ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Friday, February 25, 2005

Mr. Mullah - Tear down this medieval, repressive, unbelievably-asinine mobocracy!

Or, something like that... I suppose nothing will be as eloquent or as direct as "Mr. Gorbachev, Tear Down This Wall," as uttered by the Gipper in Berlin in 1987. Two years later, the wall is kaputt as they say over there. I happened to visit Berlin a couple of years afterward and actually stayed in a "new" east german hotel. It used to be an apartment complex that they converted to a moderate hotel. My 3 friends and I checked into our room and weren't sure where we were all going to sleep - only 2 twin beds. Then we heard that this room actually housed a family of 4, with the bathroom down the hall - oh, joy!

It was really amazing to see the depressing landscape that stretched for miles to the east, especially when compared to Kufurstendam and the "western" sector.

But, back to modern events...

W really has ticked off the libs by being so fervent in his promotion of liberal democracy. They've become sooo illiberal since 2000 that they can't even appreciate it when a nascient democracy develops, and when women shed their burqas and return too the schools. The Democratic party has veered so far to the left that Stalin, Mao, and Lenin would be proud...

Here's an excerpt from the WSJ... Be sure to subscribe and read the whole thing if you don't already have a subscription:

n Reagan's Footsteps
February 25, 2005; Page A18

Visits by U.S. Presidents to Europe tend to have a template-making quality: Wilson, the peace maker, in Paris, 1919; Truman, the victor, at Potsdam, 1945; Kennedy, the stalwart, in Berlin, 1963; Reagan, the visionary, in Berlin, 1987. If President Bush's trip this week has some kind of new theme, the word for it is probably conciliation. But our sense is that Mr. Bush is really following in Reagan's footsteps.

Admittedly, this thought is not original: Der Spiegel beat us to it. Still, it says something that the leftish German newsweekly, which two years ago devoted an entire cover story to advancing the "Blood-for-Oil" thesis about U.S. ambitions in the Middle East, has gingerly raised the question, "Could Bush Be Right?"

"The Germany Reagan was traveling in, much like today's Germany, was very skeptical of the American president and his foreign policy," Der Spiegel writes. "When Reagan stood before the Brandenburg Gate -- and the Berlin Wall -- and demanded that Gorbachev 'tear down this Wall,' he was lampooned the next day on the editorial pages. He is a dreamer, wrote commentators. ... But history has shown that it wasn't Reagan who was the dreamer as he voiced his demand. Rather, it was German politicians who were lacking in imagination -- a group who in 1987 couldn't imagine that there might be an alternative to a divided Germany."

It is doubtful that Der Spiegel would have made these observations had Mr. Bush's visit taken place just before Iraq's election rather than just after. And we suspect most of the magazine's editors would dearly have preferred to see a President Kerry.

But events have a way of imposing both discipline and clarity. For much of Europe, the idea that President Bush is the real and legitimate face of America came a few years late. But it has come, as has the realization that a hopeful era is dawning in the Middle East thanks to U.S. "unilateralism" and force of arms. In this sense, the purpose of Mr. Bush's trip isn't to present himself anew to Europe. It is to allow European leaders -- France's Jacques Chirac, Germany's Gerhard Schröder and Russia's Vladimir Putin -- to present themselves anew to Mr. Bush.

Partly this reflects political facts: Contrary to expectation a year ago (and with the qualified exception of Spain), the leaders who supported the war in Iraq have all been returned to office, while Messrs. Chirac, Putin and Schröder languish in polls.

Partly, too, it reflects the realities of power. Europe, collectively and in its several parts, requires a functioning relationship with the U.S. to secure its vital interests. The same cannot be said of America's requirements of Europe. President Bush was gracious when he acknowledged the willingness of Germany and France to contribute to the training of Iraqi policemen. But the one (yes, one) French officer now detailed to the task will probably not turn the tide of war.
I think it's great that the Europenas are starting to comprehend what BUSH HAS BEEN SAYING IN EVERY @#$ING SPEECH SINCE 9/11. I s'pose some things are harder to grasp when you're blinded by hatred.

I have faith in the Germans, the Brits, the Dutch and points east. However, the French will continue to make grand offers like the one mentioned above and demand... DEMAND that they be recognized for their bold contributions.