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Author Topic: US-World relations in the long run  (Read 8259 times)
Gustaf
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« on: December 23, 2003, 10:23:56 am »
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I guess I'm gonna get hated by all the prud Americans in this forum, but I feel obliged to raise this issue. Now, don't get me wrong, I am not an anti-american myself and I did, for example, support the Iraq war. But I was pretty alone in this. 90% opposed it in Spain, 70-80% in Sweden, and numbers were similar all over western Europe. An entire new generation is growing up learning to hate America, just when the end of the cold war and the retreat of the Vietnam war into oblivion was restoring goodwil to the US.

To give one example: one of my friends turned to me the other day and said thoughtfully, that, come to think about it, the capture of Saddam Hussein wasn't really a good thing, was it? I asked her why, and she replied that, well he wasn't going to do any actual harm any more anyway, but his capture will ensure that Bush gets reelected, so on the whole it is negative. I disagreed, but chose a diplomatic answer.

I know that a lot of Americans are convinced that you are doing the right thing. I agree, but I think it is an important task to convince other people of this as well, something which is often neglected and could in the long run be tremendously harmful to the US and the world as a whole.  
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« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2003, 12:26:27 pm »
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Gustaf, thanks for your support! Remember though that we have heard this anti-Americanism as early as '44 BEFORE the liberation of France, when De Gaulle said the USA cares as much about liberating France as the Russians did about liberating Poland. It was a recurring factor throughout the Cold War, perhaps most notably in the anti-missile protests of the early '80s.

So what causes this? Part of it is envy. Part of it is that the human psychology hates a savior. The USA has rescued Europe from destruction no less than 3 times, but the natural human response is not gratitude, but a perverse hatred, since the fact that it was necessary to be saved implies some kind of inferiority.

In recent years the most marked division btwn Euros and Americans has been over the USA wanting to expand democracy worldwide, and the Europeans led by a France that supposedly believes in the ideals of 1792 supporting every third rate thug or tyrant they can find. In such an atmosphere, the USA has no choice but to ignore European dislike and continue the spread of liberty, which is our founding purpose. In the end, there will be only democracies in the world (I think by the first half of the '20s), and then we can recpnciliate, and, what's more, drudge up the remaining libs from their tombs so that we can work on a framework for a worldwide democrtic government. But while there is tyranny left on Earth, we must ignore all opposition and root it out.
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« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2003, 12:40:53 pm »
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It was a recurring factor throughout the Cold War, perhaps most notably in the anti-missile protests of the early '80s.


That was just stupidity
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« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2003, 12:50:10 pm »
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I think that M is pretty correct in his analysis.

With respect to Western Europe, I think in a lot of ways US policy has succeeded too well.  We have made the Western Europeans so secure that they seem to imagine that the whole world operates like their societies do, and that all differences can be talked out and negotiated.

I think there is also a great deal of hatred and envy from the Western Europeans because they have lost, through their own mismanagment of their affairs, their pre-eminent place in world affairs.  People also hate those who have saved them, because they resent having been in the position of needing to be saved in the first place.

Frankly, I don't have a high regard for Western European opinion.  Europeans seem to live in a bubble, and while they like to weep over victims, their sympathy is gone the minute you stop being a victim.  I don't see the point of trying too hard to placate the Western Europeans, because they'll criticize us no matter what we do, particularly if it's in our own self interest.  We just have to do what we think is right.  I don't see that countries like France, Belgium, Sweden and some others could really provide much effective help in any case.  They were completely impotent in handling the Yugoslavia crisis, and these people remind me a lot of people who can't do anything constructive, but spend all their time criticizing those who try.
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« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2003, 12:50:35 pm »
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The anti-missile protests? Agree. Or do you mean there was a much more notable example of anti-Americanism?
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« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2003, 01:52:41 pm »

[snip]

What are your thoughts on the European Union? As a Christian, I believe what the Bible says in the Books of Daniel and Revelation and about how the European Union will rise up and a leader will emerge out of the shadows, and become the world dictator. It's heading that way. The Bible also mentions that this leader will come from Spain. Now, isn't that interesting? Solaros [spelling is probably wrong] is from where? SPAIN! The European Union will rise up and dominate the entire world. All Sovereignty will be lost. It is coming, and soon!
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« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2003, 02:39:01 pm »
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I don't think the Bible specifically mentions the European Union as any sort of forbearer of the Anti-Christ and the second coming.   The United States already dominates the world... and the first settlers to the new world were from Spain... and President Bush speaks Spanish!!!  Maybe he's the antichrist!  No, he's not, and this apoclyptic garbage that televangelists and others promote is bull.  (you have to wonder if the world is going to end so soon, why do they need your money?)
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« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2003, 03:01:18 pm »
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What are your thoughts on the European Union? As a Christian, I believe what the Bible says in the Books of Daniel and Revelation and about how the European Union will rise up and a leader will emerge out of the shadows, and become the world dictator. It's heading that way. The Bible also mentions that this leader will come from Spain. Now, isn't that interesting? Solaros [spelling is probably wrong] is from where? SPAIN! The European Union will rise up and dominate the entire world. All Sovereignty will be lost. It is coming, and soon!

I don't share your concerns about the European Union dominating the world, and I don't really believe in those biblical prophesies, which are in any case very much open to a number of different interpretations.

On the contrary, the European Union is militarily impotent, and my bigger fear would be that they would be unable to defend themselves, and expect us to save them again, this time from militant Islamic aggression.

At this point, the Europeans are like a rich old lady living on the edge of a very rough neighborhood.  Europeans are not reproducing, and they have allowed immigration by large numbers of Muslims who have no intention of assimilating.

Their economies are hobbled by high taxes and an unrealistic level of benefits for workers, and for those subject to the high unemployment rate that they have in most countries there.  It's not a situation that can go on forever.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2005, 05:21:34 pm by Peter Bell »Logged
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« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2003, 08:45:14 pm »
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One of the man reasons why Europe (and the rest of the world) hates the U.S. is because we appear to be arrogant. Well, I wouldn't argue with them, because arrogance is all I have seen from the Bush administration. This, "daddy" like attitude, that the government is doing this for your own good, so just shut up because you don't understand. Also this idea that we can do what we want and no one else can tell us what to do, NOR can they have an opinion of what we do. If they have a negative opinion of our actions (e.g. France) then THEY are the assholes.  

A lot of it comes from not caring. Simply put. I've talked to many Republicans and they all, in essence, have the same attitude;  everyone else and their feelings! However, I don't know if the Republicans on this forum share those same feelings, in some form or another.

One of the MAJOR flaws of this administration, is (as Dick Gephardt put it) "Not working well with others." The President of the United States is this country's CHIEF diplomat. It says so in the U.S. Constitution. NOT the Vice President, NOT the Secretary of State, NOT the Secretary of Defense. The President. Bush seems to not care about diplomacy. If he were to start caring then you may see not so many people in the world dislike us, or even hate us. If Bush can't work better with others, then maybe it's time we elect someone who CAN.

We're SUPPOSEDLY the strongest country in the world right? Does arrogance correlate with power. Well.....YES....it does. You see it happen all the time. But should it? Since we’re a freedom loving nation, then you would think that it shouldn’t.
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« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2003, 09:00:30 pm »

We've always appeared arrogant. There was a perception of us as a Nation of Playboys before Pearl Harbor. WWII brought us out of our little box. We realized our vulnerability....Then, September 11, a civilian terrorist attack, almost 60 years later, we got another wake-up call, and this country and the world were and will continue to be, changed forever. Arrogance breeds SLOTH. Arrogance does NOT breed HUMILITY.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2005, 05:21:55 pm by Peter Bell »Logged
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« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2003, 11:44:03 pm »
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What has europe done for us lately?  

We bail them out of Kosovo, awar they should have handled in their back yard, but no we have to do it.  We saved Europe twice in the world wars, we rebuilt Germany after the war, we did the berlin airlift, We pushed the russians over the brink in the 80's.

I agree with the poster, we spent our resources to protect them and then when we ask for a little help they say, OH NO not us.  We are too worried about our little environmental treaties ( sucha s keyoto -which many did not sign either in the end) and social programs to care about helping the US.

Arrogance is a 2 way street sometimes.

I think the President was right to not give them contracts with US TAXDOLLARS if they wouldn't help us.  We were tough and now they are coming around to get in on the action and forgiving Iraqi debt.

Its not all the US's way but not all Europe's either.
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« Reply #11 on: December 24, 2003, 12:12:41 am »

The last few postings I've read that are yours are really good. Say, are you a Moderate or Centrist? Also, could you explain if there's any difference between the two?
« Last Edit: March 05, 2005, 05:22:17 pm by Peter Bell »Logged
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« Reply #12 on: December 24, 2003, 01:39:09 am »
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What has europe done for us lately?  
Do they need to do something? Can they do something? If you're friends with someone, you shouldnt ALWAYS except something in return. I mean, if your attitude to europe is  you, then why not let it apply in that matter. Why not just say... it..who cares that they haven't done anything...we should still work with the best of our abilites for diplomacy, and we must work together.

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Arrogance is a 2 way street sometimes.
Yeah it is, and it takes a better person to be the first to stop the arrogance.
« Last Edit: December 24, 2003, 01:42:17 am by Demrepdan »Logged

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« Reply #13 on: December 24, 2003, 06:11:10 am »
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I suspected many of you would have the "too bad for them attitude", but I think it will become a problem. I read in today's paper that a rumour has aroused in Nigeria that the polio medicines they recieve from the US are poisoned so as to remove fertility, because America don't want moslem countries to grow too popolous. It is obviously rather silly. But it has caused several state governments in Nigeria to cease the distribution of polio medicines in the country, thus causing an outbreak of a disease which the world thought had been rooted  out. It's tragic and illustrates my point. With regard to M, yes anti-americanism is not new, but there was good hope of it retreating after the success of the Cold War. And I don't think it is inevitable.
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« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2003, 06:15:26 am »
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I think that M is pretty correct in his analysis.

With respect to Western Europe, I think in a lot of ways US policy has succeeded too well.  We have made the Western Europeans so secure that they seem to imagine that the whole world operates like their societies do, and that all differences can be talked out and negotiated.

I think there is also a great deal of hatred and envy from the Western Europeans because they have lost, through their own mismanagment of their affairs, their pre-eminent place in world affairs.  People also hate those who have saved them, because they resent having been in the position of needing to be saved in the first place.

Frankly, I don't have a high regard for Western European opinion.  Europeans seem to live in a bubble, and while they like to weep over victims, their sympathy is gone the minute you stop being a victim.  I don't see the point of trying too hard to placate the Western Europeans, because they'll criticize us no matter what we do, particularly if it's in our own self interest.  We just have to do what we think is right.  I don't see that countries like France, Belgium, Sweden and some others could really provide much effective help in any case.  They were completely impotent in handling the Yugoslavia crisis, and these people remind me a lot of people who can't do anything constructive, but spend all their time criticizing those who try.

This is a little hypocritical coming from a foreigner, but I would like to point something out: you don't blame the dog for eating a shoe, you blame yourself for leaving on the floor or not instructing the dog. You don't blame a three-year-old for eating chocolate and you don't blame France for not doing good. I believe that it is good that America takes a degree of moral responsibility for the world, but that is a tough task and it would be beneficial to all parts if the case was presented better. I am reminded of Toby Ziegler in the West Wing, who says "they'll like us when we win". I'm just not sure about that being the right tactic.
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« Reply #15 on: December 24, 2003, 06:19:33 am »
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What are your thoughts on the European Union? As a Christian, I believe what the Bible says in the Books of Daniel and Revelation and about how the European Union will rise up and a leader will emerge out of the shadows, and become the world dictator. It's heading that way. The Bible also mentions that this leader will come from Spain. Now, isn't that interesting? Solaros [spelling is probably wrong] is from where? SPAIN! The European Union will rise up and dominate the entire world. All Sovereignty will be lost. It is coming, and soon!

As a European I am deeply worried about the EU, since it is anti-market, anti-democracy and has anti-americanism and old-styled French imperialism as its main goals. I don't need a bible to see that, and frankly most people with obscure bible arguments that I have seen in the past have come off as nut-cases, no offense.
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« Reply #16 on: December 24, 2003, 08:01:06 am »
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The E.U has potential, but I don't like the way it's run at the moment.
Too much economic stuff, not enough social stuff.
And letting Chirac get away with f***** up the Stability and Growth pact...(who cares if the pact is stupid? The point is that if the Netherlands had done what France has done than the ECB would come down on them like a ton of bricks)

Oh and the European Parliament should not be in Strasburg which is a nasty little city at the best of times.
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« Reply #17 on: December 24, 2003, 10:12:35 am »
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The E.U has potential, but I don't like the way it's run at the moment.
Too much economic stuff, not enough social stuff.
And letting Chirac get away with f***** up the Stability and Growth pact...(who cares if the pact is stupid? The point is that if the Netherlands had done what France has done than the ECB would come down on them like a ton of bricks)

Oh and the European Parliament should not be in Strasburg which is a nasty little city at the best of times.

I would agree woth your points on the stability and growth pact, both the stupid part and the Netherlands part. I haven't been to Strassbourg, so I won't comment on that.
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« Reply #18 on: December 24, 2003, 10:16:09 am »
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The last few postings I've read that are yours are really good. Say, are you a Moderate or Centrist? Also, could you explain if there's any difference between the two?

Thanks.  Up on the issues and plan on running fo r office someday.

Moderate is more moveable tries to get along.

Centrists are always int eh center of the issues I'd say, less flexible.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2005, 05:25:54 pm by Peter Bell »Logged

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« Reply #19 on: December 24, 2003, 10:17:19 am »
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Strasbourg is a bit of a Gaullist stronghold.
Case closed.
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« Reply #20 on: December 24, 2003, 10:17:28 am »
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My point was EUROPE takes real well from us, but rarely gives.  Then when we don't give them what they want, they cry int he press and say we are arrogant.


What has europe done for us lately?  
Do they need to do something? Can they do something? If you're friends with someone, you shouldnt ALWAYS except something in return. I mean, if your attitude to europe is  you, then why not let it apply in that matter. Why not just say... it..who cares that they haven't done anything...we should still work with the best of our abilites for diplomacy, and we must work together.

Quote
Arrogance is a 2 way street sometimes.
Yeah it is, and it takes a better person to be the first to stop the arrogance.
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« Reply #21 on: December 24, 2003, 10:24:42 am »
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My point was EUROPE takes real well from us, but rarely gives.  Then when we don't give them what they want, they cry int he press and say we are arrogant.

Some countries will always have an unfavorable attitude *FRANCE* towards the US, but it should be possible to get more popular support, as well as support from generally anglo-saxon countries like the scandinavian, Holland, etc.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2005, 05:28:28 pm by Peter Bell »Logged

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« Reply #22 on: December 24, 2003, 10:34:36 am »
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The thing I've always found so funny about the Americans and the French hating each other is how similer they are...
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« Reply #23 on: December 24, 2003, 10:39:04 am »
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The thing I've always found so funny about the Americans and the French hating each other is how similer they are...

Ooooooh, someone's gonna get hated...
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« Reply #24 on: December 24, 2003, 11:02:15 am »

The thing I've always found so funny about the Americans and the French hating each other is how similer they are...

Ooooooh, someone's gonna get hated...
In some ways though Realpolitik is right. Not when it comes to defending their own country though!
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