For some reason, this evening I was drawn to the memory of Tiananmen Square back in 1989, and the dull thud of our inaction towards China. Sometimes, I’m afraid to admit, I just don’t understand the big wheels that turn in the American approach to foreign affairs. Ever since Nixon, we’ve been trying to court the biggest abuser of human rights, because it is also the biggest nation of consumers. Now we’re using China as a wedge to get into the hearts and minds of the North Koreans, but China and North Korea are at the lowest point in their own relations with each other since before the 1950s. China is just once again using America as a way to show that they’re a world-team player. And America is still content to see China as a nation of 1.25 billion wearers of Nike sneakers and purchasers of McDonald Happy Meals.
My country paints odd strokes of huge monochromatic color over everything. Don’t these ravenous American (multi-national really) companies realize that China is the largest producer of pirated material? It’s a devil’s bargain.
We become so obsessed with seeing regions or countries or leaders in one way. It’s childlike in its breathtaking naiveté. Current thought would make one believe that there were Iraqis hijackers on the airplanes of 9/11, but there were not. No Afghanis either. A bunch of Saudis though. And Saudi Arabia is the country that exported the Wahabi form of Islamic thought to Pakistan. The Pakistani secret service trained Wahabi clerics and sent them into Afghanistan to successfully take over the country as the Taliban. The Taliban sheltered the al Qaeda and the exiled Saudi, Osama bin Laden. But oil-rich Saudi Arabia is an ally to the United States, according to our doctrine of being blind to real danger.
There is no real relevance to this post to anything current. Except maybe there is. Bush Sr. did nothing in the wake of Tiananmen, and later invaded Iraq to help our friends, the house of Saud, protect their tyrannical hold over their country. Maybe there is.