Sunday, October 03, 2004

Divided We Fall

Go read this analysis from The Belmont Club, including the following comments.

Drawing parallels with France in 1940, unable to comprehend its impending doom,
One might criticize the conduct of the war on grounds that it should go faster, or be conducted in a different way, but it takes a special kind of obtuseness to argue the superfluity of defense against those who save the images of death agonies as a fetish. Yet that idea forms the unshakeable core of a Liberal creed which has a 50% chance of becoming American policy for the next four years.
And then chase that with this bit of propaganda explaining why we're on our own:

One of the sharpest differences between the U.S. and its longtime allies is over the issue of when to use force. A June poll conducted in part by the German Marshall Fund of the United States found that 54% of the Americans surveyed, compared with 28% of the Europeans, believed that military strength would ensure peace. Among Europeans, 73% said the war in Iraq had increased the threat of terrorism...

Galina Babayan, a Moscow mathematics professor, offered this assessment: "It would be more appropriate to compare the U.S. not with a global policeman, but with an ill-natured teenager sent back to the first grade. He is bigger and stronger than anybody else. He bullies everyone around him. But he is slow on the uptake."

From cafes to parliaments, the U.S. mystifies and Bush angers. Many see America as a country that professes a deep belief in religion but unsheathes its sword too quickly, a land that claims moral authority but violates international charters, a nation saddled with the images of abuse at Abu Ghraib prison and the inability to calm a seething Iraq....

"The U.S. can't be the world policeman anymore," said Erika Thiel, standing with her son, Juergen, remembering when U.S. boots echoed through the streets. "Muslims don't want to be watched over, and sovereign nations want to be independent from the U.S. shadow."

Christian Schulz crossed the street and headed away from the guard shack.

"Before Sept. 11, America was not seen as an aggressor," he said. "But since Sept. 11 and the break in the U.S. economy, people look at America as no longer a man who can fix all problems. Look at Iraq — soldiers are dying every day. I think these days it's more dangerous to be affiliated with the U.S."


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