Mohamed Khodr’s Column
The League of Arab States officially founded on March 22, 1945 has for the past 56 years been nothing more than a pathetic, shameful, wasteful, and impotent organization designed more for domestic Arab consumption by egotistical corrupt Arab leaders than for addressing urgent political, economic, social, or educational issues that haunt the impoverished and mostly illiterate Arab masses. From its inception, inter-Arab rivalry and conflicts, formation of regional Arab councils, and Cold War allegiances have rendered this organization into an irrelevant, cosmetic, pseudo-symbol of “Arab unity.” It’s a voluntary association whose purpose was to strengthen ties among the member states, coordinate their policies, and promote their common interests. At no time in its long history did it ever succeed accomplishing any of these objectives. Even today with the world’s turmoil caused by America’s “war on terrorism du jour”, which blatantly is directed at Arab and Muslim nations; with the second Palestinian Intifadah; with potential American attacks on Arab nations, our illustrious “Arab League” is internally fighting as to the upcoming summit’s location. While Arab and Muslim blood is being spilled our “leaders” are squandering time, money, and self respect to even agree on a place to meet.
Peace in the Middle East is not in the interest of Israel, the “Arab” leaders, nor the United States. Such peace would ultimately expose the myths, lies, bankruptcy, legitimacy, inhumanity, and hollow arguments for the very existence of these leaders, their conflicts, a and their policies. Truth avoids Politics and Politics avoids Truth. Thus the world watches the perennial soap opera of Arab “unity”, its weakness of resolve and purpose, its disorganization, and its failure to ever take a “unified” stand on anything to prophetically fulfill Abba Ebban’s mantra “they never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity” to apply to the Arab world not just the Palestinians. How shameful. Twenty three Arab nations with 300 Million people cannot even begin to offset Israel’s influence in the west, whether politically, economically, or even in the most important weapon Israel has: public relations. Our Arab leaders come to America on quick visits to get their orders, get some cash reward, and leave without ever speaking to the only people who matter, the American people. They are fearful to face the free American press who might have strong embarrassing questions on freedoms, human rights, military expenditures, status of women, and health and education issues. So they avoid such an encounter being used to their own “national” media who’s daily mission is “how great thou art?. Tragically, only Arafat meets with the media and that’s a disaster in itself.
Even the organization of the Arab League is typical of Arab disorganization: difficulty in decision making, fiscal mismanagement, and acquiescence to Arab leaders “requests” for appointments of self serving bureaucrats. While the United Nations has 189 member states representing the globe it only has one Deputy Secretary General appointed in 1998 and six main organizations. Contrast that with the Arab League that has eight Assistants to the Secretary General, fourteen organizations, seventeen Arab Trade Unions, and seventeen Regional Offices worldwide. While the U.N. budget is public and transparent, the Arab League budget is not public. However, both the United Nations and Arab League share one common fate. In today’s America First world or else politic, BOTH organizations, like every other International organization, are “Irrelevant”.
Neither the Arab peoples nor the Arab League garner any respect or carry any weight in the world. Arab leaders spend millions of dollars on Arab League Summits for first class accommodations and service, overblown delegations, media personnel to photograph every speech, every hand shake, every movement with newspapers and television programs praising each respective leader for their intelligence, vision, and hard work on behalf of local, regional, and international issues as well as their unwavering support for the Palestinian people. Such meetings always degenerate into self serving aggrandizement speeches full of hyperbole and recurrent false promises. The only predictable outcome of such Arab League Summits is the following perennial Communiqué:
1. WE place Total Responsibility on Israel. 2. WE reject Israel’s proposals and actions in form and content. 3. WE call upon the International Community to immediately intervene against Israel’s illegal actions. 4. WE call upon the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, the Vatican, the Non-Aligned Stated and people of peace and conscience to support the immediate implementation of All U.N. Resolutions and International Agreements. 5. WE reiterate our total support for the legitimate cause of the Palestinian people
BUT, THEY CONCLUDE: IF ISRAEL REFUSES AND KILLS MORE PALESTINIANS; WE, the Arab League have no alternative but to CALL FOR ANOTHER EMERGENCY ARAB LEAGUE SUMMIT TO DISCUSS THE NEW DEVELOPMENTS.
The Arab masses are sick and tired of these charades but are too demoralized, hopeless, helpless, and fearful to assert their faith, their dignity, honor, and longing for freedom. They are all hypnotized and indoctrinated by the shameless hourly clapping of media hypocrites who extol the virtues of the leaders and enshrine them with a false history of accomplishments. Ironically, despite Arab poverty and American wealth, both peoples share the same psychological characteristics of helplessness. Both are overwhelmed by a daily onslaught of media spins and packaged opinions that deprive both peoples from independence of thought, emotional empathy, and the moral and spiritual responsibility toward the suffering of nations due to their governmental policies of commission or omission. Both are told to put stock in their material stocks not their human bonds.
The Arab League will never amount to any strong and organized institution to resolve either internal or external Arab concerns. The Arab leaders already have their own “regional” friends and councils, they already travel extensively with huge delegations and security forces to visit each other giving the semblance of “action”. They already fill the television and newspaper news with exchanged phone calls and telegrams between each other, they already have loaded embassies in each other’s capitals, and they ALL know each other’s purpose in life: which is to stay alive and rule with an iron hand.
DISSOLVE THE ARAB LEAGUE.