Monday, 26 March 2007

A Culture Of Fear

An Op-Ed in the Washington Post by Zbigniew Brzezinski highlights the strategy of fear that has been used by the White House for the last six years to push through its agenda. Remember the duct tape, the colour-coded alerts, the mushroom cloud threat, the thwarted Al-Qaeda attacks that never were?

The culture of fear is like a genie that has been let out of its bottle. It acquires a life of its own -- and can become demoralizing. America today is not the self-confident and determined nation that responded to Pearl Harbor; nor is it the America that heard from its leader, at another moment of crisis, the powerful words "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself"; nor is it the calm America that waged the Cold War with quiet persistence despite the knowledge that a real war could be initiated abruptly within minutes and prompt the death of 100 million Americans within just a few hours. We are now divided, uncertain and potentially very susceptible to panic in the event of another terrorist act in the United States itself.
It's going to take a long time and a completely new approach from the next administration to win back the trust of the American people and the rest of the world.

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