Bush in Europe: Redux

I was asked to give my opinion of Mr. Bushs’ visit to Europe.

There were several times during Bushs’ tour when I considered posting something… but each time I took a step back and thought, “Has anything changed”?

And every time the answer was the same…. no.

There was so much talk about how Bush and Rice (does rice grow on bushes? would it be called a Rice Bush… ooooh, stop! Damn, where is my mind today)

Sorry… as I was saying, there was lots of talk about the US Administration “making nice” with Europe. But as far as I could tell it was just lip service on both sides. While things may not be nearly as acrimonious as they were in 2003/04 I think it is still clear that Bush, and his new mouthpiece Condi, have not changed. And neither have the Europeans.

Iran and Syria are now turning out to be the new Iraq. With the same players… exccept this time Britain is on the EUs’ side.

I also heard an interesting opinion of one reporter who was in Germany when George H. W. Bush visited in 1990. He was greeted by thousands of well-wishers and waving flags. His son, however, was greeted with completely deserted streets.

I don’t see Bushs’ visit as having changed anything. France, Britain and Germany will continue to push for diplomatic over military action for Iran. Russia will continue to supply missiles to Syria and Nuclear technology to Iran. Putin will also continue on his path of consolidating power in his country. The EU will eventually drop the embargo against China and open the flood gates to trade between the EU and the most populous country, and fastest growing economy in the world, leaving the US in the dust wishing.

What this trip to Europe has told me is that the US Presidents new “Mandate” means nothing in terms of getting the Europeans to subscribe to the Bush way of thinking. There will be continued tension as the EU evolves and molds into one voice and the US continues to push its’ “our way or the highway” mentality.

Oh, and I should add… as confirmation, Russia and Iran signed a deal on Sunday for Russia to supply Iran with nuclear fuel for its’ newly built Russian Nuclear reactor at Bushehr.

3 replies on “Bush in Europe: Redux”

  1. Gee, Chris, your gloomy outlook surprises me. I think it’s way early to scoff at attempts to look forward and efforts to cooperate as doomed to failure. But then, you never thought that Iraqis would vote and jubilantly embrace democracy and I’ll bet you are surprised at 100,000 of Lebonese demonstrating today for withdrawal and freedom from Syrian troops. The demand for self-rule, elections and real democracy in the ME and Iran will continue to burn in the hearts of citizens of that region. Even the Palestinian man on the street is sick to death of Hezbolla, Hamas and Islamic Jihad and all the rest. Their day is coming to a close.
    It’s just a matter of time and unflinching resolve on the part of decent people.

    If you think that everything will go the EU’s way as a counter-weight to American power and idealism in the spread of democracy, you are really in for some big surprises. The EU says it’s all about diplomacy which is true when you have no other weapon. Empty rhetoric in attempting to influence other nations isn’t really effective in the long run, IMO. I predict that the EU will become more and more irrelevant as time goes on and don’t think for a minute that the US is going to get shoved aside as economic power deveops in Asia. OOOhh no, no way.

  2. So if the US doesn’t open up to China and India and accept them into the world as the rightful powerhouses as they inevitably will be, then how will the US *not* be shoved aside.

    This isn’t a new idea, the CIA itself predicted such a fate in one of its “future scenarios” in its’ latest report. You can download it on my Documents and Media page.

    Even if the EU implodes under the weight of its’ own constitution specific players in the EU will always be a force, Britain, France, Germany, Poland and others.

    Tony Blair is Americas friend for now… but remember that traditionally it was the Conservatives, under Thatcher especially, who supported America on absolutely everything… when Labour picks a new leader, will he/she be as willing to buddy up with America.

    I think Iraq was a one-off deal. I just can’t see the UK, and especially the Blair government, going into another situation like that.

    I don’t see my reaction to the European visit as “gloomy”. It’s simply reality. In place of parades and galas there were protests and press conferences. In place of actually coming to agreements and showing unity on important issues, there was talk of “common values”.

    The reality of the situation is that there is still a major disconnect between the US Administration and, frankly, everyone else in the world.

  3. I’ve been saying that China and India are the coming of the new age of economic power for about 8 months now. I even have said that the 21st century will be the “Asian” century. If dimwitted little me can see the significance of alliance with Asian influences for the future, then don’t bet on the US foreign policy and economic experts missing that small detail. Someone in the US State Dept is probably having a meeting and formulating the next move even as I type this comment. Just because they haven’t announced our strategy to you and the world, doesn’t mean we don’t have one. If you think we are a failed power, you are not facing reality.

    My only surprise is that a committed leftist as yourself has noticed it as well. I’ve also noticed that Europe has no power. Europe has big big economic problems looming and already quite apparent. If by arming China, Europe hopes to get a ride on the bandwagon, we shall see how effective that effort is.

    Me, I see Europe as an irrelevancy in the larger scheme of things except for the mischief they create. The mischief is merely a symptom of Europe trying to pretend it is still important. Better they should work on paying for the social systems they have created at the same time as they establish a meaningful defense system. Things will only get worse in Europe if they continue the path they are on.

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