By Kaishi Lee
SINGAPORE — (September 11, 2001) Let’s face it. America’s in a frenzy after another terrorist attack.
Is it America being a world superpower? Jealousy or Uncle Sam poking his sharp nose into every corner?
America is like a giant filtration machine. American brand names like Coca-Cola, Levi’s and McDonald’s can be found from Libya to London.
However, the world generally has mixed reactions towards America.
On the other hand, America’s dominance as a world power does incur the wrath of some people – such as terrorist Osama Bin Laden and North Korean dictator Kim Jung-Il.
America also has a stinging habit of giving its two cents’ worth on almost every political and social issue happening in the world, including damaging Sino-U.S. ties by lashing at China’s stand on human rights. America’s ambiguous foreign policy is also another matter.
Americans know that they are not universally liked.
In Okinawa, where the permanent U.S. military base is situated, Japanese have complained about rowdy Americans. America is also sitting on a see-saw over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and remains affected by the ill-fated war in Vietnam.
For crying out loud, America determines the world’s economies. The Wall Street Crash of 1929 led the world into the Great Depression. A fall in the NASDAQ or the Dow Jones composite index also means a fall in the Hang Seng and Sydney index.
America has an undeniable influence in the world. It eradicated poverty, has a stable economy and its people live in peace and plenty. On a lighter note, it introduced Walt Disney, E.T. and baseball to the world.
The vein of disquiet is richly tapped by America welcoming and reviling its immigrants like no other culture in the world.
America is a moving target.
It is admired and scorned. It is showered with both bouquets and brickbats.
America has been humiliated and threatened.
America will rise to the challenge.
This piece from Youth Journalism International’s archives was originally published a few hours after the planes crashed into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.