Just when you thought frère Jacques Chirac d’Iraq was in deep voodoo, along came his eminence Gary Hart with an oft-repeated sermon thundering against “Americans who too often find it hard to distinguish their loyalties to their original homelands from their loyalties to America and its national interests.”
Hart has been speaking out against the Iraqi phase of the war on terrorism, lest it deprive him of the fame he achieved for warning well before 9/11/01 of the looming terrorist menace. Now he assures us he wasn’t casting aspersions on American Jews (yeah, right, sure, ahuh), nor even on Cubans or on America’s Irish and their tendency on St. Patrick’s Day to easily confuse Iraq with Erin and Eire and Iran. Unfortunately for the Hon. Hart, he’s the one who mentioned “loyalties” twice, which can only mean he’s charging certain Americans with having “dual” loyalties.
That’s quite an accusation to make against anyone. Certainly it can backfire. For instance, if Hart has two girlfriends, is he displaying “dual” loyalties? Back in his youth, when perhaps he drove a hot rod, did he not soup it up with duals carbs and dual brakes? As a boy, didn’t he play cowboys and Indians while wearing dual holsters? In college, wasn’t he a dual major?
Dual systems are a plus in anyone’s book. Just look at what happens to those who do not display dual loyalties. Most notably there’s the case of the University of South Florida’s de-tenured professor Sami Al-Arian, the indicted alleged leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Professor Al-Arian has been a legal resident of the United States since 1989. Yet he never obtained U.S. citizenship, a sure sign he was not about to leave himself vulnerable to any dual-loyalty charge. He knew that his hothead friends back in the Middle East would not be pleased if he displayed even outward fidelity to his adopted country. Hence his motto: “Let us damn America, let us damn Israel, and their allies until their death.” Not the kind of thing you say when you’re sworn in as a new American.
But Al-Arian also knew too that displaying no loyalty to the U.S. would greatly enhance his standing in key American circles: the very ones now rushing to defend him as Joe McCarthy’s latest victim. No sooner was the Palestinian prof indicted than his team of lawyers, led by Peter Jennings, took to the airwaves to dismiss the charges against their client as lacking evidence. Of course, their reports suppressed all evidence disadvantageous to their man.
No worry that Peter Jennings will ever be accused of displaying duality. Interestingly, his counterparts Brokaw and Rather have been anchoring their broadcasts from Kuwait. Don’t expect Peter to do likewise, at least not until Saddam renounces his territorial claim to that small country. Peter’s singular loyalties are unmistakable.
There’s more to this story. Earlier this week former President Jimmy Carter signed on to an international movement that overwhelmingly regards the U.S. as the world’s greatest threat to piece. His former national security adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski dutifully followed along, penning an op-ed in the Washington Post insisting on the primacy of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute and criticizing the Bush administration for supporting the policies of Israel’s Sharon government. Why, did you know that current U.S. policies bear a striking resemblance to positions laid out in 1996 by several American backers of Benjamin Netanyahu and the Likud Party to whom they were sent along as recommendations? It’s got Europeans upset, Brzezinski upset, and maybe even Saddam Hussein. Hot tip: If they check the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, they’ll notice an even more uncanny resemblance.
Brzezinski mentions “the European penchant for conspiracy theories,” but that hardly explains the recent behavior of France’s Chirac and his effort to impose the Brezhnev Doctrine on the former Eastern Europe. “They missed a good opportunity to shut up,” he said, apropos those emerging democracies’ open support of U.S. policies. What a shocking turn of phrase, so indelicate, crude, and, well, un-French. No Frenchman has ever been accused of dual loyalties, but at least until now it was safe to assume that no French president, as befits leaders of a culture that has institutionalized selfishness as a cardinal virtue, had ever abandoned loyalty to French greatness. But that was before the rise to power of Jacques Chirac, a lowly sans-culottes, which in English translates as Enemy of the Week. Let’s hope there’s room at the Bastille.
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