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Updated on March 1, 2012

That is all it takes to make peace.

What boggles the mind is that all four of the Republican Party candidates running for president have criticized the apology from President Barack Obama to Hamid Karzai, president of Afghanistan, in regard to the burning of the Quran by United States/NATO forces.

The apology was made to Hamid Karzai, the Afghanistan president, soon after the news broke; and in an instant like that, what would the president do to appease his Afghan counterpart? His critics would not say what they would do.

Would they have said, "OK, let's forget about it and go on to the next topic," or "Mr. President, we have better things to talk about than the burning of a book,"

Any answers would come on the spur of the moment; however, the one that would make total sense would be, "I am sorry to hear that. I must apologize for what happened." which the president did (paraphrasing).

After the Quran burning incident, many Americans were furious, as that should never have happened on a U.S. military base, because the troops were there to strike an intimate friendship with the Afghans in spite of the war. The Americans and Afghans were in a partnership against a common enemy.

In other words, it was only the Taliban faction that has offended the sensibilities of Americans by their actions and policies, and not all the people in that country. Therefore, to burn their holy book, even inadvertently, was highly stupid, if not insane. The military head and commanding officer there should have rendered an apology to Karzai even before the president would be informed about the matter.

Yet, all in all, the candidates have been able to omit one important and significant aspect; and that was, that they have failed to tell the world what they themselves would have done, if they were facing the problem under the same circumstances.

As polite as Obama was; and as Commander-in-Chief, he would not think of anything than to immediately apologize for the action of some soldiers under his command, expressing his regrets and being sincere of what he was saying.

It was Gingrich, who was beaming with anger and saying, "No American president should apologize to anyone," and that he was "appalled" by Obama's reaction and subsequent gesture to the Afghan leader, in light of the incident.

He was followed by Romney and Santorum, who expressed similar sentiments as Gingrich and said that the president has been apologizing about everything for America since he took office, and that was unbecoming of him.

Paul did not make a statement, but the feeling was that he agreed with his other three colleagues, who thought that an apology was unnecessary. Nevertheless, none of them was capable of saying exactly what they would have said or done instantly, being in Obama's shoes at the time.

Two soldiers and two other military advisers were killed in the aftermath violence that occurred, and Gingrich wanted Karzai to apologize to Obama for that; but according to news reports, those killings happened after the fact. The two presidents were also in lengthy conversations with each other, and there was the probability that Karzai would have said something about the murdered officers and soldiers.

In other words, it was impossible to know what transpired between Obama and Karzai during those conversations, for anyone to jump to the conclusion that Obama was remiss in asking for an apology from Karzai for the death of the U.S. personnel that were involved in the violence that led to their deaths.

Many people saw that the Republican candidates were only interested in squeezing political points out of a deplorable situation, and instead of making inflammatory statements, they could have backed the president in showing their disgust of the Quran burning event.

That could have cooled the indignation felt by the Afghans that sparked the violence across the country; and even the killing of the military advisers came after the comments and statements by the Republican candidates.

That went to show that politicians should be very careful in issuing statements or saying anything for their own gains, because they (statements) might be translated differently in other parts of the world.

As far as an apology was concerned, everybody understood what it was. It was universal to render an apology in a case such as the one that took place in Afghanistan, where "friends" were not supposed to do anything to irk "friends", as the Afghans were friends of the U.S. and vice versa.

The Obama administration's policy was to initiate peace in that part of the world; and therefore an apology by the president for the burning of the Quran was in order.

He stopped the Taliban from using the incident as a recruiting tool.


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