Of Missile Shields and Missive Spiels

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Predictably, the minute President Obama announces a policy shift from the Bush Administration, NeoCons reflexively denounce Obama using the tried and true tactic of lying and altering history. Last night on Real Time with Bill Maher was no exception as Matthew Continetti, (a new face/stand-in for Bill Kristol, also of the Weekly Standard) made the unrebutted assertion that Poland and the Czech Republic wanted the “Missile Shield” that Obama recently discontinued. Did they really?

Not quite, according to an excellent article written in the Spring of 2008:

Concerned that hosting a US missile base will put them on the frontline of a new confrontation with Russia, the majority of Poles now oppose siting the interceptors in their country.

The same was true of the Czech Republic. However, as long as Bush was willing to pay any price, their governments were willing to go along with the deal, even though it was causing great divisions amongst NATO allies.
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Politics of Fear 2.0

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Ok, it’s a wee bit more subtle this time: No mushroom clouds, no smoking guns, no weapons of mass destruction, no UN hearings or white powder in vials. On the other hand the Georgian President was nudged into war and a contract with Poland allows the ultimate provocation to place powerful American weaponry into Russia’s back yard. With the help of Russia’s imperialistic tendencies and their stick at nothing government, the Administration managed to get the public perception back to military threats as a major concern of Americans. The threat level’s up. And expect it to get boosted even more.

There’s nothing like a good old crisis with Russia to get voters to toe the line. And consequently bring McCain’s poll numbers up.

My behind is clearly much, much too close to Poland – which Russia threatened with a nuclear attack – for my own comfort, to appreciate gameplaying with the security of us Europeans for a cheap, albeit quite successful, election campaign booster. I do not need another mindless, intellectually incurious, neocon tool as a leader of the still remaining superpower. I loathe and fear the clueless risk-taking of diplomatically challenged leaders and their military recklessness which is designed to instill fear in you all. For their own political gain and at the cost of lives all over the world.

Good Morning from Europe – Back in Business Edition


Good Morning everybody! I can hardly believe the two weeks of Dolce Vita are finally over, but I am glad to be back here, too. So, let’s have a look at the news.

Switzerland: Yesterdays’ general elections brought a quite familiar result. Like in many democracies nowadays the right and left are growing while the center gradually diminishes. In Switzerland we have seen an almost unprecedented election campaign, dominated by the rightish SVP, whose maybe racist, but surely xenophobic campaign poster even caused international irritations.

Poland‘s elections put an end to the twins’ rule. There are still a lot of question on how the next government would look like, but the US administration has to brace for the loss of another 900 soldiers in their ill-fated coalition of the less and less willing. Mr Tusk is not a friend of the missile shield installations either.

No surprise actually, but the conflict on the Turkish-Iraqi border definitely starts to bring even more pressure on the US. The Kurdish People’s Army PKK is operating from Northern Iraq much to the dismay of the Turks and their Kurdish brethren in Iraq. Both Turkey and the Kurdish part of Iraq are doing business, many of the reconstruction projects in Northern Iraq are handled by Turkish companies. American calls for restraint remain unheeded. Moreover, Turkey decries the lack of support against the Kurdish separatists. This conflict may well put an end to peace in the only region in Iraq deemed relatively stable and peaceful.

And, finally, have a look at the dangers we face for our candid outspokenness 😉