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Thread: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by Ockham View Post
    Apparently he hoped ... and then changed.
    If some other circumstances occurred you'd be responding in a different manner! YOU HYPOCRITE!
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    What does this map have to do with the "Arab World"?
    It's from FauxNews, so probably nothing
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Can anyone open the PDF of the poll? Can't open as HTML, downloaded won't open and can't open from site.

    Arab Attitutes: 2011 | The Arab American Institute

    Even that doesn't work. I don't trust polls until I get to look at their methodology.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by sangha View Post
    It's from FauxNews, so probably nothing
    I am not the one who claimed it was a map of the Arab World, neither was Fox. Nice strawman, though...
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    That's funny. It tells ME that most people in the Middle East are blind and completely unreasonable.
    That's a pretty ethnocentric approach. I mean, is it really so unfathomable to you that people in the Middle East might not like the fact that the United States is bombing their countrymen and/or occupying their lands? When US drones kill civilians or US soldiers humiliate people in military prisons, do you think that the local populace gives a damn why we are there? I mean, how would we feel if another country occupied ours under the guise of protecting us from ourselves...even if the occupier was able to point to legitimate grievances we had with our own government? It hardly seems "blind and completely unreasonable" that people wouldn't like that.

    You are placing a moral equivalence on Israel and the DPRK?
    Nope, just pointing out that Arabs are going to complain about the superpower that supports a nation that they perceive as one of their biggest threats, just as Americans do. The big difference is that many Arabs are truly a lot more fearful of Israel than most Americans are of the DPRK.

    It makes them entirely unreasonable. As for Israel, remember, THE ARABS and PERSIANS are responsible for the fact there is a conflict there, not the State of Israel.
    Both sides are responsible for the conflict. But in any case, I think you can disagree with their assessment of the actual threat that Israel poses and still empathize with the fact that they don't like it when other nations support the country that they (rightly or wrongly) view as their greatest threat. Plenty of peoples exaggerate various threats from abroad...including Israelis and Americans. There's hardly anything unusual about that.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 07-17-11 at 01:44 AM.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    That's a pretty ethnocentric approach. I mean, is it really so unfathomable to you that people in the Middle East might not like the fact that the United States is bombing their countrymen and/or occupying their lands? When US drones kill civilians or US soldiers humiliate people in military prisons, do you think that the local populace gives a damn why we are there? I mean, how would we feel if another country occupied ours under the guise of protecting us from ourselves...even if the occupier was able to point to legitimate grievances we had with our own government? It hardly seems "blind and completely unreasonable" that people wouldn't like that.
    The United States invaded an Arab country, Iraq, that was a dictatorship and in violation of numerous UNSC resolutions, all of which authorized the use of force to ensure compliance.

    Most of the deaths now in Iraq are caused not by the United States, but by the insurgents in Iraq. U.S. presence in Iraq would be far less today WITHOUT those insurgents than with them. Iraq can even choose their own leaders today, and while the system is far from perfect, it is a damn sight better than it was before it. If the Arabs and Persians can't live with these facts, that is THEIR problem, not mine.


    Nope, just pointing out that Arabs are going to complain about the superpower that supports a nation that they perceive as one of their biggest threats, just as Americans do. The big difference is that many Arabs are truly a lot more fearful of Israel than most Americans are of the DPRK.
    And I am going to note that those complaints are unreasonable as Israel's very existance is threatened by the Arabs and Persians. Is Egypt's existance under threat? Iran's? If any Arab state's existance is under threat, it is Lebanon, and the threat isn't from Israel, it is from another ARAB COUNTRY for crying out loud.

    Both sides are responsible for the conflict. But in any case, I think you can disagree with their assessment of the actual threat that Israel poses and still empathize with the fact that they don't like it when other nations support the country that they (rightly or wrongly) view as their greatest threat. Plenty of peoples exaggerate various threats from abroad...including Israelis and Americans. There's hardly anything unusual about that.
    The Arab side started the first war by invading Israel as it was declaring independence. It also provoked the 1967 war and started the 1973 one. The United States ACTUALLY HELPED the Arabs in the 1950s. The U.S. has also helped Muslims in Kosovo. If Arabs can't look at the world objectively, that is their problem. Not an indication that there is anything wrong with U.S. foreign policy in the region.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    The United States invaded an Arab country, Iraq, that was a dictatorship and in violation of numerous UNSC resolutions, all of which authorized the use of force to ensure compliance.
    Many Arabs regard the UNSC as a tool of the West...which it is, to a large extent. Citing the UNSC is hardly going to win you an argument in the Arab world.

    Most of the deaths now in Iraq are caused not by the United States, but by the insurgents in Iraq. U.S. presence in Iraq would be far less today WITHOUT those insurgents than with them. Iraq can even choose their own leaders today, and while the system is far from perfect, it is a damn sight better than it was before it. If the Arabs and Persians can't live with these facts, that is THEIR problem, not mine.
    I suspect that most Arabs perceive the United States as CAUSING the insurgency...again, a complaint not entirely without merit. Furthermore, while Saddam Hussein doesn't have many admirers, it's not surprising that the US is at least as unpopular as he is. Our own government has probably caused the deaths of at least as many Arab civilians as Saddam's government did.

    And I am going to note that those complaints are unreasonable as Israel's very existance is threatened by the Arabs and Persians. Is Egypt's existance under threat? Iran's? If any Arab state's existance is under threat, it is Lebanon, and the threat isn't from Israel, it is from another ARAB COUNTRY for crying out loud.
    Like I said, overestimating foreign threats is hardly unique to the Arab world. For example, witness the apoplectic response from Israel every time Hamas manages to hit something with a randomly fired rocket, as though Israel is just a couple attacks away from being pushed into the sea. Or witness the absurdity of a TSA checkpoint in the United States, to protect us from the Big Bad Terrorists who are constantly plotting new 9/11s. I shouldn't even have to point out that these responses are every bit as irrational as Arab fear of Israel...but I suppose I do. Fear of "the other" is common across cultures. The fact that you are singling the Arab world out for criticism isn't because they're more irrational than anyone else, it's because you don't like being on the receiving end of it any more than other people like being on the receiving end of similarly irrational fearmongering from Americans.

    So before you write off 360 million people as irrational barbarians who need to be re-educated by the United States or its associates, perhaps you might examine their grievances and see if there might actually be any merit to any of them. Perhaps you could consider the possibility that people who actually live in the Middle East might have a better grasp of how US foreign policy affects them than you do.

    The Arab side started the first war by invading Israel as it was declaring independence. It also provoked the 1967 war and started the 1973 one. The United States ACTUALLY HELPED the Arabs in the 1950s. The U.S. has also helped Muslims in Kosovo. If Arabs can't look at the world objectively, that is their problem. Not an indication that there is anything wrong with U.S. foreign policy in the region.
    Translation: The American perspective on issues is "looking at the world objectively," and everyone else is wrong, irrational, or brainwashed. And more specifically, only a belligerent neoconservative American perspective is truly objective.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 07-18-11 at 01:46 AM.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    Many Arabs regard the UNSC as a tool of the West...which it is, to a large extent. Citing the UNSC is hardly going to win you an argument in the Arab world.
    Sure, tell that to Russia and the PRC, both of whom have veto power. And many of the non-P-5 members are from developing states. Umm... if that is their perception, you can understand why I am not going to take the rest of what they think very seriously...

    I suspect that most Arabs perceive the United States as CAUSING the insurgency...again, a complaint not entirely without merit. Furthermore, while Saddam Hussein doesn't have many admirers, it's not surprising that the US is at least as unpopular as he is. Our own government has probably caused the deaths of at least as many Arab civilians as Saddam's government did.
    They may perceive it, but that doesn't make it correct.

    Like I said, overestimating foreign threats is hardly unique to the Arab world. For example, witness the apoplectic response from Israel every time Hamas manages to hit something with a randomly fired rocket, as though Israel is just a couple attacks away from being pushed into the sea. Or witness the absurdity of a TSA checkpoint in the United States, to protect us from the Big Bad Terrorists who are constantly plotting new 9/11s. I shouldn't even have to point out that these responses are every bit as irrational as Arab fear of Israel...but I suppose I do. Fear of "the other" is common across cultures. The fact that you are singling the Arab world out for criticism isn't because they're more irrational than anyone else, it's because you don't like being on the receiving end of it any more than other people like being on the receiving end of similarly irrational fearmongering from Americans.
    You know I am not a supporter of the TSA and it is a drastic overraction, but something that liberals seem to support. As for Arabs, the U.S. is no threat to them. Whether they realize it or not is not the point. If they consider the US to be their biggest threat, then yes, I would deem that an irrational position. Their biggest threat is their own pig headedness...

    Translation: The American perspective on issues is "looking at the world objectively," and everyone else is wrong, irrational, or brainwashed. And more specifically, only a belligerent neoconservative American perspective is truly objective.
    Next you are going to come on and explain why the U.S. is at fault for the fact that the Chinese also perceive the U.S. as being anti-China and a threat to Chinese security. Just because people disagree with the U.S. doesn't mean they are right.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by ludahai View Post
    Sure, tell that to Russia and the PRC, both of whom have veto power. And many of the non-P-5 members are from developing states. Umm... if that is their perception, you can understand why I am not going to take the rest of what they think very seriously.
    4 of the 5 permanent members are Western countries, 4 of the 5 permanent members are majority Christian countries, and 5 of the 5 permanent members are countries that have used Arab nations for their own geopolitical gains in the past several decades. Furthermore, only 1 of the 15 members is an Arab state. Of course many Arabs aren't going to regard such a body as legitimate.

    Also, lol at the "developing states" comment, as though Arabs give a damn what Colombia thinks any more than the United States does.

    They may perceive it, but that doesn't make it correct.
    You're going to argue that the US isn't responsible for the insurgency? Was it just a coincidence that it popped up around the same time we invaded?

    You know I am not a supporter of the TSA and it is a drastic overraction, but something that liberals seem to support.
    Instead of making it a partisan issue, you could have just acknowledged that it's something that many AMERICANS support. Which is my point...many societies are completely unreasonable in the threats they perceive, including our own.

    As for Arabs, the U.S. is no threat to them.
    And many Arabs would swear up and down that they are no threat to Israel (and mean it). And many Iranians would swear up and down that their country is no threat to the United States (and mean it). Of course, you'd view THEIR promises of peace as either lies to get us to lower our guard, or naive ramblings of people who don't know any better. And yet I don't suppose you can fathom that anyone might view YOUR assertion in a similar light.

    Whether they realize it or not is not the point. If they consider the US to be their biggest threat, then yes, I would deem that an irrational position.
    The US has invaded Iraq twice in the last 20 years, had a marine barracks in Lebanon, launched a bombing campaign against Libya twice in the last 30 years, regularly bombs Yemen, gives weapons and political support to the country they perceive to be their biggest enemy, done business with corrupt dictators throughout the Arab world, and offered (at best) lukewarm endorsement to Arab democrats in countries allied with the US. That's quite a list of grievances, and while I don't necessarily think there is such a thing as an "objective" view of the world, theirs is certainly a lot more informed than yours, as they actually see the results of these policies on a daily basis.

    Their biggest threat is their own pig headedness.
    Well, they're getting a good start on fixing that by deposing some US-backed dictators.

    Next you are going to come on and explain why the U.S. is at fault for the fact that the Chinese also perceive the U.S. as being anti-China and a threat to Chinese security.
    I don't know enough about the grievances the Chinese people have with the US to have an opinion on it.

    Just because people disagree with the U.S. doesn't mean they are right.
    It also doesn't make them unreasonable morons. You are starting from the perspective that the US is always well-intentioned and framing all information in that light (e.g. an invasion of Iraq was done for the greater good, propping up Arab dictators was the lesser evil, the fact that Arabs perceive the US/Israel as a threat but not Iran just means that we need to market our policies better, etc.) All of these views completely fall apart if you instead view the United States as just another country that acts in its own self-interests.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 07-18-11 at 02:21 AM.
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    Re: Obama’s Popularity in Arab World Now Lower than Bush’s

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    4 of the 5 permanent members are Western countries, 4 of the 5 permanent members are majority Christian countries, and 5 of the 5 permanent members are countries that have used Arab nations for their own geopolitical gains in the past several decades. Furthermore, only 1 of the 15 members is an Arab state. Of course many Arabs aren't going to regard such a body as legitimate.
    Russia is NOT a Western country. Even by UN reckoning, it is not - it is in the Eastern European group. Why should more than one Arab state be a member. There is one other state in the UNSC with a Muslim majority population, another with a nearly majority Muslim population and another which happens to have more Muslims than any Arab state has.

    Also, lol at the "developing states" comment, as though Arabs give a damn what Colombia thinks any more than the United States does.
    No, but perhaps Gabon (significant Muslim minority), Bosnia Herzegovinia (nearly half-Muslim population), Nigeria (majority Muslim population) and India (more Muslims than any Arab state) provide some balance.

    You're going to argue that the US isn't responsible for the insurgency? Was it just a coincidence that it popped up around the same time we invaded?
    Mango season comes at about the same time typhoon season begins... are mangoes the cause of the typhoons?

    Instead of making it a partisan issue, you could have just acknowledged that it's something that many AMERICANS support. Which is my point...many societies are completely unreasonable in the threats they perceive, including our own.
    Except that it seemingly IS an increasingly partisan issue in the US. I know, let's ignore things like facts...

    And many Arabs would swear up and down that they are no threat to Israel (and mean it). And many Iranians would swear up and down that their country is no threat to the United States (and mean it). Of course, you'd view THEIR promises of peace as either lies to get us to lower our guard, or naive ramblings of people who don't know any better. And yet I don't suppose you can fathom that anyone might view YOUR assertion in a similar light.
    Ummm.. except that many of those Arabs are FULL OF IT! How many of those Arab states have invaded Israel? How many of those Arabs want Israel driven off the map? How many of those Arabs support Hamas, which has the stated goal of the destruction of Israel. I honestly hope you don't beleive your own drivel. As for Iran, I will simply point to the words of their crazy president...

    The US has invaded Iraq twice in the last 20 years, had a marine barracks in Lebanon, launched a bombing campaign against Libya twice in the last 30 years, regularly bombs Yemen, gives weapons and political support to the country they perceive to be their biggest enemy, done business with corrupt dictators throughout the Arab world, and offered (at best) lukewarm endorsement to Arab democrats in countries allied with the US. That's quite a list of grievances, and while I don't necessarily think there is such a thing as an "objective" view of the world, theirs is certainly a lot more informed than yours, as they actually see the results of these policies on a daily basis.
    Once in response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, don't forget. The other after more than a decade of broken promises and resolutions on the part of Saddam Hussein. He was a brutal dictator and I am still not shedding any tears that he is no longer sharing oxygen with the rest of us. As for Libya, remember that 1. Libya was responsible for attacks against Americans in the 1980s and 2. ARAB STATES originally called for what is going on now. Besides, I thought liberals were arguing that the U.S. is not involved in hostilities against Libya. Now we are?

    Well, they're getting a good start on fixing that by deposing some US-backed dictators.
    And I applaud them for this, so long as they aren't replaced by non-US backed dictators who are as bad (or worse) than their predecesors.

    I don't know enough about the grievances the Chinese people have with the US to have an opinion on it.
    The point is that those with grievences aren't always right. If you need help, you can ask Demon of Light - if he dares show his face again...

    It also doesn't make them unreasonable morons. You are starting from the perspective that the US is always well-intentioned and framing all information in that light (e.g. an invasion of Iraq was done for the greater good, propping up Arab dictators was the lesser evil, the fact that Arabs perceive the US/Israel as a threat but not Iran just means that we need to market our policies better, etc.) All of these views completely fall apart if you instead view the United States as just another country that acts in its own self-interests.
    I did not call them morons. Unreasonable? Yes. Morons, no. And I do not believe the US is always well intentioned... if it were, it would tell China to stick it where the sun doesn't shine and give stronger support to the region's democracies.
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