March 17, 2003
O wad some Power the giftie gie us
President George W. Bush has hastened an inevitable geopolitical realignment in world affairs. He gets credit -- wanted or not -- for countervailing geopolitical forces rising sooner than they otherwise would have. What am I talking about here? The political and military union of Germany, Russia and France.
This is the first time in the history of the world that these three countries have formed an alliance. It will be a formidable one. In the past, Russia and France have been allied to counter Germany. No more. They now counter us.
The new alliance has been formed to counter the foreign policy of the United States of America. The US drive to conquer Iraq and dominate the Middle East is the catalyst prompting this change. Israel is not a disinterested US partner.
President George W. Bush and his advisors are responsible for this shift. Whether or not it would have occurred later is moot.
The US response to the new alignment has been short-sighted and blind to reality. Bashing France, ridiculing Germany and threatening Russia will not help. These things will merely make the split deeper. Furthermore, arrogant and deprecating statements evince at best adolescent pique and at worst, hubris. Hubris, after all, blinds one to what is happening. Such behavior by Government officials is unconscionable. Coming from the mouths of comedians and entertainers, it is merely in poor taste, i.e., buffoonery. When it is echoed by the populace, it is evidence of what H. L. Mencken called "Boobus Americanus."
Dumb! And dumb is bad -- always.
The Dumb, combined with the Arrogant (puffed-up and blind), do not realize that there is a major geopolitical shift going on, one driven by "realpolitik." This ignorance is not particularly dangerous when it is found in the populace. (What would you expect?) However, the situation can become very dangerous when ignorance and arrogance are exhibited by government officials. This is what the British author John Le Carré meant when he accused the Bush Administration of being "mad." ("Crazy," for those who think the word, "mad," means "angry.")
The question is whether or not they -- the US Administration -- know what is happening. One would hope so, but it is less than certain. American economic, cultural, and military power are so dominant that American officials cannot believe it when they run across a challenge. At the moment of challenge, those in power will show what they are really made of. They don't know they are being transparent, though. Their power blinds them.
At this point, thoughtful power (authority) will step back and evaluate the situation before going forward. Arrogant and thoughtless power (authority) will step up and quickly come down on -- attempt to crush -- the challenger, usually doing more of what brought about the challenge (rebellion) in the first place. This principle works whether the power (authority) is small or grand.
Rather than accusing the French government of Vichy-like behavior toward a dictatorial regime -- Iraq -- US authorities should step back and try to understand what is going on. The French government, and most Europeans, by the way, view the Bush Administration as a dangerous, international cabal. Hence, they don't see themselves rolling over before a vicious danger to world peace, but rather standing up to one. (For you slower ones out there, that's us.)
WHAT? That's ridiculous!
It doesn't matter; that's the European perception and perception drives behavior. The majority of Europeans think that the current American administration is a greater threat to world peace than is Saddam Hussein. Some have even gone so far as to compare us to the Nazis. For them, those who would appease us, or take our bribes, are seen as being "Vichy-like." Naturally, Americans won't hear or see any of this on domestic TV, or read it in the so-called "mainstream press."
FEAR! As the President warned: You are either with us, or against us.
The words of Demaratus to the Persian King, Xerxes, are apt. When he was asked if the Spartans would fight at Thermopylae, Demaratus replied:
O' King. Do you wish for a truthful answer, or a pleasant one?
Alas, some things do not change. To a culture taught to believe in the transitory nature of reality, that thought seems to be heresy. No. Some things do not change and we will find that out the hard way -- like it or not.
But didn't 9-11 change everything?
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha.
· · · · · ·
Iraq on Swans
Main Media & Propaganda on Swans
Richard Macintosh was a Public High School Teacher in California (1956-1989). Ed.D, Edcational Leadership, BYU, 1996. MA, Liberal Studies, Wesleyan University, 1982. BA, history, Stanford University, 1956... Macintosh is currently a part-time consultant on Personnel/Team matters in Washington State.
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