Arab Anti-Americanism

The Reasons for the Enmity and Hatred

Mahmoud al-Tohami, Al-Alam al-Youm (independent, financial), Cairo, Egypt, Sept. 1, 2002

Protest, Cairo
Burning flags in Cairo, April 8, 2002 (Photo: AFP).
At last the U.S. State Department has realized that there is a wave of anti-Americanism spreading around the world. It has announced that it will organize a conference to study the roots of this anti-Americanism and try to answer it. But this conference on Sept. 6 will not be open. Attendance will be restricted to 20 invited American researchers and 50 diplomats.

Politicians, researchers, and observers often talk about this wave of anti-Americanism, but it seems that no one in Washington pays attention, for Washington continues with policies that provoke enmity and hatred.

This enmity and hatred is not directed against the American people: It is not a racist condition that focuses hatred on the Americans simply because they are American or because the United States is the strongest country in the world, the richest society, or anything like that. It is because of American policies and the position of the American administration on other people’s rights.

Of course, there are many examples of America's adoption of an ignorant foreign policy, one that ignores the facts of history, the geography, culture, and civilization of other peoples. It has unobjective stances concerning conficts such as the one in the Middle East—a glaring example of wrong-headed political practice.

Strong links such as those between America and Saudi Arabia and Egypt are subject to an unfair smear campaign from Americans who threaten the funds of Saudis in America and Egypt’s financial interests with the United States.

How was it possible that in the months since Sept. 11, the American administration has failed to understand the truth of the situation in the Middle East and the core of the Palestinian issue? And how can America deliberately confuse... terrorism with acts of resistance against occupation, giving Israel freedom to do what it likes at the cost of peace and stability in the region?

How are we to interpret the organized campaign against Islam and Muslims to which the Americans have surrendered without even trying to uncover the mix-up Israel has imposed on these understandings after the Sept. 11 attacks?

This is just one example, about which one could write volumes, [but that] is clear enough to anyone who wants to understand without bias.

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