« Berlin Government Wants to Honor a True Hero | Main | Apologies to the London Bombers »

Comments

Gert, I find your comment, ‘Israel changed from a nation that defendes itself against the aggresion of its neighbors into a supressing occupation force in the last decades,’ to be rather inconsistent. To me, it’s difficult to understand how Israel has become a ‘crushing occupation force,’ considering that Israel has, over the last two decades, credulously taken the first steps, and adopted several European initiated Peace Processes - of which granted Yassir Arafat sovereign authority over 97% of the Palestinian population, funded and armed the Palestinian police force, and started negotiations. Despite Israel’s bold, and potentially dangerous concessions, murderous Palestinian terror attacks arose, nevertheless Israel maintained extreme restraint.

This one-sided “Peace Process” continued until 2000, when socialist Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, went against the wide Israeli consensus, and unsuspectingly offered the Palestinians practically everything they had demanded; A Palestinian state with its capital in Jerusalem, control over the Temple Mount, Gaza, 97% of the West Bank (with additional, arable Israeli land to compensate for the 3%) and a 30 milliard dollar compensation package. Arafat walked away from Israel’s courageous step towards a peaceful solution, and responded with what is known as the Al Aksa Intifada. Bombs started to go off on Buses, where people were on their way to work. A pregnant mother, and her four daughters were shot to death whilst walking to school. A Sbarro’s Pizzaria, where a 5 year old girl was enjoying her birthday party, went up in flames, killing the girl and her grandmother. These horrific acts of murder, which Arafat aided and encouraged, became an everyday occurrence for Israelis.

Israel is a Democracy, and Democracies have a duty to protect the lives of their citizens. Due to the incessant murderous attacks on innocent civilians, Israel was compelled to build a security fence in order to uphold its Democratic obligations. It would be naïve, and possibly cause even greater despair among the Palestinian population if the security fence (of which 97% is made of Chain Link) was to be built on the Green Line. Doing so would cut directly through Palestinian villages and farms. The current route of the fence is designed to cause the least amount of hardship on the Palestinian population. Dozens of farmer’s gates, checkpoints using the latest technology in order to make the wait as short as possible for Palestinians, several new hospitals and schools. Every Palestinian has the right to appeal the route of the fence. In fact, a major rerouting of the fence has recently been approved, making its presence in the West Bank far more trivial. The fence will no longer be required when the Palestinians choose peace over the murder of innocents.

Right now, with Israel‘s historic withdrawal from Gaza, the Palestinians will have an unprecedented opportunity to demonstrate their desire for a peaceful solution. There will be no Israeli occupation, but autonomous Palestinian rule. Will the Palestinian leadership choose the right path, and build up the economy, disarm terrorist groups, and provide decent living standards for their people. Or, will terrorist groups continue to thrive, and stock up on weapons? Will the brutal Quasam rocket attacks continue on Israeli communities? Will the PA spend the gargantuan amount of international aid it receives on new flags (Mr. Abbas has ordered the production of 50,000 Palestinian flags after Israel leaves Gaza) and deposits in Swiss bank accounts, or will they spend it on new hospitals and parks? These are all very critical questions, and whose outcome will determine the future of the peace process.

Gert, you seem to be a somewhat reasonable person, just a little misguided. Hopefully you will choose to support rationality and reason. Support the Road Map. And stop holding Israel to an unfairly high, and unique standard, doing so borders on racism.

"I think the changes in the Middle East do not originally represent an American desire but they're more like a need that imposed itself on the US and the world as instability in this region negatively affects many parts of the world.
Troubles have spread from the Middle East to get on planes and hit targets in New York, and wore explosive belts to blow up trains in Madrid and London and some have even went as far as hitting targets Indonesia.
The reasons (and theories) that explain the spreading (or export) of these troubles may vary; some say that the West's policy toward Israel is what inflamed the situation.
Ironically, the same people who adopted this theory a few years ago now say that war in Iraqis the main reason.

But I do believe that dictatorships are the main reason; the Arab regimes didn't accept Israel as a neighbor, of course not because they care about the Palestinians and their interests as everyone knows how Palestinians are treated in Arab countries and how many thousands on them were killed in Jordan and Lebanon and perhaps Arabs killed more Palestinians than the Israelis did.
Obviously, Arab regimes and leaders didn't like Israel because it's a democratic state and its presence in the region can threaten their thrones.

Actually I think that Arabs who live inside Israel and the Joulan heights know this better than I do and I don't think they'd like to replace their Israeli passports with passports from any Arab country; they know the difference and even people living inside Arab countries began to see the difference after the revolution in communications and news flow.
In the last 50 years, Israelis went to the ballots more than ten times and 'faces' change there all the time while we are still facing the same faces that took over power thirty years ago.
What I wanted to say is that after the fall of Saddam, Arab regimes began to look at Iraqi as a second threat; as another emerging democratic project that must be foiled and stopped from growing.

So, the dramatic change that took place in Iraq was seen by the neighboring regimes and their terrorist allies as an imminent disaster; it hit their theory in the heart.
They were thinking that the US would not have the will or courage to attack but they discovered shortly after that the US was so determined to do the change and that's why their counter attack had to be a fierce one because it became a matter of existence to their regimes and their age-old ideology which they thought no one would dare to mess with.

Sadly enough, these regimes and terrorists were more prepared for the post-war phase than the US was and they the roles distributed and everyone knew his duties even before the fall of the statue."


http://iraqthemodel.blogspot.com/


Interesting what he has to say as an Iraqi.

Saudi-Arabiens neuer König will stärker mit USA kooperieren


Washington (AFP) - Der neue saudiarabische König Abdullah will nach Angaben eines ranghohen Diplomaten seines Landes in Washington im Kampf gegen den Terrorismus stärker mit den USA zusammenarbeiten. Neben den bestehenden engen wirtschaftlichen Kontakten solle die Kooperation auf diesem Gebiet der Angelpunkt der bilateralen Beziehungen werden, sagte der Geschäftsträger der saudiarabischen Botschaft, Rehab Massud, am Montag (Ortszeit) in der US-Hauptstadt. Saudi-Arabien werde keinen "dämonischen Kult" unterstützen, der den Islam als Entschuldigung für "massive Gewalt" benutze.

http://de.news.yahoo.com/050802/286/4mucn.html

Ich wollte, Deutschlands Politiker hätte diese Weisheit und Weitsicht. Komische Zeiten, daß Saudi-Arabien mehr Vernunft zeigt als Deutschland. Offenbar hat man dort keine Angst, an der Seite der USA zu stehen.

@ Authors of this Blog:

Although i think the german government acted totally right, there s a news that would fit 100% into your blog - since it covers american "idealism" and by contrast german "pragmatism" very well
Its the Usbekistan case

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/0,1518,367795,00.html

Sorry, wenn ich es hier poste, aber es ist hervorragend - wie immer.

"Den Djihadisten die Legitimität zu entziehen bedeutet vor allem, ihnen die "Begründung" für ihre Taten nicht mehr abzunehmen. Wer Kinder verstümmelt und schwangere Frauen tötet, kann noch so gute Erklärungen vorweisen - die Tat kann mit politischen Problemen in Tschetschenien oder Afghanistan oder Irak nichts zu tun haben."

Ulrich Speck, Die Herausforderung des Terrorismus

http://kosmoblog.blogspot.com/

Lesen!!!

Bravo Hermann! Are you German? Living in Germany?

and how clever Zyme - backed into a corner over the reality of the struggle faced by the Iraqi people today in the face of a terrorist onslought you do what all lefties do...change the venue

We heard this broken record before the liberation of Iraq...."what about North Korea" Alec Baldwin wailed

As if these folks ever cared about N Korea - I mean really - they can't get themselves worked up enough to avoid vacationing in Cuba and propping up Castro's regime

So now the wail is "look at Uzbeckistan" - as if they care

You are simply tuned out because it is transparently clear that you bring up Uzbeckistan, or any other place, simply to diminish the efforts of the CoW in Iraq and Afghanistan and work to remove support for these fledgling democracies

Frankly I would find the focus on ANY repugnant regime welcome - but when it comes from an ideological side that was SILENT before it became usefull to mention N Korea just to bash the USA by comparison I really don't consider the focus genuine or of relevance

Go book your trip to Havana darling - there are lots of youngsters, of both sexe's, lined up to service the needs of the Euro tourists

Angry Left appeasing Hitler in 1938? What kind of insanity is this?

@ poguemahone

What in the world makes you think i like communists?
In fact i m rather a nationalist than a commie.
And i really dont care about the people of Usbekistan *lol*

The only reason i mentioned Usbekistan was this one: Its another great example of what happens when a country does not know how to behave properly (-> Americans cant keep their mouths shut about human rights violations in Usbekistan -> their forces get kicked out) - and what happens when a country knows how to behave (-> German government remains mostly silent -> their forces stay in Usbekistan).

Since we need our airbase there to supply our troops in Afghanistan, i am convinced that our government acted very responsible to our interests here. At the same time, the americans thought it might be a great idea to keep criticizing - and they pay for their idealism with their own base.

Thank you,David.

So you are of the extreme real-politick sort Zyme

You are fine with ANY country dealing with any dictator for practical purposes - is that correct?

I don't necessarily agree mind you - but at least thats a consistent position

@eovdedn:
"Angry Left appeasing Hitler in 1938? What kind of insanity is this?"

This kind.

poguemahone - you got it.

The only reason i mentioned Usbekistan was this one: Its another great example of what happens when a country does not know how to behave properly (-> Americans cant keep their mouths shut about human rights violations in Usbekistan -> their forces get kicked out) - and what happens when a country knows how to behave (-> German government remains mostly silent -> their forces stay in Usbekistan).

Good point zyme, why don't you sell China more weapons so as to help build democracy. All the while, suggesting such platitudes as "you can't force them into democracy" - so let's sell them weapons which they can use to invade democratic Taiwan.

Hypocrite.

@ poguemahone
now was that so hard to find out?
my goodness, the 68er generation is the generation of my parents - you ll hardly find a considerable part of my generation believing into this *peace*-ideology.

@ eovdedn:

Just read this book.

@ James
Where do i say i want china to spread democracy?
My goodness, are you americans only thinking in one way?
There are so many people around in China, its better to see them live in a dictatorship since a democracy might result in total disorder and unreliability.

@zyme

Where do i say i want china to spread democracy?

LOL, I don't think that anyone here in Germany has, that's just the point. And of course you don't understand, you're a nihilist. Demanding democracy in China or anywhere would risk German business relationships and its export driven economy.

I recall when Reagan struggled with European countries ( Germany ) in understanding that they should not have business relationships with the Soviet Union because it helped to prop up the Soviet economy. Germany wanted to sell them piping and gas pumps to help build a pipeline to help pump Soviet natural gas to Germany. To relieve Schmidt's desires, Reagan sought other sources to counter aggressive Soviet access to Hard Curriences to help "rescue" the Soviet economy; he turned to Saudia Arabia.

Now Germany is reunited, the wall gone, the oppresive Soviet Union is no more, and Saudia Arabia is ticking bomb. Germans ignore American's deeds and Reagan's strategy and suggest that Saudia Arabia's relationship with the Bush's is the cause of all evil.

You see Zyme, sometimes there's a larger strategy here - one that takes many moves and a long time. Sometimes you have to loose in the short run to win in the long run. If this mean pissing off Usbekistan, or China, than so be it. I know that in the long run, America will stand righted, despite attepts by high-grounded moralist posers like the SPD to claim otherwise. Unless Germany puts words into actions, sacrifices trade revenue, you will remain a parasite in my eyes.

unreliability

Maybe you should inform yourself a little or travel to China. It's only people in the coastal cities that are making headway. Living conditions in the inner parts of China are abysmal.

My goodness, are you americans only thinking in one way?

No, I think that you'll find more so that GERMANS think the same way. Maybe you haven't grasped the crux of this blog - lack of diverse opinions in the German media... Consensus building, coffee drinking, armchair discussions, etc - reminds me of Germany. Not much like that in the US, I think you'll find more decisiveness.

Zyme, you're really a lost cause...

Well its fine with me if Zyme wants to support a policy of absolut real-politick

In fact - it beats the hell out of the usual Euro position - that the US is wrong to have worked with dictators and wrong to topple them

As I said - at least its consistent

But I don't agree with it - and the reason I don't agree is that it doesn't work in the long run

Cozying up with dictators for short term gain is a dead end

Expecting them to "keep order" in the wider world - in those ungovernable places - like the ME and Asia and Africa and S America - it doesn't work for long

Its much better to have the people in charge and help accountable government to become the norm

All this world really needs is to achieve a political system in every country that allows Joe ( or Jane, or Ching or M'hmed ) Public to hold his government accountable for schools and water service and garbage pickup

When public officials have to deal with that or get the boot - they have less time for other nonsense

Personally, I don't find any of these contrasts between German and American attitudes toward foreign intervention to be informative, because they don't account for the reasons for the contrast. Once the reasons for the differences are factored in, there's nothing left to explain. US foreign policy is home-grown and based on domestic principles. German foreign policy is not. To the extent it's of German origin at all, German foreign policy is organized around one principle: opposition to the US. It's therefore not necessary to consult Germany to find out what her foreign policy is. All one has to do is consult America, then conceive the antithesis (i.e. whatever policy will most seriously impede US policy). It's simple and it's predictive. If American policy changes sharply, German policy will turn on a dime, and the high-principle rationale for the change will be worked out later.

OK, this is hyperbolic. But it's not far from the truth, and worth keeping in mind when evaluating the credibility of claims made by promoters of German policy.

Zyme: "The only reason i mentioned Usbekistan was this one: Its another great example of what happens when a country does not know how to behave properly (-> Americans cant keep their mouths shut about human rights violations in Usbekistan -> their forces get kicked out) - and what happens when a country knows how to behave (-> German government remains mostly silent -> their forces stay in Usbekistan)."

Yes. It appears that we Americans have much less tolerance for the police shooting into a crowd of demonstrators than do Germans. Why would Germans tolerate behavior like that?

@267

I agree with you in principal, but there are other international events where that theory breaks down.

How about the Orange revolution in the Ukraine? Both Europe (Schröder included) and the US supported the re-vote and verified that the last election was legal. Both countries had the same objectives, the policy was the same. Where that differed, however, was on the resulting attitudes Russia held vis-a-vie on the important events on her boarder: Russia has always had the Ukraine under it's influence. Such peaceful revolutions threaten the existing power structures in similar countries, Putin is one of them.

We all know Europe to be a paper tiger, but when the US gets involved, it uses both soft and hard power to achieve policy objectives. This is an accepted fact in the world, despots beware. So when the US tries to sort out the nuclear problems in Pyongyang, Russia likes to play the spoiler effect - which it recently insinuated that it would help to build a nuclear power plant in NK. Hurting financially, Soviet glory gone and ruled by cronyism - Russia has complicated behavior problems.

Europe can sit back and watch as events unfold in NK, it would gain nothing to criticize Russia in their NK game play. Why risk exports and access to fuel and natural gas? However, when the boarder is close, Germany is happy to hear "Pax Americana" voice it's powerful call.

Where I think Germany is being a hypocrite though, is with the issue of expanding democracy and the belief in democracy. Since the end of the cold war, the US had strategic and global responsibilities to curb the expansion of communism. Germany was and is only a local player. The US continues to maintain this outlook globally, Germany has nothing to say globally. While the EU may grow and expand, recent rejection of the EU Constitution will force the EU to remain a local player on the world stage.

If history teaches us anything, it's that culture follows power, and the US exports more of it's couture and power globally than any other empire in history. And in the long run, history has proven that most other forms of government, save democracy, don't provide for their citizenry as well as democracy does.

@ mamapajamas

"Yes. It appears that we Americans have much less tolerance for the police shooting into a crowd of demonstrators than do Germans. Why would Germans tolerate behavior like that?"

Well i ask you: Why would we not tolerate it? Do we get anything from these demonstrators? All they cause is mayhem, plus they are threatening a government that seems to be a friend of us.

@ James

"And in the long run, history has proven that most other forms of government, save democracy, don't provide for their citizenry as well as democracy does."

Thats exactly why its good for us to let them live without democracy, since this way, their government has more to offer to us!

Btw James:

There even is a prominent example in history, that proves your theory to be not correct - When did the Roman Empire provide most for its citizens? When still being a republic or after having changed into a dictatorship? I guess you know the answer.

@Zyme

Thats exactly why its good for us to let them live without democracy, since this way, their government has more to offer to us!

I dont't understand your point. If their government were to allow for liberal and democratic institutions, the population's average income would rise. More money would allow them to buy more expensive BMWs, and more German exports (assuming BMW is still located in Germany in the future). This is fact. Do me a favor and attempt some mathematical correlation between GDP/cap and democracy. You'll see that they are correlated.

When did the Roman Empire provide most for its citizens?

If you're implying that Rome was more wealthy under the despots vs under the replublic, you will have a hard time in convincing me.

The success of the Romans can be attributed for the following reasons:

* Tolerance and integration of racial and religious minorities
* Administrative efficiency
* Trade and Commerce
* A strong military to ensure Pax Romana

Either under the despots or under the republic, neither system was democratic as we know it today - a degree of liberty ensure under both though.


Suggested reading materials:

END OF HISTORY AND THE LAST MAN

Edward Gibbon's - The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

Alfred T. Mahan's - The Influence of Sea Power Upon History

Zyme: "Well i ask you: Why would we not tolerate it? Do we get anything from these demonstrators? All they cause is mayhem, plus they are threatening a government that seems to be a friend of us."

Oh... by all means. Whenever someone you personally disagree with holds a demonstration, go ahead and shoot them. After all, you're only expressing your own freedom of speech, aren't you?

Please... just because you're not "getting anything" from the demonstrators doesn't mean they don't have the right to speak out.

I don't "get anything" from anti-war demonstrators. Does that mean I should grab a shotgun and unload a few rounds of bird shot on them? Don't be ridiculous!

The comments to this entry are closed.

Mission

The Debate

Blog powered by Typepad

February 2021

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28