Americans would benefit from less outrage at anti-US sentiment and more energy toward understanding why it's so widespread
Whatever else one wants to say, the US is a country that, for more than a decade, has loudly and continuously declared itself to be a "nation at war". It's not "at war" in any one country, but in many countries around the globe.
In the last four years alone, it has used drones to end people's lives in six predominantly Muslim countries http://www.businessinsider.com/us-launc ... try-2011-6
(probably more http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinio ... 69894.html
). Under its Nobel Peace Prize-winning leader, it has repeatedly wiped out entire families (including just this week http://www.pajhwok.com/en/2012/12/05/5- ... -airstrike
), slaughtered dozens of children at a time http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldne ... ldren.html
, targeted and killed people rescuing and grieving its victims http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... s-pakistan
, and either deliberately http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... -Khan.html
or recklessly http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2011 ... -affiliate
dropped bombs on teenagers (including its own citizens), then justified it with the most foul and morally deranged rationale http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/arc ... an/264028/
It embraces and props up http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-off ... -al-faisal
the world's most repressive tyrants http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Middle-E ... -abandoned
. It isolates itself from the world and embraces blatant double standards in order to enable the worst behavior of its client states http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... vote-rogue
. It continues to maintain a global network of prisons where people are kept indefinitely in cages with no charges. It exempts itself and its leaders http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... a-torturer
from the international institutions of justice while demanding that the leaders of other, less powerful states be punished there http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-off ... nouncement
. And it is currently in the process of suffocating a nation of 75 million people http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... -suffering
with an increasingly sadistic sanctions regime, while proudly boasting about it and threatening more.
It spent years imprisoning even Muslim journalists with no charges http://www.salon.com/2009/05/11/journalists_6/
. And then there's that little fact about how, less than a decade ago, it created a worldwide torture regime and then launched an aggressive war that destroyed a nation of 26 million people, one that led to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent human beings.
Those are all just facts. And while there is no shortage of Americans willing to step up and dutifully justify some or all of those acts, it's so astonishing to watch people express surprise and bewilderment and anger when they discover that this behavior causes people in the world to intensely dislike the United States.
If you want your country to rule the world as an aggressive and militaristic empire, then accept the inevitable consequence of that: that there will be huge numbers of people in the world who resent and even hate your country for that behavior. Don't cheer while your country constantly kills, invades, occupies, and dominates the internal affairs of countless other nations - and then expect to be liked. Immorality aside, producing this reaction is one reason not to do such things. This kind of imperial behavior, inevitably and in every era, generates extreme levels of animosity and, ultimately, returned violence. That's why George Washington, in his 1796 Farewell Address http://glenngreenwald.blogspot.com/2007 ... -east.html
, warned against all of this:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... ?fb=native
"[N]othing is more essential than that permanent, inveterate antipathies against particular nations, and passionate attachments for others, should be excluded; and that, in place of them, just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated. The nation which indulges towards another a habitual hatred or a habitual fondness is in some degree a slave. . . .
"Antipathy in one nation against another disposes each more readily to offer insult and injury, to lay hold of slight causes of umbrage, and to be haughty and intractable, when accidental or trifling occasions of dispute occur. Hence, frequent collisions, obstinate, envenomed, and bloody contests."