Monday, April 27, 2009

Obama, Europe, Love and Poetry

Every so often, when we fall into a reverie, we depend upon members of the press to pinch us awake.

Europe, Bruce Thornton reminds us in FrontPage Magazine, never loves us so dearly as when we are shedding our blood, sweat and tears in its behalf.

“The love-fest in Europe has not resulted in our NATO allies making anything other than cosmetic changes to its half-baked support of our efforts in Afghanistan. American troops will continue to bear the lion’s share of the burden of fighting and dying, while Europeans train policemen.”

The mercurial Hugo Chavez’s temporary love fest with President Barack Obama is certain to be short lived.

“Obama’s handshake with Hugo Chavez will not stop that autocrat from working against our interests by buddying up with Iran, a state that has the blood of American soldiers on its hands, or by fomenting revolution in neighboring Columbia.”

Servility can only take you so far.

“Nor will that embarrassing bow to Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah convince the Saudis to stop funding terrorists or to reform a school system that preaches jihadist intolerance and hatred. And of course, the overtures to Iran will not convince the mother-ship of jihad from abandoning its pursuit of nuclear weaponry and Israel’s destruction. Obama has forgotten Hamlet’s wisdom that “One may smile, and smile, and be a villain.”

The behavior of the villains of the world “is not going to be changed by cosmetic public relations gestures or by legitimizing autocratic regimes by cozying up with dictators. Worse yet, the groveling apologies that have issued from the ‘leader of the free world’ will not give ‘greater moral force and clarity,’ as the President claimed, to our criticisms of human-rights violations or support for terror and revolution. On the contrary, donning the hair shirt of American guilt will only damage our prestige and tell the world that we are weak, that despite our power and wealth we can be had.”

And the coup de grace is delivered, no big surprise here, by President Sarkozy of France,” who said in an off the cuff remark that Obama’s performance in Europe was “weak, inexperienced, and badly briefed.”

A poet during the age of Charles Lamb wrote a verse titled “Love Is Enough” that Lamb reviewed in a single line: “No, it isn’t.”

Obama's diplomacy is regarded by some in Europe and the United States as a poetic effusion, bound at some point to burst on the pin of reality.

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