Gitmo, Shmitmo

Wednesday, July 5th, 2006 9:04 pm by Neal

This is a must read: Victor Davis Hanson’s latest, Scapegoating Guantanamo

When President Bush arrived in Vienna last week, protestors bore “World’s No. 1 Terrorist” signs while chanting “We will, we will fight Bush.” A Harris Poll conducted prior to the president’s visit revealed that the European public thinks America is a greater global threat than either North Korea or Iran .

Apparently, our terrorist detention center at Guantanamo Bay is the most recent open sore. When, European ministers have been persisting, will the United States close down this Neanderthal embarrassment to liberal Western values?

This European anger, however, doesn’t seem to be based on evidence of systematic American abuse. Despite Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin’s claim that Guantanamo was akin to Nazi camps, the few reported regrettable, isolated cases of sleep deprivation and harassment seem no worse than what we read about in most prisons. The roughly 450 prisoners still there — many of them killers — are probably treated as well as inmates in either Europe or the U.S.

Further, Guantanamo exists to fill a vacuum in an undeclared and unprecedented postmodern war of few good choices in which the enemy does not wear uniforms, adhere to the Geneva Convention or distinguish civilians from soldiers.

Hanson is just warming up. He continues

The pacifism of the European Union was supposed to be a post-Cold War model of liberal reason for the rest of the world. Instead, Islamic fascists have either ignored Europe’s human-rights advocacy or considered it a sign of weakness to be exploited. An impotent E.U. is embarrassed and needs cheap targets like Guantanamo to transfer attention away from its past naiveté about the dangers of Islamic fascism.

By ankle-biting America on Guantanamo, the Europeans sound moral and tough while ignoring the real dangers for which they have absolutely no solutions — unassimilated and angry Muslims, the Dutch and Danes under assault by radical Islamic censors and a defenseless Europe potentially soon in range of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s nuclear-tipped missiles.

Note also that the U.S. has been mostly quiet about Europe’s own ethical lapses in this war. Americans are in a quandary with Iran in large part because the Europeans — for whom profits trump idealism — sold the theocracy technology needed for the bomb. Nothing new there: Saddam once got his nuclear reactor from the French and his bombproof bunkers from the Germans.

There’s much more here. Hello, Europe. Please, please wake up.

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