Al-Ahram Weekly Online   3 - 9 September 2009
Issue No. 963
Reader's corner
Published in Cairo by AL-AHRAM established in 1875

Readers' corner

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Bush with a tan

Sir-- Obama has now comprehensively revealed himself to be Bush "with a good tan", as Berlusconi might have said. The denialism of the US public reminds me of the reaction to Blair within the UK. After his landslide removal of the detested Tory regime, he revealed himself not only as a true Thatcherite but the Left refused to face the grim reality.

Similarly here in Australia we have Kevin Rudd, a clone of John Howard. The capitalist pseudo- democratic system does not allow real reformers to exist, it does not countenance "change" or "hope" beyond the corridors of economic power. The apotheosis of Obamaism, the real, definitive dropping of the veil, will not be his protection of torturers, continuance of rendition, or even NATO's increasing aggressiveness and the rising slaughter in Afghanistan. It may not even be the coming sell-out over climate change, where the imbecile dead-end of "emissions trading" seems destined to fail in the Congress. I think his gravest betrayal will be the sell-out of the poor, ie the blacks and Hispanics and lower class whites, during the economic collapse.

While trillions are transferred to the banksters who financed Obama's meteoric rise, the "losers" will pay the bill for generations. Having a black man preside over the class war will have them chuckling in the private clubs.

On another track, one of Gorbachev's greatest errors was his belief that the Soviet Union would befuddle the US by "taking away its enemy". The US has proceeded as if nothing has changed, as if the Soviet Union still exists. After all that is the best way to ensure the subservience of Eurasia, that and making examples of the Serbs, the Iraqis, Palestinians, Pakistanis, Congolese, Lebanese and Somalis, to encourage the others. It also keeps the billions flowing to the military-industrial complex, the last bastion of US comparative advantage in the arts of increasingly cowardly, remotely- controlled, mass murder of women and children.

Parket McKenzie

Power failures

Sir-- Concerning 'Caucasian calculus' ( Al-Ahram Weekly 27 August-2 September), America Inc is always the pre-fight favourite, however, at this point in time, is stretched thin around the globe. Russia has weaknesses that put it in a constrained position vis-a- vis America but as a member of a group of potential unfriendlies the old domino effect is too real to ignore. The top dogs are all too wary to make too large bets with all the known unknowns out there, so the shuffling of pawns must go on.

I do believe the Georgia move did fluster Russia but not enough to change their main calculations. America has no doubt been flustered much in the time since the Georgian blowup so everyone pull your hat down over your ears.

Russell Olausen

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