Why Perception Is Important

Posted by Dan on Apr 10, 2003 @ 9:31 AM

However, Tannous Basil, a 47-year-old cardiologist in Sidon, Lebanon, said Saddam's regime was a "dictatorship and had to go."

"I don't like the idea of having the Americans here, but we asked for it," he said. "Why don't we see the Americans going to Finland, for example? They come here because our area is filled with dictatorships like Saddam's."

I read this article last night and found it very interesting. There's lots of good quotes from Arabs in the area (mostly from surrounding countries to Iraq.) We have to be very aware of the perception of the citizens in the area and they have to feel confident that this War wasn't about gaining American control. Will everyone in the Middle East change their opinion, no, but you can't expect them too. It takes a long time for society perception to change—but it can change, and we've taken the first step.

We (as Americans) also have to realize this is going to be long process. It's not going to be over today, not a month from now and not a year from now. It takes a long time for a country to adapt to a democracy—especially when the people have been living in poverty. The problem is the people who have money tend to have power and a introducing a democracy into a dictatorship typically affects the people who had money under the dictatorship—and nobody likes to give up their money or their power. This is going to take a while and their will be ups and downs. You just need to have faith that this is the best thing in the long run for the Iraqi people.

Categories: Media/Politics

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