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A real shame. This is just disgusting.
But also a sign of weakness and a complete lack of concepts and visions. Not that i´m really surprised. Well well well ...

Amazing. What do those greens think who they are? Laughable.

It looks like there are two things that expand to the infinite, never reaching a border: the Universe and Stupidity.

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Unfit for Office
By JOHN O'NEILL
May 4, 2004; Page A20
HOUSTON -- In 1971, I debated John Kerry, then a national spokesman for the
Vietnam Veterans Against the War, for 90 minutes on "The Dick Cavett Show." The
key issue in that debate was Mr. Kerry's claim that American troops were
committing war crimes in Vietnam "on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness
of
officers at all levels of command." Now, as Sen. Kerry emerges as the
presumptive Democratic nominee for the presidency, I've chosen to re-enter the
fray.
Like John Kerry, I served in Vietnam as a Swift Boat commander. Ironically,
John Kerry and I served much of our time, a full 12 months in my case and a
controversial four months in his, commanding the exact same six-man boat,
PCF-94,
which I took over after he requested early departure. Despite our shared
experience, I still believe what I believed 33 years ago -- that John Kerry
slandered America's military by inventing or repeating grossly exaggerated
claims of
atrocities and war crimes in order to advance his own political career as an
antiwar activist. His misrepresentations played a significant role in creating
the negative and false image of Vietnam vets that has persisted for over
three decades.
Neither I, nor any man I served with, ever committed any atrocity or war
crime in Vietnam. The opposite was the truth. Rather than use excessive force,
we
suffered casualty after casualty because we chose to refrain from firing
rather than risk injuring civilians. More than once, I saw friends die in areas
we
entered with loudspeakers rather than guns. John Kerry's accusations then and
now were an injustice that struck at the soul of anyone who served there.
During my 1971 televised debate with John Kerry, I accused him of lying. I
urged him to come forth with affidavits from the soldiers who had claimed to
have committed or witnessed atrocities. To date no such affidavits have been
filed. Recently, Sen. Kerry has attempted to reframe his comments as youthful or

"over the top." Yet always there has been a calculated coolness to the way he
has sought to destroy the record of our honorable service in the interest of
promoting his political ambitions of the moment.
John Kennedy's book, "Profiles in Courage," and Dwight Eisenhower's "Crusade
in Europe" inspired generations. Not so John Kerry, who has suppressed his
book, "The New Soldier," prohibiting its reprinting. There is a clear reason for

this. The book repeats John Kerry's insults to the American military,
beginning with its front-cover image of the American flag being carried upside
down by
a band of bearded renegades in uniform -- a clear slap at the brave Marines
in their combat gear who raised our flag at Iwo Jima. Allow me the reprint
rights to your book, Sen. Kerry, and I will make sure copies of "The New
Soldier"
are available in bookstores throughout America.
Vietnam was a long time ago. Why does it matter today? Since the days of the
Roman Empire, the concept of military loyalty up and down the chain of command
has been indispensable. The commander's loyalty to the troops is the price a
commander pays for the loyalty of the troops in return. How can a man be
commander in chief who for over 30 years has accused his "Band of Brothers," as
well as himself, of being war criminals? On a practical basis, John Kerry's
breach of loyalty is a prescription of disaster for our armed forces.
John Kerry's recent admissions caused me to realize that I was most likely in
Vietnam dodging enemy rockets on the very day he met in Paris with Madame
Binh, the representative of the Viet Cong to the Paris Peace Conference. John
Kerry returned to the U.S. to become a national spokesperson for the Vietnam
Veterans Against the War, a radical fringe of the antiwar movement, an
organization set upon propagating the myth of war crimes through demonstrably
false
assertions. Who was the last American POW to die languishing in a North
Vietnamese
prison forced to listen to the recorded voice of John Kerry disgracing their
service by his dishonest testimony before the Senate?
Since 1971, I have refused many offers from John Kerry's political opponents
to speak out against him. My reluctance to become involved once again in
politics is outweighed now by my profound conviction that John Kerry is simply
not
fit to be America's commander in chief. Nobody has recruited me to come
forward. My decision is the inevitable result of my own personal beliefs and
life
experience.
Today, America is engaged in a new war, against the militant Islamist
terrorists who attacked us on our own soil. Reasonable people may differ about
how
best to proceed, but I'm sure of one thing -- John Kerry is the wrong man to put

in charge.
Mr. O'Neill served in Coastal Division 11 in 1969-70, earning two Bronze
Stars and additional decorations for his service in Vietnam.

The subtext: the assumption that Europe has the blanket right of refusal over US affairs.
How charming. How much deeper in denail can they be about the world?

Fischer . Interview Welt am Sonntag:

WamS: Auch in Bezug auf den Irak?


Fischer: Wir haben vor dem Krieg lange und immer wieder mit den Amerikanern darüber geredet, ob es der richtige Schritt im Kampf gegen den Terrorismus ist, oder ob man nicht das Gegenteil erreichen wird. Wir haben gefragt, was aus der territorialen Integrität, aus der regionalen Stabilität wird, und ob der Westen nicht in eine Situation gerät, die ihn überfordert. Gerade jetzt, wo die Dinge nicht so laufen, wie man sie sich vorgestellt hat, stellt man fest, wie brüchig die Legitimation ist."
http://www.eurogreens.org/cms/default/dok/8/8402.wir_haben_eine_europaeische_position_die.htm

Ich frage mich, WANN denn die Deutschen immer wieder mit den Amerikanern geredet haben. Meint er vor Schröders NEIN, noch nicht einmal mit UN-Mandat oder danach???? Wann haben diese Gespräche stattgefunden oder will Fischer sich jetzt auch in diese Lügenriege der SPD einordnen? Seit August 2002 steht die deutsche Entscheidung fest!!!

Cohn-Bendit: "Die Amerikaner können nicht als Vermittler (im Nahostkonflikt) auftreten. Dazu müssten sie von beiden Seiten anerkannt werden. Die Regierung Bush erkennt Scharons Position der Stärke an - Punkt. Sie entwickelt überhaupt kein Interesse an einem wirklichen Versuch der Vermittlung."

Seit wievielen Jahren versucht man jetzt die "Vermittlung"? Wie erfolgreich ist diese "Vermittlung". Wielange und wer soll noch "vermitteln"? Was gibt es eigentlich zu vermitteln, wenn Terroristen israelische Busse voller Schulkinder in die Luft sprengen?

"Vermittlung" half nicht bei Saddam Hussein. "Vermittlung" hilft nicht bei Bin Laden. Und "Vermittlung" hilft nicht bei Hamas Terroristen. Europa wird eines Tages erkennen, daß gegen Terror nur der Zusammenhalt ALLER hilft. Zur Zeit ist der Leidensdruck nicht da, aber Bin Laden arbeitet ja schon tüchtig am nächsten Projekt. Und dann gibts Gold für die family. Die Tötung der schwangeren Israelin mit ihren 4 Kindern kann Europa nicht beeindrucken, aber vielleicht die Sprengung des Brandenburger Tors? Soll nicht heißen, daß ich es uns wünsche.


A double standard on the part of the Germans? Goethe's two souls in his breast? Or just the normal & myriad psychological complexes of such a oh so complex tribe, which, in the deed, we all love to hate.

@AuslanderRaus

"A double standard on the part of the Germans? Goethe's two souls in his breast? Or just the normal & myriad psychological complexes of such a oh so complex tribe, which, in the deed, we all love to hate."

What's up? Is it international psychology day today? I notice that Pitzke throttled back his America bashing from "blatant lies" to "psychobabble" today. Maybe one of the editors had a long talk with him. Then again, maybe he's been watching too many old episodes of "Twilight Zone." WE ARE ALL GUILTY! Now where's that old copy of Freud...

Als das „tausendjährige“ Reich vorüber war, standen bei uns die Besatzungssoldaten im Land.
Vor meiner Haustür waren es in jahrelanger Dauerpräsenz „die“ nicht eingeladenen Amerikaner.
Ich war damals Kind im Vorschulalter und habe über Politik nicht nachgedacht, aber später habe ich diese Zeit natürlich rekapituliert.
Mein Vater, überzeugter Anhänger der Naziideologie, war eingetragener Bewerber für ein „Rittergut“ in der Ukraine gewesen. Dort hätte er dann „Untermenschen“ auf seiner Farm für sich arbeiten lassen.
Am Ende hatte er nicht nur das nicht bekommen, sondern darüber hinaus Haus und Hof und die selbstständige berufliche Existenz verloren, das gesamte Lebenswerk, und die Gesundheit noch dazu. Er hatte aufs falsche Pferd gesetzt.
Spätere Jahre brachten es an den Tag. Er war auf der ganzen Linie „Unbelehrbarer“ und uneinsichtiger Verlierer.
Diese geistige Haltung, so zeigte sich für mich später, war im nachbarschaftlichen Umfeld besonders unter den Flüchtlingen seuchenartig verbreitet.
Ich kassierte später, als Schüler, viele Jahre lang die Mitgliedsbeiträge für den Bund der Heimatvertriebenen an den Haustüren.
Du meine Güte, welche Hasspotentiale habe ich kennen gelernt.
Für diese tausendfach vorhandenen Kriegsverlierer war die „Dummheit der Amis“ am Ende daran schuld, dass der Krieg den erhofften Segen eines blühenden „Großdeutschen Reiches“ nicht erbracht hatte, sondern den Verlust der Heimat, die Nichterfüllung von Hoffnungen und Träumen.

Das ist jetzt vielleicht etwas vereinfacht beschrieben. Aber worauf ich hinaus will:

Ich bin meinen uneinsichtigen Eltern und ihren Glaubensgeschwistern außerordentlich dankbar, dass sie die Situation mit den doch wohl unerwünschten „Befreiern“ vor der Haustür
pragmatisch gemeistert haben.
Es gab keine bombenbastelnden Widerstandskämpfer, die darauf aus waren, uns von der „Schmach der Besatzung“ zu befreien.

Wenn es in der internationalen Weltpresse, im Rundfunk, im, Gott sei Dank, nicht vorhandenen Fernsehen tausendfach Stimmen gegeben hätte, dahin gehend, dass an unserem Unglück die von uns nicht herbeigebetenen Amerikaner schuld waren, also die “übelsten Verbrecher der jüngeren Menschheitsgeschichte“, vielleicht wäre alles ganz anders gekommen.
Es zeigte sich ja sehr bald, dass die Westmächte, voran „die“ Amerikaner etliche strategische Fehler gemacht hatten, als deren Folge es einen jahrzehntelangen, wenigstens bei uns, kalten Krieg gab
Wenn es in dieser Zeit nicht völlig unbegründete antiamerikanische Hasstiraden in der ausländischen Presse gegeben hätte, wären sie in der unmittelbaren Nachkriegszeit bei uns auf fruchtbaren Boden gefallen. Es gab zu viele Verlierer und Enttäuschte.
Schießprügel und Handgranaten lagen überall rum. Als Kind und Jugendlicher habe ich mich so manches Mal durch das Hantieren mit hochbrisanten Kriegsüberbleibseln in Lebensgefahr gebracht.

Ich mag gar nicht dran denken, was aus mir geworden wäre, wenn Tausende von Idioten Versucht hätten, Deutschland von den Befreiern zu befreien.
Mir wird ganz schlecht davon.
Mir war viele Jahre lang die unbewusste Traumatisierung auf der Flucht und durch die Bombenangriffe auf Bremen schon Last genug.

Und nach über fünf Jahren Besatzungszeit, in der uns unsere „Feinde“ und auch die für die wir noch kurze Zeit vorher eine Bedrohung der staatlichen Souveränität dargestellt hatten, unter eigenen Opfern durchgefüttert hatten, fing es langsam an, dass es uns wieder besser und am Ende so richtig gut ging.

Ich bin meinem Schicksal dankbar, und manchmal könnte ich heulen vor Glück,
dass nationalistische Scharfmacher mein Leben nicht nachhaltig ruiniert haben,
dass ich nicht durch Hassprediger deformiert wurde, dass ich mich dankbar an die Carepakete aus Amerika erinnern kann,
und an den Schlag Suppe in die behenkelte Konservendose in der großen Pause aus schwedischen Spenden (noch 1951),
aber auch an die Hilfen zum Einüben in die Demokratie und zum Verstehen der Welt für mich, für meine Lehrer und für viele andere durch das Amerika-Haus hier in Bremen.

Dieses mal zum Nachdenken an die auch in diesem Forum reichhaltig vertretenen Negativisten in Bezug auf die Rolle der USA in der Weltpolitik.

Idealbildung ist schön, leider aber eine psychische Krankheit.

Die Eröffnungsrede zum Festival „Duisburger Akzente“ vom Altbundeskanzler Helmut Schmidt als Freund Amerikas gab es im Deutschlandfunk am 25.April um 17:05

Nachzuhören unter Audio on demand http://www.dradio.de/aod/player/index.html

Want to get back at the German government?

I understand that the California Highway Patrol has put in an order for 400 BMW police motorcycles. 400 x $15,000 per motorcycle = six million dollar contract: a nice piece of change for the German economy.

This contract does not economically make sense for California. BMW's American competitor, Harley Davidson, leases motorcycles to U.S. police departments at a fraction of the cost. Anyone who knows motorcycles: a Harley Davidson retains its value. Harley can resell the motorcycles at a profit when the lease is up, thus dramatically lowering the cost per motorcycle for the state of California.

A way for the American people to show their displeasure with the German government is to have the Governor of California rescind the CHIPS contract with BMW. There needs to be a campaign to inform the the Governor of California of the intentions of the German Government to interfer with inner American politics, not to mention the economic considerations with going with Harley Davidson.

If our German friends in this blog want to participate, they should feel free to do so. I understand that the present Governor of California speaks and reads German fluently.

Boycott? A six million $$$ contract? Yeah right.
That works. Good luck. :)

@"Helmut Schmidt":
... vom Altbundeskanzler Helmut Schmidt als Freund Amerikas ...

Besonders ein Freund von Jimmy Carter, danach etwas weniger mit Reagan/Haig. Neulich gab es in der ZEIT diesen netten, treffenden Auswurf von typischer "Schmidt-Schnauze" über unser heutiges Deutschland:

Schmidt: Es gibt kaum einen Bereich, in dem Deutschland mit seiner Leistung deutlich herausragt. Es gibt zwar solche, wo die Deutschen gleichgezogen haben: Medizin, Flugzeugbau, aber zusammen mit anderen Europäern. Im Automobilbau geht es zu Ende. Und sonst? Nichts mehr.

Nachzulesen im Interview mit Horst Köhler hier. (auch interessante Bemerkungen zum Thema Twin-Deficit von Bush in dem Text)

@George M.
If our German friends in this blog want to participate, they should feel free to do so.

Calling for boycott of BMW-motorcycles to cost jobs of Germans? (manufactured in Berlin-Spandau, btw) As nothing would surprise me on here anymore, let's see if David, Ray or other German-related people will publically show their support for this.

A boycott-campaign by Germans against Germans could actually also be something to get this blog into the press, btw.

Notice from David: Klink, aren't you surprised - at least occasionally - that we allow you to present your daily dose of anti-Medienkritik in - this blog?
What a great blog! Try this at SPIEGEL ONLINE...

@Helmut Schmidt

The American author Mark Twain once observed that if you find a poor, starving dog and give him shelter and something to eat, he will not bite your hand. That is the principal difference between a dog and a man. Thanks, Helmut, once in awhile it's good to be reminded that not all men are like that.

@Gabi

Your comments about Israel are right on. There is literally no one to negotiate with. Bush has simply recognized this fact. He was also entirely right to remove the so-called "right of return," i.e., the de facto destruction of the state of Israel, from the table as something that can be negotiated. Do the Israelis who were forced out of Arab and other Muslim countries have a "right of return?" No, and they don't want to return, because they have long been integrated into Israeli society. Why, more than half a century later, haven't Palestinians been integrated into Arab countries that have far more room and wealth than Israel? Why are they still in refugee camps to this day? How is it that their fellow Muslims, for whom hospitality is, supposedly, one of the highest virtues, have failed them so utterly? Finally, why does the German media refrain from asking these questions?

Without comments:

...With no weapons of mass destruction to be found and security an ever more elusive vision, the only remaining rationale for America's fierce grip on Iraq is that the Army's heart is pure. The US stays only to plant the seeds of democracy. That noble goal alone justifies the huge cost in death and injury, money and material.

Goodbye, nobility. Never mind that Americans are supposed to abhor torture, both in their morals and in their laws. Never mind that the rank and file of the military are supposed to be the very models of rectitude. America's primary military asset, its character, has been badly tarred....

...It appears the torture was all of a piece with a national dragnet for "bad guys." For months, many top Western journalists have been reporting violent, middle-of-the-night raids as US soldiers break into Iraqi homes and roughly carry off "suspects" in hoods and handcuffs. Passersby are seized at checkpoints. Prisons and military headquarters swarm with family members hunting for the disappeared. Apparently there are many thousands of these "detainees" hidden in a gulag of prisons scattered across Iraq and, it seems, in some other countries as well....

http://search.csmonitor.com/search_content/0505/p09s02-coop.html

Colin Powell: "Im Krieg passieren solche scheußlichen Dinge ab und zu schon mal."

Dass "Osama & Co." ein so prächtiges Jahr gehabt hätten, beklagt etwa William Lind, der Direktor des erzkonservativen Centers for Cultural Conservatism, sei nicht der "Brillanz" der Terroristen zuzuschreiben, "sondern dem krassen Herumprotzen unsererseits".

"Antiamerikanisches Vorgehen hat das amerikanische System korrumpiert", schimpft die von den Republikanern zu den Demokraten abgewanderte Kolumnistin Arianna Huffington. "Willkomen in George W. Bushs Amerika."

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/debatte/0,1518,298744,00.html

@David

"Notice from David: Klink, aren't you surprised - at least occasionally - that we allow you to present your daily dose of anti-Medienkritik in - this blog?
What a great blog! Try this at SPIEGEL ONLINE..."

1. Die Auseinandersetzung mit anderen Meinungen gehört doch zur Demokratie....und ist doch "uramerikanisch"..oder?

2. Freuen wir uns auch in den BLogs von SPON auf eure tatkräftige Mitwirkung. Was spricht dagegen?

What is Herr Fischer doing in regard to the genocide in Sudan right now?

No Jews or Americans there!?

I just discovered this link in the Internet. It confirms what I always suspected: Germans have a contorted view of freedom of press.

@Paul,

Media types always think they are the most important people in the entire world and should be accorded special privelage, rank, and respect.

I see the site you pointed out has an article pissing and moaning about how 14 of them were dennied entry into the US because they lacked a visa.

Well that tells me they work for pretty soddy organizations who fail to prepare them for assignment. Of course with most media organizations if the reflection of their product is also a reflection of their professionalism, I am surprised that figure is not a great deal larger.

@paul

here is something similar: http://www.freedomhouse.org/research/pressurvey.htm

i didn't check it in detail, however there seems to be a mismatch in the tables concerning germany and the us. just for information. i cannot tell due to insufficient data which is more reliable... nevertheless i'd like to know how you derive the conclusion "contorted" from the link you gave.


p.s. i'm not the no comment that flooded the blog with kerry-tales from vietnam

@David
Klink, aren't you surprised - at least occasionally - that we allow you to present your daily dose of anti-Medienkritik in - this blog?

You wanna be schmoozed a bit by me? Alright, you are more tolerant than FR is.

What a great blog! Try this at SPIEGEL ONLINE...

SPIEGEL ist also quite tolerant IMO, no? Or has anyone other experiences (except for using foul language)? Talking of boycotts...There was a posting by a Ray D. in September 2002 on SPIEGEL-Forum also talking of boycotts: "Und was passiert mit der Arbeitslosigkeit in Deutschland wenn auf einmal die Amerikaner aufhören Deutsche Autos und andere Exporten zu kaufen?" ("Und what happens with unemployment in German when Americans suddenly stop buying German cars and other exports [sic!]?")

@Paul
I just discovered this link in the Internet. It confirms what I always suspected: Germans have a contorted view of freedom of press.

What does this ranking by RSF have to do with Germans view on freedom of press? You know that this ranking is one from reporters sans frontieres? Here is the main English link:

http://www.rsf.org/article.php3?id_article=8247

Niko
Daniel Cohn-Bendit happens not only to hold the German citizenship, but also the citizenship of another large European country.

Cohn-Bendit not only holds French citizenship, but also sits in EU-parliament for France. (might change in June, since Cohn-Bendit runs for Germany next time AFAIK)

Klink,

Well, I have to revert myself a little bit. On second thoughts, the link I gave you does not originate with German media.

Sorry for that.

Mathesar:

" den Demokraten abgewanderte Kolumnistin Arianna Huffington."

Arianna ist schon oft abewandert. Original war sie Griechenland geboren, ist nach Frankreich gewandert und hat dort einen reichen Amerikaner geheiratet.

Ihr mann hat Politik versucht. Er war einmal erfolgreich zum U.s. Congress gewaehlt worden. Dann hat er seine 2ten Term verloren und ist "out of the closet" gekommen...hat zugegeben dass er Schwul war.

Als sie ihr mann scheidet, hat sie ihre Umwandlung gemacht um Linker zu werden.

Wieder noch eine bewilderte Europaerin!

@Klink

"SPIEGEL ist also quite tolerant IMO, no? Or has anyone other experiences (except for using foul language)?"

In short, yes, I have had other experiences. The only reason you think they're "tolerant" is because you tend to agree with the editors on most things. They do not tolerate criticism of SPIEGEL itself. If you do that, they not only erase your post, but punish you with "lebenslaenglich." They have a long memory. You can try to post under different names, but their sysops scrutinize everything, and if they recognize your style they will silence you again, even if you're discussing something that has nothing to do with SPIEGEL, in the most civil terms. For Americans like me, who can't speak German like a native, it's hard to camouflage your style. As a result, Americans who leave posts critical of SPIEGEL are systematically eliminated. So much for "Pressefreiheit" and "Toleranz" in Germany.

@Gabi:

Sicher bringen Verhandlungen im Nahen Ost absolut nichts. Das haben alle
Versuche der letzten Jahre bewiesen. Aber warum sollte denn der andere Weg,
die Anwendung von Gewalt der richtige sein ? Es ist höchstens eine Lösung von
kurzer Dauer. An eine Demokratisierung des Iraks z.B. glaube ich auch erst,
wenn ich es gesehen hab.
Ja, G.W. Bush hat die Wirkungslosigkeit von Vermittlungen erkannt, aber der
Irakkrieg ist aus meiner Sicht nicht mehr als ein konzeptloses "Och, dann
versuch ich es mal so". Sicher muss etwas gegen Terrorismus getan werden
(Vermittlungen mit terroristischen Verhandlungen schliessen sich auch aus),
aber sicher wird keine Aktion von Europa ausgehen. Dazu müsste man an einem
Strang ziehen, eine klare Linie haben, das jedoch lässt sich auch nach den
Anschlägen in Madrid nicht erkennen.


Stephan:

"Boycott? A six million $$$ contract? Yeah right.
That works."

On this side of the Atlantic, its not a boycott. It is rescinding a bad contract for goods we do not need.

The anti-U.S. shananigans of the Greens and the SPD rationalize the rescission of the $6 million dollar contract, at least from the U.s. point of view.

@Mathesar

Have missed your postings. They always display the very best insight of people who share your beliefs.

Thanks

Well what else would you expect them to run on.

Surely not their record on the economy, jobs, tax reform, education, defense (other than to reduce funding),deficit reduction. Really there is not a lot of good reasons to vote for them. But then if the citizens of German demand no more than what they have now as far as leadership is concerned then surely they will gain seats and not lose them.

Of course, one platform plank would be to get Germany out of NATO and the US out of Germany.

That surely would be a winner.

I think that it's quite amusing that President George W Bush is an opponent of legalized cloning and thus the Green party agrees with him on the cloning issue.

No, irony is not dead.

I can't imagine a more guaranteed way to lose Kerry the election than to make clear statements that foreign governing parties are going to make an effort to illegally boost his candidacy by tearing down George W Bush.

Cohn-Bendit war und ist ein eitler Dummschwätzer (so eine Art Pfarrer Fliege für Grüne) dessen Stärke es ist, noch größere Dummies zu finden, die ihn überhaupt wahrnehmen. Dazu gehört auch ein Teil der hiesigen Medien. Man kann ihn schlicht und einfach vergessen, ist nicht mal nen Aufreger wert.
Grüße von Franz

Damn, and I was gonna vote for Kerry. By the way, isn't Cohn-Bendit a terrorist?

Note from David: Worse than that... Check this.

There was a posting by a Ray D. in September 2002 on SPIEGEL-Forum also talking of boycotts: "Und was passiert mit der Arbeitslosigkeit in Deutschland wenn auf einmal die Amerikaner aufhören Deutsche Autos und andere Exporten zu kaufen?" ("Und what happens with unemployment in German when Americans suddenly stop buying German cars and other exports [sic!]?")

Wow, you've really done your research Klink, a Ray D. quote from 2002, vintage! Unfortunately, you are failing to mention that I wrote that in the context of a conversation with SPON readers openly calling for a boycott of US goods as a response to the possibility of war in Iraq. Such calls were frequent and widespread at that time and still persist today. I was simply asking them to consider the potential effects of a US counter-reaction to their proposed action.

As far as boycotts go I have never supported them because they usually tend to hurt everyday people who have no control over international relations or politics.

Olaf,
ich fand den Artikel von Walter Laqueur über Terrorbekämpfung gut. Er hat nachvollziehbar dargelegt, daß nur intensive Gewalt und nicht ein bißchen Gewalt gegen Terror etwas bewirken kann. Das macht erst einmal Angst, noch fehlt der große Schlag in Europa, daß man diese Angst üebrwindet und mit den USA zusammen nach Lösungen sucht.
Bist du Olaf aus E....?

@ Klink, Mathesar, unwichtig u.a.

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/004/041enwup.asp?pg=1

Europe's Non-Strategy
From the May 10, 2004 issue: The E.U. isn't taking terror seriously.
by Gerard Alexander
05/10/2004, Volume 009, Issue 33


IN THE WAKE of the March 11 Madrid train bombing, Romano Prodi, president of the European Commission, said, "It is clear that force alone cannot win the fight against terrorism." Prodi was hardly the first continental leader to implicitly criticize U.S. policy as short-sighted and to suggest that there are clear and compelling alternatives to America's strategy in the war on terror.

Soon after 9/11 itself, French prime minister Lionel Jospin traced terrorist acts to "tension, frustration, and radicalism," which in turn "are linked to inequality," which would have to be addressed. In 2002, France's foreign minister famously termed U.S. policy toward terrorism "simplistic" precisely because it did not look to "root causes, the situations, poverty, injustice." Norway's prime minister, Kjell Bondevik, insists that "fighting terrorism should be about more than using your military and freezing finances," and convened two international conferences on the root causes of terrorism in 2003. And after Madrid, German chancellor Gerhard Schröder said that "terrorism cannot be fought only with arms and police. We must also combat the roots of terrorism."

This view isn't restricted to the other side of the Atlantic. John Kerry said in January 2003 that President Bush "has a plan for waging war [on terror] but no plan for winning the peace" over the long haul. "We need more than a one-dimensional war on terror," he went on, requiring us to "recognize the conditions that are breeding this virulent new form of anti-American terrorism."

There are only two things wrong with this line of criticism. The United States is mounting a long-term strategy against terrorism. And Europe isn't offering any alternative.

American conservatives may not be famous for their "root causes" explanations of terrorism, any more than of crime. But in several major speeches that echo neoconservative thinking on the subject, President Bush has articulated what amounts to a root-causes theory of terrorism. "As long as the Middle East remains a place of tyranny and despair and anger," he says, "it will continue to produce men and movements that threaten the safety of America and our friends," because dictatorships incubate "stagnation, resentment, and violence ready for export." And his administration has begun to implement a strategy based on this theory. It has outlined a far-reaching "greater Middle East initiative" aimed at offering incentives for political reform and democratization in the region. More pointedly, the United States invaded Iraq in no small part to create a new democracy which the administration thinks might catalyze liberalization throughout the Middle East.

The United States doesn't exactly have the strongest track record when it comes to transformational policies in the Middle East. And there are grounds to be skeptical of the "tyranny" theory of the origins of anti-Western extremism. But it cannot be denied that this administration is trying something bold and serious, something expensive and risky, to solve the terrorism problem from the roots up. Britain, Poland, and several other European countries have of course joined in the Iraq initiative.

By comparison, what are European critics offering as an alternative? All European countries have mounted assertive intelligence-gathering and law enforcement policies against terrorists and plotters in their midst. And several have military forces in Afghanistan. But both those measures are parts of the bombs-and-bullets strategy they insist is not enough. So what major initiative have they--say, the governments of France, Germany, Belgium, and Scandinavia--launched to address what they consider terrorism's root causes, whether alone, jointly, or through the European Union? No such initiative is anywhere in sight.

Is it too early to expect more? It's only a little over a month since Islamist terrorists attacked a major E.U. capital, killing 191 people and wounding 1,500. But Europeans have had two and a half years since al Qaeda put terrorism on everyone's agenda. Moreover, they have had major domestic terrorist problems for decades, unlike the United States. So there has been ample time to formulate what French president Jacques Chirac has called for: a "European plan against terrorism." And Europe has the means. The E.U. countries have a total GDP of around $8 trillion, and they stand at the crossroads of both international diplomacy and the global economy.

What are the leading candidates for a European "root causes" initiative? Sweden's Social Democratic Olof Palme Center declares that "world poverty, exclusion, and class divisions" are key root causes of extremism. As is well known, the link between poverty and terrorism is suspiciously difficult to establish. But let's assume many Europeans believe that poverty is generating a major threat to the security of the West. Several E.U. governments famously give foreign aid at higher rates than the United States, especially the Scandinavians. But they have been giving at these rates for decades, the same decades in which anti-Western extremism was growing. In answer to post-9/11 calls for changes in policy, these leaders might have launched--or at least proposed--a major shift in which countries receive their aid or in how they monitor its effectiveness. Or they could have proposed to dramatically increase the amount of aid--the recipients of the Marshall Plan now "giving back" to the international community. But they haven't done any of these things. For example, European official development assistance levels and practices generally remain steady.

Other Europeans argue that global economic inequality is a source of resentment. If so, France, Germany, and other E.U. countries could try to revise the rules of the global economic game to promote growth in developing countries. They might have started by opening their own markets to textiles and especially agricultural products from developing countries. But instead they've chosen to maintain import barriers and extensive subsidies to their own producers. By depressing the prices of goods made in Europe, these measures decrease incomes in the developing world, at levels almost certainly outweighing the value of Europe's foreign aid. If anything, Europe (and especially France) has been playing a regressive role on agriculture in world trade talks in recent years.

Other European commentators highlight political root causes, such as the lack of political and human rights in many developing countries. Decades of experience suggest that mild pressure on developing countries to reform has little effect. So have these Europeans outlined a transformational strategy aimed at political reform in, say, the Middle East? So far they haven't. Indeed, nothing has attracted their criticism as much as America's pursuit of a democracy-seeking transformational agenda in the region.

Finally, Jacques Chirac and former French prime minister Alain Juppé are among many who trace Islamist anger to "conflicts," often a code word for the Arab-Israeli conflict. The evidence for this thesis, too, is not persuasive, to say the least. But have Europeans launched a major initiative aimed at resolving or even substantially mitigating this dispute? Here is the one candidate on this list on which Europe's leaders have expended effort and (some) treasure trying to encourage progress and increase their leverage over events, mostly by funding Yasser Arafat's Palestinian Authority with over $100 million a year. This has not solved the problem (and may well have made it worse), but it's a rare attempt to follow through, however partially, on one root-causes theory of terrorism.

So where have continental European leaders been focusing the bulk of their counterterrorism efforts? Since 9/11, and again since "3/11" in Madrid, they have dramatically intensified surveillance, gathered intelligence, revealed wide-ranging plots and recruiting networks, and made a pleasing number of arrests of known and suspected terrorists in their midst. Pleasing, but not satisfying, because arresting on-site conspirators deals only with the tail end of an enemy's overall assault. Dick Cheney points out that such a law-enforcement strategy "leaves the network behind the attacks virtually untouched," able to continue recruiting, training, and dispatching new teams of bombers whenever it wishes. This is the furthest thing from a root-causes strategy.

The result is that there is a real difference between European and American strategies in the war on terror, but not the one you might think. It's not that Europeans are thinking long-term while the United States is thinking short-term, or even that their theories of root causes are distinct (though they are). The real difference is that only the United States has translated a theory of root causes into a strategy and started to implement it.

What might explain this? One disturbing possibility is that the real long-term strategy of many Europeans might be to lie low while the United States takes the heat: in other words, to take Osama bin Laden up on his "separate peace" proposal even while denouncing it. This might have made sense to some people immediately after 9/11, when violent Islamists seemed to be treating Europe only as a staging area for attacks on America. But in the succeeding months, al Qaeda affiliates and sympathizers repeatedly targeted E.U. citizens and assets--in Pakistan, Tunisia, Turkey, and on the open seas. The Madrid train bombing brought the war to an E.U. capital. And even since Spain's elections, ongoing plots have been uncovered in Spain, France, and Britain. In the wake of Madrid, there is little evidence that many Europeans believe they can deflect the threat.

Another possibility is that Europe's multinational nature makes coordination and implementation complicated. That's no doubt true. But it does not explain the lack even of well-developed proposals for addressing the root causes of terrorism.

A more plausible explanation is that many Europeans aren't as convinced of their root-causes theories as their talk would suggest. Their skittishness over the Iraq operation in particular and the "greater Middle East initiative" in general leaves the distinct impression that it is Europeans who are averse to transformational agendas and more comfortable with the muddling-through approach that the Bush administration now criticizes. The E.U.'s December 2003 "European Security Strategy" traces "violent religious extremism" to "the pressures of modernization, cultural, social, and political crises, and the alienation of young people living in foreign societies," including in Europe. In which case, they should be the first to mount a bold initiative aimed at alleviating those very pressures and crises. Yet what has angered Europeans most is not America's failure to pursue an ambitious strategy but its insistence on doing so--starting in Iraq.

Gerard Alexander is associate professor of politics at the University of Virginia and author of The Sources of Democratic Consolidation (Cornell University Press).

Joe:

The U.S. will be removing its troops from Germany. Both Poland and Hungary are being evaluated as replacement sites.

It is expected that Germany will try to cushion the blow to its economy by filing environmental lawsuits.

@greysquirrel,

Yes, there is a Congressional move here to save bases in the States at the cost of forward deployed locations. In Germany, I see our foot print being reduced significantly. With one air hub and some form of logistical support facility probably being all that would remain.

With a bit of luck, most will come back to CONUS with lily pond bases in Hungary and Poland.

I think what is left in Germany will be backed up with equal but maybe bare bones facilities should some future German government chose not to allow US forces to use them. Which I think is very possible.

To think we could not or will not leave is naive just as it is equally naive to think that a Germany government would not denie the future uses of these bases.

So I think it is time to go. It was fun while it lasted but all things change with time.

@Helian
They do not tolerate criticism of SPIEGEL itself. ....For Americans like me, who can't speak German like a native, it's hard to camouflage your style. As a result, Americans who leave posts critical of SPIEGEL are systematically eliminated.

Sorry to hear that. I had thought they were relatively open compared for an establishment-site.

Do you still have any specific examples over which you are at odds with them? I went now through some of your postings and found some quite inflammatory stuff, like apparently you calling the SPIEGEL directly to be "Nazis through and through"!? If this heavy criticism was still allowed on, what was deleted, I wonder?

@Ray D.
Wow, you've really done your research Klink, a Ray D. quote from 2002, vintage!

Yeah, vintage perhaps. Not as vintage though as that cop-episode from 30 years ago or some of the Röhl-stuff on here against Cohn-Bendit or Fischer?

Note from David: So they had 30 years to deal with it ... and did nothing?

As far as boycotts go I have never supported them because they usually tend to hurt everyday people who have no control over international relations or politics.

Good!

@Rush Limbaugh-fans
Since some Germans on here hoped the past days for a German type of Rush-Limbaugh-show, here is one his reactions to the Iraqi-prison-pictures. So that other Germans can get a picture of what certain talk-radio is about. Quoted from his site here from May 4th (any highlighting done by Klink, totally biased in the good tradition from here):

CALLER: ... It was like a college fraternity prank that stack up naked men --

RUSH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the skull and bones initiation and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You of heard of need to blow some steam off? These people are the enemy. Our people are being fired at, shot at, these are young people that have volunteered to go over there and they're having bullets fired in their way, bombs and mortar fire aimed at 'em by the people that they are guarding and charged to get information from. Everybody has a breaking point. Now, I'm not suggesting that it's common, normal in disciplined military structures for people to lose control. I'm suggesting that it might be understandable.
...

Do "anything" to get George W Bush voted out or, I take it, to prevent him from staying in power?

If he's that much of a threat to Germany and the world community, you might ask, if he is the horrible monster that has been claimed, then why don't they go a step further?

Living in Paris (where one magazine famously carried a picture of Dubya with the words "The man who ruined the year for us"), as I do, I have certainly been witness to several outbreaks of pure hatred.

What options exist for getting rid of Bush, I wonder?
(Let's help the Greens, here, let's brainstorm...)

• Have him assassinated.
(This is what one happy young Frenchman suggested would benefit the world the most, and the fact that other people didn't think that this step was obvious seemed to seem strange to him. And Europeans are always saying "Americans deserve it" (anything bad that happens to them). Oh, by the way, the young fellow was a self-declared humanist, in case you hadn't noticed.)

• Setting bombs on the trains of Washington allies — Italy, Britain, Poland — (or even on German ones!), half-disguising them as Islamist deeds, and claiming the resulting disaster is the fault, ultimately, of Washington; Revel as you see the Americans wiggle and your own (or your anti-American allies') poll numbers rise.
(Ridiculous? Offended? A French reporter gleefully crowed that Zapatero's victory was a bénédiction, suggesting that the event that led to the Spanish socialists' victory was a benediction as well — a blessing in disguise, perhaps, but a blessing nonetheless; it doesn't seem all that far-fetched to say that blessings should be instigated, if possible.)

• Setting fire to the Reichstag and accusing everybody's favorite suspects (America's neocons) of the fact.
(Why not? When I attended a French journalism get-together in Caen's World War II museum (called the Museum for Peace :oP) and stood up to point out that a book demonstrated that French reporters had been far from responsible and objective in their coverage of the Iraq war, one of their members answered (afterwards) that he didn't think the fight against Bush was without basis, implying that there are many things that warrant getting rid of the bad guy (Bush) and, supposedly, getting the good guys (anti-war anti-Bushites) in power. If that includes twisting the truth, and hurling demented accusations against Americans, their leaders, and their society, why shouldn't some people think it appropriate to take it a step further? It has happened in the past, you know...)

@Niko
Err ... Klink, you might check your bookmarks, this is not FreeRepublic.

"What we need here in Germany is a conservative talkradio with a german Hannity or Limbaugh. This is the way to change the thinking of the german people, and radio is easy to consume. ....
Posted by: Hartmut | Mai 6, 2004 12:13 nachm."

Replied by:
"Haim Saban, can you hear us :)
it'd be really a good way to keep it similar to this block. ....
Posted by: TED | Mai 6, 2004 12:54 nachm."

@Erik
And Europeans are always saying "Americans deserve it"

For someone living in and out of France for 15 years, you have managed to get an awfully differentiated view. Is Eric Svane for Paris what Mark Pitzke is for New York?

Note from David: ...or Klink for Medienkritik?

I was thinking. Given how the Germans seem to more or less believe what ever their elites tell them, like reducing jobless rates, economy growth, Agenda 2010,etc. Why not tell them something equally outrageous.

German media could start reporting a secret plan that if Bush is reelected he has plans in place to bomb all the major cities in Germany because of the Germans previous support of transnational terrorism and for failing to support the US.

I am sure that at least 40% of the German people would believe this. Then NYT, WP, and CNN could pick up this story. Then Bush would have to go on the defensive about how this was not true. Of course, as it all but impossible to prove a negative he would fail and Kerry would sail to victory in November.

Hell, I bet Klink would believe it. In fact, I think Klink believes it now.

@Gabi

Gibt es noch einen Olaf ? Also ich komme aus K...

I knew I shouldn't have kept my mouth shut when I ran across the Germans in the elevator.

I should have given my opinion to them.

Erik And Europeans are always saying "Americans deserve it

and Klink's reply: you have managed to get an awfully differentiated view. Is Eric Svane for Paris what Mark Pitzke is for New York?

As always, Klink sees red when someone unjustly criticizes proud old Europe. You just don't say things like that about Europe, even if they are true, got it ?!!

The nice part is that I don't have to argue with Klink. The FACTS (you know, the ones he ignores when they don't fit), do the job for me. I can declare, under oath, that the majority of Western-Europeans I know feel EXACTLY like that, when something bad happens to the Americans: they deserved it. (I said the majority, not every single one)

And you know, I don't hang out with young left anarchists. The people I'm talking about are really highly inteligent. Believe me. Oh, by the way, Klink, they ALL read Spiegel Online. So much for the lack of influence of that piece of informative-junk.

Maybe lucky-Klink is surrounded just by people who love the US. Now I do get jealous. But then, his postings here seem to contradict this idea. I don't know anymore... Virtual reality maybe ???

@Joe: German media could start reporting a secret plan that if Bush is reelected he has plans in place to bomb all the major cities in Germany

Joe, your ironical-polemical idea is not to far from the truth. You have no idea how many Germans would want to believe that. (Of course, excepting Klink's friends who ALL LOOOOOVE the US)

Olaf, ich meinte jemanden, den ich aus einem anderen Forum kenne. Wir hatten heiße Diskussionen über Pazifismus usw.

Der alte Judenhass
Holocaust-Leugnung und Antisemitismus in arabischen Ländern
Margret Chatwin

Am 29. August 2002 führte das Zayed Center for Coordination and Follow-up (ZCCF) in Abu Dhabi, Vereinigte Arabische Emirate, ein eintägiges Symposium mit dem Titel "Semitismus" durch. Schon im Vorfeld kündigten die Organisatoren an, Israels "Lügen und Übertreibungen zum sogenannten Holocaust" offenlegen zu wollen, wie die englischsprachigen Ausgaben der Tageszeitungen Gulf News und Khaleej Times übereinstimmend berichteten. Es gelte, die "betrügerischen Forderungen und das Gebräu von Legenden der Zionisten" aufzudecken.

Bei dem Veranstalter handelt es sich um den "Think Tank" der Arabischen Liga. Als seine zentrale Aufgabe sieht es das Institut, "zionistische Methoden" aufzudecken, mit denen die "Geschichte gefälscht und Wissenschaft und Kultur manipuliert" werden. Vorsitzender ist Scheich Zayed ibn Sultan Al-Nahayan, Sohn des regierenden Präsidenten der Vereinigten Emirate gleichen Namens und stellvertretender Ministerpräsident. Den arabischen Zeitungsberichten zufolge entsandte der Generalsekretär der Arabischen Liga Amr Moussa, vormals ägyptischer Außenminister, Dr. Ahmed Saleem Jarad als seinen offiziellen Vertreter zu der Tagung. Die Palästinensische Befreiungsorganisation PLO, 1964 von der Arabischen Liga gegründet, gehört der Liga als Mitglied an.

Mehr hier:

http://www.idgr.de/texte/rechtsextremismus/antisemitismus/zccf-konferenz02.php


Wann fangen wir in Deutschland an darüber nachzudenken, warum uns die Drohungen eines Bin Laden, Juden und Amerikaner zu töten, ein Kopfgeld für Annan und Bremer zu zahlen, warum uns Selbstmordattentate durch palästinensische Terrorgruppen in Israel, nicht tief berühren oder erschrecken? Was ist mit uns passiert? Warum ist es nur eine Kurzmeldung, wenn eine Mutter mit ihren 4 Kindern und einem ungeborenen Baby aus nächster Nähe von Kugeln durchsiebt wird. Warum glaubt die Mehrheit blindlings, daß die israelischen Soldaten einen 15jährigen Jungen abknallt, nur weil er ein Steinchen geworfen hat? Und vor allem, warum wollen unsere Medien, daß wir das glauben? Warum bezeichnen unsere Medien Politiker wie Rumsfeld und Sharon als Hardliner selbst in den Nachrichten?

Was wissen wir über die arabischen Verhältnisse wirklich? Findet das niemand beunruhigt, was oben im Artikel dargelegt wird? Findet niemand beunruhigend, daß immer nur Israel allein von der UN abgemahnt wird. Kennt jeder die Rassismus-Resolution gegen Israel? Wie konnte es dazu kommen? (Sie wurde vor einigen Jahren wieder aufgehoben.) Was machen wir mit Informationen wie diesen? Nicht sehen, nicht hören, vergessen.


@Malthesar2:

"2. Freuen wir uns auch in den BLogs von SPON auf eure tatkräftige Mitwirkung. Was spricht dagegen?"

and Klink:

"SPIEGEL ist also quite tolerant IMO, no? Or has anyone other experiences (except for using foul language)? Talking of boycotts...There was a posting by a Ray D. in September 2002 on SPIEGEL-Forum also talking of boycotts:"

Since you are interested in SPIEGEL's "tolerance" and seem to be researching the matter, you may want to check out my experiences under a couple of persona. As "Logan Seven" I was posting rebuttals of a SPIEGEL article listing ten cases of "black propaganda" supposedly spread by the Bush administration. I went through them one by one, but, as you can see, only made it to number six. At that point, SPIEGEL blocked "Logan Seven" and I was never able to post under that handle again. As you can see, my postings are not abusive, in contrast to those of the "Rote Kapella" opposing me. You will notice that none of them were blocked in spite of several ad hominem attacks on me.

Somewhat later I made another try to discuss the issue of depleted uranium in U.S. weapons, using the handle "Simon Simple." This post stayed up for a few days, and, as you can see, drew some response. I may have a record of what it actually was somewhere. It was a response to something one of the other people on the forum had posted, and, as I recall, didn't contain any criticism of SPIEGEL. When I tried to post a longer article elaborating my position on depleted uranium, and responding to attacks on my first posting, #856, it was blocked, and #856 was deleted, as you can see. On the weekend, when the boss sysop was off, I managed to post a short message, #1365, pointing out that my comments had been erased. Notice Andreas Heils response to this message in #1366. He had read #856 before it was blocked. As I mentioned before, SPIEGEL presumably recognized who "Simon Simple" was from my style. So much for SPIEGEL's "tolerance."

@Klink:

"@Rush Limbaugh-fans
Since some Germans on here hoped the past days for a German type of Rush-Limbaugh-show, here is one his reactions to the Iraqi-prison-pictures. So that other Germans can get a picture of what certain talk-radio is about. Quoted from his site here from May 4th (any highlighting done by Klink, totally biased in the good tradition from here):"

I completely agree with you that Limbaugh's response to the torture issue was obscene. He was the only one I actually heard, but I wouldn't be surprised if some of the other right wing radio talk show hosts had similar opinions. However, you seem to be arguing that, since he doesn't share the opinion of most Germans, and, for that matter, most of the visitors to this blog on the torture issue, it would be undesirable to have people like him on German radio. If that's your argument, you couldn't be more wrong. Should people only be allowed to speak publicly in Germany if they agree with you? I am seldom in complete agreement with Limbaugh on anything, and certainly don't agree with his take on the Abu Ghraib story, but I still realize that he has played an invaluable role in restoring some semblance of balance and objectivity to the U.S. mass media, a balance which is utterly lacking in Germany. It's instructive to look at a news report from, say, the Vietnam era, and compare it to today's reporting on Iraq. The mass media obviously still have an agenda, but the "spin" is much more subdued. A major reason for the far greater balance in the U.S. mass media today is that fact that, if they try to "spin" a story or to report only one side of it, Limbaugh and other influential radio personalities will be in their faces immediately. The same can be said, by the way, for bloggers, who are far more influential here in the U.S. than in Germany, and who provide an excellent "reality check" on both the right and the left. Limbaugh is wrong about Abu Ghraib, but he has been a consistent and very effective opponent of media bias, and has, in fact, been an effective antidote to it. Millions of people whose opinions were never reflected in the mass media before now feel they have a voice. The result has been a vast improvement in the ability of the people to inform themselves intelligently on both sides of an issue. That ability to get a balanced picture of world events, to easily inform oneself about both sides of an issue, is still almost entirely lacking in Germany. People like Rush Limbaugh could be one solution to the problem. Blogs like David's are another. I hope both will someday become as influential in Germany as they are in the U.S.

Erik:
What it boils down to, is that whether they know it or not, sooner of later the European Left will be doing the work of Al-Qaida. And convince themselves that they are acting in the interest of humanity.

Sad.

Joe: ...sooner of later the European Left will be doing the work of Al-Qaida. And convince themselves that they are acting in the interest of humanity.

Exactly like the "founding fathers" of communism... Those guys were utterly convinced that they were acting in the name of the Greater Goal. (I would like to remind possible forgetful or youthful readers that communism was the the worse plague mankind has seen so far)

The whole story with "looking for root causes", "getting to know and appreciate each other", etc, plays right into the hands of Al Qaida. They couldn't care less about getting to know us, strengthening cultural ties with us and so on. Yet, the Left, in their incapacity to recognize Evil when confronted with it, stubbornly believes that "dialog" is the new Messiah.

Dialog IS indeed necessary, but it will be possible and constructive only AFTER the IMMEDIATE threat has subdided.

The muslim world has its fanatics (Al Qaida & friends) and the West has its fanatics: the Left-Green-establishment. Their methods are different, but what they share is their fanatical belief that they and only they see the light.

@WhatDoIKnow
The nice part is that I don't have to argue with Klink. The FACTS (you know, the ones he ignores when they don't fit), do the job for me.

LOL - please cut this wise-cracking with grand words like 'facts' in capital letters. *You* are mature and wise enough from life (as I can tell from your writing-style) to know better - that one man's truth is another man's distorted view. (and I won't mention videos of chemical labs as example - it cuts in all direction for all views).

(I said the majority, not every single one)

And with that, you took quite a bit of the juice out of our Parisian guy's statement.

Maybe lucky-Klink is surrounded just by people who love the US.

No, perhaps more surrounded by people who differentiate stronger between politics and the country? And also - if it happens to be Americans -, then by those who don't constantly whine about "bad Europe", but who see the glass half-full, as a real American does: Positive thinking, not adopting this European pessimism. (but perhaps more important: Almost all of the Americans I know personally would be Bush-critical. Some of them Republican voters in the past) If it comforts you though: I am not only heckled on this blog here as being "naive", but also heard from some Germans before that Klink is "too naive" and "too positive" about America.

@Helian
Since you are interested in SPIEGEL's "tolerance" and seem to be researching the matter, you may want to check out my experiences under a couple of persona.

I looked now around #856 - but I can't quite reconstruct what the issue was, especially since one of your "opponents" Heinz Waida replied to your deleted posting in #865, but then also had a message himself gone in #866. So it looks on first sight like a flame-war being extinguished - but might as well be sysop-powertripping. *shrug*

You ever thought of other forums? SPIEGEL has a horrible forums-structure - not sure why anyone wants to post there. Also a corporate site, which tend to be more restrictive. (Not sure how it is today, but www.cdu.de was a real joke. But also "freedom-loving" Greens like Rezzo Schlauch or Oezdemir suddenly had their Guestbooks completely disappearing in the past when too much criticism popped up ;-)

And on "re-identifying" you: I highly doubt it on such a large site. Delete any cookies, and use a new domain for e-mail plus a *large* ISP like T-Online or just a different proxy.

Should people only be allowed to speak publicly in Germany if they agree with you?

"Be allowed" is the very wrong term to ask a first amendment defender like me. Of course Rush Limbaugh needs to be allowed. As much as Michael Moore. But curious minds like me would ask: What corporations want to place ads on his show and thus indirectly get in bed with him? Like ole Deep Throat: "Follow the money". ;-)

Millions of people whose opinions were never reflected in the mass media before now feel they have a voice. The result has been a vast improvement in the ability of the people to inform themselves intelligently on both sides of an issue.

First of all: I deny the term "inform intelligently" for people like Rush Limbaugh or Ann Coulter. They might be intelligent, but play to their audience often in a quite nauseating cheap populistic manner. If you want to use "inform intelligently" for people from the right, ask me for conservative folks like Safire or Hanson, but please not Limbaugh. There are differences.

Second: I think I know what sentiment you mean, perhaps because we suffer here in Germany from a strange drive to equalize everything: Everything seems designed to lull people in and no one really says what's going on without adding some political correctness phrases. Sabine Christansen to be named as an example for this. (And one of the reasons why I liked Michel Friedman, btw. - he tried to cut through the usual softball-interviews without dropping into populism)

The problem now with a number of the populists on the right-wing radio-circuit is this: You only get them in a full package. No "partially" or "please just the foreign politics section". And that means also at times not only horrible comments like the above on abused prisoners, but others in similar insensitive tone. Slurs against entire nations. Against gay marriage. Against people who broke the law, became homeless, took drugs. You name it.

Political incorrectness can be great and necessary, but has its boundaries. And those specific people we talk about now with their occasional nauseating populism are the boundary for my own good taste. Your own mileage might vary, sure. But then we split here.

Niko
Actually, that's what I thought immediately when I started reading your posts here.

Duh. I said here from the beginning that I am pro-American and saw a need for a counter-view against certain mindsets. I differ with Ray & David strongly at the partisanship and thus at some of the roots for the problem, and also the magnitude of the problem compared with issues like racism or Anti-Semitism.

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