The extreme naivety of our foreign policy makers
toward countries like Libya and Egypt is not only embarrassing, it
is dangerous and disastrous.
With yesterday's storming of American diplomatic offices in
Egypt and Libya, the world is now watching the true colors of
Islamists -- something that those of us with experience have known
all along. Unfortunately the Obama administration has been doggedly
colorblind to the Islamists' true colors.
We give Egypt $2 billion a year. We give Libya military and
financial aid to topple their dictator. But what do we get in the
way of thanks? Death and destruction.
Make no mistake -- these recent violent events will not be
contained to those two countries. It will spread to many other
countries that we have supported in the past -- supported with our
money and blood.
The extreme naivety of our foreign policy makers is not only
embarrassing; it is dangerous and disastrous.
As Yogi Berra once said: "It's déjà vu all over again." By that
I mean it's "1979 Iran" all over again. In that year, another group
of naïve amateurs ran our foreign policy, and their ignorance
ultimately led to the storming of our embassy and the
hostage-taking of American citizens for 444 days.
Here is the core of our government's ignorance: We assume that
everyone is like us. That everyone responds with gratitude to
generous gestures. That everyone respects us with the same respect
that we offer them. That when we bend over backwards, they will
show appreciation for our efforts to please them.
But not only would they never respond that way; they view our
actions as unmitigated weakness. And with weakness they see an
opportunity: the further humiliation of the infidels.
Our foreign policy officials ignorantly believe we won't be
viewed as infidels since we give them money. But to Islamists, it's
not only legal to take money from infidels; taking such money and
using it to humiliate us is considered the height of
Apparently the attacks in Egypt and Libya were provoked by a
film that disparages Islam and Muhammad. To be sure, I would never
be party to any film or form of attack on the Muslim religion. The
people behind that film were foolish.
But Arab Spring or no Arab Spring, Islamists will never
understand what democracy and freedom of speech are all about. They
will never understand that the U.S. government had nothing to do
with the film. The killing of innocent people will never touch
their conscience. To them, the killing of any infidel is always
When will the adolescents in Washington wake up and smell the
Jihadi coffee? When will they rouse themselves from their
stupor of naivety?
When will America begin to comprehend the gravity of our
I pray, God, that it will be soon.
Michael Youssef, PhD is an Egyptian-born American and
founding rector of The Church of The Apostles. His messages are
broadcast 3,800 times a week into 200 countries through Leading The
Way Ministries. He holds a PhD from Emory University in Social
Anthropology. His blog:www.michaelyoussef.com. Follow
on Twitter: @MichaelAYoussef.
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