Sunday, September 08, 2002

No More Mr. Milquetoast
(Via Instapundit via Junkyard Blog) Martin Walker of the UPI lays it out nicely in a lengthy opinion piece, Sept. 11: US Nice Guy says 'enough' . The closer:
"When the Europeans demand some sort of veto over American actions, or want us to subordinate our national interest to a UN mandate, they forget that we do not think their track record is too good," a senior U.S. diplomat said recently in private. "The Europeans told us they could win the Balkans wars all on their own. Wrong. They told us that the Russians would never accept National Missile Defense. Wrong. They said the Russians would never swallow NATO enlargement. Wrong. They told us 20 years ago that d├ętente was the way to deal with what we foolishly called the Evil Empire. Wrong again. They complain about our Farm Bill when they are the world's biggest subsidizers of their agriculture. The Europeans are not just wrong; they are also hypocrites. They are wrong on Kyoto, wrong on Arafat, wrong on Iraq -- so why should we take seriously a single word they say?"

If the Europeans are in for a rude awakening as America takes its own decisions over the War on Terrorism and dealing with President Bush's "axis of evil," then the Arab world is in for an even deeper shock. The United States has spent 30 years trying to play by what we might call European rules, seeking to play the role of honest broker between Arabs and Israelis, while paying them both handsomely for the privilege. (Israel and Egypt are the first and second recipients of U.S. aid). America has watched while the Saudi "allies" use their petro-dollars to buy off internal dissent against their indefensibly sexist and undemocratic feudal regime by exporting their intolerant and puritan Wahabist creed throughout the Islamic world.

Whether Europeans and Arabs like it nor not, Iraq will be getting not just a change of regime, but a change of system. There is a post 9-11 mood in Washington to ask why, with the kind of American resolve and wisdom that turned the World War II enemies of Japan and West Germany into peaceful and prosperous democracies, an Iraq liberated from Saddam Hussein, or a Palestinian state liberated from the corrupt incompetence of the Arafat gang, or an Afghanistan liberated from the Taliban, might not enjoy a similar transformation. The Saudi monarchy might hate such an emergence of democratic and representative government in its wretchedly ill-ruled region, but Washington understandably cares less and less for the concerns of a dubious ally whose nationals formed the bulk of the Sept. 11 terrorists.

Note that this is not the case of an enraged and vengeful America telling the world "no more Mr. Nice Guy." It is America saying "Enough" to the European "internationalism" of compromise and appeasement, and holding true to its core principles -- that democracy is in itself a good thing for all states and all peoples. The most valuable export America can send out to the world is its values and its freedoms and its readiness to devote blood and treasure to the mission. That would be the real memorial to the victims of 9-11.
Read the full article for a great deal of insight.