Future of European Security

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
January 29, 2010
Secretary Clinton is Greeted by French President Sarkozy Upon Her Arrival at the Elysee Palace
French President Sarkozy Waves After a Meeting with Secretary Clinton
Secretary Clinton Delivers a Speech on European Security
Secretary Clinton Gestures Before Speaking on European Security
Secretary Clinton and Foreign Minster Kouchner at Press Conference

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Today, Secretary Clinton delivered remarks on the future of European security at the L'Ecole Militaire in Paris, France. The Secretary said:

"As founding members of the NATO Alliance, our countries have worked side by side for decades to build a strong and secure Europe and to defend and promote democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. And I am delighted that we are working even more closely now that France is fully participating in NATO's integrated command structure. I thank President Sarkozy for his leadership and look forward to benefiting from the counsel of our French colleagues as together we chart NATO's future.

"Today, thanks to the partnership between our nation and others, Europe is stronger than ever. The bitter divides of the Cold War have been replaced by unity, partnership, and peace. Russia is no longer our adversary but often a partner on key global issues. Nations that once were members of the Warsaw Pact and eyed NATO with suspicion are now active members of our Alliance. And the European Union has grown to include 27 nations, from the British Isles to the Baltic states, and is poised to become even more dynamic with the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon. As I recently expressed to the new EU High Representative Baroness Catherine Ashton, the challenges we face in our Euro-Atlantic relationship demand collective responses, and the European Union is an invaluable and increasingly effective force for global progress.

"So the accomplishments of the past half century have showcased how vital European security is, not only to the individual nations, but to the world. It is, after all, more than a collection of countries linked by history and geography. It is a model for the transformative power of reconciliation, cooperation, and community.

"But at the same time, much important work remains unfinished. The transition to democracy is incomplete in parts of Europe and Eurasia. Arms control regimes that once served us well are now fraying. And in too many places, economic opportunity is still too narrow and shallow.

"Adding to these ongoing challenges, the institutions that guarded Europe's and North America's security during the 20th century were not designed with 21st century threats in mind. New dangers have emerged, such as global terrorism, including cyber terrorism and nuclear terrorism; climate change; global criminal networks that traffic in weapons, drugs, and people; threats to Europe's energy supply, which, if exploited, could destabilize economies and stoke regional and even global conflict. Tanks, bombers, and missiles are necessary but no longer sufficient to keep our people safe. Our arsenal must also include tools that protect cyber and energy networks, halt the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, counter the threats of terrorism and destructive ideologies, in part by confronting the political, economic, and social conditions that give rise to such ideologies in the first place.

"The transatlantic partnership has been both a cornerstone of global security and a powerful force for global progress. Now we are called to address some of the great challenges in human history. And to meet them, we are required to modernize and strengthen our partnership."

Secretary Clinton continued, "[L]et me address some questions raised in recent months about the depth of the United States commitment to European security. Some wonder whether we understand the urgent need to improve security in Europe. Others have voiced concern that the Obama Administration is so focused on foreign policy challenges elsewhere in the world that Europe has receded in our list of priorities.

"Well, in fact, European security remains an anchor of U.S. foreign and security policy. A strong Europe is critical to our security and our prosperity. Much of what we hope to accomplish globally depends on working together with Europe. And so we are working with European allies and partners to help bring stability to Afghanistan and try to take on the dangers posed by Iran's nuclear ambition. We are working with Europe to help meet the crisis of climate change and revitalize the global economy. And we're working in the fight against extreme poverty, gender-based violence, and pandemic disease. Human rights and universal values, shared as part of our common history between Europe and the United States, must always be a cornerstone of our security efforts, because if Europe is not secure, Europe cannot lead. And we need European leadership in the 21st century."

Secretary Clinton then outlined core principles that guide the United States today as we consider the future of European security and our role in shaping, strengthening, and sustaining it. These principles include:

Dedication to the Sovereignty and Territorial Integrity of all States. The United States must and will remain vigilant in our efforts to oppose any attempt to undermine the right of all countries to pursue their own foreign policies, choose their own allies, and provide for their own defense. The United States strongly objects to any spheres of influence in which one country seeks to control another's future.

Recognition that Security in Europe Must be Indivisible. The security of all nations is intertwined. We must work together to enhance each other's security, in part by engaging with each other on new ideas and approaches. We want to work together with Russia to reaffirm the principles of the Helsinki Final Act and the NATO-Russia Founding Act. The United States is proud of what our two countries have accomplished together during the past year. We will continue to build a more substantive and constructive relationship based on our mutual interests.

Unwavering Devotion to the Collective Defense and Security of NATO Allies. This pledge is enshrined in the NATO treaty's Article 5, wherein an attack on one is an attack on all. The United States is working with our Allies to develop contingency plans for responding to new and evolving threats. We are engaged in productive discussions with European allies about their potential participation in the new missile defense architecture. We are also exploring ways to cooperate with Russia in ways that enhance the security of all of Europe, including Russia.

Commitment to Practicing Transparency in Our Dealings with Europe. To keep Europe safe, we must keep the channels of communication open by being forthright about our policies and approaches. The United States supports a more open exchange of military data, including visits to military sites. The Conventional Armed Forces in Europe Treaty also needs our attention. Our goal should be a modern security framework that strengthens the principles of territorial integrity, non-first use of force, transparency, and the right of host countries to approve the stationing of troops in their territory.

Belief that People Everywhere Have the Right to Live Free from the Fear of Nuclear Destruction. President Obama has declared a goal of ridding the world of nuclear weapons. As long as nuclear weapons exist, we will retain a safe, secure, and effective deterrent to protect us and our allies. The United States and Russia are close to concluding a new START treaty to reduce our strategic nuclear arsenals. The United States will also chart the future of its nuclear forces in the Nuclear Posture Review, host a Nuclear Security Summit to address the risk of unsecured nuclear material, seek to strengthen the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, pursue negotiations on a Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty, and move toward ratifying the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.

Recognition that True Security Entails Not Only Peaceful Relations among States, but Opportunities and Rights for the Individuals Who Live Within Them. Governments must promote and defend the human rights of their citizens so that all can live in dignity, free from fear of violence or oppression. The United States and Europe are acting together to expand opportunity, advance democracy, and protect human dignity around the world. The United States seeks to partner with and strengthen institutions to broaden the respect for human rights, to end the scourge of human trafficking across Europe, and to reach out to marginalized groups.

Secretary Clinton concluded her remarks by saying:

"Looking back on all we have achieved together over the past 65 years, it is remarkable how much has been accomplished -- Europe emerging from the ruins of war to become a showcase for peace and opportunity and prosperity. The condition of modern Europe, however, is not a miracle handed to the people of Europe. It is the result of years of careful, courageous work by leaders and citizens, in this country and others, to create institutions and erect policies that brought together former adversaries and united them in common cause. Now it is our turn. It is our responsibility to continue that tradition of leadership and renew those institutions for a new era. As we proceed, let us remember why we began this project in the first place, and why it is still vitally important today.

"This partnership is about so much more than strengthening our security. At its core, it is about defending and advancing our values in the world. I think it is particularly critical today that we not only defend those values in the world. I think it is particularly critical today that we not only defend those values, but promote them; that we are not only on defense, but on offense. There is so much that the West has to be proud of and to lay a claim to.

"We believe and we have the evidence to prove it that democracy works and can deliver for citizens if leaders are committed to the enterprise, and if democracies are about more than just elections; if we build institutions of independent judiciaries and free media and protection of minority rights and so much else, that we have worked and labored to create.

'We are closer than ever to achieving the goal that has inspired European and American leaders and citizens -- not only a Europe transformed, secure, democratic, unified and prosperous, but a Euro-Atlantic alliance that is greater than the sum of its parts, that stands for these values that have stood the test of time, and worked strategically to move toward a vision that may need to be updated and modernized, but is timely. The United States is honored to stand by your side as we take the next steps towards fulfilling that vision."

Read the Secretary's full remarks here.

Comments

Comments

Anthony
|
Minnesota, USA
January 30, 2010

Anthony in New York writes:

Great post!

Ron
|
New York, USA
January 30, 2010

Ron in New York writes:

Out of the Woods......

The Foundation of US-EU Security is a shared Economic Structure. We are still lost in the Old Bretton Woods, and we need to find a clearing where we can build a mutually sustaining monetary vision. Once this is acheived, many of our problems will come into better focus, and the currency wars will be averted.

Sofia
|
Portugal
January 31, 2010

Sofia in Portugal writes:

I wonder what the American people would feel if European troops were stationed in their country. Even if European governments are willing to go along with this, a great part of the European population doesn't agree with American military bases in our countries. We just fail to see how this enhances our security... As the State Secretary said, security goes beyond military issues. We also fail to see some of the threats that she mentioned, at least so evidently. Appealing to the fears that a constant threat might arise, like terrorism or Iran, is wrong and can lead to dangerous situations that occurred in the past.

Security will come when all nations are equal in the international community and will not suffer political discrimination and/or economical exploitation. The only values we need to spread are respect for the other nations and peoples. Having an ambiguous criteria to get along with other countries is the worst. How can the Secretary refers to the great human rights violations that happen in Iran and not refer to what happens in Saudi Arabia or Egypt? It seems to me rather unfair.

As long as this kind of situations keep happening, security will always be elusive.

Best regards

Ole
|
New York, USA
January 31, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

Madame Secretary, and all who may happen upon my post! i urge you to take note of what's happened today in Russian city of Kaliningrad, a Baltic exclave in the middle of EU, where up to 15 thousand people took to the streets to protest policies and demand resignation of both local and national leaders, including prime minister Putin. sadly, this event has been ignored not only by major Russian but by worldwide media; yet it must be acknowledged, as citizens of Russia are starting to wake up to the nightmare their regime has plunged them and their country into. forget about Ukraine, Georgia or Belarus: this is really big! without strong, safe, democratic Russia there can be no stable safe Europe; and such Russia is not possible with current regime

I also want to applaud on a different but similar topic, the arms sales to Taiwan. while i support not Taiwan independence but unified democratic China, the current oppressive regime there must be put in its place. and shall the need be, we can and should 'go it alone' on Iran and North Korea issues

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 1, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

by the way, want to note: in this article news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20100130/pl_afp/usirangulfmissiledefense_20100130211234 there's a frase 'Washington is seeking to win over its allies'. i don't think countries whom you need to win over, can be called 'allies'. they become ones, after you win them over

bogdan
|
Romania
January 31, 2010

Bogdan in Romania writes:

I think that is drunk with cold water. The world is nearly over and we must do something. We dig own grave.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
January 31, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Seems to me a sphere of influence is a social construct rather than simply political in nature.

While it is used in context with the soveregnity of nations, it in itself can be either positive or negative in manifestation.

Without post WW2 American "sphere of influence" in Europe, the EU wouldn't exist today.

Face it, you have spheres within spheres of infuence on every level imaginable all factoring into the "controlled chaos" democracy represents among nations speaking multiple languages..Whether that's the EU or the UN.

Well... I just wanted to remind our European friends that we have 50 states across the pond and half the time I can't understand the language used East of the Mississippi, and to this New Mexican, the vernacular becomes more peculiar the closer one gets to the outskirts of DC...be that as it may, it just goes to show that keeping it all happening and functioning reletively well is not something the citizen takes for granted ...having a vested interest in the matter.

I wish the leaders in Europe would sit down with the leaders of China and Taiwan and help them deal with the oneness of a people when divided by State.

At least to the extent that they don't have to think about going to war with themselves and arming to prepare for it.

So here we are with a status quo as "One China policy" that no one's really happy with, and is costing a fortune to maintain an illusion of hostility and peace through strength.

China might do better to cut off its right hand rather than promote fear, and fear is the response we get sometimes for helping to defend against it.

The reason you are what you are today is because you allowed yourselves to be yourselves, rather than let states put a makeover on your way of life every generation or so, and force you'all to basicly start from scratch from the rubble left over.

Well now today, we see others around the world that are dealing with their own personal devestation and threat to soveregnity, and I'm telling you all it's time to put out the welcome mat, and pay down on a little history.

What comes around, goes around.

You've seen America initiate the correction of two mistakes in the last decade, mistakes made by the international community in leaving Saddam Hussein in power after '91, and abandoning Afghanistan after the Soviet withdrawl, and for all the flack we took you are living safer for it having realized you must be part of the solution rather than a bystander.

Some things just need the proper mindset in place to achieve resolution.

The way to get a dog to stop chasing his tail is to throw him a stick.

So refocus the conversation and start making sense to those living in fear.

There's a better way to wield influence.

palgye
|
South Korea
February 1, 2010

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Shortly, last

Is fine. By the way, in order Europe economically again reconstruction to be stenchy will make with the influence which unites the Mediterranean Sea coast and northern part Africa at the production and consumption base which is new eastern Europe stands, What, will not know.

With my forecast the outbreak possibility of large scale warfare to be low solution and the resources which are a foreign enemy of internal problem, thinks from Europe that the border problem the mortar from outbreak possibility of the local warfare which makes is high. This time with meeting probably, thinks also like this possibility remarkably to be low the qualitative thing.

The problem being a foreign enemy was solved, the participation which the citizens who are internal is active the low of the mortar - is sorry only, is the opinion which is personal is a thing where the interest of the citizens and participation degree will be low about politics and foreign affair. - Thinks that the policy which is the possibility of making a social integration is necessary. The Europe whole participates.

Thinks sense of alienation and betrayal gratitude of the citizens considerably came to be high in banking crisis. Song solves with the fact that calls to, thinks that the wound grows too.

To taking out at existence, but the outside makes the problem which is the possibility of accomplishing the social sympathy which is sensitive with issu and thinks creating all feeling of Europe which is integrated method.

With example, the prostitution in compliance with a human traffic (specially, social integrated meeting etc. for exposing of child pornography industry, Secrtetary John Carr - www.enacso.eu) - The impression was not bad as it is.
occurs from eastern Europe and demand layer eu nations are most and, Solves the transborder problem of the electric wave and the plan which strengthens the location of the domestic political men,

In former times from the Republic of Korea " Warfare " with crime; Executed, reason pass,

When does not becomes like this.-the press makes a noise from before and the police jumps about and prosecuting attorney condition publishes the sacred place without
and the judge is unconditional decided upon guiltily, but-

Thinks makes the integration which is social is considerable contributed. The integration which is official is national ends and recently accomplishes the participation which the citizens is voluntary and the method and must do to make become accomplished occurrence seeks thinks that nature.

Is a talk which is simple, but if the sense of alienation of the citizens was solved a little, recently thinks that action where eu is active is demanded about the social integrated motion which will induce the participation which the citizens is active.

If is not, under possibility one is long, is insecure a little. For some reason as it is…

p.s
sorry, france?

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 1, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

We just fail to see how this enhances our security..--

dear Sofia, this is because your security isn't threatened, and that is precisely due to American presence. the human rights abuses in countries allied with US and EU have been exposed and critisized enough, but you also have to realize that those nations often face threats of extremely cruel islamic, ultra-leftist and other insurgencies, who unlike USA, give no littlest care for human rights; so the line between justifiable security measures and abuses there, is extremely thin. as for other issues, such as for instance gay rights, some noticeable progress has been made recently, even in such a bastion of chastity as Saudi Arabia.
by pressuring Iran, North Korea, Zimbabwe etc we precisely spread respect for all nations, for we demand that all of them adhere to the same standard of democracy and elementary human decency. please allow in your mind a distinction between regimes and nations proper
and while you and many other Europeans may not see a clear need or benefit in American presence, i reckon many more do, especially in Europe's Eastern part. go ask those Poles, Czechs, Romanians etc about life under Soviet domination, as opposed to under American one

Aase H.
|
Norway
February 1, 2010

Aase Iren H. in Norway writes:

Miss Clinton and USA.

Thank you. We still have a lot of work to do, but staying together it might be possible to hit/reach some of our goals. Some of our enemies are difficult to find, because they are not where you expect to find them. Sorry, there's stories never told....

Women and kids may do the difference in peacemaking as you said and other people have tried to say and work through. Afganistan may be a test of this? Healthcare, schools and homes in small towns for the kids and their moms. Women working in the fields bringing up production of food different ways (vegetables, fruit, animal, chikcen). Some women might teach in school and in different kind of work for elder children.

I guess the most importante is to find out what the women at the different places have been thinking of by themselves. They are smart, we have a hudge buntch of hidden expertease in the world.

A few words to tell we would also like to do what is possible to help and move some pressure from your shoulders. All the best from Aase Iren H.

Patrick
|
Maryland, USA
February 1, 2010

Patrick in Maryland writes:

Hello, Everybody :)

I like the security work are counrty is doing, on behalf of our allies.

I think the security of our allies is very important, and the safety of these countries and their people. Who in some cases are our relitives, should be one of the United State's most important prioritys.

I think this is more of an update to, out of date software and hardware ,our friends need to pretect themselves.It's like you wouldn't want your mom driving a car with out brakes. Updates are nessasary to prevent accidents.

Also,it's nice to hear about the french built Hospital in afghanistan.That is also used as a teaching facility for Afghan nurses and doctors.I think that was a great idea. :)

Good Luck on your Updates and Security Work.

.....Cya...:):)

Sofia
|
Portugal
February 2, 2010

Sofia in Portugal writes:

Dear Ole,

How are you today?

It isn't accurate to make such a simple interpretation. You're forgetting that we had two wars on European soil and that we have a different economic model. In my opinion, this is directly related to our security here.
Islamic fundamentalism and ultra-leftist insurgencies are not the same thing and neither will be solved through military action.

"we DEMAND that all of them adhere to the same standard of democracy" - This kind of language isn't the best one at all because who has legitimacy to define what's a standard of democracy? And, again, even if I would recognize the US legitimacy to do it, you still don't do it with all the non-democratic regimes (yes, it's different from the concept of nation) which are your allies.

To justify your military presence through the URSS occupation of Eastern Europe countries is exactly what they did during four decades. And if the US has recognize the Soviet collapse and the failure of communist, why keep talking about that threat? Eastern Europe can live without either.

Finally, I just don't see why we need to support the American military presence in Europe and why we need to follow a narrative of fear.

Take care.

Flavius
|
Virginia, USA
February 2, 2010

Flavius in Virginia writes:

The future of security in Europe involves Europeans defending European soil. 80,500 U.S. Armed Forces personnel in Germany is 80,500 too many. This is a collosal waste of resources. We sure could use at least some of those people in places where they are needed.

The Second World War and the Cold War, for that matter, are OVER.

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 2, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

Dear Flavius, people believed same thing after many previous global conflicts, be it Napoleonic wars or WW1, only to be harshly disappointed. sure it'd be nice if Europeans develop their own military, and they are working on it, but it's not gonna measure up to ours any time soon. and just look at current regimes in Russia and China: their attempts to formulate an 'alternative to Western system of values', whether socialistic or 'conservative' one, is serious; hence a new Cold war, sadly, might be in store. just look at recent occurrences regarding Google, Rio Tinto and other firms operat6ing in China, or Russia's attack on Georgia 2 years ago. note that every time US chose to abstain from world affairs, it got eventually hit real hard. we can't ignore the world we're in; but we can take charge in it

Sofia, i can say the same to you, and being originally from Ukraine, you can trust me i know what i'm talking about: it is way too early to discount the threat of Russia again becoming a trouble maker. as for islamic and leftist insurgencies, of course there needs to be political solution, and a lot work is done towards that; but every carrot needs to be backed up with a stick as for the right to demand nations adhering to a standard in human rights etc., UN has it, and the world community in general. for example, there would be no US troops in Mid East if not for Saddam's policies in early 90s, nor US troops in Afghanistan if not for 9/11 please name me non-democratic regimes closely allied with USA. at best, you'll find countries like Saudi Arabia who we're doing business with, just like everyone does; but the nature of US relations with them is totally different from US-EU or US-Japan relations. and again, there is a significant attention paid to abuses in those 'allies' of ours, they are held accountable, they have made progress; yet again, keep in mind what threats they deal with. do you prefer even more radical, totally anti-western islamists taking over in Er-Riyadh, for instance? hope not USA has actually over the decades 'given up' many 'undemocratic allies', such as in Chile, South Korea, Taiwan, Cuba, Spain, Congo or Iran. in some cases, it paved way for much worse dictatorships, but in most, stable democratic systems came into being. not in the last turn thanks to US military role

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 3, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

by the way, the reason there were two world wars in Europe is precisely lack of a strong principled leader, with military 'muscle', which has been US. note that there's been no major war in Europe since 1945, and it was American and NATO leading role that quickly ended the Balkan hostilities. as for economic systems, while European one may be somewhat more on a socialist side, they're still essentially the same, and some countries in EU, like Poland, Ireland, Baltic states, are actually closer to US than to their neighbors. yet, we have way more in common

Sofia
|
Portugal
February 3, 2010

Sofia in Portugal writes:

Dear Ole,

Russia is to blame of lots of things but the at least they didn't invade two countries and bombed another couple in a ten year time. It seems to me that the US is the trouble maker here.

Your country doesn't have the right to demand anything, it's not better than any other country and so it doesn't have the legitimacy to do that as well as Europe.

You mean the same UN which is ruled by 5 countries in an absurd Security Council?

"There would be no US troops in the Mid East if not for the Saddam's policies in early 90's." I strongly recommend you to review your History, US troops were in that region way before Saddam came into power and we all know who put him there.

In spite of European and UN support, the Afghan invasion is wrong. That country didn't attack you, a buch of idiots did it and that cannot be used to lauch war upon a people who hadn't anything to do with it.

What accountability have you demand from Egypt, Morocco, African dictatorships, the Gulf monarchies, Israel... Unfortunately, you're right, other countries do the same but at least they don't feel they have the right to police the world.

Maybe you should ask why religious parties are becoming stronger, things happen for a reason, and the more the US wants to control everything, more strong they'll get.

Gave up 'undemocratic' allies in Chile and SPain? Pinochet was a CIA product and Franco was supported by the US. And Iran? What about the 1953 coup d'etat agains an Mossadegh?

How can you say that the two wars were a result of the lack of a principle leader? We had enough military muscle at the time. Right, the total destruction and 60 million dead had nothing to do with our want for peace... it's all about the US and NATO! please! When it comes to economic models, yes, we're different exactly because of the socialist culture that lives among us.

We all know how that proximity serves the American interests well. 'Divide to conquer' as the Romans used to say.

Take care.

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 4, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

Sofia, where were you on 08.08.08? ever heard of the Georgian-Osetian conflict? though it's much more correct to call it Russo-Georgian. Russia also has troops in Romania, Ukraine, Tajikistan, all the places it has no business being in
who's dividing and conquering whom? US has played leading role in all unification projects in the world, be it EU, NATO, NAFTA, League of American States, African Union, Asian-Pacific community etc. and what benefit or profit does US derive from it? US spends itself into near bankruptcy, to defend freedom and democracy the world over. who's played major role in helping Germany, Italy, the rest of West Europe, Japan, Korea to thrive after the devastating WW2? USA! and like i said, the differences between American and European economies are less than similarities. note that if you had no US military to defend you, much more money would be spent by Europe on its own defense, meaning much less money on social programs
What of Mossadegh, that populist who neglected his own parliament? and what of Allende, who ran his country down with communistic experiments, and refused to resign? look at Chile today, a full democracy and a thriving economy. And what did USA have to do with Franco, if he came to power in 1936, when US was totally isolationist?
the fact is, had USA been the sort of leader after WW1 that it became after WW2, there would be no WW2
Afghanistan did not attack US, Taliban and Al-Qaeda did, so what do you want us to do, forgive the murder of almost 3000 people? and how is USA fighting a war against its people? USA does all possible to alleviate civilian losses, unlike Russians who murdered two million people in cold blood. USA helped create semblance of democracy there, with flawed but fair elections, and the fact is far from violating their sovereignty, USA gives it back to peoples of many nations. it's plain wrong that you put US and its allies, including NATO, on the same plane as USSR, Islamists or fascists. forgive me for saying it, but your position in this respect is morally dejected
yes, i'm talking about UN and it's universal human rights declaration. as for Israel, it is criticized often, and not always fairly, by the way. a lot has been done to push Arab and African nations toward democracy and reconciliation, and the funny fact is you people hate US either way, when it supposedly is too involved in others' lives, and when it's not involved enough. the next thing we'll hear from people who accuse us of attacking Iraq or Afghanistan, is why we didn't stop genocide in Darfur or Rwanda. make up your minds: either US should leave every place its troops now are, or it should put them into even more places. personally, i believe the second
finally, US had nothing to do with putting Saddam in power. i grew up in USSR, and Saddam was USSR's huge friend. read on this subject, you'll learn that he essentially was confirmed to be Iraqi leader in Moscow, where he used to pay visits. did he ever pay a visit to Washington or any other western capital? don't think so

Sofia
|
Portugal
February 5, 2010

Sofia in Portugal writes:

Dear Ole,

About the conflict between Georgia and Ossetia, it was concluded that Georgia started the conflict. You have troops in six continents. The benefit comes from the military power you have over other nations. Maybe you look up at Eisenhower's reference to the military-industrial complex that is a part of you economy to see the benefits.
Bankruptcy by helping others?! Right, not because of your economic model, enormous debt, displacement of companies and a crazy defense budget...
As I said before, the European governments are also to be blamed for allowing your troops here, but it obvious that it's in the US interest, otherwise what would happen to NATO if the EU had it's own army?
Mossadegh neglected it's parliament in what way? And if so, the best solution is to replace him for one dictator, just like Allende and Pinochet, huh? Even my country's dictator Salazar, was supported by the US.
There would be no WW2 if the US was already the leading power? I'm astonished to how you can say that so easily! History doesn't revolve around the US, there are other factors and people.
I understand your outrage for 9/11, but you lost all your credibility by invading Afghanistan. And you'll never defeat terrorism through war, never. It only fuels it and it's exactly what's happening right now.
Yeah, tell that to Pakistani who are bombed by drones... The Afghan election was a fraud and Karzai doesn't have any credibility before his people. His corrupt and he's a puppet.
The Charter of Human Rights is an extraordinary thing but not the UN institution itself because it's hardly democratic.
I'm against American military interventionism and keep in mind that you're the one saying I hate the US, I never wrote those words.
Come on, it's a fact that Rumsfeld traveled often to visit Saddam and offer the American support against Iran.

I'm sorry for your experience with the USSR. I'm not a supporter of that regime at all but American imperialism it's not the solution.

It was a pleasure to have this discussion with you,Ole. I wish you luck.
Take care

Ole
|
New York, USA
February 6, 2010

Ole in New York writes:

Churchill and Roosevelt supported Stalin, does that make them guilty of installing him as Russia's leader?

The Tagliavini commission concluded that Georgia 'started the war' after being repeatedly provoked by Russia and its ossetian cornies. read recent stories on how those very Kremlin-controlled bandits mistreta Russian citizens(!!!), especially in Abkhazia; and do some self-education on the whole history of the conflict. Without Kremlin's support there would be no 'South Osetia', and no war there

US lost it's credibility by invading Afghanistan? maybe we also lost our credibility by 'invading' Germany and Japan during World War 2? would you have preferred the Allies stopping at the German border, and letting Hitler's regime off the hook?

Afghan election was way fairer that many other countries'; Mr. Abdullah had his chance, and was offered a spot in reconciliation government. he refused-- that's his right, and his problem. and the last thing one can say is that Karzai is our puppet: US is actually treating its 'puppets' with such kids' gloves that sometimes you wonder, who puppeteers whom. we came in, gave the country back to its people, in Afghanistan as well as in Iraq; and what they do with it from then on, is their problem. note that even Taliban do not get the sort of support that say Vietkongs used to get, because Afghan people know that for all problems with Karzai and NATO, Taleban is way worse

Mossadegh stopped the national parliament election when he saw his side losing; drove the nation's economy down with his idiotic nationalization of oil industry, better called simply robbery; and amid all that demanded more power from the Shah, and set up a referendum where he got '99.9%' support. so who was the real dictator? had US actually done the same thing in '79 it did in '53, Iran today wouldn't be a problem

the history doesn't revolve around USA, what it does revolve around is a need to actively struggle for freedoms and human dignity, and uphold them, if needed even with force. when that has been done, and it's been primarily done by US, though any help is surely appreciated, it works out, and there's overwhelming evidence of that

defense budget in US today is twice lower than it was in Reagan times; which itself was a few times less than the share of Soviet budget spent on the same needs. Eisenhower was a good president (save for allowing Castro in Cuba), but it's actually quite debatable if US military-industrial complex is all that influential. Soviet, and currently Russian one, enjoy much more unanimous support of their governments.

Your country's dictator came to power when US was virtually absent from European stage. mind he was a guy able to attract moderates into his government, and secure tremendous economic growth for the country. while it's surely better to do that through democracy, sometimes you gotta simply choose lesser evil. note that toward the end of his rule, he was pretty much alone in his ultra-conservative stances, among Western nations; so you can't really say US supported him
as for NATO: a)you derive just as much benefit, like jobs, financial aid and stuff, from US presence, as if not more than ecological or other problems. b)it won't go anywhere even if US withdraws from it; there's a great need for such an organization, anyhow. not all NATO members are EU members, note Turkey, Norway, Iceland.

our policies of helping achieve and sustain freedoms the world over, are a serious addition to our financial burdens. note Japan has lived with deficits for long time too, while some EU nations, including your own Portugal, have recently come into budget problems, too, what with socialism and all. the US at least has had a tremendous growth in the 80s and 90s, the EU's growth rate has been much lower, and where it was high it was more 'capitalistic' countries like Poland and Ireland

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
February 12, 2010

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ Sofia in Portugal -- What I had to say in my last post on this thread wasn't intended for you specificly, but maybe you should read it anyway, it might give you reason to obtain an attitude adjustment.

---
@ Ole in New York -- Ole, welcome back, missed your posts, I see you are still in "educational mode" so do please carry on, this is getting entertaining.

If you were to ask me what my definition of stupidity is, by historical precedence, it would be Stalin biting the hand that fed him.

And look where it got everybody eh? Trillions wasted on fear-based thinking to bring us to the brink of anihilation, before sanity prevailed.

Yet we're still dealing with idiots that haven't learned their lessons from history.

And when it comes to Iran and North Korea, Pakistan and India and dysfuntional relations between nations in general, the only glue that has held this world intact is America's attitude, and its ability to inspire peace and "stop the car in time."

As well as the occasional enforcement of "serious concequences".

Aye well, it goes without saying that some will "look a gift horse in the mouth" anyway.

Such is the nature of "appreciation".

.

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