American minds these days are occupied with the financial crisis. The increasingly distant Iraq War, ever expanding military muscle in Afghanistan and recent loss of life and massive destruction in Gaza have been knocked off the front page and main story of daily newscasts. Problematic as the economy worldwide is, we will survive. It is not wealth that has disappeared, nor the ability to make money, but confidence in a system that by its very nature rewards with one hand and takes away with the other. As in economics, so in politics, it seems. And “occupation” is the main problem. In a short interview on FORA TV, Dr. Abdul Mawgoud Dardery (Assistant Professor of Cultural Studies and Critical Discourse at South Valley University, Egypt) brings this point into focus. Of course occupation has been the rule of history with “to the victor go the spoils” a mantra of civilization’s domination of those not considered sufficiently civilized. But unless the occupier empties the land of those already occupying it, as all the American continents’ countries have attempted to do, problems necessarily remain. In fancy we think of getting along with others as a melting pot; for much of the Middle East it has been more of a smelting and pelting pot … and the beating goes on.

Daniel Martin Varisco