Our Readers' Opinions
May 28, 2004
Religious, ethnic and racial cleansing?

Whether we like it or not, trample on people’s religious beliefs and practices, and we will have formulated a perfect recipe for the creation of a universe in which violence, coupled with fear, becomes commonplace.
When did it start? And how are the curtains to be brought down, if a new course is to be charted?{{more}}
The recent bizarre conduct of the United States military personnel in Iraq who forced captured Iraqi prisoners to eat pork, etc., knowing fully well that what they were doing runs counter to the religious beliefs and practices of the captured. One is left to wonder about the reaction of George Bush and Donald Rumsfield if, on the receiving end of that encounter, there was a Jew.
Not too far adrift of Iraq, the economic and military might of the United States through its erstwhile conduit – Israel – religious, ethnic and racial cleansing continues unabated under the pretext of “terrorism”. Where is the hope of mankind the world over? Little, if at all anything, has yet been said to link the drastic increase in the cost of petroleum products to the massive and prolonged consumption of this commodity by the United States and Israeli military activities in that part of the world.
Perplexing, to say the least, that the United States of America, which has and continues to derive enormous prosperity because of the diversity of its ethnic origin, should have arrived at a point where its military strength should be used to inflame and aggravate situations in its selfish quest to control the universe.
In our own tiny island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Americans are not yet aware of the extent of the burdens their government has placed and continues to place on us and the entire region.
Economies cannot be planned, standards cannot be met, taxation and unemployment are not ours to determine. The governments of the OECS and Caricom face a cut-off period of non-compliance and threats of punitive measures if we comply with aspects of the United Nations Charter relating to war crimes.
Vincentians and indeed West Indians once saw “Uncle Sam” as big brother and a friend on whom we could depend, no matter come-what-may. All of that has changed to: Master! Speak, Thy servant heareth!

Stanley M Quammie