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Eminent Domain Stuff

New London Update (2/24/06)
Coverage of the Rally at New London's City Hall (w/ pics)

Tuesday, December 07, 2004


International Divisions

This post is in response to this week's Homespun Symposium question from Arthur. Here's the question:

The war on terror and the war in Iraq have caused deep fissures through the international political landscape, but arguably not simply and predictably "left" versus "right"; after all, President Bush is allied with a social democrat Tony Blair and ex-communists of Eastern Europe, while the anti-war coalition is also a motley crew of American and British paleo-conservatives, European right (France) and left (Germany) and many others.

So what does it all mean? What is the new divide in international politics?
And will it last?
The current international divisions resulting from the continuation of our war in Iraq are not drawn down typical political lines. Rather, there are a few fundamental issues that divide the world with respect to Iraq.

Arthur mentions that we are aligned with the "social democrat [Labor, I believe] Tony Blair and ex-communists of Eastern Europe" and yet are opposed by traditional conservatives in Britain as well as both France and Germany. Why?

We are aligned with Tony Blair simply because he is the sort of guy who sees evil in the world and understands that it must be destroyed by force. I would also like to think that he feels some sort of historical kinship with the US considering our many links...but who knows. The ex-communists (or, more correctly, ex-communist countries) have taken our side because, for them, oppression of similar magnitude suffered by the Iraqi people is all to clear in their collective memories. It wasn't all that long ago that the 'Stans' were under the iron fist of Communism. They saw similar conditions in Saddam's Iraq and recognized the right side to join.

As for why France and Germany are against us. Well, I think that Germany is less so, especially these days as they try to make nice. I'm not exactly sure what drove them to oppose us to strongly at the beginning except that they want to be the dominant power of the EU and what better way to assert dominance than to stand up to the big bully of the world? Not to mention that they were in direct competition with France for the title of Giant Killer.

France. Oh France. I think this is probably the easiest one to answer: Oil For Corruption. I think that as the investigation of the UN's dirtbagery ferrets out the guilty many in the French government and private business are going to feel some major heat. From what we know today, at least some government officials were receiving $$ from Saddam in the form of oil vouchers. How deep the corruption goes remains to be seen, but it seems likely that it contributed at least some amount to their opposition to the war. Another slightly more innocent (but only slightly) explanation for France's (as well as Germany and Russia) position is their many oil contracts negotiated with Saddam. With that dirtbag removed, they lose out on all of that.

So, the major opposition to our actions in Iraq has been driven almost completely by dirty money. Whereas, the supporters of the war are in it to remove a major threat to the region and world and to liberate an oppressed people. Which side do you want to be on?

What does it all mean and will it last? I think this all means that we must continue to make the decisions necessary to keep our country and the world safe, regardless of the opposition. I know that many a liberal will label this Cowboyism, reckless or whatever. I would answer with: I don't care. Doing the right thing is rarely popular and never easy.

I think that these divisions will last for a very long time. I also think that they have been around for a long time, just under the radar. So long as France, Germany, Russia and their allies (umm...not too many, are there?) could maintain the status quo, they were happy to make nice noises in our direction. When we decided enough was enough, they made less pleasant noises in our general direction. I don't know when or if these divisions will change. I suppose they will, because nothing remains constant forever. In all honesty, I don't particularly care. The rest of the world can go pound dirt. What I care about is (in this order) the safety of this country and that of people around the world. Whether we are opposed by 1 or 100 countries, we need to keep foremost in our mind the noble goals of keeping ourselves and our children safe and bringing freedom to the oppressed.

Other Responses:

Dagney's Rant
Mad Poets Anonymous
A Physicist's Perspective
Bunker Mulligan
Paulie World


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