Apologists in the West

Victor Davis Hanson

The Russians have sized up the moral bankruptcy of the Western Left. They know that half-a-million Europeans would turn out to damn their patron the United States for removing a dictator and fostering democracy, but not more than a half-dozen would do the same to criticize their long-time enemy from bombing a constitutional state.

The Russians rightly expect Westerners to turn on themselves, rather than Moscow — and they won’t be disappointed. Imagine the morally equivalent fodder for liberal lament: We were unilateral in Iraq, so we can’t say Russia can’t do the same to Georgia. (As if removing a genocidal dictator is the same as attacking a democracy). We accepted Kosovo’s independence, so why not Ossetia’s? (As if the recent history of Serbia is analogous to Georgia’s.) We are still captive to neo-con fantasies about democracy, and so encouraged Georgia’s efforts that provoked the otherwise reasonable Russians (As if the problem in Ossetia is our principled support for democracy rather than appeasement of Russian dictatorship).

From what the Russians learned of the Western reaction to Iraq, they expect their best apologists will be American politicians, pundits, professors, and essayists — and once more they will not be disappointed. We are a culture, after all, that after damning Iraqi democracy as too violent, broke, and disorganized, is now damning Iraqi democracy as too conniving, rich, and self-interested — the only common denominator being whatever we do, and whomever we help, cannot be good.

I’ll be updating this a lot.

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11 Comments

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11 responses to “Apologists in the West

  1. Thanks, suek.

    Have you been over to The Belmont Club? Comments gone wild over there.

  2. suek

    Posted twice, and both disappeared. May have double posted, or ?

  3. I’ve had 3 of mine to disappear over there. Lots of people commenting simultaneously.

  4. http://pundita.blogspot.com/2008/08/to-any-and-all-us-forces-in-georgia.html

    This is a good example of why Russia thinks it can have its cake and eat it too.

    These are the people who make wars happen.

  5. Stand down my ass. We got Cossacks to kill.

  6. suek

    I read Pundita’s articles as well…it left me confused. My instinct is the same as C4s…but it may be due to age and recognition of an old enemy. I’m also a checkers player, not a chess player.
    Pundita may be right…but it goes against the grain. Fortunately, I – as well as most here – have the luxury of being able to wait and evaluate. My opinion means nothing to anybody, so waiting till there’s more info is an option. Those making decisions don’t have that luxury. Of course, they also have more info already!

  7. suek

    >>I’ve had 3 of mine to disappear over there.>>

    C4 – not there…here.

    I wouldn’t add to the comments over there…300 + is more than I even have the perseverence to read – unless it’s a week-end and nothing else to do!

  8. I don’t know what to tell you about comments disappearing here. WordPress glitch.

  9. WordPress will akismet spam your comments depending on some criteria. Then Canno will hav to go to his spam folder to approve it. It doesn’t show up on the regular comments list for the blog author.

    Speaking as someone born in the 1980s, this ain’t an age and anti-Soviet reflex thing, suek.

  10. I said this: A man who breaks his word in one deal simply because it is of no vital importance to himself has no honor. Not even when he says he is honorable and an honest broker because he will definitely keep his word on a deal that has vital importance to himself.

    In response to this.

    Maybe “whatever we do…don’t do…” will have an impact.

    Assuming that the Sing channel is of vital interest to the US, that’s something we can and should protect.

    But Georgia, per se, is simply NOT in that category.

    As to JFK, Wilson (‘safe for democracy,’) and GWB’s 2nd Inaugural: high-minded, wonderful speechification with absolutely no real meaning. Ideals are great to talk about, but those fellows were writing checks they could not possibly cash.

    The question is Vital US Interests, not “democracy,” or “liberty.” Petroleum is a vital interest.

    IIRC, Jefferson said democracy was something that WE had to keep; and the same holds true for others: THEY have to keep it.

    I do not suggest that the US cannot provide some aids, humanitarian and equipment.

    I firmly contend that committing US troops is NOT in the best interests of the country.

    At the same time, if Europe thinks that Georgia is in ITS vital interests, they should gear up and go fight.
    dad29 | Homepage | 08.27.08 – 7:26 pm | #

    http://www.haloscan.com/comments/grimr/1762126652635949941/?a=26549