US Hypocrisy at the Center of a New “Axis of Evil”

Bombs rocked a crowded Hindu temple and a train station in India leaving more than twenty dead and many more badly wounded. Though no group took responsibility for the attack, a similar bombing in New Delhi in October was concluded by police to be the work of a Pakistani Islamic radical group, Lashkar-e-Taiba. The attacks came just four days after President Bush visited India. The president of India, Shahid Siddiqui, has voiced a growing concern that India has become a new target for terrorism due to India’s close relationship to the US. Earlier on the day of the bombing, Siddiqui introduced the nuclear cooperation deal that was reached with President Bush during his visit. The deal would allow India to produce as much weapons-grade material as it needs for its present and future “strategic program,” despite the fact that India failed to sign the international Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. The bombings in India highlight two awful, yet consistently made mistakes in the international realm: misplaced religious intolerance and America’s hypocritical foreign policy. Bush has troops building a nation from scratch in Iraq; an intervention that was originally justified under the guise of nuclear non-proliferation. The US failed to find the nuclear material in Iraq when its government was supposedly in violation of the treaty. Yet the president of India can admit to the same violation that Iraq was suspected of, and simultaneously tighten its diplomatic ties with the US. This double standard has effectively destroyed the diplomatic capital of the United States, leaving it with only hard power as a tool to exert international influence, which is not a very popular tool. American hypocrisy has extended to the point where the US is no longer the only place where the opposition targets. Religious radicals, as well as those who are just fed up with US favoritism in the international community, are now targeting both the US and its’ allies. Though India and Pakistan have had unstable relations for some time now, it is no coincidence that this attack came so shortly after President Bush’s visit. The bombing in London a few months ago was another example of radicals targeting US allies to voice their concern with those compliant with US hypocrisy. However, as attacks by religious “radicals” continue, a familiar axis pattern begins to form. These “radicals” believe that the US hypocrisy is evil and, by the looks of the London, New Delhi and Varanasi attacks, they also believe that benefactors or supporters of the US hypocrisy should be punished. The ‘benefactors’ and ‘supporters’ coalesce into an axis of US led hypocrisy. Also apparent from the attacks, is the assumption of the “fundamentalist” religious groups that countries as wholes are either for or against US hypocritical policy. What we’re witnessing is the infamously named “Axis of Evil” speech being turned around and applied to the US. When the US made the Axis of Evil speech people listened, understood and targeted the “fundamentalists” as evil. Maybe, we should listen a little closer when “Islamo-Fascists” implicitly make the same argument about the US. Or perhaps we can stare into space arrogantly while bombs go off in temples half way around the world due to our hypocrisy. If these Islamic groups are truly fundamentalist, they learned from a great role model; Christian fundamentalist George W. Bush.