BRAVO Barrak Obama! You deserve a pat on the back for realizing the extent of risk the bill on ‘Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act’ (JASTA) poses to the United States of America, and your veto against the bill to unsheathe the sword before the countries targeted by the bill, and your country.
Perhaps, the position you have adopted could expiate your hesitant policies in the Middle East throughout the years leading to lack of interest in the relationship between Washington and countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council. Indeed, there is a possibility of referring the bill ‘JASTA’ back to Congress for another voting session, but the issue will go against the wishes of those who submitted the bill for the first time to the US Senate and the House of Representatives after probing the activities of voting on the recent weapons’ deal with Saudi Arabia, which was presented by the same extremist group submitting JASTA and expunged by Congress through the major players.
The major US political players are certain that zeal can never transform to laws that will turn into a double-edged sword against the country later, no matter the nature of election.
In his comment on JASTA, the White House spokesperson Josh Earnest said it is not difficult to see other countries in the mind’s eye using the bill as justification to drag US diplomats or soldiers or even companies to courts worldwide.
Furthermore, the “VETO” is considered a rectifier of the currently tarnished image of the US, not only regionally but worldwide. Perhaps, it will erase the memory of what the US politicians see as ‘indication of bankruptcy’ eschewing from liabilities of the global financial crisis through seizing other countries’ funds under the pretext of sponsoring terrorism on empty and flimsy allegations, without evidence.
American voices appealing against any act of giving in to the fervor of extremist representatives and the senate zeal, realize the consequential losses the US status may incur worldwide in pushing the relationship with Saudi Arabia and other GCC countries and the entire Arab countries to the ledge of feudatory due to the adventurous bill.
Despite the positive step President Obama has taken, which will be recorded in the right column, there’s still need to restore the historic coalition with regional Arab countries to normal through series of procedures — especially in the aftermath of honeymoon between Washington and Tehran, and its negative effect on the state of affairs in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon.
No change will be accomplished if this orphan step is not followed by a series of other steps in the right direction to counter the political campaign waged against Saudi and the GCC countries in propelling the US public opinion on JASTA, although it violates international law. It’s necessary to work on erasing its tracks so as to prevent the extremist language from prevailing in the US against Arabs and Muslims.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor in-Chief, the Arab Times