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AP: The World Has No Tears For US Over 9/11

From the DNC's Associated Press:

Saddam Hussein in France visiting a nuclear reactor. Jacques Chirac is the second man from the left.

World remembers 9/11 but many not crying

By ELAINE GANLEY, Associated Press Writer

The nations of the world joined Monday in solemn remembrance of Sept. 11 — but for many, resentment of the United States flowed as readily as tears.

Critics say Americans have squandered the goodwill that prompted France's Le Monde newspaper to proclaim "We are all Americans" that somber day after the attacks, and that the Iraq war and other U.S. policies have made the world less safe in the five years since.

Heads bowed in moments of silence for the 3,000 killed in the attacks on New York and Washington — while the No. 2 al-Qaida leader issued new warnings in a videotape. And dissident voices said the world has traded in civil liberties and other democratic rights in its war on terror.

In Europe, where Islamic terror has struck twice since 9/11, in the Madrid train bombings and the London transit attacks, the silent tributes were tinged with doubts and recriminations.

Even German Chancellor Angela Merkel — an advocate of repairing ties with Washington that were frayed under her predecessor Gerhard Schroeder — had veiled criticism of the United States, saying: "The ends cannot justify the means."

"In the fight against international terror … respect for human rights, tolerance and respect for other cultures must be the maxim of our actions, along with decisiveness and international cooperation," she said…

Allies in the U.S.-led war on terrorism renewed their resolve Monday to fight fanaticism, while skeptics countered that they can no longer follow a superpower they say has relinquished its right to lead.

"Right after Sept. 11 the world was united with Americans. Their moral leadership was unquestioned," Pawel Zalewski, head of the Polish parliament's foreign relations committee, wrote in the Gazeta Wyborcza. "However, this strong moral authority was abused as a result of the Iraq war."

Exactly five years after its message of solidarity, Le Monde titled its lead editorial "The Mistakes of Bush."

In Caracas, Venezuela, about 200 marchers protested what they called "imperialist terrorism" carried out by the United States since the 9/11 attacks. Demonstrators — many of them supporters of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and some of Arab descent — carried Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian flags. Many criticized the U.S. invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani wrote President Bush on behalf of the Iraqi people, expressing condolences to the families of Sept. 11 victims.

"On this sad and memorable day, I would like to reiterate the gratitude of the people of Iraq for the people of America and for your leadership," Talabani wrote. "The people of Iraq will never forget those who helped them in getting rid of the most brutal and terrorist regime of Saddam Hussein."

New Zealand's Prime Minister Helen Clark joined many when she said: "No, we're not more secure since 9/11."

Clark said more should be done to reach out to moderate states and leaders in the Islamic world to encourage understanding between different peoples, and to help end the sense of alienation and exclusion among some young Muslims that fuels extremism

French President Jacques Chirac, in Helsinki, reiterated in a written message to Bush his nation's "friendship" in the fight against terrorism.

A week after the Sept. 11 attacks, Chirac flew over the World Trade Center site — the first foreign leader to pay personal condolences. That solidarity quickly dissipated into rancor in the buildup to the Iraq war, when Chirac led opposition to Bush's plans.

Israel's Haaretz daily expressed disappointment and cynicism in an op-ed piece that said: "This is Sept. 11 five years later: a political tool in the hands of the Bush administration."

In Southeast Asia, U.S. and Philippine troops fighting Islamic extremists in the jungles prayed for peace and safety. Other remembrances took place in Japan, Australia, Finland, South Korea, Thailand and Indonesia.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who won the country's first post-Taliban election, expressed the appreciation of the Afghan people to the U.S. for the "sacrifices of your sons and daughters" in rebuilding his country. But in the Afghan capital, many residents said they had not seen much improvement since the U.S.-led invasion that toppled the Taliban for harboring bin Laden

Apparently we didn't surrender fast enough for France or Spain — or the AP.

And I guess we could really learn a lot from Germany about the humane way to fight wars.

But when Hugo Chavez says we're on the wrong track, we really have to be concerned.

(Thanks to nicotusc15 for the heads up.)

This article was posted by Steve on Monday, September 11th, 2006. Comments are currently closed.

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