Shock and Anger

Bush’s Backing of Rumsfeld Shocks and Angers Arabs

“Arab commentators reacted with shock and disbelief on Monday over President Bush’s robust backing of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld against calls for his resignation.

[. . .] “After the torture and vile acts by the American army, President Bush goes out and congratulates Rumsfeld. It’s just incredible. I am in total shock,” said Omar Belhouchet, editor of the influential Algerian national daily El Watan.

“Bush’s praise for Rumsfeld will discredit the United States…and further damage its reputation, which is already at a historic low in the Arab world,” he added.

[. . .] “After Mr. Bush’s decision to keep Rumsfeld, all their apologies seem like lip service,” Dubai-based political analyst Jawad al-Anani told Reuters. “Mr. Rumsfeld would have certainly lost his job if the prisoners were American.

[. . .] A Saudi businessman, who asked not to be named, said keeping Rusmfeld would be seen as Washington’s quiet approval of the abuse. “This just confirms that what is happening in Iraq (news – web sites) in general, and especially what is happening in Abu Ghraib is sanctioned by the American administration and that is a hell of a position to be in.

“I see no advantage in keeping Rumsfeld. Bush should be building bridges with the outside world.”

For our OWN safety — Rumsfeld must go. We must show the world that we are making changes. And we must MAKE those changes.