The absence of Obama

A long, angry article by Robert Fisk—the most experienced historian of the contemporary Middle East—on how the United States’ has ensured its irrelevance to the future of the region.

Obama’s failure to support the Arab revolutions until they were all but over lost the US most of its surviving credit in the region. Obama was silent on the overthrow of Ben Ali, only joined in the chorus of contempt for Mubarak two days before his flight, condemned the Syrian regime – which has killed more of its people than any other dynasty in this Arab “spring”, save for the frightful Gaddafi – but makes it clear that he would be happy to see Assad survive, waves his puny fist at puny Bahrain’s cruelty and remains absolutely, stunningly silent over Saudi Arabia. And he goes on his knees before Israel. Is it any wonder, then, that Arabs are turning their backs on America, not out of fury or anger, nor with threats or violence, but with contempt? It is the Arabs and their fellow Muslims of the Middle East who are themselves now making the decisions.

Extract from Robert Fisk – The Independent

Fisk sounds like a disappointed idealist because—astonishing to say, after forty years’ witness to terrible cruelty, betrayal and destruction wrought in Iraq, Iran, Egypt, Lebanon and Syria by the West and its puppets—he continues to expect that rationality, humanity and even civility will triumph. Why, for goodness’ sake?

Obama says no Palestinian state must be declared at the UN. But why not? Who cares in the Middle East what Obama says? Not even, it seems, the Israelis. The Arab spring will soon become a hot summer and there will be an Arab autumn, too. By then, the Middle East may have changed forever. What America says will matter nothing.

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