Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Someone Convince Me That Iraq's Not About Oil...

After reading this little crunchy bit of news, in which GWB attempts to once again self-justify the quagmire that is the Iraq War and Occupation; and this other little gem of inspired wisdom from Televangelist and former presidential candidate Pat Robertson on the topic of Hugo Chavez in Venezuela.

Apparently, it's acceptable foreign policy (in Mr. Robertson's bent little universe) for the US to go around assassinating world leaders it doesn't like. Chavez has long been critical of American foreign policy (especially since 9/11) - no big surprise there when you think about it - Central and South America bore the brunt of Reagan-era aggression and interventions during the 1980s. Although those countries have mostly recovered, many are still picking up the pieces. (I'll quietly ignore the monumental errors made in Argentina and Chile prior to Reagan)

Sayeth Mr. Robertson:

stop his country [Venezuela] from becoming “a launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism.”

“You know, I don't know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we're trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it,” Mr. Robertson said. “It's a whole lot cheaper than starting a war ... and I don't think any oil shipments will stop.”

So, fundamentally, we have a leader in a foreign country that is being openly critical of the United States. Further, that leader just happens to be sitting on top of a big chunk of Oil that the US purchases. Apparently, it's inconvenient for the US to have a leader of a resource supplying nation be critical of them - especially publicly. Sounds a lot like Iraq to me. (Yes, I know Saddam Hussein was a right royal bastard towards his people - but let's be honest, Saddam Hussein's abuse of his people wasn't the reason for US intervention)

Of course, coming from Pat Robertson, we do have to put his statements in context:

Mr. Robertson has made controversial statements in the past. In October, 2003, he suggested that the U.S. State Department be blown up with a nuclear device.

He has also said that feminism encourages women to “kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians.”

[Aug 23, 2005 Update]

Apparently, Mr. Robertson claims that he was quoted out of context. I heard his words quite clearly on the morning news. There was no doubt in my mind what Mr. Robertson was referring to. A man with his public profile and experience knows damn good and well how his words were going to be interpreted.

If he didn't "mean" that, then he should have found other words to use - or better yet, shut his trap. A man who once ran for the US Presidency has long ago learned the hard lessons of public speaking. Mr. Robertson's plea about context is an insult to the intelligence of any reasonable, rational human being.


Anonymous said...

US foriegn policy in the Middle East is ALL about the oil and nothing else.

That said, it is a perfectly legitimate foriegn policy goal to protect one's oil supply.

It would just be nice if they'd come clean and say it.


Anonymous said...

Note to Mr. Robertson:

The book says "Thou Shalt Not Kill".


Grog said...

But _he_ wouldn't be doing the killing, would he?