by Jim Hightower
The first George W to be president -- George Washington -- sagely warned against America getting caught up in "entangling alliances" in foreign affairs. The current W, however, seems to think he's smarter than the original.
As a result of Bush's arrogance or ignorance (or both), our country is now entangled in some very ugly and messy alliances that put us on the wrong side of history, morality and the worldwide yearning for democracy. For example, W's buddy in Uzbekistan, President Islam Karminov. Since 9/11, the Bushites have hailed Karminov's government as a staunch ally in their war against terrorism. But what they've not wanted us to know is that their buddy is a repressive, brutal, autocratic thug who rules Uzbekistan with an iron fist.
Karminov's oppression and corruption drove the people to the boiling point in May, and protestors poured into the streets. Karminov responded with a bloody crackdown, unleashing his troops to open fire with rifles and machine guns. Independent sources say several hundred protesters and bystanders were gunned down, but Karminov's government is trying to cover it up by declaring that the uprising was "a planned and well-prepared terrorist act by international radical-extremist groups." In other words, Karminov says he's just being a good soldier in George W's global counterterrorism fight. "Only terrorists were liquidated," his spokesman said of the crackdown.
Amazingly, the Bushites are still standing behind their buddy, characterizing these democracy-fighters who rose up against Karminov as militants and terrorists. Bush's secretary of state, Condi Rice, sympathized with the oppressor, saying that no government should have to "deal with terrorists."
Guess who has armed and trained Karminov's troops? The Bushites! Using the Foreign Military Financing program, they have entangled our country with a thoroughly repressive regime, creating new enemies for America among the people who should be our friends.
Publication date: 06/16/05