Tuesday, March 27, 2007

7 Things You Might Not Know Bush Has Done Wrong:

  1. Acquiesced in genocide in Darfur, in order to protect valued Sudanese government witnesses in the war on terror. Don’t believe me? Read.
  2. Significantly increased aid to Musharraf’s Pakistan over a period of years, with few strings attached—even after the AQ Khan nuclear proliferation network was uncovered. Then, when finally trying to rein it in, he blamed the Democrats for asking too many questions about where the money would go.
  3. Provided military support to both side of a potential nuclear conflict. The Bush’s America didn’t just provide military aid to Pakistan. It has also provided aid, and sold weapons, to India. The two states have been to war three times since decolonisation, and are now nuclear armed. If this isn’t playing with fire, I don’t know what is (source).
  4. Pardoned a terrorist—or pretty close to it. Bush pardoned a 25 year old man for his role in a bombing that occurred in the context of a 1990 West Virginia mineworkers’ strike. While the incident was relatively small, the decision stands in sharp contrast to Bush’s usual position on political violence. It is all the more remarkable, given his willingness to hold suspected, would-be terrorists without trial, and his stubborn unwillingness to commute the sentences of the 100-plus people executed while he was governor of Texas.
  5. Bought oil from a government that is openly and personally hostile to him. Everyone knows Hugo Chavez doesn't care for Bush much, but it's easy to overlook that Venezuela supplies more than 10%, the third largest share, of imported oil to the US. Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez is in the habit of calling Bush the devil publicly. I don’t care for either of them much, but it hardly seems good diplomatic practice to let this go on.
  6. Bought almost as much oil from a region affected by an open insurgency. And no, it isn’t Iraq. Close to 10% of US oil imports are from Nigeria, primarily the Niger Delta region, which is inhabited by about 30 million exceptional poor people. The region has been environmentally brutalised by oil extraction, and the locals aren’t even seeing the money (source).
  7. Appointed a war profiteer Energy Secretary. Again, this isn’t in Iraq. Sam Bodman used to run Cabot Corporation, which bought the high-tech mineral coltan (aka tantalite) from sources in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, during the recent war there. Somewhere around 4 million people died in the war, which was largely financed through the minerals trade. (Bodman is also a world class polluter.)
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