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Obama doesn't give a rat's ass what the Germans do. He won't even let foreign reporters on the press plane.

This is his way of pandering to the American press that he can be 'tough' on the 'war on terror'.

Grow up already.

"Germany's Social Democrats [SNIP] quickly reversed"

The current SPD-leadership never offered more troops. No Flip-Flops for You.

"Germany remains light years from the election or appointment of a minority to the prime ministry, presidency or any significant cabinet post."

50 years ago, the first Turks immigrated. Their children work as lawyers and judges; they serve as members of parliament. Politicians like e.g. Cem Özdemir will be in high cabinet positions within a decade. Openly gay politicians serve as governors and run a major political party; one is even being broomed as a future chancellor. Our current chancellor is female.

50 years after the creation of the US, most of its blacks were slaves. Even today, immigrants are not allowed to become US president; women have failed to reach said office in the US. Openly gay politicians are nearly as rare as openly atheist ones.

"Simply being the leading anti-Bush is enough to be loved in Europe."

We Germans might simply be in favor of dealing with a US administration that no longer commits acts of aggression, possibly even including a war of aggression, and no longer consistently violates the Nuremberg Principles (e.g. VI (b) ) as a matter of policy.

@ Tropby,

We Germans might simply be in favor of dealing with a US administration that no longer commits acts of aggression, possibly even including a war of aggression

These aggressive comments by candidate Obama on launching military strikes into Pakistan - and possibly even an invasion - must truly concern you then. Will you be supporting Ralph Nader?

By the way, it is refreshing to know that you now speak for all Germans and are an expert on the Nuremberg Principles and the supposedly consistent violations of the United States thereof. Further, it is refreshing to know that all Germans - though they have supported the United States in Afghanistan and indirectly in Iraq by training police - now reject all acts of aggression.

Secondly, it is interesting that you are actually trying to compare the United States in 1826 to Germany in 1958 and somehow suggest that we can somehow draw meaningful conclusions on civil rights progress based on that comparison.

Finally, nowhere did I claim that the SPD changed its stance on troops for Afghanistan. That's a bit of a strawman. I was simply pointing to the sudden change in attitude in terms of it going from seemingly unlimited enthusiasm for Obama to a somewhat more reserved stance as soon as talk of additional demands on Germany from a prospective Obama presidency begin.

"Further, it is refreshing to know that all Germans [SNIP] now reject all acts of aggression"

Act of aggression is a legal terminus technicus and I seriously hope that everyone rejects such acts. I am quite willing to discuss legalities if we can keep the discussion on a civil level.

To simplify: The actions in Afghanistan were - according to most legal minds - legal, no problem with German help (We should even do more IMHO). The initial invasion of Iraq was quite likely illegal, but Germany only offered support after an UN declaration authorized post-invasion aid.

We are the good guys. At least we are lawful. ;-)

"Secondly, it is interesting that you are actually trying to compare the United States in 1826 to Germany in 1958 and somehow suggest that we can somehow draw meaningful conclusions on civil rights progress based on that comparison."

OK, forget about history and slavery.

Were are Your openly gay politicians?
Were are Your atheists and agnostics?

"I was simply pointing to the sudden change in attitude [SNIP]"

Your original "Yes, we can!" "No, we can't!!!!" contrast looked quite like a veiled Flip-Flopping attack to me; I am happy that I misread Your intentions and we both agree that there are no broken promises.

"These aggressive comments by candidate Obama on launching military strikes into Pakistan - and possibly even an invasion - must truly concern you then."

Attacking a nuclear armed nation should indeed be a grave decision. Seriously.

I am not some Obama-fan. Electing its president is an internal affair of the US.

I only care about getting rid of the current administration because of the damage it has done to international law and human rights; re-electing a party that has committed such acts would send a wrong signal world wide.

@Tropby.
OK, forget about history and slavery.
Were (Where) are Your openly gay politicians?
For starters, there was the late Congressman Gerry Studds and current Congressman Barney Frank. I am not going to spend time finding more examples. There are plenty more.

Were (Where) are Your atheists and agnostics?
For starters, here I am. I have had no problem vis a vis my agnosticism, in a Bible-belt state. Similarly, my Buddhist sister has had no problem. (Buddhism is not a theistic religion.) One figure for agnostics and atheists in the US is 3-9 %. Here are some figures from. polling data.

"...evangelicals remain just 7% of the adult population. That number has not changed since the Barna Group began measuring the size of the evangelical public in 1994....less than one out of five born again adults (18%) meet the evangelical criteria." (N = 1003; margin of error = ±3.2%).

14.1% do not follow any organized religion. This is an unusually rapid increase -- almost a doubling -- from only 8% in 1990. There are more Americans who say they are not affiliated with any organized religion than there are Episcopalians, Methodists, and Lutherans taken together.

About 16% of adults have changed their identification.
For the largest group, the change was abandoning all religion.
Baptists picked up the largest number of any religion: 4.4 million. But they also lost 4.6 million.
Roman Catholics lost the greatest number, 9.5 million. However, they also picked up 4.3 million.
The survey found that 22% of couples reported that they identified with different faith groups. Defining the term "couple" broadly to include both married and living together partners, some 28 million adults live in a mixed religion household. Percentages range from a high of 42% for Episcopalian to a low of 12% for Mormons.

I wonder to what degree this data fits Germans’ views of the US. Not very much, I imagine.

Tropby says: "50 years ago, the first Turks immigrated. Their children work as lawyers and judges; they serve as members of parliament. Politicians like e.g. Cem Özdemir will be in high cabinet positions within a decade. Openly gay politicians serve as governors and run a major political party; one is even being broomed as a future chancellor. Our current chancellor is female.

50 years after the creation of the US, most of its blacks were slaves. Even today, immigrants are not allowed to become US president; women have failed to reach said office in the US. Openly gay politicians are nearly as rare as openly atheist ones."

Ray caught it but . . the correct comparison would be between the USA is 1826 and Germany in 1921; (Three years after the end of the World War Germany started); or the USA and Germany from 1958 till today. I'll be glad to make either of these arguments, to compare and contrast the differences and progress. The bad ol' USA will come out looking fine.

Tropby says: "We Germans might simply be in favor of dealing with a US administration that no longer commits acts of aggression, possibly even including a war of aggression, and no longer consistently violates the Nuremberg Principles as a matter of policy."

I won't pretend to speak for all Americans, so ... I have trouble getting morally lectured to by people whose only experience with peace in the last 500 years, has been the last 63 years (and counting). A peace that was imposed upon them by an outside power! I have trouble getting morally lectured to by a people that wishes us to forget history so they can now present themselves as paragons of virtue in this bad ol' world the USA has suddenly created!

As if the majority of troubles the USA has been/ is dealing with in the world since the end of WWII are not the stinky little scheizen piles left floating in the wake of Europe's genocidal, rapacious, colonial legacy. Go find yourself some American college kids (and their professors) Tropby to sell your selective memory snake oil to.

The bad ol' USA doesn't want to "arrogantly impose itself" on the world so, let me know when your "better solution" UNITED NATIONS comes up with a definition for genocide so the EU can "forcefully" respond to the genocide in Darfur.

The bad ol' USA doesn't want to be thought of as an "imperialistic hegemon" so, let me know when your "better solution" of Euro-Softpower gets Iran to stop its nuclear weapons program or gets Robert Mugabe to stop slaughtering his people and give up power.

European myopia is astonishing. European arrogance knows no bounds!

Tschuss, Tyranno

PS: To quote chapter and verse from the Nuremberg Principles would require one first ascertains the correct legal definitions. Your false assumptions being; 1) that the US did not have lawyers involved in the process and making judgements on their political decisions about the detainees. Ergo, the topic is still up for legal debate. 2) That because you are comfortable with your interpretation of the principles, that is the final word.


Ray D.:

These aggressive comments by candidate Obama on launching military strikes into Pakistan - and possibly even an invasion - must truly concern you then.

Well, as the article says:

Obama's mention of an "al Qaeda leadership meeting" refers to a classified military operation planned in early 2005 to kill al Qaeda leaders including Osama bin Laden's top deputy Ayman al-Zawahri in Pakistan's tribal regions. First reported in The New York Times earlier this month, the mission was "aborted at the last minute after top Bush administration officials decided it was too risky and could jeopardize relations with Pakistan, according to intelligence and military officials."

Despite his strongly-worded speech, I'm not so sure whether Obama actually would act differently as president.

It is particularly striking that so many Europeans proclaim such affection for Obama - without really being able to specifically explain why they like him so much. Simply being the leading anti-Bush is enough to be loved in Europe - yet it is the Americans who are continually accused of harboring a black-and-white view of the rest of the world.

Agreed. McCain, though not as infatuating as Bush to many Republicans (and not at all to most Europeans), certainly has produced mucg clearer statements than Obama.

@ GringoTex

"For starters, there was the late Congressman Gerry Studds and current Congressman Barney Frank. I am not going to spend time finding more examples. There are plenty more."

Sorry, this is simply not true.

There are two openly gay members of Congress, Representatives Tammmy Baldwin and Barney Frank. Pete Stark is a lone atheist in the House.

There is not a single openly gay/atheist US senator or state governor; Jim McGreevey had to resign.

GLBT persons (about 5 % of the population) and atheists (according to Your data 3 - 9 %) are not adequately represented by one or two members of the House.

Gays are over-represented over here, with e.g. 12.5 % of our governors being openly gay. "There are plenty more" - in Germany.

------------------------------
@ Tyranno:

"Your false assumptions being; 1) that the US did not have lawyers involved in the process and making judgements on their political decisions about the detainees. Ergo, the topic is still up for legal debate. 2) That because you are comfortable with your interpretation of the principles, that is the final word."

1) I can hire a lawyer to argue e.g. for my right to be crowned ´King of England´, but this topic is not up for serious legal debate due to my lack of any claim to the British throne.

The legal positions of the current US administration have largely been rejected by international legal scholars and are only accepted by parts of the US and Israeli legal communities.

2) The current US administration will not be put on trial; we have to rely on our legal skills to assess US behavior. My evaluation uses established rules and standards of International Law and is backed up by the ruling legal opinion. Yep, I am very comfortable with it.

It's perfectly understandable that Germans don't wish to extend any sort of military assistance outside of Europes borders, after nearly 100 years of being portrayed as warmongering barbarians, who would want to confirm that depiction. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

I find it very odd, this current European love affair with Obama. His trip there (coupled with his track record in transatlantic affairs) may, in my opinion at least, be a political ploy on a level not many have thought of.

Here's my question, and let's see what others think of it:

Should Obama get elected, I'm going to say that he's going to want to pull out of Iraq as promptly as possible -- because it's popular with the electorate. He'll protect U.S. interests there somewhat, but not over and above his own popularity ratings (he has cronies that will need to be re-elected/elected into Congress in two short years). Iraq, for Barry, can go to H; he could care less if it becomes a democratic country, nor has he any real concern with the people there. Similarly, he's going to want a quick "victory" in Afghanistan because it will make him look the strong, war president. He will most certainly want more effort out of the coalition countries; he'll lean hard on them -- much harder than the Bush administration has -- and there will be no "thank you kindly for your support" afterwards; this will be his moment of glory and his alone (with the exception of the Democratic Party cronies, which will lockstep behind him). If there is no quick victory, guess who the blame will be placed upon by Pres. Obama? Not his government, so most likely canidate, the coalition troops. As for Iran, he'll try to broker with them at the expense of everyone else -- because again it will look good to the constituents. As long as there are no more terrorist attacks on American concerns (or very few in comparison), everyone else can go to rot -- in short, if anyone else, especially Europe, gets a nasty visit from Terrorism Inc. don't expect much support from a President Obama other than the verbal "tut tut how awful, we are all [insert whatever nationality here]" kind. He could very possibly pull the anti-Europeanism card here at home, and if he does, he'll play it hard, because at this point the public (who have now become very aware of the anti-Americanism across the pond) will be ripe for it and it would make him popular. And this goes for domestic/economic policy as well -- I definitely think he'll play up to isolationist/protectionist sentiment here very definitely. Expect a potential rival union to the EU and/or NATO, if Europe doesn't fall in line with what he wants -- and he'll use these foreign campaign trips of his as evidence that he and his administration were definitely not the guilty party in any further souring of relations (why did he choose Germany, of all places, after all? I don't think it was just for the photo op potential of Branderburg, although that would have been cherry for him too).
In short, the present "war-mongering" administration could end up looking positively benign compared to what could happen with an Obama presidency.

Which causes my bemusement at why Europeans like him so very much; he really seems to be using you all as his "useful idiots" and, dare I say, his lap dogs -- or at least that's the way the cards on the table are beginning to look.

@Tropby.
GLBT persons (about 5 % of the population) and atheists (according to Your data 3 - 9 %) are not adequately represented by one or two members of the House.
I find this very amusing to be preached to. Especially since I an agnostic, formerly an atheist, and do not care if there is an openly atheist agnostic person in Congress. So what? There is just so much segmenting one can do. I remember when my home state had the Polish representative, the Italian representative, the Irish representative, the WASP representative ,the Irish governor, the WASP senator, the Irish senator, the French Canadian representative. The WASP senator retired, and a Jewish senator was elected to replace him.Yes, the state later had a black US representative and a female governor. When Germany elects Bundestag members of that ethnic variety, then I will talk about religion and sexual orientation in the US Congress. Since a very hot place will freeze over before that happens, we will be waiting a long time for that conversation.

Gays are over-represented over here, with e.g. 12.5 % of our governors being openly gay. "There are plenty more" - in Germany
So what? Do you get Diversity Points?

Tyranno says:
"Your false assumptions being; 1) that the US did not have lawyers involved in the process and making judgments on their political decisions about the detainees. Ergo, the topic is still up for legal debate. 2) That because you are comfortable with your interpretation of the principles, that is the final word."

Tropby says:
1) I can hire a lawyer to argue e.g. for my right to be crowned ´King of England´, but this topic is not up for serious legal debate due to my lack of any claim to the British throne.

The legal positions of the current US administration have largely been rejected by international legal scholars and are only accepted by parts of the US and Israeli legal communities.

2) The current US administration will not be put on trial; we have to rely on our legal skills to assess US behavior. My evaluation uses established rules and standards of International Law and is backed up by the ruling legal opinion. Yep, I am very comfortable with it.

Me: Sure you can and I wish you luck, but that is not what we are talking about. I would suggest that you have as much right/ claim to the British crown as Europe or any nation has a right/ claim to direct US foreign policy.
You are confirming my second point that, "because you are comfortable with the International Criminal Court's expansion of authority and interpretation of International Law you assume that is the final word." Unfortunately, and legally, the US can not be put on trial because the US is not a party to the ICC and thus is not bound by it. That makes your 'ruling legal opinion' only one of several on the topic. Have your lawyers call my lawyers!

Although I personally think the ICC is a good idea at some point in the future, you provide another example and reinforce why the US does not participate in several of these supranational organizations. Too many Tropbys in the world are very 'comfortable' and silent with a criminal murderous Hussein regime and only see a crime when the US stops him; are very 'comfortable' and silent with Castro's gulags and only see a crime when Guantanamo shows up on the island; are very 'comfortable' with pursuing a Pinochet to his deathbed while wringing your hands impotently over a Mugabe; are very comfortable and willing to threaten Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld with legal action ... but have nothing to say about a Kim, a Putin, a Chavez. You get a sense of my concern?

@ Gringo Tex:

"I find this very amusing to be preached to."

The ´Americans´ started preaching and claimed ´Diversity Points´ in the OP:

"Germany remains light years from the election or appointment of a minority to the prime ministry, presidency or any significant cabinet post."

I merely added some facts.

@ Tyranno:

It is not about the ICC, but about International Law. US courts are - very simplified - bound by International law that has been absorbed by US law, e.g. via signing conventions and treaties.

I want to see serious criminal investigations in US courts. One can dream ...

About not opposing Kim and other dictators:

We tried to organize some support for Zimbabwean jurists - who were threatened with murder by Mugabe´s so-called war veterans - a few years ago; the results were admittedly rather limited. There WAS a (mostly) working judiciary over there, so one could try to support it. I can do nothing about North Korea.

It is or should be possible to improve democracies like Germany and the US with debate, funding and legal actions.

Who is John Galt?

There nothing original going on with Obama.

Me: Which international laws, treaties or signing conventions are you talking about Tropby? The world uses code law (not British based common law) so unless the US signs and ratifies the given treaty or protocol it is not legally bound. This may anger much of Europe but that is considerably different than being illegal.

The US did not sign onto the International Criminal Court (ICC) or, for another example, the International Convention on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) of the International Bill of Human Rights, because in a number of these supra-national agreements there are still too many ambiguities that could be manipulated by the majority of non-democratic, non-representative entities that make up the UNITED NATIONS.


Tropby says: "I want to see serious criminal investigations in US courts. One can dream..."

Me: But based on what? There is no applicable legal foundation, beyond certain manifestations in BDS obsessed imaginations. I think you are grossly mistaking simple political difference with criminal acts. Granted there has been a serious effort of late by the DNC to do just that in the USA.
This causes me to revert to my point in the prior email ... (the international legal community last time) the DNC (this time) might have a case except for the fact that none of this came up when Clinton (D) bombed Serbia, Afghanistan and Sudan or occupied Bosnia without a UN (or Congressional) resolution. So once again it is the lack of objective, consistent, non-political application of rules, laws, and standards that dooms your efforts from the start. It is too obviously political to too many people.


Tropby says: "About not opposing Kim and other dictators: We tried to organize some support for Zimbabwean jurists - who were threatened with murder by Mugabe´s so-called war veterans - a few years ago; the results were admittedly rather limited. There WAS a (mostly) working judiciary over there, so one could try to support it. I can do nothing about North Korea."

Me: With all due respect, what I hear is the usual whiny liberal bumpersticker of "at least we tried!!!" You want to get a big pat on the back for your good intentions? After Rwanda, and with Darfur and the Congo, and Zimbabwe, and Korea, and Tibet, and Burma, and Cuba...ongoing? Are you redirecting some sort of shame and impotence onto your preferred easy target ~ the bad ol' USA?

Seems to me what you are talking about is fundamentally irrational. Western nations can certainly make improvements but... You wring your hands and throw them up in frustration over making a difference among the difficult cases that are operating maybe 10% within the international legal framework; while imagining you are doing important works by raising a Germany or (really only the) USA, who are operating at the 90% level within the international legal framework an additional single percentage point.

Where could and would you make a bigger difference? Where would you get more of a return on your time and energy investment? Where would you make a bigger difference in the lives of more people, arguing picayune legal points about the USA or by working to remove a Mugabe or Kim from power?
You are taking the safe and easy and well trodded path.

@ Tyranno:

I fail to understand Your problems with using International Law: The US is e.g. a signatory to Geneva III and transcribed it into the UCMJ. It is ´merely´ an enforcement problem ... torture and murder of POWs is already illegal under US law.

I would not label my behavior as ´whiny´, but realistic:

My financial and other support of Mugabe´s opponents may not have been sufficient, but it seems to be more than You and the current US administration are doing.

Define a non-whiny approach to removing dictators; I am still waiting for reports of Your airborne assault on NK ... ;-)

About taking the ´easy´ way: I did not dodge the draft - unlike certain chicken hawks in Washington.

Tropby says: " I fail to understand Your problems with using International Law: The US is e.g. a signatory to Geneva III and transcribed it into the UCMJ. It is ´merely´ an enforcement problem ... torture and murder of POWs is already illegal under US law."

Me: And we have come full circle! Common law, based on tradition and precedence, is open to interpretation and revision. As I said, the White House had their lawyers in on the decision making process and obviously felt that they were operating within allowable legal boundaries. I do not believe they looked at it and said, What the hell, just do it!" That and the "Bush lied" mantra, while popular in the MSM, are the stuff of leftist moonbat websites. That you may disagree with their decision only matters within this conversation.
I know there have been abuses on the battlefield and that enemy combatants have died in US custody. That, however is not official policy and is very much the outlier experiences by the vast majority of enemy POWs. As you have no doubt read ad naseum in the world medias, when abuses are identified the individuals involved are prosecuted. (By the way, the US got two of its POWs back last week. The mutilated parts fit into one plastic trash bag. I guess I missed the world's outrage! You ever ponder why there are no POW issues with our opponents?)

Your confusion is (perhaps) the confusion of attempting to understand, and then define and explain the realities of war from a comfortable chair in your climate controlled study. It is only necessary to explain why war does not happen as clean, and organized, and legal as a Saturday afternoon football match to someone who has never been there. I understand that you must deny the restraint that the US led coalition has practiced since the beginning of this war, from the laser guided ariel munitions to the restrictive daily ROEs the individual soldiers operate under. I understand that admitting that truth undercuts your argument and highlights your bias and your personal emotional investment (frivolity) in your desire to see a "war crimes" trial.

Your perspective may well seem realistic from where you sit, but stroking a check for Mugabe's opponents is the cliche definition of a limosine liberal. This takes us back to my other point,
"Where could and would you make a bigger difference? Where would you get more of a return on
your time and energy investment?"
Where would you make a bigger difference in the lives of more people, arguing picayune legal points about the USA and moving it into the 91 percentile; or by working to remove a Mugabe or Kim
from power or at the very least move them to the 51 percentile?"
The slaps on your back and hearty guffaws from your mates over dinner, when you bring up the topic of a war crimes trial for Bush, may be satisfying enough for you; it may well be all that you are reaching for. But make no mistake, you are indeed taking the safe, easy and well trodded path.


Tropby says: "...but it seems to be more than You and the current US administration are doing.
Define a non-whiny approach to removing dictators; I am still waiting for reports of Your airborne assault on NK ... ;-)

Me: How do you know what I do or have not done about topics such as these? Do you automatically assume everyone's investment extends no further than stroking a check and posting on political boards? Why would you assume that everyone is like you?
Let's see... a non-whiny approach to removing dictators would be ... umm, how about; 17 UNITED NATIONS resolutions spread over 12 years, a warning 18 months out to cooperate with the UN or face the consequences, a second warning 6 months out that unless cooperation begins soon there will definate consequences, a third warning 1 month out that the regime is now on a time line to comply or face consequences, a 48 hour warning to leave the country or be forcibly removed and . . . (here is where europe's soft power always blinks!) pulling the trigger and overthrowing the criminal regime. (HHHhhhmmm... where have I heard this before???)

So, you want a war crimes trial for George W. Bush for toppling a criminal dictator in Iraq . . . and you want me to believe that you wish to see a forceable overthrow of Kim in North Korea? I assume you were kidding because you threw a wink at me, but you make a very trenchant point here worth noting. Europe always and only offers the USA a lose~lose proposition. The USA is damned if it does and damned if it doesn't, which, as Henri-Levy said, is evidence more of an obsession than thoughtful or coherent opposing opinion !
"The USA is a bullying hegemon in the world" but . . . why isn't it doing something about Darfur? "The USA is too quick to rely on force" around the world in general and in Iraq in particular but . . . why isn't it doing something about Mugabe? The only way the USA can "win" in this silly equation Europe has constructed is to do their bidding, to do what Europe won't do for itself.
And isn't this really the crux of Europe's beef with the USA and George W.? That he was the first President so impolite as to embarrass the Europeans and say out loud that the US has different interests from them and it will pursue them with or without Europe's approval, just as Europe does. Unfortunately, this is where Obama is bound to disappoint Europe too. But, this is Europe's problem not the USAs.

The unanswered question is, where is the much vaunted European soft power? What is their strategy? Where are their milestones? What is your endstate? And, what are their options when a Mugabe, Kim or Ahmedinajhad blows them off? Well, I'll tell you . . .

Europe is like a loudmouth girlfriend in a rowdy bar demanding a couple of big guys do what she says or else . . my boyfriend will kick your ass! Luckly for Europe, her current boyfriend is a World Extreme Cage Fighter.

I am an American who has not yet decided who to vote for this November. However, one thing you will need to remember is that no amount of enthusiastic crowds of Germans is going to help Barack Obama once he gets into office. At that point he has to by and large keep the majority of the American people onboard with him or he will end up like George W. Bush. The American political system isn't like Germany, where a parliamentary majority not only gives you control of the legislature, but essentially makes your legislative leadership the head of government and head of state as well. If Obama falters on delivering for the American people, he's going to get rolled in Congress.

As for all this talk about how George W. Bush should be tried for this or that offense, this is more Euro-carping at the easy target. I don't like GWB, but if you look objectively at current national leaders, GWB would definitely be behind Vladimir Putin, either one of the Castro brothers, Kim Jung Il, most leaders of Middle Eastern nations, lots of African leaders, maybe Hugo Chavez, probably several current and recent European leaders, and certainly a lot of Asian leaders as being deserving of prosecution for various crimes.

Euros like to target Bush for "prosecution" because he is from a society that embodies and believes in Western principles of human rights. Its easy to call for George W. Bush's arrest because its accepted by both GWBs supporters and enemies that everyone is entitled to their opinion, so he's a target that won't defend himself other than to shrug and say "sorry you feel that way". Calling for the arrest of a U.S. President is a painless way to express your disapproval with the current state of world politics without actually doing anything about the state of world politics.

I would be ecstatic if Europe would assert their individuality from the USA and simply start picking up the tab for their own defense . . . instead of this sophomoric and baseless grandstanding.

Tyranno

@ Tyranno:

"I know there have been abuses on the battlefield."

Straw man. I never criticized over-reactions in the heat of battle. We are talking about incidents in safe areas like prisons and POW-camps.

"That, however is not official policy and is very much the outlier experiences by the vast majority of enemy POWs."

Hogwash. The US Army is no ragtag militia. You may want to look at the survival rate of Iraqi generals after their capture: Captured generals had a higher survival rate in earlier wars despite the advances in medicine. Consider e.g. the commander of Iraqi air defense.

"As you have no doubt read ad naseum in the world medias, when abuses are identified the individuals involved are prosecuted."

You are still in denial, and repeating the facts gets boring, so I will limit myself to one example:

´I know that my peers in the Army will be mad at me for speaking out, but the fact is that we violated the laws of land warfare in Abu Ghraib. We violated the tenets of the Geneva Convention. We violated our own principles and we violated the core of our military values. The stress of combat is not an excuse, and I believe, even today, that those civilian and military leaders responsible should be held accountable.´ - General Taguba 2007 in the New Yorker

Labeling me a ´limosine liberal´ may fit Republican attack routines, but using a limousine and treasuring liberty makes sense.

The chutzpah of denigrating my actions while declaring Your inaction a state secret is amusing. The response to my support for Mugabe´s opposition, namely evading the issue and bragging about the illegal US war in Iraq, feeds my suspicion that You are a Young Republican: Pro-war, but somebody else has to do the fighting and dying.

War is necessary - sometimes. Chicken hawks are despicable - always.

Tropby,
Dealing in facts or at least thoughtful opinion, may well be boring for you, as opposed to dealing in the 'thought provoking' off-the-cuff one liners you toss out here? Couldn't help but notice that besides the name calling and platitudes... you don't really answer any of the points we were suppose to be discussing??? Saying that I am "still in denial" doesn't make or answer the point. Did you limit yourself in this manner, and to "one example," because there really wasn't much more to add? (Not including emotional opinion, of course)

I have no state secrets, amusing or otherwise. I will answer any questions if you pose some. This also might prove to be more interesting than your speculating on what or how I am. I would appreciate it if you would tell me a little bit about yourself? American or...? Political affiliation? Education? Motivations? Did you serve in the military? I ask only because I think you have fooled me as I am surprised with the sophistry in this last response. Before I waste my time (again) answering your post with a thoughtful response... I guess I just want to make sure that the effort will be reciprocated.

PS: Stroking a check is an "action?" Is tropby perhaps a chickenhawk???

@Tyranno
I remember Tropby mentioning a few months ago that he was an anarchist.
I doubt that he/she even knows what it really means?

@ Tyranno:

Complaining about "name calling and platitudes" of this humble ´limosine liberal´, who sells his ´selective memory snake oil´ as an ´usual whiny liberal bumpersticker´ ... cute.

"I would appreciate it if you would tell me a little bit about yourself?"

I already offered some data on my vita and behavior,; You did not. Do it, and I will reciprocate.

"Did you limit yourself in this manner, and to "one example," because there really wasn't much more to add?"

There are two - including the Iraqi Generals - and You failed to address either one. Your turn.

@ americanbychoice:

Your memory seems to be failing. My commiseration. I am no anarchist and never claimed to be one.

Labeling me an ´anarchist´ while I am defending law and order is quite funny.

@ tropbt,
Yes, I am long in the tooth. I could have sworn that you referred to yourself in that manner some time ago. If not, so be it. My bad

I never quite understand Tropby and his ilk so despising chickenhawks.
I think that police are necessary. The work they do is necessary.
But yet I would never want to be a policeman. Does that make me a hypocrite? What about you Tropby?
Are police necessary? If so would you be willing to become a policeman? If no, you HYPOCRITE!!!!
same thing works with armies etc... soldiers and wars are sometimes necessary. But just because people who are FOR these things have never BEEN these things doesn't make them morally despicable..

Tropby,
you and your type are one of the main reasons I left Germany. I used to live there (I am an Ami).
I got so tired of the self righteousness of the Germans / Europeans (Tyranno, I love your earlier comment!!!)

it got SOOO tiring... people would just not leave me alone..
so many stupid uninformed opinions about the USA.
A German friend of mine visited me recently.
He raved about the hospitality. Never got slack about him being German. (although don't forget we also suffered in Germany - just like the Germans - wir waren auch Opfer). I was with him.
So many people treated him well. Of course he is a likable man. and America friendly.
Tropby, you are probably the type that would have given me a hard time because I am American (and there were more than a few)

amiexpat
it got SOOO tiring... people would just not leave me alone.. …so many stupid uninformed opinions about the USA.

I made reference to another stupid uninformed opinion about the USA in the NATO thread.

Allow me to do what tropby seems incapable of . . . specifically answering his post.

Tropby says: @ Tyranno: Complaining about "name calling and platitudes" of this humble ´limosine liberal´, who sells his ´selective memory snake oil´ as an ´usual whiny liberal bumpersticker´ ... cute.

ME:
1 Limosine liberal . . . What I said was; Your perspective may well seem realistic from where you sit, but stroking a check for Mugabe's opponents is the cliche definition of a limosine liberal.”

I am addressing your argument here. But if you feel the need to personalize it, so be it.
2. @ snake oil. . . you said: “We Germans might simply be in favor of dealing with a US administration that no longer commits acts of aggression, possibly even including a war of aggression, and no longer consistently violates the Nuremberg Principles as a matter of policy."
I said: As if the majority of troubles the USA has been/ is dealing with in the world since the end of WWII are not the stinky little scheizen piles left floating in the wake of Europe's genocidal, rapacious, colonial legacy. Go find yourself some American college kids (and their professors) Tropby to sell your selective memory snake oil to.
Interestingly, you only bring this point up to claim a quid pro quo… I suppose that is easier than addressing the point. Do you think no fat, stupid Amis know European history?
3. . @ limosine liberal . . . What I said was, “With all due respect, what I hear is the usual whiny liberal bumpersticker of "at least we tried!!!"
Again, I am addressing your argument here but, if you feel the need to personalize that as name calling, so be it.
The personalization of an argument is always a problem for people who are not adept in the art.

~ ~ ~ ~

Tropby says; "I would appreciate it if you would tell me a little bit about yourself?" I already offered some data on my vita and behavior, You did not. Do it, and I will reciprocate.

Me: I am only here occasionally so I must have missed your info. @ me ... You never asked.
Easy day... 50 year old, unapologetic American. No party affiliation. Undergrad in Economics/ Africa area studies minor, completing my MA in International Studies in December. I am an old fashioned liberal but with a strong practical streak. Lived in Europe for seven years, Scotland, Germany and Italy. Speak passable French. I am motivated by what works, by what observably provides tangible benefits in peoples lives, thus I have long since been weaned off of the teat of modern progressive liberal dogmas. Served 30 years in the USN, 28 of them in special ops. Badda-bing!

~ ~ ~ ~
Tropby says: "Did you limit yourself in this manner, and to "one example," because there really wasn't much more to add?"
There are two - including the Iraqi Generals - and You failed to address either one. Your turn.
Me: Great, and I am sure there are but… which two Iraqi Generals? Where did you identify them? Didn’t see it in your posts. I saw the GEN Tagabu reference but that doesn't impress me. There are approximately 8000 flag level officers in the US military. You found one... good job!

More specific answers to Tropby's rantings.

Tropby says: "I know there have been abuses on the battlefield."
Straw man. I never criticized over-reactions in the heat of battle. We are talking about incidents in safe areas like prisons and POW-camps.

Me: C’mon Tropby. Are your arguments that weak that you have to hope nobody can follow the thread back. My full statement was . . . “I know there have been abuses on the battlefield and that enemy combatants have died in US custody.” Does successfully making your point always require selective cutting and pasting???


Tropby says: "That, however is not official policy and is very much the outlier experiences by the vast majority of enemy POWs."
Hogwash. The US Army is no ragtag militia. You may want to look at the survival rate of Iraqi generals after their capture: Captured generals had a higher survival rate in earlier wars despite the advances in medicine. Consider e.g. the commander of Iraqi air defense.

Me: If it is hogwash then provide me the instruction manuals or at least the names of them. “Chap 4. Abuse and torture of Iraqi flag officers.” Making unsubstantiated statements like this without a link or something -- after seeing how strict you were with your facts in your first point – reduces them to emotional rants and nonsense. Verify, verify, verify baby!


Tropby says: "As you have no doubt read ad naseum in the world medias, when abuses are identified the individuals involved are prosecuted."
You are still in denial, and repeating the facts gets boring, so I will limit myself to one example: ´I know that my peers in the Army will be mad at me for speaking out, but the fact is that we violated the laws of land warfare in Abu Ghraib. We violated the tenets of the Geneva Convention. We violated our own principles and we violated the core of our military values. The stress of combat is not an excuse, and I believe, even today, that those civilian and military leaders responsible should be held accountable.´ - General Taguba 2007 in the New Yorker

Me: I read the Tagabu article and as I said in my prior post . . . ok, there is one! I also read about the soldiers, from across the ranks, getting reprimanded, relieved, prosecuted and going to jail for abusing prisoners. I also read about the soldiers who possessed enough of a moral and ethical grounding to report the abuses.
Since you are so concerned about international law and civil rights what do you propose we do, legally of course, about the trash bag full of the mutilated body parts of two American POWs retrieved three weeks ago?


Tropby says: Labeling me a ´limosine liberal´ may fit Republican attack routines, but using a limousine and treasuring liberty makes sense. The chutzpah of denigrating my actions while declaring Your inaction a state secret is amusing. The response to my support for Mugabe´s opposition, namely evading the issue and bragging about the illegal US war in Iraq, feeds my suspicion that You are a Young Republican:

Me: I didn’t label you although you do seem to like imagining yourself the victim. That and you like to create a caricature opponent that you want/ wish/ need, as opposed to a real live person.
Who is the republican of which you speak, much less a “young” Republican?
Whose liberty do you treasure? What do you do to support it?
It is only chutzpah when you confirm you have done more than “talk, like, really forcefully, you know, against Mugabe! . . . or anyone.
I am evading nothing. You asked and I answered, last post. Don’t know what your talking about after that.. “where did I brag about the ‘illegal’ war in Iraq. You are starting to confuse your various moonbat rants.
If Bush has committed war crimes should I assume you also pitched the same bitch about Saddam Hussein? Iran, Kuwait, 300,000 Iraqi corpses (so far) in unmarked graves?.
Pro war, but somebody else has to do the fighting and dying. War is necessary - sometimes. Chicken hawks are despicable - always.
You say “Pro war” as a perjorative and then claim “war is necessary” . . . So which wars do you support? You say, Chicken hawks are despicable . . .so where did you serve? Since Germany hasn’t offensively engaged since the big WWII until Afghanistan, did you miss out on combat like George W. Bush? Speaking of Afganistan, the Germans are under so many self-imposed restriction as to be effectively useless in the coalition. I did buy a couple of boxes of S'mores and Thin mints from them the last time I was there.

Well, I didn’t get killed so to quote COL Jessop from the movie “A Few Good Men” (who ironically was from Guantanamo and was a lot less crazy than the movie made him seem) . . . if you (are a German or an American) have slept soundly under the umbrella of security I have provided . . . I’d be satisfied for you just to say thank you and go away!

Amiexpat says: "I never quite understand Tropby and his ilk so despising chickenhawks.

~ ~ ~ ~

I suspect Tropby is a chicken hawk. Since he has alluded to military service and has claimed to be a German, unless he is in the KSK all he has done is UN "peacekeeping" missions somewhere. I know I am preaching to the choir here but, Chickenhawk is a throwaway line, adolescent name calling, a dull blunt club meant to stifle conversation. If you haven't been there you can't talk about it! SO shut up and let me continue ranting . . .!!!
Your observation is spot on Amiexpat. I have never been a police office either but I am concerned and talk about crime. I have never been a fireman, or a politician. It is a twist on the old liberal guilt bromide that you can't possibly know what it means to be ... black, or female, or gay, or... (fill in the blank.) So, in their tiny minds, you are not allowed to have an opinion.
(In my best Andy Roony voice; "You ever notice how they say "you could not possibly know" what it is like to be them, but... they have you sussed, all figured out and thoroughly explained, without ever talking to you??) But I digress...
It is nothing more than argumentive ploy. Nothing thoughtful there.


Another digression on why it is funny to hear a European call any American a "chickenhawk!"

What is fundamentally misunderstood in Europe is that the US has a military. Not a social program, not a jobs program, not a national boy scout troup for parades and assisting in natural disasters, but an all volunteer, offensive, very aggressive, very capable military. So does Europe but they are embarrassed to admit it since it is called ... the U.S. Army.
They have funded their utopian "Third way" with the money they have not spent on their own defense. Wouldn't it be nice to have say, 1/2 (approx $250B) of our annual military budget to spend on infrastructure here in the USA.
Instead we spend it having soldiers on the wall around Europe. And as Col Jessop also said, "Make no mistake, you want us there!" When the last round of BRAC base closures was announced (2001 I think) several German and European mayors joined their American counterparts in Washington DC to plead their case and explain why "their base" shouldn't be closed.

The fact is, as Robert Kaplan points out in "Of Paradise and Power," Europe could not exist as it is today without the USA being here and doing what we do. It is their vanity that they can not/ will not publicly admit this.
While Europe quietly helps the bad ol' USA capture, rendention and kill tangos, the European elites indulge their populations with with childlike fantasies of its superiority. They create an imaginary world where there are no threats, where obama style "talks" solve all the problems, and where criminal dictators like a Kim or a Hussein are countenanced... as long as they keep their butchery below the screen and off of the evening news so polite Europeans don't have to see it and feel bad about it, feel guilty about doing nothing...again.
Not that even that would compel them to do anything... besides have a big fuzzy feel good rock concert hosted by Bob Geldoff, with all the usual suspects flying their personal Lear jets in for their 20 minute appearance/absolution. Or they would kick it to the UNITED NATIONS, which is where they send everything (it is just a thing, since there are no problems) that they want to kick down the road a year or three.

Or, they will discuss the definition of genocide at the EU in Brussels... and then again later that year in Strasbourg and then again the following year in Brussels. They will discuss possible courses of action that they will take immediately... if they can only get all 27 nations to agree. They will issue voluminous white papers and reports, endless talking points, and resolutions after the fact honoring the dead, generically acknowledging that, "mistakes were made," and apologizing for not having acted in a timely manner.

It took living there awhile to really understand the dynamic at play. This is why they so viscerally hate what George W. Bush and the USA represents. He said he was going to act, he warned them he was going to act, and then he did it! He acted!!!
They know and hate the fact that anybody else's action holds a damning mirror up to their perpetually flaccid inaction, to their abject impotence ... and the reflection is damning, looking at the 7000 dead of Srebrenica staring back at them, the 800,000 of Rwanda staring back at them, the 300,000 + Iraqis staring back at them, the 200,000 (and growing daily) Sudanese staring back at them...

God Damn George W. Bush and the bad ol' U.S.A. for intruding into their nirvana and reminding them they too live in the real world... and there are problems (follow any of them back very far and you will find the cold dead hand of European colonialism at the root) that won't get better by ignoring them.

One Iraqi with purple voting dye on their finger means more to me than all the criticisms Europe could snivel up about failure, and war for oil, Bush's war, etc... those words are used the same way Tropby uses "chickenhawk." It is a whiny, flaccid, impotent response ~ in lieu of taking action.

@ Tyranno:

"50 year old, unapologetic American. No party affiliation. Undergrad in Economics/ Africa area studies minor, completing my MA in International Studies in December. I am an old fashioned liberal but with a strong practical streak. Lived in Europe for seven years, Scotland, Germany and Italy. Speak passable French. I am motivated by what works, by what observably provides tangible benefits in peoples lives, thus I have long since been weaned off of the teat of modern progressive liberal dogmas. Served 30 years in the USN, 28 of them in special ops"

39 year old German, as shown by my Teutonic cruelty to the noble English language. My French is even worse. No party affiliation, but think FDP with some compassion. Currently, I am partner in a small law firm (Petrocelli-level, not Boston Legal); I additionally focus on representing small companies in Eastern Europe and the Middle East and tourism in more exotic locations. I did not dodge the draft, but I did not serve in the KSK, of course.

May I now ask You to finally respond to my question:

´What have You done in Your own time with Your own money to spread democracy in NK or Zimbabwe? To help in Rwanda or Sudan?´

You ridiculed my actions, so tell me what You did.

"I suspect Tropby is a chicken hawk."

According to Wikipedia, a chicken hawk is someone who strongly supports a war or other military action, but has never personally been in a war, especially if that person actively avoided military service when of draft age.

Sorry, labeling me a chicken hawk is rather stupid, as I am neither eager to use military force nor did I actively avoid military service.

You exhibit a pro-war position, but have claimed military service in Your last post, so You are off the hook, too.

Examples would be Cheney (5 deferments IIRC) and Bush (pulled strings to get into a safe unit and quit as soon as they introduced drug tests), who are both quite gung-ho,

"There are approximately 8000 flag level officers in the US military. You found one... good job!"

Yes, but he was the one to do an investigation. Why should he smear the US Army? He served said institution all his life and was going to be promoted to a career-enhancing command position after filing an exculpatory report. The critical report ended his career; he is neither into politics nor has he any publishing or broadcasting deals.

Maybe You prefer another source on the white-wash about Abu Ghraib: Former SecDef Rumsfeld himself appeared on CNN, as the pictures from the men´s wing were being published, and claimed that he had seen the pictures from the women´s wing, and that they were much worse. Said pictures were never published and not introduced into any trial. They simply vanished ...

"When the last round of BRAC base closures was announced (2001 I think) several German and European mayors joined their American counterparts in Washington DC to plead their case and explain why "their base" shouldn't be closed."

This has been discussed on this blog: Americans tend to ignore that the remaining bases in Germany primarily serve US power projection capabilities outside of NATO (logistics, hospitals) and are no longer primarily used to defend NATO territory. They also often ignore that Germany shares the burden of construction costs, maintenance and soldier´s pay.

To maintain the current bases or leave is a US decision. But the money saved by Germany could be used to pay for more or better equipped German soldiers or to help towns near former US bases to adapt. So it is less of a problem than some Germany-bashers assume.

The US on the other hand would have to rebuild all of these facilities e.g. in Poland. Poland will welcome US troops, no doubt about it. But it offers no financial burden sharing whatsoever, so have fun with paying the full stationing costs while building new facilities without any German subsidies. Better yet, Poland recently declared that the US would have to give additional military aid to Poland if it wanted to deploy more troops over there.

To end on a positive note:

I have to give You credit on whining about me personalizing the debate while You continue to use pejorative political terms. You may have mastered doublethink, which is normally the prerogative of leftists.



Tropby,
You have talked about sharing some of your personal info ... that is not located in this thread. (Although, this response is the closest you have come and yet you are still evasive about education, military service and motivations. Why?) You have accused me of "failing to address" something about two Iraqi Generals that you never identified or asked me any questions about. You answer a question about lack of diversity in the German Bundestag with anecdotal information on Turkish immigration??? and now you demand that I "finally respond" to a question you have never asked, until now !!!

This on top of your ridiculous attempt to compare two disparate periods in US and German history in order to make Germany look better. This on top of your prevarication about my statement, " I know there have been abuses on the battlefield..." leaving out the rest of my sentence, "...and that enemy combatants have died in US custody," attempting to get away with lying to make a point that I guess you thought would make you look better.

And now you wish me (US) to believe that you are a "partner in a small law firm" implying much but tangibly identifying little. Are you a lawyer or do you just wish me to infer you are a lawyer; because I fail to see the usual linear thinking readily observable in every lawyer I know. You are loose with your facts, incongruent in your arguments (confusing with other threads?) and not perceptive enough to discern the difference between an argument and a personal attack.

As I said before, you toss out non-'thought provoking,' off-the-cuff, one liner, non-answers here, while dancing onto your next topic and demanding answers for new questions that you only sometimes pose?

I don't see disciplined lawyerly thinking here... I see an typical euro-ideologue anti-American boob playing a lawyer on the internet. Am I right??? :)


PS: I hope "euro-ideologue anti-American boob" is not too strong for your delicate sensibilities.


Attempting to circle this thread up back to where it started, with Tropby's comparison of the diversity of the Bundestag with the lack of diversity in the US Congress.

The info I found was about the last (109th) Congress.
65 Women
40 African-Americans
5 Asian-Americans
2 Latinos
2 Homosexuals
1 Native American

Don't know why Tropby includes Agnostics and Atheists ~ as if they were nationalities or cultures?? Would a lawyer do that? Is he reduced to "category hunting" to make his weak point. What about the Frisbee-tarians? (A small sect found exclusively in Southern Cali. They believe that when you die your soul goes up on the roof and you can't get it down!) They are not represented AT ALL ! ! !

Of course the list above are the preselected victim groups recognized by the left otherwise, to be fair, we should also break out the German, Italian, British, French, Austrian, Filipino, Japanese, Malaysian, Crow, Navaho, Somali, Ghanian, _________ (fill in the blanks) -- Americans.

From what I know of the Bundestag it is all white men with Anglea Merkel cracking the whip.

Educate me/ us Tropby, with links of course.

FWIW, Numbers in Congress.


42 Jewish.
17 Lutheran
16 Mormon
5 Greek Orthodox
2 Buddhist ( atheistic religion)
2 Muslim
2 Unitarian (so don’t tell me there aren’t atheists in Congress…. based on my HS membership in a Unitarian Youth Group)
1 Serbian Orthodox

27 Hispanic ( the only one of Tyranno’s that needed correcting)
Nunca los Domingos. Nunca en Alemania

From Bob Dylan’s I Shall Be Free.

Now, the man on the stand he wants my vote
He's a-runnin' for office on the ballot note
He's out there preachin' in front of the steeple
Tellin' me he loves all kinds-a people
He's eatin' bagels
He's eatin' pizza
He's eatin' chitlins.
Final word.

Tropby says: "´What have You done in Your own time, with Your own money, to spread democracy in NK or Zimbabwe? To help in Rwanda or Sudan?´ You ridiculed my actions, so tell me what You did."

Me: Well, lets see, no one has done anything in North Korea or Zimbabwe beyond engaging diplomatically. Rwanda or Sudan are both embarrassing examples of problems in Europe's back yard, with Europe's "Third Way" washing its hands of the consequences of its own colonial policies... and then attempting to shift the blame on to the USA for its "in-action." Damned if we do ("Illegal" war in Iraq) ~ Damned if we don't! ("Obligation to protect" in Rwanda)
With few to no one in either of our MSMs asking, "given the facts, what Europe's obligations are, individually or collectively, in these situations." The appropriate question is, "what is Europe's "soft power" doing about it?" Unfortunately, we know the answer.

Anyhow, you ask, "what have I done?" I'll assume you don't mean my service in the military. I'll assume you don't mean my thirteen deployments, all of the missed birthdays and anniversaries and Christmas's and Thanksgivings, and family get-togethers, all the family and friends weddings. The parent funerals. All the first steps, the first days of school, the rocking to sleep, the kissing of boo-boos, the Pop Warner football games, the swim meets, the school plays, the prom, their graduations, the camping trips, the Saturday picnics in the park, all of the times my wife needed me and I wasn't there, all family photographs that I am not in, ... I'll assume you don't mean any of that.

I'll assume you don't mean the taxes I pay that foot the bill for sustaining that "occupying force" in Germany/ Europe, and around the world. Even though no one more than me would love to see the State Department and diplomatic staff doubled in size and the US military chopped in half, with the money spent on infrastructure or tax relief, for the people who earned the money, back inside the bad ol' USA.
Unfortunately, I know too much; and I know there are a lot of bad actors in the world who would rush to fill the power vacuum left in that wake. And who is going to deal with the mayhem, the chaos? As Col Jessop said, "... we live in a world that has walls and those walls need to be guarded by men with guns. Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lieutenant Europe?" (Jessop was a kook but he was also right in a number of things he said.)

The question is just the usual display of euro-arrogance. Why would Tropby think he gets to pick and choose which hot spots in the world matter and which don't, and if everybody/ anybody/ you weren't there with him doing whatever he was doing at that time, then you are a chickenhawk. Arrogance?
Why would Tropby think he gets to pick and choose the type of service that is relevant? He appears to have decided that his peacekeeping service does, while George Bush's National Guard service doesn't count.
Unfortunately Tropby, and extrapolating on what seems to be your point, I didn't see you beside me in Panama or the Balkans, or the Lebanon, or Haiti, or... The fact is there are an infinite number of ways and opportunities where one can serve and contribute. This is just an extension of the silly chickenhawk name calling game.

Europe, and all too many europeans have/ must/ need to accuse the USA of arrogance otherwise someone might notice how aggressively they are pushing their self-serving agenda on the world. There is a (extremist?) part of Europe that sees the USA standing in its way ~ every bit as much as the luddite extreme Islamists. Both cling to and are nostalgic for that point in their respective histories when they ran roughshod over the world. One is attempting to use our system against us while the other is constructing an alternative One-World supra-reality to (hopefully) supersede the current US dominated system.

Interestingly both can not hide their enthusiasm for Barack Obama, who personifies their hopes and goals. Now, what do they perceive that the average, modern, progressive liberal Obama supporter does not?

"Although, this response is the closest you have come and yet you are still evasive about education, military service and motivations."

Education: Any partner in a German law firm is a lawyer (a law professor may represent somebody at court, but cannot be a partner.). But if it makes You happy: Grundschule, Gymnasium, Studium finished with both Staatsexamina (Prädikatsexamen), some work for local companies as a hired Volljurist (Assessor iuris, if You like Latin), later registered at the Anwaltskammer (paying into its lousy retirement fund) and working as -dadah- lawyer.

Military service: I said that I neither dodged the draft nor served in the KSK; details of my service at the Rechtsabteilung of the Bundeswehrkommando Ost as a Referendar (but paid as a mere conscript!) are of no relevance to the discussion at hand.

Motivation: I am the one who talks about such ideas as Rule of Law including Internatonal Law ... this should be pretty clear. No party affiliation, but in some areas close to an ideal FDP. Any real question, or Do You ask me to write an essay about the perfect society?

---------------------

´My financial and other support of Mugabe´s opponents may not have been sufficient, but it seems to be more than You and the current US administration are doing.´
´The chutzpah of denigrating my actions while declaring Your inaction a state secret is amusing.´
´What have You done in Your own time with Your own money to spread democracy in NK or Zimbabwe? To help in Rwanda or Sudan?´

Finally, the third time, we get an answer: You did nothing on Your own. No private initiative, no free labor, no financial support. Nothing. Nothing at all. A truly compassionate Republican.

Serving in the Armed Forces is a job; You get paid. Your service oath is about serving the US, not serving liberty abroad. Read some Smedley Butler.

According To Your vita, Your work history is mostly limited to military service. This is fine, but the creation of wealth happens in the private sector. So shut up about taxes.

And You are still avoiding topics like Abed Hamed Mowhoush or the women´s wing of Abu Ghraib ...

---------------------

"And now you wish me (US) to believe that you are a "partner in a small law firm" implying much but tangibly identifying little. Are you a lawyer or do you just wish me to infer you are a lawyer; because I fail to see the usual linear thinking readily observable in every lawyer I know.
{SNIP} I see an typical euro-ideologue anti-American boob playing a lawyer on the internet. Am I right??? :)"

No, You are wrong. I tend not to lie, at least not without a tangible benefit, and a discussion on the Internet does not qualify. The number of little kids living in Mom´s basement and claiming to have served in Special Forces is legion ... yet I took You at Your word.

Implying that I am lying crosses the borders of civilized discourse, so I am out, unless I get a full apology and retraction. I only allow myself to be insulted while billing according to the RVG. Have Fun!

Tropby,
I did not imply you were lying. . . I think I was very unambiguous in my question. Nothing in your latest response here changes my mind about your lawyer credentials. Or, perhaps you are the exception that makes the rule (as we use to say) . . . someone has to be the worst of the best.

But you have not wasted your time here. In fact you have been quite beneficial for others reading the thread. Because all one has to do is read the thread and it is quite obvious how many times you have made my point. Go back and read the thread Tropby!
Towards the end of my time in Europe I grew weary hearing how much more “complex and sophisticate” the European perspective was and you have assisted me in proving that is obviously not true.

You are profoundly opinionated until someone starts asking specific questions. From that point forward the lawyer in you starts falling apart. You have followed the pattern religiously and now, feeling caught, you are doing what you have done throughout this thread, which is to dance away while tossing your name calling and new redirecting questions back over your shoulder.
We will never know if you really are a lawyer but I absolutely stand by my prior point. “I fail to see the usual linear thinking readily observable in every lawyer I know. You are loose with your facts, incongruent in your arguments (confusing with other threads? And you do it again here!) and not perceptive enough to discern the difference between an argument and a personal attack.
You toss out non-'thought provoking,' off-the-cuff, one liner, non-answers here, while dancing onto your next topic and demanding answers for new questions that you only sometimes pose? I don't see disciplined lawyerly thinking here... I see an typical euro-ideologue anti-American boob playing a lawyer on the internet.”
And in your Euro-arrogance you want an apology. Please . . . apologize to George Bush for listening to the BND. “The BND Lied and People Died!” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/1189182.stm

Tropby, all of this time wasted here could have been avoided if you had simply answered the first question from my first response to your initial post . . .
It was; PS: To quote chapter and verse from the Nuremberg Principles would require one first ascertains the correct legal definitions. Your false assumptions being; 1) that the US did not have lawyers involved in the process and making judgments on their political decisions about the detainees. Ergo, the topic is still up for legal debate. 2) That because you are comfortable with your interpretation of the principles, that is the final word.
PSS: Not bad for a teenager in his Mom’s basement pretending to be an ex SpecOps guy eh?

PSSS: (I have some addresses of college students and Professors that I can forward to you, if you like.) And I agree this is a waste of my time. But I am tenacious with a capital "T" and I am sick of watching partyline spewing lemmings like you go unchallenged, sooOOooo. . . See ya!

Tyranno: Regarding your bringing up the BND Report. When I brought that up to one German poster opposed to the Iraq War, his response was that of course we shouldn't have listened to the BND. Didn't everyone know the BND was useless?

I found that amusing, to say the least.

Hi GringoTex:
Sure, but the cherrypicking of information is necessary for them to make their... point. Like tropby here attempting to use half of one of my sentences to accuse me of making a strawman argument. The truth is not on their side. The oddest part of it all for me is there is sooOOoo much to legitimately criticize about the Bush administration but the little drougies of the world like tropby always get lost in the vortex of the emotional Partyline spin.

Should we hold our breath till the Europeans hit the streets by the millions to demonstrate, while their intellectuals and "lawyers" energize the ICC over potential war crimes and crimes against humanity charges for Putin over the invasion of Georgia???

One has to be willing to overlook so much that is right in front of them to believe the sorts of things a tropby believe.

Tschuss,

what i wanna kknow outta you dm is what the germans think of how their gazprom masters are using a door they opened by denying nato status to georgia and setting alot of this up.
the new russia is kinda creepy, huh?

vdh has a good piece about it and sheds some light on how the germans are reacting to pooty.

i remember the hippies on the highways in germany with no nuke signs the day that three mile island went down. great job fritz. now you send your money to moscow and they stamp their neighbors down making a path to the middle east. oh well, its bush's fault anyway.

i just wonder if anyone is germany is saying anything about all that aong those lines or if its all still just a mystery.

it may become a reality to europe that obama represents not so much a naive and suicidal choice but rather a readjustment was needed away from his brand.
i personally cant see any european lifting a finger against obama but maybe then not lift one for him either. i sense that sarkozy is the model for most of the next pols we'll see in germany. someone has to do something and things may have jsut changed enough to make things happen.

It is particularly striking that so many Europeans proclaim such affection for Obama - without really being able to specifically explain why they like him so much.

Here´s a German writer who is offering an explanation:

Vor ein paar Jahren demonstrierten sie noch gegen Amerika. Jetzt jubeln sie für einen Präsidentschaftskandidaten, den sie nicht wählen dürfen. Unterwegs in Berlin mit Daniela und Tobias vom deutschen Obama-Fanclub. [...]

Trotzdem ist Daniela mit ihrer Amerikaflagge um die Hüften eine Ausnahmeerscheinung unter den jungen deutschen Zuhörern, die schließlich der Studentengeneration angehören, die vor wenigen Jahren noch mit Amerika-kritischen Parolen gegen den Irakkrieg protestierte. Auch Daniela zog damals noch mit Pace-Fahne statt Sternenbanner auf die Straßen. Einen Widerspruch findet sie das jedoch nicht: „Ich war nie anti-amerikanisch eingestellt“, sagt sie, „sondern frustriert über deren Außenpolitik“.

A few years ago they were protesting against America. Now they´re cheering a Presidential candidate they can´t vote for. A tour through Berlin with Daniela and Tobias of the German Obama fanclub. [....]

Still, with the US flag wrapped around her hips, Daniela is an exceptional appearance among the young German audience, most of which belong to the generation of students who were protesting against the Iraq war with America-critical slogans just a few years ago. At that time even Daniela was carrying a PACE flag instead of the star-spangled banner. But she does not see any contradiction: "I´ve never been anti-American, I was frustrated over their foreign policy.

While this last statement might be just as questionable as Barack Obamas own political orientation, the entire situation looks like a collective approach of BDS rehabilitation. As long as they don´t require the rest of us to march in lockstep with their latest idol any more than when they embraced Saddam it´s okay.

But GINO,
Isn't this the typically European response? They hate/ fear/ avoid dealing in the real world, with all of its warts, inconsistencies, dangers, read... potential for failures; so instead they focus on a fantasy world (Russia = good/ USA/Bush = bad or, Obama is different) filled with fantasy problems (man-made global warming or, the 'threat' of US imperialism).
The challenge for the USA is to manage the situation in a way that doesn't precipitate WWIII by emboldening Putin's aggression. The USA must roll back the aggression as much as possible, and/or sends a strong message that the reimposition of the Soviet Empire will not be tolerated. Europe has a very bad track record at confronting much less dealing with situations like this successfully.
Some options might include:
- Immediately offer Ukraine NATO membership.
- Immediately initiate the installation of the missle shield in any Eastern European nation that wants it.
- Start moving US troops back into bases in Europe. Ukraine and the Baltics in particular.
- Suspend Russian membership in the G-8
- Recommend the Ivan Safronov, Paul Klebnikov, Anna Politkovskaya, Alexander Litvenenko, etc... murders to the ICC.

Witness the feckless EU "soft power" response in the face of Russian aggression. It is proving as successful as their efforts in Darfur and with Iran. They even attempt to/ must blame the USA for this (see No Pasaran) because looking in that mirror and seeing their flaccid, limp, impotence (AGAIN!) in the face of reality ~ is painful.

Europe's next fall back position will be to shift blame the USA for not having done enough.
The unanswered question is, "Would an aggressive US response now save lives ~ in the face of the usual euro/world condemnation; or, would the flaccid EUro/ UN response cost more lives in the long run as Putin's Russia feels emboldened by the utter lack of world response to its successful aggression/ invasion.

Tyranno, I expect Frau Merkel to come out with a request to Mr. Ban for suspension of Russian decision power in UNSC (i.e. downgrading to observer status until territorial integrity of Georgia is remembered) should the czar sends she back with empty hands from Sochi. Those actively breaking the rules should not be entrusted with enforcing the rules.

Tyranno, let me add that in our current situation Europe will need any and every experience which can contribute experience to opposing strong forces from a position of weakness. Therefore it is ignorant to render this mindset as "a fantasy world with fantasy problems." In that description there is no distinction as to what of it is ideological placenta and what will be part of our future.

I've quoted you and linked to you here: http://consul-at-arms.blogspot.com/2008/09/re-opinion-eventually-we-will-all-hate.html

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