Tuesday, March 16, 2004
Capitulation & Acquiescence [UPDATED]

Mark Steyn sees the Spanish Elections 'living in infamy':

At the end of last week, American friends kept saying to me: '3/11 is Europe's 9/11. They get it now.' I expressed scepticism. And I very much doubt whether March 11 will be a day that will live in infamy. Rather, March 14 seems likely to be the date bequeathed to posterity, in the way we remember those grim markers on the road to conflagration through the 1930s, the tactical surrenders that made disaster inevitable. All those umbrellas in the rain at Friday's marches proved to be pretty pictures for the cameras, nothing more.
Steven Den Beste, in an uncharacteristically short post, agrees.
The people of Spain marched in the streets on Friday.

Then they crawled on their knees into their voting booths on Sunday.
My cautious optimism is under attack, and not only by the pundits, but also by the new Spanish government:
Having vanquished an ally of President Bush, Spain's newly elected prime minister announced Monday he will pull troops from an Iraq coalition that he described as a "disaster" for Iraq and its people.

"The war has been a disaster, the occupation continues to be a great disaster," Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said. "It hasn't generated anything but more violence and hate."
(By the way, Zapatero has unequivocally backed John Kerry for President). This hurts, and has been bugging me all day. It's what has been putting me off. It's not the end of things - not by a long shot - but you hate to see this. It's not every day that a democratic government caves in to terrorism.

Bush is 'putting on a brave face,' but my first reaction to this news was "Get us out of Europe. Leave them all to their chosen fate. If they aren't going to fight for themselves, then let them die." It's a visceral feeling, one mixed with equal parts of anger and dismay.

We can't leave them to the Islamo-Fundamentalists, of course, any more than we could have left them to the Soviets. Or to the Germans. Twice. There is a very real issue of security that must take primacy here. But one is tempted to do as the US did to South Korea but a few months ago - 'You're growing to dislike us? You are protesting our presence? Very well, we shall withdraw our forces from your northern border.' Notice how quickly the South Korean government did an about-face on its positions when it appeared we might take them seriously?

Ugh. Thoughts are just coming out now - no real consideration behind them at all. It is obvious to me that we cannot leave our 'allies' to acquiesce to this world threat; but when they act as if they want to succumb, as if they are begging to surrender - well that just sickens me.

A clarification, then: my solidaridad is with the victims of terror in Spain (and worldwide), not with the cowards who have betrayed them.

Brian feels like I do about this, though he goes further and explores those feelings and their ramifications [emphasis in original]:
You know what my feelings are right about now, regarding the Spain debacle?

I'm thinking, Good. You see what you morons get.

Is that wrong of me? Does that make me a bad person?

I'll decide later whether I regret saying this. But right now, my gut's telling me something, and I'd better just get it out before it gives me heartburn. It's telling me that If Europe is determined to play this role, let 'em play it to the hilt. It makes things easier, and it might shorten the war.

Why? Well, here's what I'm thinking...
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A webjournal of ideas, comments, and various other miscellany from a Texan university student (with occasional input from his family) living in Toronto, Ontario. Can you say "culture shock?"

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