(1000+ posts) Tue Sep-14-10 07:25 AM
Original message Hypocrisy: While We Condemn Quran Burnings, Drone Strikes Continue Unchecked
Hypocrisy: While We Condemn Quran Burnings, Drone Strikes Continue Unchecked
Al Jazeera / By Lamis Andoni
September 13, 2010 | Barack Obama, the US president, has warned that threats to burn the Quran are a sure and effective way to swell the ranks of al-Qaeda. This may be true, but largely because such symbolic acts of 'Islamophobia' are widely viewed as verifying the perception that the US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, along with its backing of Israel, are motivated by its hostility towards Muslims.
The previously unheard of pastor of a small Florida church may have scrapped his plan to publicly burn hundreds of Qurans on the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, but the threat alone has done untold damage to the already troubled relationship between the Muslim world and the West.
The US government's reaction to the plan will not have gone unnoticed. But no matter how strong the words of condemnation, those on the receiving end of US occupation or air raids will be struck by the apparent inconsistency.
General David Petraeus, the US commander in Afghanistan, warned that burning the Quran could endanger the lives of US troops who might become the target of retribution. But why do Obama and Petraeus think that burning the Quran is any less civilized or more dangerous than their use of unmanned drones to target suspected Taliban or al-Qaeda fighters and the subsequent civilian casualties these attacks often entail?
Terry Jones, the pastor behind the planned Quran bonfire, may be insane, as some, including his own daughter, have suggested. But what excuse do sane and sophisticated people like Obama, Petraeus, and Robert Gates, the US secretary of defence, have?