Sep 16, 2005

Bush Rises to the Top in Southeast Asia

"In a crisis, don't hide behind anything or anybody. They're going to find you anyway."

- Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant

In the aftermath of Katrina much of Southeast Asia was horrified at what they saw on their televisions. Completely devoid of leadership the city of New Orleans plunged into anarchy and chaos as the governor of Lousiana overcome with emotion broke down and cried and the mayor of New Orleans, abandoned by his own police force as they went on their own looting spree, went into a foul-mouthed tirade shouting obscenties and blaming everyone except himself for his botched evacuation of his own city.

At first there was hardly any mention of the hurricane in the local press. In a fast developing situation like this there was really little to report at first other than a hurricane had struck the gulf coast of the United States near New Orleans. It was nighttime over here when the hurricane struck and many of us stayed up that night watching CNN and checking the internet for news.

Having suffered a terrible tragedy themselves with the earthquake and the tsunamis that followed, many of the people in Southeast Asia having a newfound respect for the power of nature, empathized with the citizens of the United States.

But before the severity of the situation had even sunk in to many overseas here in Southeast Asia, before people were rescued and even before an accurate assessment at what had actually happened was known, the liberal's and Democrat's instinctive Bush bashing followed by the requisite 'blame game' had already begun in earnest.

An opportunity to show compassion for our fellow man, an opportunity to come together, to unite in the face of adversity and show the good side of mankind had turned into something hateful, divisive and ugly. The concern and empathy of many over here in Southeast Asia turned into confusion and bewilderment as the events unfolded. What was confusion and bewilderment has now turned into disdain and scorn, not for President Bush, but for those who have exploited this terrible tragedy and who continue to exploit this to further their own agenda to discredit Bush. Many overseas are now asking themselves what exactly the core values of the Democrats really are when the only thing that seems to really unite them is their intense hatred of George Bush.

What kind of leader has an emotional breakdown on television then breaks down and cries or one that goes into a tiny fisted, foul-mouthed obscenity-laced tirade blaming everyone else for his own failures in the heat of a crisis situation? In a society where the paternal leadership of an asian-style democracy is both respected and revered, many in Southeast Asia are now asking themselves that very simple question. Many wonder if there are no qualifications for leadership in America other than popularity and as if that might be an explanation for the relentless partisan attacks?

E. J. Dionne Jr. of the Washington Post might try to make you believe that we are now seeing the "End of the Bush Era" and his ideological comrade Michael Moore will tell you that the Republicans have become the laughing stock of the world. From where I sit, I can tell you that nothing could be farther from the truth. In the days ahead, no amount of Bush bashing by the media will sway opinion here, the relentless mind-numbing esoteric arguements of America's left trying desperately to pin the blame somehow on the administration of George W. Bush have just become tiresome. In the end, what will be remembered is America once again was faced with a crisis and a leader emerged and rose to the occasion.

A local here summed up the mood among many of the people here when he told me "We might not agree with the foreign policy of the United States and many of our people don't like Bush, but we respect him as a true leader and as a man."

There are important lessons to be learned here. Someone might wish to buy America's increasingly isolated Democrats and the left a clue.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Creative Commons License