Peace upon the earth

The U.S. should not give up its role now

| Forum Editor

I vaguely remember the early ’90s, when there was moderate excitement about ceasefires and peace in the Middle East with the signing of the Oslo Accords. The Clinton administration seemed to be concerned about keeping the peace between Israelis and Palestinians. With the recent war in Israel, however, it appears as though many Americans do not care about keeping the two sides from destroying each other.

Yes, the horrible state of the economy is very important to us, and it does occupy most of our attention, but there is a humanitarian crisis in Gaza. Thousands of Israelis and Palestinians are being held hostage by a war their leaders have escalated. We Americans used to rush to the scene of a crisis, but now we seem to stand at a distance twiddling our thumbs. With the Bush administration leaving the White House, the government lacks a clear goal for the Gaza war. And the Obama administration, fixated on its “wonderful” bailout plan, only sends Senator Biden to Iraq to “visit” the American war on terror. Why doesn’t anyone seem to care? The United States has a large amount of leverage in Israeli politics, so why doesn’t anyone try to draw up plans for a cease-fire? Instead, the world has to look to France and Egypt to bring the two sides together.

American politics have gone through a drastic shift, and foreign policy is being ignored for the moment. With the Dow below 9,000 points, very high unemployment numbers and national morale at an all-time low, politicians at Washington realize that it is time to look inward. But if you ask me, it is a little too late. America has always viewed itself as the policeman of the world and has altered many courses of history. Now, with a bleak future ahead, the politicians have realized that there are colossal changes to be made if we are to survive the next century.

Great social, political, economical and environmental reforms must be achieved. But this focus inward has happened at the worst time on the world stage. With the war on terror staggering on, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict killing more people every day, the massacres still occurring in Sudan and Islamo-fascism on the rise again, the world very much needs a superpower to step up and take charge. Because even when the U.S. did meddle in various international events while trying to deal with domestic affairs, such action brought some form of change and media attention that would not have happened otherwise.

As college students, we feel as though we have little say in what happens outside our campus; however, even just the act of spreading awareness about humanitarian crises occurring around the world can make a difference. We have organizations like Amnesty International that have been established in order to create awareness and spread information, yet what action have they taken so far? More must be done to inform students around campus.

In the end, we must never become apathetic to crises around the world, because as one of the greatest nations on Earth, we must help those who need it the most. Yes, we must briefly look to our own affairs, but we should never turn a blind eye to the dying children, abused women and tortured men who need our help.

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