Barack Obama and the Message of Gaza

Studies have shown that more than 80% of American-Muslims (including myself) voted for Barack Obama in the presidential election. It is also known that the Palestinian issue is one of the most important issues to a lot of Muslim voters in America. For this reason I have said for months that the Muslim honeymoon with Obama will end once the Palestinian crisis flare up and Muslims find out he is more on the lines of another Bill Clinton than someone who can bring a just resolution to the conflict.

Personally I have no faith in the Obama Administration with regards to Palestine. He is first and foremost a politician who cut his teeth on the ethnic and neighborhood politics of Chicago. Politically, whether it be right or wrong, he will see no benefit in taking a more Pro-Palestinian stance while one-fifth of Democratic donors are Jewish and a pro-Israeli mainstream media would attack him if he took a more just stance. This is compounded by the fact that Hillary Clinton will be the Secretary of State and Dennis Ross will be her advisor.

We are getting a sneak preview now as Obama remains silent as Israel mercilessly attacks the people of Gaza militarily after systematically starving the people for months. This is contrasted by his forceful condemnation of the Mumbai attacks. Combine these two things with the fact that Obama has promised a fool-hearted increase in the number of American troops in Afghanistan to fight the insurgency (which itself is fueled by the occupation). All of this together means that as I am looking at it today Obama will be bad for most Muslims in most places in the world unless he can bring peace with Iran, Syria, and really leave Iraq.

So, why would I vote for someone who I think will be bad for most Muslims? Well, Obama may be bad for most Muslims but he is by a number of degrees better than a unilateralist and neo-conservative Republican Administration with Evangelical leanings would be.

But, even though I think Obama will be better, that is not why I voted for him. I knew that Obama would be no treat for Palestinians and Muslims worldwide. However, as I live in America and my family lives in America I had to vote for who would improve the condition for me, my family and the Muslims in America first and foremost.  This means I had to focus on issues like healthcare, the economy education and other matters first. Just as the people in Gaza vote for who will do the best for them in their lives first I did the same thing here in America.

A lot of younger American-Muslims who have came of age in the post 9-11 world and do not have a great knowledge of history ( especially those whose parents were immigrants or apolitical) may get a rude awakening when they find out that the left is no greater a friend to the Muslims than the right. Historically, the international left has been very hostile to Islam and Muslims and Obama may fit into this pattern.

However, he may not, and Obama may bring a new way of looking at the world from the West as North America and Europe grapples wit the question of how to deal with a resurgent ummah poised to yield great power in the decades to come. It is my fear though that Obama will see Islam as a threat and not attack Muslims in the West through the police state tactics of Bush; but will use the power of NGO’s, the media, and academia to try and mold the Muslims into a less threatening community in a “soft crusade”. This can also be done through giving support to Muslim leaders and organizations who are either apolitical, making taqleed to corrupt scholars, or “progressives”.

Regardless as to what happens we should remember that our faith is in Allah and our example is that of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.s.) and the earliest generations of Muslims and that our friends are the believers and we cannot find a permanent ally in the left or right only a very temporary arrangement with either.

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7 thoughts on “Barack Obama and the Message of Gaza

  1. My salams I dont have time to write about Obama and what his presidency is going to be like right now because I am real busyAkhee read Paul Street book Barak Obama and the future of American Poltics and the artcles that were written on the Black Agenda Report and Counter Punch orgMany people forrgot to invesigate Obama prevoius votnig recrod and they got foolled by finance capital in there comericalism of Mr.ObamaSome of us should known better.

  2. You’re on point Umar, but also what I see going on is a pattern Clinton had to deal with Domestic Terror in Oklahoma 95′. Bush dealt with 9/11. So what’s challenges is Obama going to encounter ahead?

  3. this is really pathetic umar — enough with the self-indulging victimhood. your prophecy will fulfill itself just as long, and becasue, muslims continue to evaluate others’ character on whether they’re pro-israel. it doesn’t all reduce to that. to me it’s just an indication that muslims wish to perpetuate the conflict, it is the best way to avoid the challanges that will inevitably arise from its resolution.
    at least wait until obama disappoints, you can then say ‘ergo hoc propter hoc’

    ps. if not for denis ross, the population of jewish settlers would be double its current size

  4. What exactly is a proportionate response? If the Luftwaffe is dropping bombs on London, should the RAF constrain itself to dropping exactly the same number of bombs on Berlin? No, the RAF’s goal is to make Hitler cut it out. If that means dropping the same number of bombs, or ten times as many, or no bombs at all, then that is a proportionate response. If it is sufficient to ask, “Mr. Hitler, would you please stop dropping bombs on London?” then that is proportionate. If it is necessary to bomb Berlin until not one stone stands atop another, then that too is a proportionate response.

    So let it be with Israel; their goal is to persuade Hamas to cut it out. Their “disproportionate” response has clearly been inadequate, or possibly misdirected. Hamas’s problem with Israel seems to be that it exists. If I am wrong, then what outcome other than Israel’s destruction will Hamas accept? If I am right, then why won’t someone just say so? Perhaps Israel is supposed to not exist? They stole the land, or so we’re told, but does that make “Jews out of Palestine” any more or less right than “Arabs out of Egypt” or “Turks out of Anatolia”? These, too, are stolen countries after all.

    There’s plenty of blame to go around here. I’d like nothing more than to see an American president call the Israeli prime minister on the carpet, and tell him to pull all the settlers out of the West Bank or he won’t get another dime from Washington. Such would be right and just, but it’s hard to believe that this would satisfy Hamas. They did pull out of Gaza, did they not? And Gaza is where the rockets are coming from.

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