Can't find the link so I'll have to post in entirety. Near East South Asia Council of Overseas Schools 2002-2003 CALL FOR PAPERS The winner of this year's Call for Papers is WARREN S. APEL of The American Embassy School in New Delhi, India. His thoughtful and insightful essay is reprinted below. Why Do They Hate Us? Warren S. Apel American Embassy School, New Delhi, India Americans like to believe that the United States is a great country. And in many respects we are correct. Compared to many countries in the world, we are lucky to have the political freedoms, the quality medical care, education system, and low poverty that we enjoy. We figure that no one should hate us they should all want to be more like us. Its this belief that caused George W. Bush to make his famous quote: "I'm amazed that there is such misunderstanding of what our country is about, that people would hate us. . . like most Americans, I just can't believe it. Because I know how good we are. . ." Why was America a target of terrorism? For the last year, just the act of posing this question has been tantamount to justifying the actions of those terrorists who struck the United States. If asking the question was excusing the terrorists, then changing our attitudes or conduct was "giving in to their demands." Until recently, there has been no chance of actually changing the way America conducts itself at home or abroad. Now that weve had more than a year to calm down, perhaps its time to change our way of thinking, our attitudes, and our actions. When we ask the question "why do they hate us?" we dont want a complicated answer. Americans dont want to hear that weve been doing anything wrong. We want to hear "they are jealous of our freedoms." We want to generalize that Arabs are crazed and violent, acting without logical motivation. U.S. Congressman Brad Sherman stated in a meeting of the Committee on International Relations that "we are resented for our power, envied for our wealth and hated for our liberty." This kind of placating reassurance may comfort Americans, but it is far from the truth. Other countries have freedoms, wealth and liberty. Why werent Sweden, Canada, or Holland the target of any recent terrorism?