The issue of SANCTIONS. Economic Sanctions. It's a cornerstone in our Diplomatic Policy, it's also a thorn in our side, a sponge in our mouth, and proof that we are chasing our own tails in the wrong direction. Take, for example, our relationship with Iraq. It's not a healthy one, it's not pleasurable, there's no frenching, no cuddling, no his needs - her needs, just full-on, ball-swinging, throat grabbing, ear biting brutemanship (and yes I've coined that term. Def: the art or skill of being a brute). In our filthy, jagged relationship with Iraq, we behaved masterly.
In 1990, we imposed harsh economic sanctions on Iraq. The goal was to isolate and cripple the nation economically, effectively forcing them to snap into shape and play by our rules - 'Reform!' was the cry we barked. However, such actions show a serious failure to come to grips with the reality of the world we live in - it's a clear example that we, the people, are not in control because I would never trudge through swamps with such heavy, thick feet. The sanctions are aimed at the leaders of the countries in hopes that once they see their people suffering, stricken by disease and malnutrition, struggling to even pull a trick (they're illusions, Michael!) for a Dinar (Iraqi dollar equivalent) - and also making it near impossible for the nation to operate the way it desires on the international scale - that their eyes will glisten with sympathy, they will open their arms and embrace their children, compromising, doing whatever they can to stop the suffering. Now, think back to Iraq........is this what happened? Did their leader, I won't say his name after the whole you-know fiasco, suddenly melt into a big softy, a sweet angel, a wide-eyed poet? The answer, simply, is NO. This is exactly what self-absorbed, hate-filled, power-hungry leaders want....the United States has played into their hands with unparalleled ease, unmatched unawareness. When children die and beggars beg, and disease sprints through the streets; when rats crawl, and bread stales, and water browns what, exactly, do you think they'll cry? Who do you think they'll blame? The sanctions don't affect the despotic, demon leaders of far-away countries; they affect its people....its everyday bakers, construction workers, farmers, seamstresses, artisans - it affects people like us. But we refuse to see that. We refuse to even try to see that.
So, now it's 1996. The sanctions have been in affect for 6 years. 5 years before that fateful day in September. Disease, malnutrition, all the things I spoke of are alive and thriving. The cries for help are heard, but by deaf men who sit in comfy chairs and wear suits to work. The anger is real, the betrayal they feel is real, the sadness, the death, it's all real and it's not the leaders who are feeling it. It's the people. We have created desperate people, and desperate people do desperate things. Desperate people turn into monsters. The leaders use the malnutrition as a senator, here, would use a late-night hooker against his opponent. How's the war on terror going? Well? Hmm. The next generation of terrorists, the same young people who lived through the nineties of isolation and disease and death, adults now, they are the leaders of the groups we fear, the people who haunt us. Who created them? The senators and the congressmen will tell you they were created poof! out of thin air, but I don't believe in magic.
Now, as new elections approach in Iran - keep in mind the leader of that nation - we've imposed harsh sanctions, once again. The people are hurting....let's hope we can illegally place a puppet in power over there, which is probably what will happen because if it doesn't, well, we've always been superb at creating desperate situations for regular people. Good luck negotiating with the new president over there - I wonder if the people will vote for a pro-western guy....i doubt it. Looks like a post-WWI, 1990s in Iraq kind of situation.
I just wish the United States would reevaluate its strategy. We don't act intelligently. We fail to see big pictures and we are oblivious to the effects of our actions. The Iron Law of Cause and Effect - you do this, and this will happen. It gets embarrassing, sometimes. We support monsanto and we walk through the world with the dumb, brick feet of Hodor....I want my nation to dance through the world with the elegance of Inigo Montoya....you killed my father, prepare to die.