Vinod's Blog
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Thursday, October 24, 2002 - 08:57 AM Permanent link for European Peaceniks
European Peaceniks

(via Instapundit)  Instapundit's got some great links this morning and I'm going to shamelessly relink & quote.   This OpEd from the Cornell Daily Sun presents a take on European reflexive annoyance with just about any display of American initiative:

As a public service, this skeptical Yankee proposes the following rule of thumb: the more the Europeans talk morality, the more they mean power.

When it comes to the possibility of war in Iraq, for example, the main theme sounded in the European media these days is that Europe opposes American power. You know the refrain: unlike ignorant and arrogant Americans, Europeans know the true price of war. American intellectuals concur, but our mandarins have always been eager to embrace the argument that their countrymen are a bunch of spitball-throwing hayseeds while the Europeans recite Homer before breakfast.

...So, let's ask: What would Europe replace American power with Kantian morality? Nope, the replacement would be European power. American unilateralism is what Europe fears most; the rights and wrong of war with Iraq are a secondary issue. "No to War, Yes to A European Voice," is the way that one poster in Rome recently summed things up.

In short, we're talking about a desire for Europe to have relevance on the world stage proportional to their (self-perceived) hi-browness.   I think this is fine -- and even a Good Thing -- IF Europe collectively maintained more ability to actually ACT and implement policy and recognized that the world is far more Hobbesian.  

Real relevance in the International Jungle isn't something that's "bestowed" by peers.   It, unfortunately, must be secured.   Alas, right now, the primary EU method for clinging to relevance is to attempt to push EU policies on the US.  The situation basically devolves into a cooption of US economic and military power by EU / UN politics.

Instapundit links to a second article related to this topic -- an opinion piece in the UK Telegraph by David Frum:

But who is the real threat to the international rule of law: America, for acting on the ancient and universal sovereign right not to adopt a treaty that does not serve its interests? Or those European countries that claim that the agreement on the international criminal court binds America, whether America adopts the treaty or not?

International law is an idea with a powerful hold on the European mind; maybe too powerful, since Europeans often pronounce things "unlawful" when they merely mean that they disapprove of them.

Bravo.    Frum has a gem of a quote:  "It's like we're the guy who ended up being the designated driver for the planet."

UPDATE: It turns out that Frum's "designated driver" was quoting none other than John Hawkins of Right Wing News.
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