The Words of the Fefferman Family

Viewpoint: American Power As A Force For Peace

Dan Fefferman
Published May 19, 2005
Special to World Peace Herald

WASHINGTON -- Some people today believe that only where the U.S. has injected itself militarily is death and injury a daily phenomenon. Such persons tend to focus on trouble spots such as Afghanistan and Iraq, where death is certainly a common occurrence. But they ignore other areas-Chechnya, Indonesia, the Philippines and Colombia come to mind--where terrorism is practically a daily occurrence. They also close their eyes to places such as North Koreans are dying every day because of starvation while Kim Jong Il pursues a reckless policy of nuclear armaments. And for some reason, they seem to turn a blind even toward Sudan, where death is certainly a daily phenomenon as a result of a policy of forced Islamization. People who focus on American power as a source of pain in today's world should not be unconcerned about these matters. But for some reason they seem so caught up the "blame America first" mentality that they fail to include these disturbing realities in speaking of countries they consider to be of great political interest.

This attitude spills over toward Israel as well. Just this week the official sermon of the Palestinian Authority television station spread the most hateful and venomous anti-Semitism as it declared: "With the establishment of the state of Israel, the entire Islamic nation was lost, because Israel is a cancer spreading through the body of the Islamic nation, and because the Jews are a virus resembling AIDS, from which the entire world suffers. You will find that the Jews were behind all the civil strife in this world." Where was the outcry against this? We didn't hear it, because those with friends in the Palestinian Authority were too busy shouting "Mr. Sharon, tear down this Wall!" Shouldn't those who criticize American and Israeli policies in the Middle East confront the Palestinians about their terrorism and anti-Semitism as boldly as they confront America and Israel? Indeed those who bemoan the supposed abuse of American power seem to have missed a crucial point: namely that US military force remains the major deterrent to aggression in the world today.

Would Taiwan, for example, remain at peace if the U.S. did not deter the aggression from mainland China? Would South Korea be secure without the credible threat of U.S. military intervention? Incredibly, we hear sincere voices in the U.S. today blaming the violence in Afghanistan on the Unites States. But we must not forget that U.S. intervention there denied a safe haven to Al Qaida and almost certainly prevented additional major terrorist attacks against U.S. targets. The same voices decry the killing in Iraq. Have they forgotten that U.S. intervention in that country rid the world of one of its worst dictators who had used weapons of mass destruction against tens of thousands of his own people? These two actions by the United States in Afghanistan and Iraq also established fledgling democracies on those counties. But we hear objections such as: "democracy cannot be imposed by force by foreign powers."

Can it be that the people who make such objections have never heard of Germany, Italy and Japan, three countries with strong democratic traditions today whose democratic institutions were "forced" on them by an occupying force--the Allies--after World War II? One pundit even asked: "Where did we get the idea that security and military force are the roots of democracy?" The real question, however, is: where do such people get the idea that anyone thinks that military force is the "root of democracy?" The root of democracy remains right where it always lay, in the self-evident truth that all people are created equal, that God has given them certain rights, and that the function of government is to secure those rights. The founders of the U.S. believed that when governments fail to do this, "it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." The people of Afghanistan and Iraq did not have the power to throw off the brutal regimes that oppressed them without outside help. Although our main goal in intervening in those countries was our own security, we should be justly proud of the sacrifices we have made to establish democracy in Afghanistan and Iraq. Lebanese Druze leader Walid Jumblatt is among many people in the Middle East who have ultimately come to see U.S. leadership as a beacon of hope.

"I was cynical about Iraq," Jumblatt stated. "But when I saw the Iraqi people voting--8 million of them-- it was the start of a new Arab world." Yet certain people here at home insist that America's rise to the position of "world's sole super-power" has blinded us to the roots of our greatness. Walid Jumblatt says, "The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it.... This process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq" Perhaps it is time for "blame America" crowd to join Mr. Jumblatt in taking off the blinders.

Dan Fefferman is the President of the International Coalition for Religious Freedom, organization that receives funding from the Unification Church. Rev. Sun Myung Moon, who founded the Unification Church, also founded News World Communications, which publishes World Peace Herald.

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