Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Beef-eating surrender monkeys

With the prospect of the touted 'pin-prick' strikes morphing into another regime-change, some of the usual suspects have fallen into their conventional positions - while some have adopted stances that are a little different from what one had become accustomed to expect.  As with previous conflicts, the moralising ad hominem rhetoric doesn't justify head-space, never mind a response.  Rather, I was hoping (in vain, no doubt) that regardless of what position anyone takes on this - people might agree that the historical analogies being mobilised (from the Second World War, of course) in the debate are as helpful as ever.  Which is to say, not at all.

It relates to the 'special relationship'. We're told that there has been irreparable damage done to it on account of the Parliamentary refusal to sanction military action. Our prestige in the world is diminished and our trade imperiled.  We should all hang our heads in shame?  No.  This from the Washington Post illustrates the point.  I imagine Cameron, Osborne and Gove nodding in agreement to it:
"But Britons of another stripe awoke in a daze. How had the Churchillian spirit of a nation suddenly turned into a Chamberlain moment, appeasing a tyrant? At great risk, they argued, was Britain’s outsize role in the world, a role it has earned since World War II by playing global deputy to America’s sheriff."
Paddy Pantsdown Ashdown was another who mentioned Chamberlain - in an interview that left one feeling a little queasy.  With anyone who's mentioned Appeasement, I've yet to hear an interviewer make the obvious historical point.  'Global deputy to America's sheriff?' The flaming cheek of it!  The United States was a little late to that particular shooting match, if one recalls  - and only joined it after being attacked herself.  Yet to listen to some Tory MPs and the usual 'being on the right is the new left' pundits, we're all supposed to commit suicide or something because we're not on the starting block with the US army?  You don't have to be Max Hastings to find this 'special relationship' obsequiousness a little nauseating.  The piece was entitled 'soul-searching stirs Britain'.  You search your soul if you want to.  I'll carry on looking for people who trade in something other than personal insults and stupid historical analogies.

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