US Bombs Somalia, Sticks Her Nose in Palestinian and Colombian Affairs

March 05, 2008
Temple Stark

Really, I'm as pro-American as anyone when it comes to the belief of the potential and power and generosity of the country, my country. But it gets involved where it is often unwelcome, and where it won't at all benefit the situation. How often does it do good?

A trifecta of such adventures hit home this week.

On Sunday and Monday in hits meant to go against Al Qaeda in southern Somalia, it was, it appears, regular citizens in the area who suffered the most by losing their lives.

The Somalian government, not yet completely in place, said 27 civilians were killed, the BBC reported. The new government would have ostensibly have benefited after having just fought back control over the group Union of Islamic Courts took over much of the south. Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf backed the American action.

The next day, there were anti-American protests in the small town of Dobley, with about 600 people taking part.

The likely target was Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, a Kenyan who is thought to have a major role in the 1998 bombings of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. It was 257 people who were killed at that time.

"The United States stands with Colombia."

President Bush popped his mouth off about Colombia it would seem just to get in another dig at Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. Chavez deserves much criticism but do Bushes words help or hinder a solution? Bush said he would side with Colombia in any acts of aggression towards it. Again, he's talking about war.

Venezuelan and Ecuadorean soldiers massed on their respective Colombian borders after Colombian forces crossed into Equador, without notice or permission to go after a senior rebel figure Luis Edgar Devia Silva (aka Raul Reyes), second in command of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, who was killed. The Colombian government also said they had evidence of Venezuelan support of FARC.

America supports Colombia's uninvited incursion into another country because it likes to do the same.

"America will continue to stand with Colombia as it confronts violence and terror and fights drug traffickers," said President Bush, who has transformed anti-drug aid into anti-terror funding.

When I hear of such things, I always try and think how the American government and American people would react if Canadian or Mexican troops did the same thing. You know the answer and the American government action, would be similar, especially in the case of Mexico.

Bush used the mini-crisis as an opportunity to say a free-trade agreement was absolutely necessary for "economic security." Cynical? It has been turned away by Congress because of what its opponents think are poor human rights and labor rights standards.

Is it worth bringing up that America is loudest against another heavy oil-bearing country? It's hard to say, but it's equally hard to deny the coincidence.

Ecuador President Rafael Correa said the Colombian actions had disrupted negotiations for political prisoners, including former Colombian Sen. Ingrid Betancourt. Correa immediately cut off diplomatic relations with Colombia and brought troops to the border.

To use understatement to it's fullest, America has been involved in the Israel-Palestinian "troubles." For decades. It entirely depends on how you view Democracy - and, I guess, this whole article rests on that positioning - but the anti-Israeli Hamas government has been shunned by American officials and authorities. In a very strong comparison, it's as if the Irish Republican Army had taken power in Northern Ireland in the mid-1980s.

This one perhaps can be viewed in a much more stark, and different light because of Hamas' violent actions. It's not as cut and dry.

But a plot to overthrow the Hamas government and Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has been revealed this week. An incompetent plot, which underlines the global sigh of relief when George Bush leaves office that will cause the temperature of the earth to rise 2 degrees for a week. Like many Americans have come to realize, a good idea in the hands of President Bush and his administration rots and spoils. sometimes it explodes.

Simply put, Vanity Fair reported that the president, deputy National Security Advisor Elliott Abrams and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice decided to overthrow the newly elected Hamas government that won 56 percent of the vote in 2006. They armed the Fatah "movement" to do the deed, but it didn't work.

Supplied arms. Like the main issue behind Iran-Contra. Eliott Abrams was also a significant part of that Reagan-era scandal.

Tom Casey, a State Department spokesperson said the country was forbidden by law from furnishing arms to Fatah.

"The [Vanity Fair] story alleges that there was some kind of secret plot on the part of the U.S. government to create an internal conflict within the Palestinians, specifically an armed conflict," Casey said in a statement. "That's absurd. That's ridiculous."

The effort energized Hamas, who took control of the Gaza Strip and united the "country" more behind it, though certainly not entirely. The move was internationally condemned.

The Jerusalum Post reported that "David Wurmser, who resigned as Vice President Dick Cheney's chief Middle East adviser a month after the Hamas takeover, said he believed that Hamas had no intention of taking over the Gaza Strip until Fatah forced its hand."

America, as many other countries, do a lot of good with their voice, with its power to draw a consensus. With weapons it hasn't fared out as well for the country or the world.

I will find a way to get to India. I'm not afraid of crowds. I enjoy new, experiences, writing, photography, having opinions on music and getting lost in the moment. I'm the new Chief Copy Editor at What else ya want to know?
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US Bombs Somalia, Sticks Her Nose in Palestinian and Colombian Affairs


Author: Temple Stark


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Temple Stark
March 5, 2008
07:03 PM

Hmm, interesting feminine pronoun added the headline. I'm not sure I've EVER thought of America as "she." The ships that sail? Sure. Temple

March 5, 2008
07:17 PM


Yesterday, John Macain referred to America as 'she' and 'Her' several times during speech he gave when he clinched the GOP nomination. I was very surprised as I have never seen any politician in America refer to it as 'she'. May be it is going to be a new trend , a change electioneers in USA are talking about. Now that a woman is running for presidency, America has suddenly become feminine.

Temple Stark
March 5, 2008
11:51 PM

Interesting kerty,

I know small squirrel may not appreciate this piece but I really am concerned when the US sticks its nose in like a small child in a badgers nest.

Consensus is absolutely needed because the defensive or pre-emptive move always seems to cause much more misery in the long run. Think US bases in Saudi Arabia after the Gulf War1

March 6, 2008
10:56 AM

I thought the country's name was Colombia - correction needed, methinks

March 6, 2008
11:06 AM

well I know I have a reputation for not tolerating any criticism of the US, but it's not well-founded. I do not like it when people bash the US simply for the sake of doing it, or when they invent things to gripe about.

Let me first say that I think there are enough legitimate concerns to keep us all busy for quite a while!

So...I, for the record, am NOT a huge fan of our current foreign policy. As such, I do not see too much in this piece that I disagree with fundamentally. Do keep in mind, however, that Colombia did ask for help from the US. It's not like we barged in there without an invitation. And it is a little more complicated than you've made it sound. FARC is a major issue down there are there are hostages galore. Do I think we made a hasty move though? yeah, we probably did!

I have nothing to say about the cluster-f**k that is the US involvement in the middle east. suffice it to say this is one jew that thinks a whole bunch of people have forgotten a little too soon what persecution feels like (sorry Ruvy!)

Temple Stark
March 6, 2008
08:46 PM

I mentioned your name ... just to draw you in. Well not just. I don't know you enough to know how you'll react but did want your input. I can understand how pieces like this come across as anti-American, when they aren't. And I enjoy when people can be persuaded of such.

You're right about the complex issues involved, including Colombia. But the piece was already quite long enough ;-)

- Temple

March 6, 2008
09:38 PM


""I mentioned your name ... just to draw you in. Well not just. I don't know you enough to know how you'll react but did want your input."'

And it worked!!!

Temple Stark
March 6, 2008
11:35 PM

Hey, I'd check into my own thread regardless, so a little miscalculation on your part..

But hey you repeated what I wrote!!! You're clever. Really, really clever.

Except for the whole getting my name wrong thing. Mine was in good faith and sincere, as - you know - I did actually want her input.

Temple Stark
March 6, 2008
11:38 PM

OK wait, I've been reading to many anti-Hillary, anti-Obama threads. I think, I know I COMPLETELY misread your comment. Damn.

'cept my name is actually Temple

Temple <-- see?

March 7, 2008
11:22 AM

Starktemple, it's ok!!

Ruvy in Jerusalem
March 10, 2008
05:39 PM

I have nothing to say about the cluster-f**k that is the US involvement in the middle east. suffice it to say this is one jew that thinks a whole bunch of people have forgotten a little too soon what persecution feels like (sorry Ruvy!)

smallsquirrel knows I read these columns even if I am kinda quiet.

So I do not have a lot to say other than to recommend you to this story at Blogcritics. Spraying a bunch of kids celebrating the beginning of a new month in a yeshiva with five to seven hundred rounds from a Kalashnikov and killing eight of them adds a whole new dimension to the term "crashing the party".

Generally, I am as much in favor of U.S. intervention in this region as is the author of this article, Temple Stark.

Temple Stark
March 10, 2008
06:40 PM

That I knew, Ruvy. ... ;-)


March 15, 2008
10:31 PM

ruvy.. yeah, that miserable and uncalled for. there is unspeakable human misery/tragedy all the way 'round over there. I do not have to tell you that, though... :(

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