Archive pour la catégorie ‘Articles Anglais’

North Africa

North Africa

Dear President Obama, I followed your actions in reference to Tunisia, where I was born and have an attachment to, as for generations my family has lived in that country, long before the French took it over as a protectorate.  And my distant family has lived there from the time before the Arab conquest and settled there, maybe with the Phoenicians or the Romans. You can see why I am personally interested in this particular country and furthermore in North Africa in general.

I followed the three debates and until now, neither you nor Governor Romney have brought up the subject, particularly whether it was right for the United States and its president to mix themselves into the interior affairs of those countries, and even act as a dictator by saying to President Ben Ali and later to President Mubarak of Egypt to get out. I was shocked to see an American president and a Democrat ordering a president of another faraway country to get out.

Honestly, I was appalled. I thought that in the United States, dictatorship was not acceptable. I didn’t believe my ears and told to myself is this democracy? I searched in the library to find an explanation for such orders or attitude. Finally, I found that only in Africa and in communist countries such rules existed, but our president is born in Hawaii, so he could not be the source of this education and these orders. Finally I closed the ranks of my thoughts and remembered that our president’s father was from Africa. Then I realized from where this attitude was coming.

I was not satisfied with my explanation, I was asking myself, how come that the Ennahda, the new ruling party in the government of Tunisia, is an extension of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood?  Their share in Tunisia is normally no more than five percent of the population. Now they have won in the national election. There must be some tricks also in Tunisia; I should not be astonished, as even in the United States such tricks exist.

I remembered that a few days ago I read that one of the leaders from the Nida party, another party, which opposes the new government, was murdered with stones. Here, in the United States, no one said a word about it. At the same time as the Benghazi attack, the American Embassy in Tunisia was attacked too. The damage was – all the cars that were parked around the embassy were burned to the ground, and the American school, which was not far from the embassy, was also burned.

At the same time, our embassy in Cairo was attacked and harassed and the protesters burned the American flags. No one from our government said a word about it. In fact the entire Middle East was in uproar. But our government was completely in panic or troubled because they had to deal with Benghazi. This was the big success of the Arab Spring, of which our government seemed to be very proud.

Dear Mr. President, with all due respect for the presidency, yesterday in the debate you seemed to ridicule your opponent, Governor Mitt Romney. When it came to the military power, you seemed to diminish his knowledge about the power of the army. Mr. President, at my age, and as a former officer, I can tell you that this was not elegant from your part. Mr. Romney is a very intelligent and smart man who has more experience in life than you had. Beside this, he is a father of five great sons and his experience in life is bigger than yours when you ran for president. As my president, I feel obliged to tell you that your reaction was not presidential.

Copyright 2012 Emile Tubiana

Just to Get it off My Chest – Wake Up America!

Just to Get it off My Chest – Wake Up America!
By Emile M Tubiana

Today, in the countries of the Arab Spring? In Tunisia, in Egypt and in Libya the people are far worse off than they were before.

Just to Get it off My Chest – Wake Up America!

I know that my fellow Americans have enthusiastically voted for Obama three and a half year ago. I hope that the intelligent ones among them have realized by now the meaning of their choice and their vote. I knew from the beginning that Obama’s intentions were different from any American president’s before him. I also knew that his dreams would transform America as we can see it now and even more, in order to share its wealth with the entire world, at any cost, and without any consideration for the unemployed, the rising cost of living, the out-of-control cost of fuel and of healthcare.

However, at the age of 80, having children and grandchildren, and having lived through WWII, having experience Nazism, communism, and socialism, I know that sooner or later, the American people will not tolerate Obama’s “change”. Everyone who was an immigrant or is immigrating now was dreaming of the opposite.

This is why I am calling on all Americans today to please not succumb again to his nice but empty words. If Obama would like to fulfill his dream, he should do this in his own house, as his dream is not the dream of everyone. I feel it is arrogance to impose his dream on us. Everyone has his own dream, but not everyone’s is the same as his. Now that I see the suffering of millions of unemployed people and the staggering number of food stamp recipients, I know that the healthcare he is imposing on everyone will not be sustainable. Obama, with all due respect, spoke about “change” but never cared to tell the people what kind of change he meant. The change that he dreamt about takes hundreds of years to accomplish, without upsetting the people.

Today’s media is trying to take advantage of Obama, for their own purpose, by saying that he should be given four more years – in the meantime their profits would go up.

Mr. President, I know your dream, but you cannot share it with the American people and also impose it on foreign countries. This is not fair. I mean – “the Arab Spring”. I myself was born in Africa and I would love to see the entire African continent being developed. It took Europe centuries and numerous wars to reach the level where it is today. This is why I am not happy that you encouraged Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and now Syria to change regime, while the people were not ready. Changing a dictatorship for a theocracy is no progress. You did it without telling anybody about your intentions. Do you realize what responsibility you took upon yourself and upon the United States?

I know these countries. Under Ben Ali, Mubarak, Khadafy the people were living peacefully, and those who were able emerged. They had a home, order, and stability. Do you know the situation in these countries now? As to Syria, we have done nothing to show the way to Bashir Assad and to his father, without wars. Even as we stand now, we do not know who would replace Assad – the Al Qaida, the Muslim Brotherhood? As for its neighbor, Israel, I am sure that they will eventually find a modus vivendi. In my view it is not necessary to send in our forces to safeguard the chemical weapon stockpiles, as long as Assad remains in power..

As to Iran, remember how it was with the Soviet Union. All that was needed was a strong and determined hand. But you did not do it. If you would have affirmed your position unequivocally, they would have yielded. Think of Alexander the Great. The Persians eventually gave up and even sang praise songs for him. Please allow me to give you an Iranian saying, “A determined man is worth 1000 undecided.” Leave things as they are in the US, for the few months that are left. Try to fix however what you have destroyed in these Arab countries. Don’t leave your job unfinished.

Do you know how the situation is today, in the countries of the Arab Spring? In Tunisia, in Egypt and in Libya the people are far worse off than they were before.

Copyright Emile Tubiana

Is This the Democracy We Intended for the Arab Countries?

Is This the Democracy We Intended for the Arab Countries?

In March of this year I published an article called “Democracy”. Today I feel compelled to post again an article on similar thoughts. After so many months have passed, it seems that President Obama wanted to teach these countries democracy, while here in the United States we are not sure if we have the right kind of democracy.

After almost bankrupting our country I wonder what Obama wanted to propagate in the Arab World. Is it our kind of democracy?  Has Obama been elected to impose this kind of democracy, which further impoverished the Arab countries like Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and who knows what other country? My President, you are not an example for the Arabs, the Europeans or the Americans. By saying, “not only the secular should vote” in fact, you opened the door for theocracy. Is this is the “change” you meant?  Allowing the Congress and the Senate to have closed door sessions – is this the transparency you promised during the elections and later on?

Now that we see the results of your way, please do not encourage people to go the same failing way, which is neither sure nor secure. We can all learn from General Petraeus, as he understood the Arab way of life and the way democracy works in the Middle East, which is different from ours, and he used his insight wisely. Even Alexander the Great of Macedonia understood that it was in his best interest not to change the local regime of the places he conquered.  By wanting to bring so-called “help” to the Arab countries we are in fact destabilizing the Arab World. Is this the kind of change our people had voted for when they elected you?

It took time and experience to create and to apply the art of democracy. The cost of democracy is different in every country. We just have to look at the countries which succeeded in implementing democracy, by counting the time it took them to evolve. We can notice that every revolution killed innocent people and left many wounded and created years of animosity without counting the economical damage. Can we pretend to be the best democracy in the world? Some say yes and some say no. Sometimes I wonder whether President Obama has been elected to lead the world or to impose on the American people the European democracy, which as we can see, has one country after the other falling apart in financial crisis.

Obama praised the Occupy Wall Street movement which is now disintegrating without any specific goal, unlike the Tea Party who had clear and positive demands.

Now we want to teach the Arab countries our democracy and we are conducting ourselves as if we were the elected masters of the world, by interfering with other people’s systems. We go even further by wanting to dictate to others how to proceed and how to manufacture revolutions and to chase their leaders from their countries, even those who have maintained stability and were considered to be friends of the United States for years. All this with the pretext of helping them create a democracy – without even having any valid candidate on hand, who would have the knowledge of the ways of democracy and the ability to create the appropriate institutions.  See for yourself what happened with the “Tunisian Spring”. The religious party has now the upper hand. The Egyptian so-called “revolt” is now under the control of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Libyan so-called “uprising” came under Shaaria law.

I am born in Tunisia and remember well that Tunisia was never a fanatic Muslim country. It has become Muslim after the Arab conquest in the seventh century. In fact the population is of Bedouin origin, with a lot of talent and faith. As per Fereydoun Hoveyda’s book “What Do the Arabs Want” it is mentioned In reference to Tunisia that there are only five percent of real Arabs. Now suddenly, the majority became Muslim as represented at the elections by the religious party Ennahda. Wouldn’t it have forced the voters? Is this the separation of state and religion?                                                                   
Let other nations develop their own capacity according to their way of life in their own countries. Isn’t this the real freedom that we are preaching?

Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

Are the Egyptian Riots a Spontaneous Revolt, or a popular uprising without any leader or instigator?

I wrote and published this article on February 2, 2011. Now, it has been eight and a half months since I started wondering what kind of change would result of this revolt or of our President’ interference. The Muslim Brotherhood seems to have taken over. Meanwhile I don’t see any democracy anywhere near, or any stability or security for the people. Many Christians have been killed and the army has not protected them. The Hamas is transferring its office from Damascus to Cairo. Is this the kind of Democracy we are expecting from the Egyptian uprising? The Sinai is open to terrorists without the control of the army and without any respect for the peace agreement between Israel and Egypt which had stopped the war and brought stability to the entire Middle East. Is this is the change we wished for?

Are the Egyptian Riots a Spontaneous Revolt, or a popular uprising without any leader or instigator?

Are the Egyptian riots a spontaneous revolt, or a popular uprising without any leader or instigator? I doubt it.  Do we really know what the Egyptian people want? What kind of government do they want to institute? Do we know what kind of leaders are pulling the strings or working behind the scenes of this so-called spontaneous revolt?

I cannot base my opinion on rumors like the one found in an article published by The London Telegraph which says that the United States was behind the planning of this event, without any confirmation from US sources. We can read many articles in the press, but which ones can we trust?

Looking back at Obama’s Cairo University speech, could it be an indication of the direction he intended to take the United States into?

How come our President takes the right upon himself to impose on the leader of a sovereign state an ultimatum to leave his office immediately?  Does he feel he is entitled to do so because of the 1.5 billion in aid the US provides to Egypt? Meanwhile here in the US there is no end to the additional trillions he keeps spending.

He is criticizing the high unemployment rate in Egypt, while we have 9.5% right here in the US.
I remember that Obama had said during the Iranian popular protest, “It is up to the Iranians to make decisions about who Iran’s leaders will be,” after having been silent for a while and not intervening for the rights of the opposition. This was the case for Iran, which is not an ally. Now, however in the case of Egypt, whose President has been loyal to the United States and a stabilizer for the Middle East for 30 years, our President does not give him any consideration and although pretending not to mix himself into the current events, he is encouraging them by publicly humiliating Mubarak, without even knowing who is behind them.

Knowing that Mubarak’s presidency will normally expire in September of this year, and having heard  him confirm that he would terminate his duty with honor and dignity, what is the reason for the US turning up the heat on the Egyptian President now?

Being neither Muslim nor Arab, I feel that  the policy of the Obama Administration is publicly taking away the dignity of President Hosni Mubarak and his entourage, and  that of a large part of the Egyptian Army and maybe even that of part of the Middle East people. Those who do not know the value of an Arab’s honor cannot understand the gravity of the insult brought upon President Mubarak. There is no guarantee that a better leadership team will take over after the elections in September 2011.

Mubarak’s choice for Vice President, intelligence chief Gen. Omar Suleiman was coordinated with the White House the day before the announcement. What happened then? Did the White House change its mind?  While P.J. Crowly from the State Department said, “President Mubarak’s words pledging reform must be followed by action,” Hillary Clinton kept saying, “Mubarak must go now!”

Those contradicting messages are confusing to Mubarak, to the Egyptians and to US citizens as well. I am convinced that our government had no idea who the groups of protesters are and who the people providing and shouting the messages for them are. Should our government know, we would have the right to know too.

I wonder whether the demands of the protesters are indirectly coming from the Muslim Brotherhood or any other group. Is this the way we intend to treat our Arab allies in the Middle East? I believe that there is still time to revise our policy before it is too late, as we may find ourselves facing an Egyptian Khomeini!  I am for democracy everywhere in the world but the planning should not come from our people, but rather from the people of the country in question and not from abroad and unchecked. Would we accept the meddling of other powers in our policies?

If however this is the intent of the US Government, is this the legacy our President and  Senator Schumer wish to leave, when they keep saying publicly that Mubarak should go now. It looks like a dictate. Do we know who will come after Mubarak’s departure?

In order to appease all the people in Egypt and abroad I wish that the army would protect first the people and prevent any political abuse and any reoccurrence of the meddling of  illegitimate forces like the ones  who kidnapped the potential new government in Iran.

If Mubarak is to go in September, the army should guarantee a fair transition of power, and make sure that the human rights of the Egyptian people are secured. Furthermore, that the peace treaty between Egypt and Israel is preserved. I hope that Mr ElBaradei knows what he is doing by letting the Muslim Brotherhood organization use him as a figure head.  I hope that the Egyptian people know who Mr ElBaradei is. In any event, I don’t believe that he is a friend of the US.

As for the people we saw in the streets of Cairo, I don’t have the impression that they really want a democracy. Change through violence in Egypt could bring about tyranny and extremism instead of freedom and could be worse than the status quo. Our leader should see the potential for Egypt’s future as it is and not as he wishes it to be. Any mistake in judgment could be a disaster for the Middle East, for our allies, for our country, and for the world.  This is not a time for gambling.

Emile Tubiana
A concerned US senior citizen.

Obama and Israel – a Difficult Relationship

Obama and Israel – a Difficult Relationship

Since the election of our president, I followed his line of thought.

First I thought that our president was closer to me than any other president, as I was born in Africa like his father, but the more I listened to his speeches, the more I concluded that his thoughts may be closer to the Asian Islamic way of thinking than to the Middle Eastern and North African Islamic Arab one.

Encouraging the Arabs in the Middle East to make revolutions without consideration for the results of this enormous protest, which took on drastic proportions and is leading to unknown consequences, shows me, with all due respect for my president, that he was not well advised on the Arab mentality and traditions.   Proof of that matter is that many countries are not prepared to follow his thoughts, but rather distance themselves from him. Instead of the democracy he wished for, his actions created an anarchy which develops towards the unknown without any guidance or direction.  

As I happen to know, our ambassadors played an active role in this endeavor and finally he joined them by dictating to the rulers what to do. I was unhappy to see how he treated our friends and allies like President Mubarak of Egypt, who was actually willing to cooperate and prepare democratic elections for September 2011 and to step down at that time. What was the rush for making him go immediately and in a very disgraceful way, which much upset Saudi Arabia? By doing so he alienated another ally, Saudi Arabia, which is our supplier of oil and a serious buyer of all kinds of products. These economic exchanges are the engine of our economy.

Among the alienated Arab countries I can cite the following: Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States, which make up a group of eight states against our policy and which may in the near future include Jordan, Morocco and Yemen. Now with his proposal mentioning the 1967 borders for Israel and the way he formulated the Thursday speech and with his words at today’s AIPAC meeting, he alarmed all the Jews in the US and Israel. We should not forget and remember that our Ambassador to the UN, Ms. Rice, pictured Israel many times as an apartheid country.  In my view this should be stopped as it aggravates Israel’s situation even further.  

Our president’s speech at AIPAC resulted in a lot of applause, but in my view it also created doubt and mistrust. We know that here we are dealing with very intelligent, peaceful and democratic people. I doubt if those applauds were a sign of approval, or rather just being carried away into the election mood, or something else.  From experience, deceiving the Jews the first time, one cannot not expect to be trusted the second time. The Jewish people has no margin for error as it has been gratified with such negative experiences in the past. Last time Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Jewish people were humiliated. After a few leaders protested everyone believed that our president  understood the significance of  the insult  and let go. No one knew he would come back with such an uncalled-for proposal like the 1967 borders.

As for me, a American Jew born in Africa, I believe it is my duty to be cautious when elections come around.  Please remember, we the Jews from Arab countries have been displaced the same way the Palestinians have been displaced.  Today all these Jewish refugees are settled by their own means and have left behind their property which is worth more than the property Palestinians have left behind. I believe that is a balanced claim and Israel should not be forced to receive the Palestinian refugees or have to pay any money for damages, unless Israel wants to show a good will to help them going further in their life.

Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

Barbara Walter Is Flattering Obama while Diminishing Bush and Clinton

For many years I admired you when you were with the famous Ted Koppel.
All the credit you received at that time had diminished day by day until the time you politicized the entire military episode about Obama giving the order to kill. As reported also by the Media Research Center, “On Wednesday’s The View, ABC’s Barbara Walters slobbered over the ‘courage, and the guts, and the coolness’ of President Obama in ordering the assassination of terrorist Osama bin Laden. ‘It was enormously, enormously courageous,’ she said of the president’s decision to commence the mission to kill or capture the al Qaeda leader.
‘President Bush tried, President Clinton tried, but Barack Obama was the one who had the courage and the guts and the coolness,’ Walters said of the mission before being drowned out in applause from the audience.”
I thought you are in love of our president. As you serve the public, you should bring the facts and not your admiration. Particularly knowing that Obama didn’t succeed to help either the economy or the gas prices, just before the summer, or most importantly, to reduce the unemployment, which went through the roof. Obama went to get credit when he visit the largest barrack of the US army in the United States. You know why? Because the army is the only community that does not feel the heat of Obama’s policy and that has to be neutral and greet him as their commander in chief. He is counting on the army to help him get another term in the next election.
Giving compliments to our president is OK, but not when you try to diminish the other presidents as you said, “President Bush tried, President Clinton tried, but Barack Obama was the one who had the courage and the guts and the coolness.”
Ms Walters, do your job as you used to do it with Ted Koppel and leave the politics outside your job.
The real heroes of this action are the seals and their commanders like the hero of the Entebbe Raid Rescue Mission where the brother of Benjamin Netanyahu, Colonel Yonatan Netanyahu lead 29 commandos who succeeded to bring back the passengers of Air France but he lost his life in that mission.

Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

President Obama – About Your Budget Speech at the Facebook Forum

President Obama – About Your Budget Speech at the Facebook Forum

I listened to you carefully, to hear what you had to say in reference to reducing the astronomical budget deficit. Instead, you were attacking the Republicans. Further you were saying something to the effect that you are dreaming of a society where everyone is equal and fair, and where the rich should pay their duty to the less fortunate people.
Mr. President, I could have been your father age wise, born and having grown up in Africa until the age of fourteen.

Allow me to tell you that I survived under the German bombs of WWII, and much more than you can imagine and I learned many things in life. Having said that, what you said about the fair and just society that you dream about it, and that the rich should pay for the poor because the country gave them the opportunity to become rich, please think about this:

“I’d rather be poor among the rich, than being poor among the poor.”

Mr. President, you would not have the White House and you would not own a house worth two million dollars and show an income equal to this amount if you were living only among poor people. Americans are of a generous nature but they do not like to be asked or forced to give.  I experienced this during WWII with the American soldiers

. Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

I Don’t Believe Revolution Is a Solution

I Don’t Believe Revolution Is a Solution

Our President succeeded in influencing the majority of the American population, since he was elected. Some say they believe that the media and certain elite groups were the backbone of Obama’s presidency. They fought vehemently for him during the election and onward. It is to be recognized that all of Obama’s nice speeches and promises were indeed intended to create enthusiasm and fill the peoples’ minds with dreams that the audience could identify itself with. Who does not love living in peace and sharing the wealth of our a great prosperity and having social justice for all?  

Since my youth I heard such beautiful language, which let me dream, until the first German bomb awakened our peaceful town. Who did not dream about peace in his youth?  About brotherhood, about lovely songs we learned in our French school, like this song, “Si tous les gars du monde se donnaient un jour la main et marcheront la main dans la main, le soleil brillera pour demain “ (If all the guys of the world would one day join hands  and walk hand in hand, the sun would shine for tomorrow). These are beautiful words, similar to those that our President uses. But unfortunately we saw in our time, I mean over seventy years ago, instead of peace – Nazism, Communism and WWII. Those who have lived in that era will understand what I am saying. That’s why I believe that in order to reach those beautiful times of which I am writing, we should be careful not to advise other people to make a revolution. If they want a change from one regime to another, they should advance the idea very slowly. In my view, we have to let every country and every people blossom on their own, according to their stage of development, their pace, their way of life, and without any coercion, just like a toddler who is learning to walk by himself.

We should not forget that all human beings are created equal but also that each one is unique and each nation is unique and each nation has its own age, its own customs and its own cycle. In our judgment, we should take into consideration those facts. As Oriental wisdom says, “The one who is not able to honor the stranger and the man of another tribe is not worthy of being called the son of a noble nation.”

Many politicians think that they can perform miracles without having at least a comfortable majority of people with them.  I didn’t vote for Obama but when he succeeded I believed that he would be the president of all Americans. I wished that he would succeed in his tasks for two reasons,
1.  I wanted that our nation would succeed too.
2.  I wanted that Obama would succeed as he is a member of a minority, just as we are all part of minorities.

Obama is using his intelligence and school knowledge, but in a different direction, which we all have not expected. In fact Obama is the one who had caused the creation of the Tea Party movement, as he was not listening to the people.

The November election had proved it, despite the fact that he is a nice person, a persuasive man, and he is mastering the language with great talent and intonation. I recognize that he expresses himself with magnificent words. He reminds me of a few leaders in history who succeeded to change the world and awaken many forces, innate in the human being. Some performed marvels and others have created disaster, even if in their mind they wanted to change the world for the better. I should not forget that Obama succeeded to divide not only the American people, but also the Jewish people and their families.

If we continue mixing ourselves in any revolution, we identify ourselves with one side or with the other and would create at the same time friends and enemies. But in my view, we should help both sides with humanitarian aid, as we don’t know what is best for everyone. I still believe that these revolutions were not spontaneous, but even if they were, no one has a guarantee that they will succeed.  Only time will tell.  

Furthermore they cause the death of many people and suffering for the wounded and the displaced, without mentioning the material destructions. Just by seeing the thousands of refugees from many poor African countries, who lost their jobs, heading towards Tunisia, one has to wonder what will become of them. They were peacefully working in Libya and had their livelihood there. Who is responsible for that? It took thirty years with Mubarak, with Khadafi and with all those leaders to maintain a peaceful Middle East, despite some incidents, and the entire world was enjoying a steady oil supply. Now everything is in question.

The case of Tunisia is very unique as the population has been educated and prepared for many years to act in a peaceful and intelligent way. The strong tourism influx has also contributed to a constant exchange of ideas and culture. I believe that the Tunisians are able to solve their problems on their own by creating a balanced, non extremist government, maybe even creating a secular country.

Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

Are We Out of Our Mind to Risk Egypt?

Are We Out of Our Mind to Risk Egypt?

Having watched the interview between President Obama and Bill O’Reilly the other day, I couldn’t help describing what I saw. In my view it was relevant for a president of a huge country of 300 million people – a continent in itself.

The president seemed relaxed and as one anchor put it nicely, “he is very charming and a lovable person.”  But for a president of such a great country like the United States, who has a lot of responsibility towards the world, I felt that he is not aware of what is going on in the world, and particularly in Tunisia and in Egypt. Or maybe he is just very astute to play all of us who are watching him at this interview.

It seemed to me like he enjoys watching the revolt in those countries like a football game and his sole role is to orchestrate the events like a conductor. I understand that everyone is hoping to change the Arab regimes into democracies. For many this is even a beautiful dream. The question remains, however, what is the cost for such a change? How many human beings and how much destruction this change would entail and how long would it take? Fifty years, hundred years to reach again stability and prosperity for everyone in those countries?  We should not forget that the West has neglected the Arab countries for centuries and that the colonization took advantage of the Arab misery. It is only now that the West started to understand that the situation of the Arabs cannot remain stagnant and may even destroy the development of the West.

I also understand that the young Egyptian generation has proven its case. I am also convinced that not everyone knows the reason of such a protest and its real meaning. No one took responsibility. Until now we don’t know who had initiated this dramatic event and what the result would be. Let’s say that Mubarak would leave his post today. I am not convinced that the Egyptian revolution if it succeeds would satisfy the entire population.

I don’t believe that democracy can solve all the problems that plague Egypt now and transform it into a so-called western-style country, knowing very well that even in the best country in the world democracy could not immediately satisfy its entire population. Taking the United States as an example, one can easily find poverty, run-down neighborhoods, and starving children. Not every democracy possesses natural resources, the needed capital, and the know-how, etc. And even if they have the resources, they need a lot of infrastructure, equipment and knowledgeable people to create a stable and fruitful economy.

Yes, revolutionary people can eradicate an entire generation which oppressed the people, but that cannot create a prosperous and stable middle class from one day to the next. Even when Germany’s reunification took place, they needed a lot of money. West Germany had to make a lot of sacrifices in order to balance their budget and the people from both sides, west and east, had to cope slowly in order to adjust themselves to the new situation.

With all due respect for President Obama and his administration I wonder if they had verified how this huge protest got all started and who is behind it. For an event of such magnitude it would be odd if there had been no planning and no preparation and nobody to lead the people. I was thinking about the article I read in the London Telegraph which said that the United States was behind it. Even if this is hard for me to believe I can imagine that someone or some organization who promotes democracy could have influenced and actively supported the movement.

I understand the development in the Middle East and the Arab countries need for change, but it takes more than a president or a general to transform the unacceptable situation. No one knows if the result of the change would not produce a worse situation.

On Wednesday February 10, I read an article in El Arabiya titled, “Egypt & US swap barbs as tension mounts.” In the article it says, “Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit accused the United States Wednesday of imposing its ‘will’ on its Arab ally, as the White House warned that Cairo had failed to even reach a ‘minimum threshold’ for reform. Egypt’s top diplomat lashed out in a television interview on a day when Washington took a critical line towards Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman, who is in charge of a dialogue with opposition groups. And amid warnings by the Egyptian government of a military crackdown on rejuvenated protests, the U.S. government again pleaded with armed forces it helped build with billions of dollars in aid to show restraint.

Abul Gheit condemned U.S. rhetoric on a crisis sparked by days of opposition protests in Egypt, complaining in an interview with America’s PBS television at Washington’s urgent tone.”

Washington’s urgent tone.  “ When you speak about ‘prompt,’ ‘immediate,’ ‘now,’ as if you were imposing on a great country like Egypt, a great friend that has always maintained the best of relationships with the United States, you are imposing your will on him.”    Egypt FM Ahmed Abul Gheit

I wonder if the President of the United States is not about to lose Egypt to other powers and to turn the entire Middle East into a disaster zone that would generate instability and imperil all the moderate Arab rulers who backed the United States for so many years. Is this the way the West wants to teach democracy in the Arab World? We pretend that only the people of Egypt are going to decide their destiny and their future, but we try to impose our will. Losing Egypt will in fact make us lose the entire Middle East. Is this what we try to accomplish?

Lately it was Netanyahu who was told what to do, and now Mubarak, whom the United States is trying to chase out of office without any consideration. I wonder if we had not inflamed the Egyptian young generation and this had lead to violence. Who will take the blame?

Copyright 2011 Emile Tubiana

The Meaning of this Election

The Meaning of this Election

Since the 2008 elections, three respected democratic leaders including President Barack Hussein Obama, the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, and Senior United States Senator Harry Mason Reid, with all respect, wanted to lead the nation in a completely different direction from the one for which they were elected.  I am sure that they had good intentions, which however lacked any correlation with the will of the people, with the American culture and with the feasibility in the current economic situation.  President Barack Obama, who has extensive knowledge of law as he himself has been a professor of law, didn’t have any prior experience in economics or simple business administration, as he hadn’t managed a single small business in his life.

Since the beginning of the launching of the healthcare bill it was clear that the majority of the people objected to it and complained continuously.  How could the democrats and the president not feel the people’s and the opposition’s discontent? However, they pushed the bill further with disregard and by turning a deaf ear to the alarmed voice of the people. Where are the promises of transparency and of openness? Furthermore they applied all kind of pressure, such as goodies and other means in order to obtain the majority in the senate. The example of Senator Sestak is flagrant. This procedure alone infuriated and antagonized not only the opposition but even their liberal partners.

Everyone expected that the president would take into consideration the will of the people as he promised.  Is this the kind of democracy we want to teach the Iraqis, the Afghans and other countries that do not have a democratic government? President Clinton had understood that it was necessary to listen to the people and had included more conservative ideas during his second term.

I do not understand how the democrats have not seen it coming – a defeat of such magnitude as it had never before occurred in the United State of America. It was the natural reaction, given the high numbers of unemployed people, never before seen since the big depression, not counting the number of families losing their homes. All these mishaps have created a mass of unhappy people.

The President blamed this defeat on bad communication. Just by saying so he confirmed that despite this huge defeat he still didn’t grasp the message the people sent to him and to the democrats. It is clear to all that the defeat is about the substance of his policy which is destroying our economy and the American way of life that we enjoyed for so long. The democrats should have known, as these new bills they shoved down the people’s throats, such the healthcare, the stimulus, cap and trade, the regulations, the tax increases, the trillions in spending without any financial collateral were bound to upset everyone.

If an entrepreneur used the same method he would be bankrupt and he would pay for his miscalculation with losses and suffering for many years. However, politicians who cause even more damage are immune. Mr Obama promised to heal the nation. In his campaign he said “no more blue states no more red states, we are all Americans” but instead, he divided this great nation.

Addressing the Hispanic voters, President Obama said, as Mr. Charles Krauthammer puts it elegantly in his article on Thursday, October 28, 2010; 9:45: President Obama chided Latinos who “sit out the election instead of saying,  ‘We’re gonna punish our enemies and we’re gonna reward our friends who stand with us on issues that are important to us.’ “
I wonder if by saying “our enemies” he meant the Iranians, Al-Qaida, or the Taliban’s, that in fact are, the real enemies of the United States and not our fellow Americans who disagree whit his social-democratic agenda.

Let the people breathe air; let them decide for their future. Not a single entrepreneur would like to invest or create jobs if he doesn’t have any certainty for the future. In order to create jobs, one should analyze and plan in advance. When President Obama blamed the defeat of losing over sixty seats in congress and 680 seats in the states and so many governors on bad communication,  he is in fact doing a disservice to himself and to the country, and he is losing credibility in the states and in the world.

With so many problems at home, Mr. President, and with all due respect for the office you occupy, I am asking myself how you can now mix yourself in greater world affairs before solving our national issues first.

Copyright 2010 Emile Tubiana