Send the marines

Foreign policy is difficult. On an American talk-about-the-news-site, newsvine.com, there is a debate about socialism, France and Europe. Some of the Americans are just as stupid as their President. One of them says:

“You blame us for not having a passport, I’ve been travelling a lot in the Navy. And then that isn’t good enough. What do you want??

The answer is, of course, there is a difference between visiting another country as a normal citizen and visiting it as part of a crew on a boat with enough weaponry to blast a continent to Kingdom come. How come this is so hard to understand? What makes some Americans, including their so called President, so arrogant.

The easy answer is of course something along the lines of: Once upon a time there was a country that had slaves. That wasn’t all that uncommon, but this particular country had to start a war to free their slaves. Lots of countries have been colonial powers, most of them saw around the time of WW II that this didn’t really work in the long run. In comes America, and takes over. Today they are all powerful, they have the major part of the nuclear weaponry. And they are the only country to have used them.

Since the coup in Chile, America have supported more dictators than any other nation. They have toppled more democratically elected regimes. And today, in Iraq, they have the audacity to talk about democracy. Being the good guys, in a world full of terror. And so on. There are more examples, but this will be enough.

On newsvine there is someone saying these things, without much diplomacy. Some people call him liberal – which in the US is sort of the same as calling someone a communist around our part of the world. Some people ask him why he sounds so angry. Sounds angry?

I can see very clearly why. I remember when I was a small country, going to school. There were big bullies. I tried to talk to them, saying might is not always right. What happened? They beat me up, of course. That is what happens among kids. Should that happen among grown ups as well? I don’t think so. And yet, this person is accused of sounding angry. I think he is angry. As he well should be. I remember the frustrating experience of trying to speak to someone who had the big guns. Trying to make them listen. Trying to make them understand. Didn’t work then. Doesn’t work now.

So, what can we do about this. Just like in the school yard, we have to stick together. That, by the way, is the main argument for the EU-project. Not that it is good in itself, it is not, but we smaller countries has got to stick together. Organise, as one American folk singer would say. Here’s another American that did get what it was all about. Tom Lehrer, who when Henry Kissinger got the Nobel Peace Price stated that political satire was meaningless and went off stage back to mathematics.

“With President Bush practising escalatio on Iraq, and with the terrorist crises it has been a nervous year and people have begun to feel like Christian Scientists with appendicitis

Fortunately America has it’s number one instrument of diplomacy – the marines?

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