I was reading Dr Chandra Muzaffar's letter and I was wondering whether he truly believes much of what he has written, or was is it just more red meat to the usual 'Bush is a liar/USA is out to control the world' crowd.
First of all, let me disclose that I was and remain a supporter of the war to get rid of Iraq's Saddam Hussein. This doesn't mean I think that everything the US-led coalition has done is right. But I do think the good definitely outweighs the bad.
Now back to Chandra's letter. First he says that the US government is not really bothered by the Anwar Ibrahim or the ISA detainees issues. The US is merely giving lip service to these issues 'to twist the Malaysian government into submitting to certain plans it has for enhancing its global hegemony'.
Now, I'm no doctor but I do think that the good doctor seems to have twisted himself into a bit of a pretzel here. Why would Malaysia do something for the US to help the latter expand its 'hegemony' and then sit still while it criticises us on these very issues?
I would think the opposite would be more viable. Assuming Malaysia agrees with the US on whatever plans the US has, the US would then keep its quiet on any festering complaints it has on Malaysia.
Quid pro quo, as the saying goes. What Chandra has said makes no sense at all, unless we are to assume Malaysia is dumb enough to let the US have its way and also let them criticise us!
Now we get to the Iraq issue. Here, I'll agree with Chandra that the US would like Malaysia and other countries to contribute to the coalition force in Iraq. Doing so would then help the US in its dastardly plan to control or occupy Iraq.
From Chandra's letter, we can safely assume that the doctor does not think that the war to remove Saddam was right and that the US are still occupying Iraq despite its transfer to an interim sovereign government. Fine.
He even brings up polls that say Iraqis want the foreign troops to leave. But what he fails to say is that these polls usually say that the Iraqis want US forces to stay on until security is restored then leave. And not a day later too, mind you. And polls also show that up to 70 percent of Iraqis have confidence in Ayad Allawi and his interim cabinet.
Here, Chandra's priority seems to be this: make sure that we don't help the US-led coalition because their 'occupation' is illegal, even if this goes against the interest of the Iraqi people. So what if while we thumb our noses at the US, the Iraqis also get slapped?
Now this is coming from a man who fervently opposed the war and was part of the opinion that the war would do more harm than good because the Iraqi people would suffer. I'm generalising here, but the conventional opinion of this crowd was: yes, Saddam was evil, but we are against the war because we support the Iraqi people and we don't want to see them hurt.
The reality now is that the Iraqi people are still getting hurt by terrorists. After all, the terrorists bombs are now targeting normal Iraqi people. And assuming Chandra thinks the US is 'evil' so to speak, then why is he not doing his bit to try and help the Iraqi people now?
This reminds me of those pious human shields that went to Iraq to so-called protect the Iraqi people before the war. After the war, when the Iraqi people really needed protecting, they were nowhere to be seen.
It seems as if the Iraqis are only worth protecting if the bad guys are the US. If some terrorist comes a-knocking it's: 'Sorry guys, you're on your own. We're off to find other innocent people to protect form the nefarious US of A'.
Finally, we come to Chandra's view that everything the US does is some sort of conspiracy for global hegemony. Heck, maybe George W Bush is even placing his little finger at the side of his mouth as he outlines his master plan to control the world.
I dunno about you, but whenever I hear people saying, 'The US is out to control this, they're planning to control that and this', the first thing that comes to mind is, what are these guys smoking?
Look, I'm not naive to think that everything the US does is for the good of the world. But I'm also not buying into conspiracy theories about an evil Bush empire etc. and that everything the US does is for the purpose of expanding their plan for global dominance.
Those who think that way should lighten up on their Noam Chomsky and Michael Moore reading.