The term 'blogfather' has mostly fallen out of disuse these days, probably because most of today's bloggers don't have a single person to point to and say: "that guy, he's the one who got me to start blogging." This blog has only one father, though, and it's Ian Welsh (formerly of Tilting at Windmills, occasionally of the pogge collective). Back in 2004, it was our skirmishes in his comments section about everything from proportional representation to polygamy that convinced me I needed to get my own soapbox.
These days he's mostly writing for an American audience over at the Agonist, which is of course the Canadian blogosphere's loss. But once I got over my annoyance with him for abandoning us (SOB!!!), I started actually reading what he was writing, and it blew me away. He's simply a better blogger for them than he ever was for us. Overall, his mission seems to be to provide a kind of no-holds-barred but always impeccably well-grounded critique of the U.S.'s role in the world, which, like a slap in the face to a bully, is sometimes exactly what is needed. And interestingly, I almost never disagree with him about American issues, which is a whole new experience for me.
Anyway, in part this post is meant to tell everyone who's not already reading Ian at his new home at the Agonist to give it a shot. But mostly I want to pimp his guest post over at firedoglake, "A Mile In My Enemy's Shoes." Here's the thesis:
What is so infuriating about America, to outsiders, is the inability of Americans to look at the world through other people's eyes. Michael Scheur, the ex-CIA analyst who wrote “Imperial Hubris” first wrote a book called “Through Our Enemies' Eyes”. Interesting that a (good) analyst would first seek to understand how his enemies saw the world, don't you think? It's not because Scheur is some pansy leftist, either, in his books Scheur has suggested that winning against Islam may require killing many many millions of Muslims and he doesn't have much of a problem with that. It's because if you don't understand your enemies it is much harder to either defeat them, or make peace with them....and here's the money quote:
When America stops doing the Muslim=bad short circuit, peace may be possible. When America stops saying one thing (we believe in democracy) and then doing another (but not when you vote for the wrong people), foreigners may stop hating America. In the meantime, if the US insists that every Islamic militia is its enemy – then every Islamic militia will be its enemy.Yes, it's All About the U.S., which is probably irritating to those of you who think there's already plenty of political commentary out there about the U.S., thankyouverymuch. But it's viewed with a Canadian eye, and besides, this thing may be the best blog post I've ever read. So seriously, what are you still reading this one for?