s Men, Kinzer).
What is even more ironic is that the countries stirring these uprisings, namely the U.K. and the U.S., tout Western principles of freedom and democracy, while, simultaneously, investing in movements led by Islamic fundamentalists and tyrannical monarchies abroad.
In Iran, for example, one Islamic cleric turned against the popularly elected leader Prime Minister Mossadegh. A day later he received $10,000 from the CIA.
Incidents like these are scattered throughout the twentieth century. They only serve to illuminate the truth behind the politics of the Middle East. Even more so, they force me to question the current chaos gripping the Middle East today.
I ask myself questions like, who is behind these Arab protests? Are they really genuine? And why are countries like Saudi Arabia not being scrutinized for their brutal suppression of pro-democracy protests in Bahrain?
Perhaps it is for the same reason that the U.K. orchestrated the coup d’etat against Prime Minister Mossadegh in 1952 – to preserve their grasp on the oil wealth of the Middle East.