Why is the Arab world so easily offended?

I normally don’t post stuff I don’t have any useful comments on, but I think this article from the Washington Post is an exception. The article says nothing really new, but what it says is worth repeating — because the American public tends to be not only ignorant of the world at large, but to have short memories for what it does know. The question the article raises, but doesn’t answer, is what can we in the West to do improve the situation?

…And Where the Demonstrations Aren’t
Here’s an Atlantic article and map on where the demonstrations are, and are not.

Note that the violent protests are in currently unstable countries, and the non-violent protests tend to be small. Also note that the vast majority of the countries with large Muslim populations have no demonstrations. Finally, the incident that triggered these protests – the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi – may well have been a planned attack by external/extremist forces that only later claimed the film as the cause.

…and the surveys show
The people of the Muslim world don’t object to our culture so much as they object to our foreign policy towards them. I’ll have more to say in a later essay, but if you look at the past actions of the neocons and the policy statements of the various Republican politicians, the Muslim view of US foreign policy is pretty accurate.

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