Are we ugly Americans?

By From page A6 | January 18, 2013

Unfortunately this is a common vision about us overseas. My ex-girlfriend’s father served in Hitler’s army during World War II. He told me that “I was hoping to get captured by Americans rather than Russian.” Those days even our enemy respected us for being good people. Today this vision has been reversed.

New Year’s Day a group of American soldiers entered a mosque that is located in Incirlik U.S. airbase in Turkey. They broke the mosque’s windows, ripped apart Quran and tipped over the Altaf. Mosque has been decommissioned some time for repair.

The Turkish government and Turkish military hid the incidents until they became news. Now they are dancing around the issue. They were worried about the incident might spark an anti-U.S. way of thinking.

This is an insult to the Turkish nation more than to Islam. Punishing the people who did it won’t solve the problem. The root of the cause is mentality. The U.S. government is wholly responsible for their training therefore, U.S. government is accountable for this incident.

Military personnel are ambassadors for the United States. They have no right to act or react irresponsibly and destroy the U.S.’s (my) image. The burden is on the U.S. government, which should give proper training to these kids while they are in their hands.

I am Turkish citizen as well as a proud U.S. citizen. I have been all around the world. When I came to the States, I found out that American people are a most loving nation. Unfortunately the US government is failing to represent us properly around the world. We need to act swiftly and keep our government responsible, otherwise we have to deal with consequences.

I would like to end this with Albert Einstein quote “The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything.”

Karahan Mete

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