Right now we do have the dying children, so there is not much complaining about the aid being sent. What people should notice is the impact that aid has on the battered image of the US.
Television news broadcasts have been filled in recent days with images of U.S. Navy cargo ships offloading relief supplies in Karachi, olive-drab Chinook helicopters disgorging bundles of tents and blankets in isolated mountain villages, and American soldiers -- some diverted from military operations in Afghanistan -- working with their Pakistani counterparts to evacuate the injured.
In Pakistan, a country where we are truly hated, there is gratefulness, and changing attitudes. Contrast this with the official US efforts at rebuilding our image in the Islamic world.
Hughes, who is undersecretary of state for public diplomacy, made her remarks at Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University, south of Jakarta, one of several stops during her three-day visit to the world's most populous Muslim country. The students at the prestigious institution confronted her with emotional objections about the U.S. rationale for war in Iraq, similar to those she faced last month in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.
In addition Mrs. Hughes made a huge misstatement (lie) that will just serves to further lower how she is viewed by the very audience she is trying to sway.