US is'worst' imperialist: UK archbishop

Archbishop claimed that America's attempt to intervene overseas by "clearing the decks" with a "quick burst of violent action" had led to "the worst of all worlds".

US is'worst' imperialist: UK archbishop
The leader of the world's Anglicans has blasted US foreign policy, especially in Iraq, as being in stark contrast to Britain's benevolent imperial past, according to an interview published on Sunday.

Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, was quoted as saying in the December issue of Britain's Muslim lifestyle Emel magazine that US intervention in Iraq was a "quick burst of violent action," the Sunday Times said in a reprint of the interview.

This led to "the worst of all worlds," Williams said, heaping scorn on the "chosen nation myth of America, meaning that what happens in America is very much at the heart of God's purpose for humanity."

Williams urged the United States to launch a "generous and intelligent programme of aid directed to the societies that have been ravaged; a check on the economic exploitation of defeated territories; a demilitarisation of their presence."

He added: "We have only one global hegemonic power. It is not accumulating territory: it is trying to accumulate influence and control. That's not working.

"It is one thing to take over a territory and then pour energy and resources in to administering it and normalising it," he said. "Rightly or wrongly, that's what the British Empire did -- in India, for example."

"It is another thing to go in on the assumption that a quick burst of violent action will somehow clear the decks and that you can move on and other people will put it back together -- Iraq, for example."

He also said the Muslim world needed to acknowledge that its "political solutions were not the most impressive."

Williams has been a persistent critic of the war in Iraq, which began with the US-led invasion in March 2003.

Last month he said the conflict had wreaked "terrible damage" on the Middle East region and "urgent action" was needed to stabilise Iraq.

The archbishop also attacked modern society.

"Our modern Western definition of humanity is clearly not working very well," he told Emel.

"There is something about Western modernity which really does eat away at the soul."


Güncelleme Tarihi: 25 Kasım 2007, 18:37