A Crisis in Confidence in U. S. Leadership

  • From: "Muslim News" <editor_@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <submit@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 8 Jun 2002 09:24:34 +0100

There is a broadening crisis in confidence in political and corporate
leadership in the U. S. Suddenly, the world's sole super-power is faced
with a credibility crunch as its unparalleled status as a global
military and economic giant shows unmistakable signs of shakiness. It
emanates essentially from a worrisome-wannabe-warrior in the White House
and corrupt and crooked executives in major corporations along with
collaborators in their respective power structures and spheres of

President George W. Bush fanned the flames of continuing conflict by
calling for "first strike" military action against potential "enemies'
of the United States in an address to our young military leaders at West
Point's commencement. Bush's saber rattling offers a wretched role model
for the threat-swapping leaders of India and Pakistan as the
long-standing mortal enemies ratchet up the rhetoric of battle and
teeter toward the brink of a nuclear war in South Asia. While Bush wags
on about war, the Middle-East also desperately needs bold and
imaginative personal diplomacy for peace from the President of the
United States. The United States continues to project an image to the
world as being decidedly pro-Israel in the age-old Arab/Israeli
struggle. Antagonism engendered from this perception answers the "why do
they hate us" question asked of much of the Muslim world in post

White House talk of never-ending-war to "make peace" is being actualized
. Donald Rumsfeld, the Secretary of Defense and civilian head of U.S.
armed forces (formerly known as the Secretary of War), has been
dispatched to make "peace" between India and Pakistan. George Tenet, the
Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, the war-abetting
organization of spooks that has an indelible image of fomenting
division, distrust and mortal combat around the globe, has been
dispatched to the Middle East to "make peace". And we wonder "why do
they hate us?" 

As reports continue to surface on a daily basis about several instances
of foreknowledge of the 9/11/01 terrorist attacks by U.S. intelligence
and security agencies like the FBI and CIA, more questions are being
asked about "who knew what when?" As the intelligence committees of
Congress launch into an investigation of the matter an on-going turf war
and blame-game between the FBI and the CIA is becoming apparent.
Finally, everyone can conclude the buck stops in the oval office on such
vital matters of national security. Our wide-eyed-warrior President
issued a Clintonesque denial of responsibility by admitting that the FBI
and the CIA failed to communicate but then said, "I've seen no
evidence...that said this country could have prevented the attacks". 

Many astute observers of political affairs are beginning to question the
motives behind the recent concerted deluge of the scare talk of more
imminent, large-scale terrorist attacks. They were hastily churned out
by Bush administration officials immediately after the foreknowledge
reports and the who- knew-what-when questions arose. Would the Bush
administration deliberately frighten and divert the public away from
their who-knew-what-when before 9/11/01 concerns with a concerted
campaign to alarm U.S. citizens of new terror to come? 

According to the Wall Street Journal on June 4, 2002 the "possible new
terrorist attacks have also weighed on markets" in a front page story
describing the plummeting U.S. stock markets. The Journal also cited
growing anxiety about political turmoil abroad, a declining dollar, and
corporate scandals. The Dow Jones average was at its lowest point since
February 7, 2002 and was 17% off its' record high in January 2000.
NASDAQ was 69% below its record high on March 10, 2000, and about 20%
down this year. Revelations of CEOs and top corporate management
involvement in a series of scandals and scamming has weakened investor
confidence in the stock markets to an extent unseen in decades. The New
York Times opined that, "These days, business news can resemble a
financial police blotter". Such corporate crook's actions have aided the
phenomena of an unprecedented increase in the disparity of wealth
between the very wealthy and everyday people. 

Rampant greed and corruption in the top echelons of such seemingly
prosperous companies as Enron, Arthur Andersen, Global Crossing,
Adelphia, and Tyco have sullied the integrity of our much ballyhooed
"free market" and caused investors to pull out their money and begin to
invest it in overseas markets. Such shenanigans include many corrupt
practices like inaccurate and misleading accounting to inflate values
and increase the "take" of executives and top management at the expense
of shareholders and employees. 

Those interested in reform to restore the integrity of the equity
markets have been urging Congress to restrict accounting firms from
providing both auditing and consulting services to the same corporation,
but the most powerful members of Congress have prevented passage of such
legislation. In almost every instance high-level connections with
governmental officials in the Legislative and Executive branches,
facilitated by hefty campaign contributions and high powered lobbying,
has stopped such reform legislation. Political patronage has helped the
corporate crooks position themselves to pull off their scams. 

Today's news tells us that thousands of foreign nationals are evacuating
India and Pakistan; that there are 16 new Israeli deaths as a car bomber
blew up a bus and Israeli troops are entering the Jenin refugee camp
again; and that the CEO of Tyco has been indicted for evading more than
a million dollars in a sales tax scam. Where-oh-where is competent and
uncorrupted U.S. leadership in this crisis of confidence? 

Source:  Common Dreams

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