In response to last year’s interchange between Ron Paul and Rudy Giuliani, Fox News had this to say about Muslim reaction to continued US military presence in Muslim lands. It’s a bit late, but I think it is an important concept to remember as we continue the occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq.

The “blowback” theory isn’t some fringe idea common only to crazy Sept. 11 conspiracy theorists. It doesn’t suggest that we “deserved” the Sept. 11 attacks, nor does it suggest we shouldn’t have retaliated against the people who waged them.

What it does say is that actions have consequences. When the Arab and Muslim world continually sees U.S. troops marching through Arab and Muslim backyards, U.S. trade sanctions causing Arab and Muslim suffering and U.S. bombs landing on Arab and Muslim homes, it isn’t difficult to see how Arabs could begin to develop a deep contempt for the U.S.

Straight Talk: Paul Has a Point, by Radley Balko, on May 21, 2007.

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