Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Well, How Was This Question Answered?

From September 17, 2001...

Global Empathy, Will it last?

From Paris to Pakistan, a new perspective on the lone superpower.
By Robert Marquand | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

BEIJING - Knocking the "lone superpower," rightly or wrongly, was a post-cold-war sport until last week. America was caricatured as a giant Disneyland, a naive society, lead by "insensitive" hypocrites who tout democracy and human rights with little understanding of the world.

But that stereotype discourse has been largely silenced - at least for now. The scale of the New York and Washington attacks showed a country vulnerable, confused, hurt - and the world responded.In Iran, 60,000 soccer fans and players held a minute of silence. In Germany 200,000 expressed sorrow at the Brandenburg Gate - where the Germans came together after the Berlin Wall fell. In Nairobi, site of a 1998 bombing of the American Embassy, the word pole (Swahili for "sorry") is on the lips of many Kenyans.

It's too soon to say whether the attacks will bring an enduring global common resolve, put evils at home and abroad into sharper focus, or permanently alter the image of a people more complex and traditionally "decent" than critics allow. Much depends on how America responds now, say analysts and people interviewed in various cities worldwide.

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