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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Points of view

 
 

Many Arab Muslims oppose globalization because they connect the idea with the United States, said Gubara Said Hassan, a visiting Fulbright scholar.
“There is a tendency to equate globalization of the world with Americanization of the world,” Hassan said.
Hassan discussed Middle Eastern views about America in the Glasscock Building Tuesday afternoon at a forum entitled “The Origins, Root Causes and Functions of Middle Eastern (Muslim and Arab) Anti-Americanism.” The forum was co-sponsored by the Brazos Valley Fulbright Association and the Melbern G. Glasscock Center for Humanities Research.
Political despotism, socio-cultural dislocations and military impotency are some of the root causes of anti-Americanism in the Middle East, Hassan said.
“I’m trying to understand (anti-Americanism), so we can create a solution to it,” said Hassan, a researcher from the University of Helsinki in Finland.
Muslims who maintain anti-American sentiments often perceive military and political aide from the United States as intrusive, Hassan said.
“This is another way of intervening into (their) affairs,” Hassan said of Bosnian, Albanian, and Kuwaiti attitudes toward American involvement in past conflicts affecting the countries.
There are some positive views in the Middle East of the United States, but they are clouded by antipathy toward U.S. foreign policy, Hassan said.
“People love the United States as a republic, where there is freedom, land of opportunity,” Hassan said. “I find that Muslims are at home here. I find that Arabs are at home here.”
Judith Baer, a professor of political science, said she attended the forum to hear Hassan’s opinion on the issue, and said she agreed with Hassan’s positions on the topic, “with some reservations.”
When considering foreign countries’ attitudes toward America, students should think carefully about the countries and should evaluate American foreign policy as well, Hassan said.
“Be objective in criticizing or evaluating Islam and Muslims,” Hassan said. “Be objective in criticizing your own government and its policy towards the Middle East.”

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