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overcoming inertia

Reader comment on item: The U.S. Institute of Peace Stumbles

Submitted by yonason (United States), Mar 23, 2004 at 16:14


So, what can we do? I mean, how do we change the thinking and behavior of those who set policy and those who implement it?

Bureaucratic institutions have a life of their own, and the momentum they have now is not going to be redirected swiftly or easily. From what I've seen, the Muslim activists not only know this, but have long been aggressively working behind the scenes to exert as much influence as possible at all levels.

Even if Islamic activist's efforts are minimally responsible for causing the weak-headedness you are rightly protesting, their years of hands-on experience has taught them how to manipulate it. They have also become known and, after years of seemingly civilized behavior, they are trusted. Any "outsider" who sounds the alarm against them, no matter how rationally, will be viewed with suspicion and not taken seriously.

If we are to play catch up, we've got our work cut out for us.

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