In his essay, “An Obsession the World Doesn’t Share”, Roger Cohen describes in detail the way other countries view the actions of the United States Government and President Bush (New York Times, 2004). Mr. Cohen’s main idea throughout the article is how the United States government is reacting, or not reacting, to world issues due to the focus on 9/11/01. The author uses countries such as South Africa, and Brazil to make his point that these countries are facing severe problems and the USA, which has always been seen as a “helping country” is now focused on terrorism.
Supporting viewpoints of his main idea are the fact that in Canada, a recent statue of President Bush was erected in the same form as Iraq’s past leader, Sadaam Hussein. In addition, the author notes the AIDS epidemic in South Africa; and the economic factors in Latin America. Mr. Cohen continues his main idea by making the suggestion that any good the USA government has done (i.
e. – giving money to support AIDS education), is overshadowed by the fight on terrorism.
Mr. Cohen’s point in this article is to inform Americans about how the rest of the world views their country. His central argument seems to be that despite the good our government has done, it is completely overshadowed by our dire need to revenge for 9/11 terrorist attacks. The author uses facts to back up his argument from what seems to be reliable sources, such as the government of these nations, and Ambassadors for these countries.
The tone of this article is informative, the author presents his arguments without bias and his personal judgments are few. The author uses a logos appeal, presenting his argument as a logical, reasonable one. Although it does not appear that there are many weaknesses in his argument, some information is excluded, namely that of President Bush’s view, because Bush’s view was not clearly stated, this alone may make the author slightly biased towards the other countries, who are in effect asking for our help.
This writer accepts Mr. Cohen’s argument. I believe that all the good the USA may be doing for other countries, IS overshadowed by what seems to be revenge for not only 9/11 but for the Gulf War as well. The fact that our government is intent on punishing Middle Eastern countries, which had little or no involvement in 9/11, speaks volumes about what is important (fighting and not assisting). In this article, the author states, “The problem is the perception that Bush uses immense power in an egotistical way. (NY Times, 2004)
This writer strongly believes this to be the truth as evidenced by the fact that Hussein of Iraq was a main focal point of the terrorism instead of the one who committed the crimes (Bin Laden). As assumed from this article, President Bush is not well-liked by other countries and even Americans are growing tired of Bush’s so-called priorities. In sum, Mr. Cohen has presented an aptly named title of how the world negatively views our government. Unfortunately, most Americans do not differ on this viewpoint.