July 2008



The attack at the US Consulate in Istanbul got me thinking last night.

Generally speaking I try to avoid official US Embassies and Consulates whilst traveling as they generally do not make me feel especially safe. There’s always tons of paranoid security afraid of photography, loitering, and human beings in general.

As the most accessible part of the United States, they do make attractive targets wherever they happen to be located.

The problem is that when they are attacked, the message is lost by the US people and then the US Government.

Take, for example, the 1998 US Embassy attacks in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi.

For some reason the vast majority of US citizens failed to understand that an attack on a US Embassy is the same as an attack on US soil. The attacked embassies were in far off Africa and of little concern to people in their every day life.

Consequently the Clinton Administration could only go so far in its response. Sure there were some military responses, but the partisan Republican party claimed that Clinton was being “political;” trying to distract from the Lewinsky problems. In truth, Clinton was trying to respond appropriately but the Republicans, being Republicans, couldn’t see beyond his crotch, never mind the US borders. To Republicans, a US Embassy abroad is a place that doesn’t matter.

Of course we know now that 1998 foreshadowed something bigger and more destructive: September 11. We know now that al Qaeda was trying to provoke the United States but was being ignored like a fly on horse shit. We know now that al Qaeda figured out how land a punch so close to home that the response came from a drunken sailor flailing wildly in the dark.

The attack on the US Consulate in Istanbul wouldn’t stop me from going back to Istanbul, nor should it stop anybody from taking a trip to Turkey.

I just hope that the government doesn’t bury its head in the sand and pretend it didn’t happen. I just hope that the government doesn’t take the wrong message from the attacks and set us up for something worse.

Unfortunately Republican Presidents have a track record for missing some pretty obvious signs.

8 comments to Disconnected

  • Al Queda attacked the consulate because they fear overendowed fertility idols. Especially when printed on post cards that are purchased by Americans to send to their friends back home.

  • Gawd I hate spelling errors…

  • disenchanted

    Remind me to tell you about Sorta’ Cosmopolitan’s new travel policy regarding the state department’s list. Blah.

  • Jay


    Since you are a foreigner, I thought (SPAM LINK REMOVED) (social networking website for expatriates) might be interesting for you and your readers..

    You might want to add it to your links page as well.


  • Ed

    What do you mean Bush won’t do nothing, he probably wil declare war on…on…Canada!

  • @cq: you mean postcards from muslim countries?

    @disenchanted: oh boy…

    @Jay: Fuck you. I removed your spam link from the comments, and I don’t think you know how to define the words “foreigner” or “expatriate.” Please do not leave any more commercial comments here.

    @Ed: Sad but all too possibly true!

  • @tqe: Acutally, I meant the second post card you sent me. The dick on that fertility idol was as big as the rest of the idol itself.

    You’ll be happy to know it is now on my refrigerator right next to the one I got from you and Dr. D when you went to the Commie Museum.

    That is, at least for the next two or three weeks.

  • @CQ: I know which postcard you meant. I did send it from a Muslim country…