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Publisher's Outlook
November 2001

Nadji Tehrani

Does The World Deserve America?


[ Go Right To: Terrorism And Islam In Perspective ]

First Things First
I would like to take this opportunity to extend our sincere condolences to those of you who have been injured, suffered, lost loved ones or have been otherwise adversely impacted (as all Americans have) by the truly tragic attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and through plane hijackings on September 11, 2001 by a group of terrorists. One cannot help but wonder what is really going on in the minds of these outlaws.

Based on the research I have conducted, and having read literature and seen numerous programs on television, the directives, which encourage the terrorists to kill mass numbers of innocent men, women and children in the United States and elsewhere are clearly forbidden by the best of Islamic traditions and writings. In fact, many Islamic clergymen have come forward and clearly stated that these actions have nothing to do with Islam or the Koran (the official book and teachings of Islam). No matter what your religious denomination, race or beliefs, it defies logic to believe that those who commit such attacks will end up in paradise and remain with God. The teachings of the Old Testament tell us we are all (Muslims, Christians, Jews) the children of Abraham, and as such, we are all equal in the eyes of God.

Before I discuss the root cause of the problems in the Middle East, I would like to take a moment to explain why many people in the world do not deserve what America has done for the world. Having lived more than half of my life in these United States, I have come to the realization that there is no other country in the world that compares to America in any way. Here are my thoughts and why:

1.) Human Rights Champion. The United States is one of the most prominent champions of human rights, not only within the U.S., but also throughout the world.

2.) Land Of Opportunity For All Religions, Races And Minorities, Including Women. Few other countries in the world even come close when it comes to providing equal opportunity for its citizens, regardless of religion, race, gender, etc. It is a known fact that a major contributing factor to the unsurpassed progress and economic power of the United States is that America is a melting pot of virtually all nations. Indeed, America's doors are open to those who seek to become a part of this great society and let their ambitions take them as high as they can go. If America had kept other nationalities, religions and races from entering the U.S., America would not be such a phenomenal success story and, indeed, the world's leading superpower, bar none. Indeed, America is so fortunate because it has opened its arms to receive everyone.

3.) America Is Always A Trusted Ally. Those of you who have had dealings with or have done business with other superpowers know full well that while some superpowers may renege on their original promises, the United States does not. A case in point is Desert Storm. This war was started by America and its allies to protect the territorial integrity of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia from Saddam Hussein's attacks. Indeed, America spent billions of dollars and sacrificed the lives of some young men and women in the line of duty only to protect its allies, namely Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. In fact, had it not been for the strong and powerful determination of the U.S. in defending these countries, you can bet your bottom dollar that Saddam Hussein probably would have taken over all of the Middle East by now, and under such dictatorship, no fanatics or anyone else could express opinions without getting shot.

4.) America Is A Superpower With Empathy. It has been said that actions speak louder than words. Our country shows its truly superior leadership and empathy by actually sending millions of pounds of food, medicine, blankets, etc. to the Afghan refugees. In short, because the U.S. is an empathetic and civilized culture, where protection of human rights is truly practiced, it showed its graciousness and nobility by actually sending humanitarian aid provisions to the refugees of a country with which it is at war.

5.) America Is The Educational Source For Many World Leaders. Indeed, many world leaders, business leaders and technology leaders are trained in the United States' universities and related institutions. Practically every cabinet member of every country includes several people trained in the United States. I ask, how could such a wonderful country that has done so much for the world be considered evil?

6.) The United States Is A Global Leader In Technology And Innovation. Every country in the world is currently using technology developed in the U.S. to increase productivity, solve medical problems and improve overall lifestyles. In every country, when you turn on a computer, the first thing you are likely to see is Microsoft Windows, reminding everyone in the world that this technology comes from the United States.

7.) The United States Is Also A World Leader In Foreign Aid. The United States is among the top five countries in the world to provide foreign aid annually to needy countries. This is another noble tradition by America that has continued for years. The problem is that in many countries, 95 to 98 percent of the foreign aid goes into the pockets of the rulers and people close to the rulers...not to the needy. But that's another problem. My question is, would an evil country consider the selfless acts of providing aid to foreign nations, even those with which it is at war?

8.) The United States Is A Leader In Finance For The Rest Of The World. Through the establishment of the World Bank, the U.S. has also championed the provision of trillions of dollars annually in financial support and loans to needy countries. While such actions are well intended, most countries that receive such loans never have any intention of paying them back. I ask, if America is not a good country, what do you call the other thieves who, for a variety of reasons, accept money from America, put it in their own pockets and give nothing to their people who need it?

When You Compare, There Is No Comparison
In summary, anyone who lives on this planet should know that it is foolish to question and challenge the greatness of the United States. In fact, if there are such things as sovereign countries in the Middle East today, it is because of the power of the United States. If the U.S. should suddenly drop its support of the Middle Eastern countries, other superpowers such as Russia and China, without a doubt, would move in immediately, get rid of the Middle Eastern leaders, divide up the oil fields among themselves and stay in those countries forever. The Middle Eastern dissidents or critics would be placed in front of a machine gun, which would be working around the clock killing thousands, if not millions, of people until every last one of the opposition forces was dead.

A Great Source Of Problems In The Middle East Is Its Vast Oil Reserves
As long as most countries of the Middle East have vast oil reservoirs, there will always be a problem in those countries. Obviously, the superpowers would like to protect the oil fields (at least in the case of the United States) so that the economy would prosper, for the U.S. obtains approximately a quarter of its oil imports from the Middle East.

On the other hand, if certain other superpowers were to take over the Middle East, they would do so to take ownership of the oil fields from the leaders of those countries and bring strict dictatorial rules. Thereafter, they would forever control (and I really mean forever) the oil fields and never release them.

Proof In The Pudding
1.) When the United States defended the territorial integrity of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, the U.S. government never claimed ownership of anything, and, except for nominal policing by soldiers, the United States left the countries alone.

2.) When the Russians captured Berlin in World War II, they never left for 45 years and they actually put up the famous Berlin Wall. No German was allowed to visit friends or relatives from East Germany to West Germany.

I am sure the intelligent Muslim and Arabic nations as a whole realize these facts of life.

Oil-Producing Nations Of The Middle East Need A Strong Ally
This is a crucial point for the Middle East leadership to understand. A superpower like America is needed to protect the sovereignty of all oil-producing nations to prevent foreign take-over attempts. If they don't like the United States, they will have to take their chances with the Chinese or the Russians.

In Summary
Having enumerated some of the greatest attributes of the United States, any reasonable nation in the Middle East or around the world might admit that if you are going to have an ally that can be trusted and depended upon, it is the United States. As I pointed out, the United States' presence in the Middle East is a major reason other superpowers have not occupied oil-producing countries as yet. For this alone, I think the world owes a great "thank you" to the U.S. for having protected the sovereignty of their countries while not taking over those countries and putting up walls of depression and suppression.

If you ask me, "Does the world deserve what America has done for it?" my answer is a resounding "no." And...I am extremely proud to be an American.

As usual, I welcome all of your comments.

Nadji Tehrani
Executive Group Publisher

[ Return To November 2001 Table Of Contents ]

Terrorism And Islam In Perspective


The tragic events of the Sept 11, 2001 have no doubt left an indelible mark on our hearts and minds. What has been especially painful is that the attackers were so flagrantly indiscriminate with their targets. Many innocent civilians were murdered, many others left with a sense of confusion, loss, anger and resentment. These feelings are not only due to physical casualties inflicted, but also due to those intangible casualties that will be with us for some time to come. As the attacks unfolded, we all had to face the reality that humanity had lost some ground, hope had lost some light, freedom had lost some luster, and these realizations left us justifiably angry and hateful toward those who committed such atrocities. Unfortunately, the backlash has mostly shown itself as resentment for a certain ethnic and faith group, in this case Moslems.

In times of severe shock and outrage, human feelings can succumb to powerful dark forces, stifling the good in all of us, blinding us to the fact that only a miniscule portion of people associated with a certain race or religion take such extreme actions. We can sometimes forget that the majority of the people of the world, regardless of their faith or background, are inherently good individuals who value human qualities, strive for a better life for themselves and their children and help their fellow humans whenever they can. Laws and regulations are meaningless and ineffective if we cannot rely on and trust the true goodness of human nature. And today, while we have lost a part of our innocence, it is still this inherent human goodness that brings us together to mourn our losses and carry on with our lives.

In my life, I have seen different sides of seemingly different worlds. I was born in Germany, raised in Iran and educated in America. My father is a moderate Moslem and my mother a secular woman. My close relatives are as diverse in nationality as Scandinavian to African-American and practice a variety of religions. It is striking that our similarities as people so much more outweigh our differences.

Most religions (including all major ones) preach peace and respect for human life. The holy books associated with these religions have plenty of passages confirming this attitude. Unfortunately, there are tiny groups of evil-doers who have manipulated and subverted religion for their own evil deeds. For as infallible as we would like to believe religions are, they can be dangerous in the hands of a few and their cult-like followers. No faith is immune to this subversion. Unfortunately, Islam has been used as an excuse to drive a few men to commit horrific crimes. No doubt, these men were blindly guided by the real evil powers to take their own lives along with thousands of other lives with superficial promises of a permanent address in heaven upon their deaths. Rest assured that their bosses know better than to put their own lives or those of their immediate families on the line. That sacrifice is reserved for a few naive and gullible souls who are completely dominated by their masters.

It is up to us to come together as humans and prove that true humanity transcends all religious and racial boundaries, and in the end it will vanquish over all evil. In the immortal words of the late John Lennon, you may say Im a dreamer, but Im not the only one.

The author may be contacted at rhashemian@tmcnet.com.

[ Return To November 2001 Table Of Contents ]

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