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The New Cold War
Transterrestrial Musings ^ | March 16, 2003 | Rand Simberg

Posted on 03/16/2003 12:20:33 PM PST by NonZeroSum

For decades, our nation, and much of the western world, was at war with an ideological enemy--a socialist entity. An ally in the second world war, like us, it had nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them, with no defense against them, a factor that created a standoff in terms of engaging in direct warfare. Instead, war was waged by proxie.

Smaller nations were infiltrated and subordinated to the cause, and wars of "liberation" were fought by both sides (though such a word was egregiously 1984ish when employed by those defending the totalitarian Soviets). We often, regrettably, supported dictators because they were deemed to be a lesser evil than the even-more-dictatorial governments being imposed by force by our planetary rivals. Often, when we attempted to utilize the United Nations in its intended role as both peacemaker and arbiter of justice, vetoes were employed by our adversary to prevent it. The only exception to this was the Korean conflict, only because the Soviet representative was absent in a fit of imperial pique.

For both sides, the ultimate goal was domination of the world, and the ideology that they represented, though our ideology was one of human freedom and enlightenment.

Ultimately, we won that war, over a decade ago, without having to engage in direct battle with the adversary. It was won through sustained military pressure on our part, and by allowing the USSR to be bled white, both in its determination to maintain and expand its brutal and expensive empire, but also by it maintaining dysfunctional Marxist dogma and applying it to its own economy, which finally led it to collapse in the late 1980s.

But throughout that cold war, there was another power, in the background, a power that continued to steep in dreams of a restoration of its former grandeur, centuries ago. It was ostensibly a US ally against the Soviets and it was similarly an ally in the second world war. As a result of the latter, it was given power far beyond any rational assessment of its assets, but not sufficiently so to be a major player in a battlefield of two titans. It lay back, biding its time, pretending to be our ally occasionally, when necessary, and occasionally throwing wrenches into our works, when it thought it advantageous, and cost free.

Now, in the power vacuum left by the end of the USSR, that nation has arisen as a new adversary. Once again, we are in a cold war with a former ally, a nuclear-armed ideological rival, socialist in nature, that uses other nations as pawns in its attempt to challenge us for global supremacy. Of course, this rival is in some many less dangerous than the Soviets, in that it doesn't have the resources or the vast weaponry that they did, and while basically socialist, it's not a totalitarian state. But in other ways, it is more so, because it is more subtle and clever, and has at its disposal finely-honed tools of diplomacy--an art that many believe to have been invented there.

And like the Soviets, this nation maintains a number of client states, primarily in Africa, brutal to their own people, and impoverishing them through failed socialist kleptocratic schemes, inspired by their masters. The ill-gotten gains, by the millions of francs (now Euros), of this thievery are spent on expensive trinkets and chateaus by their corrupt and thuggish clients in the imperial capital, thus draining Africa of much of its wealth and transferring it to the seat of the empire.

And now, Fred Barnes, on Tony Snow's panel on Fox News yesterday afternoon, reports that they are aggressively lobbying the Turks to not only deny us the use of their territory to open up a northern Iraq front, but to deny us their airspace as well.

If this is true, they're not only no longer allies--they've crossed the line to becoming active enemies. It's reminiscent of the time that they forced us to fly around them when we bombed Libya in 1986, except much worse. That time, it was mostly an inconvenience, with longer flight times for the crew and increased expenses.

Here, the stakes are much higher. This isn't just a bombing raid--it's a full-fledged war, with American boots on the ground.

The loss of the northern front will almost certainly slow down our progress against the Iraqi regime, and the loss of overflight rights would further constrain our potential plans. Either of these will almost certainly result in the loss of the lives of both American servicepeople, and innocent Iraqis, who might otherwise have lived.

France has gone beyond diplomatic obstructionism on the East River, which has been bad enough. Now they are taking deliberate action that has the effect of colluding with Saddam Hussein, America's enemy.

I think it should be clear to all that the Atlantic Alliance that has been dominant for the many decades since the end of the second world war is dead. The fault lines have shifted, and we now face cultural enemies on two fronts, both of them inimical to our own values of freedom--both religious and economic. During the first Cold War, we were defending the values of the Enlightenment, and the ability of the governed to have influence over their government, and for the negative rights of speech, thought, and economic freedom. While our wartime surrogates didn't always support such values, they were considered vital to the overall effort, just as individual battles may be compromises, yet ultimately lead to victory in the war.

This new Cold War is the same in that regard, and those values remain under threat, both by Islamists and Arab nationalists who revile them, and by European bureaucrats determined to put into place a transnational structure that is increasingly unaccountable to its people. And both groups seem to be coordinating and cooperating more and more, from Chris Patten's determined and studied indifference to Palestinian corruption, to French interference with our national defense.

In fact, the modern muslim world, with the complicity of the transnationalists and neo-Gaulists in Paris, has started to undo the work of Charles Martel, who stemmed the tide of Muslim expansion into Europe twelve centuries ago--an act over which Osama bin Laden, if he lives, continues to seethe. It could be said that France has actually ceded some of its sovereignty and been colonized by Islam--it is said that there are neighborhoods in Paris where the gendarmerie fear to go. This all, of course, is in addition to and beyond the long-time personal connection between Jacques Chirac and Saddam Hussein, going back decades, and continued sales of banned items to Iraq by France.

While it's important to shift our perspective on the relationship between what Secretary Rumsfeld called "old Europe" and ourselves, it is of course equally important to not overstate the case. Obviously, the French are not the former USSR. They are a true Republic (five in the time that we've had one, and perhaps going on six after the unintended side effects of Chirac's misguided policies become clear to the French populace), and they are certainly not a totalitarian state. The Soviet Union truly was, in Reagan's words, an evil empire. France is merely an empire of cynicism and mendacity. But in order to deal with them appropriately, it's important to focus on the similarities rather than the differences, and for that we can draw some lessons from the Cold War.

While containment won't work with a capricious dictator like Saddam Hussein, it did work with the former USSR, and it can work with France as well. It's time to recognize that it is not to our advantage to any longer provide most favorable trade terms with them, particularly in military matters, and it is also time to finally strip them of the remainder of their bloody empire.

The American people have already started to respond spontaneously, but in the interest of NATO cooperation, we continue to purchase many items from France that are, or could be, easily and cost-effectively manufactured here. This must end. NATO itself, in its present form, has outlived its purpose, and must be reformed or replaced by an alliance among ideologically-compatible nations. For now, this means the Anglosphere and much of eastern Europe, but not France, Germany or Belgium. Whether Turkey comes in will depend on their behavior over the next days and weeks, particularly with respect to the Kurds. Headquarters should be moved from Brussels, and troops from Germany, to the new center of gravity, Poland.

Since the UN is clearly now nothing but a squabbling, childish debating club, the US should remain within it to keep an eye on it, but it should be evicted from New York, where the real estate could be used to much better purpose. It might be able to move into the newly-available former NATO HQ in Brussels. They have plans for a nice new building there--perhaps France and Germany can put up the money for it.

US contributions, of course, will drop to a much lower level--the budget times the reciprocal of the number of "united nations" would be appropriate.

In the meantime, a new, effective organization, consisting of governments accountable to their people, should be planned and formed. France will be welcome to such an organization, but not on its equivalent of a security council.

And after we've deposed Mssr. Chirac's favorite dictator, we should start the liberation of Africa, actively aiding rebels against his precious pets, starting with Robert Mugabe. Just as we did with the Soviets, we will make France's brutal little empire too costly to sustain.

France's behavior over the past few months has made clear their agenda, and their interests, and it's clear that we do not and cannot share them. Looking at that nation through this new prism shines their behavior over the past several decades in a new light as well. It is time that our own policies, finally, start to reflect it.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: coldwar; containment; empire; france; nato; un; weasels
Certainly a different way of looking at western Europe, and a new "new world order."
1 posted on 03/16/2003 12:20:34 PM PST by NonZeroSum
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To: NonZeroSum
Great analysis! This hits some many facets of the true interrelationships I have to wonder if the writer has keen intutive intellect or that in combination with hard intelligence:)

Read the Financial News Papers, they can't "afford" to be wrong when selling news to their readers who are the world's investors!

2 posted on 03/16/2003 12:30:45 PM PST by Jumper
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To: NonZeroSum
The Cold War alliance of the EU with France at the head has already launched an attack against the US Dollar. Starting in October 2000, Iraq has only accepted Euros in payment for oil. Jordan was next on the bandwagon to only accept Euros.

Last year the topic of OPEC only accepting Euros was brought up. Overseas banks are looking for the right time to increase their holdings in Euros. This could signal the shedding of some of their US debt that they hold in reserve for trading reserves.

The EU seems to sense the frail condition of the post 9/11 US money system, and are poised to "capitalize" on it's weakeness.

This is the French way of doing battle, attempting to engage something that is weakened. They just don't have the internal courage at taking on anything at face value, and in the open.

This begins to shed some additional light on the posturing of France and other EU beneficiaries against any US intervention in Iraq. They have business ventures there, and are using Iraq as a stepping stone to EU prominance.

Today's summit in the Azores should take some of the wind from their sails, and will hopefully also prempt their attempted coup against the US Dollar in their battle for supremecy in the world's currency.

I personally hope that the alliances between France and Iraq for the past two decades will be factually linked and put out in the public eye for all the world to see. France needs to concentrate their efforts on something they are more adept at doing; not doing anything.
3 posted on 03/16/2003 12:45:50 PM PST by Dalite (... Comment to all)
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To: Dalite; NonZeroSum
Good Analysis - but this time the Franco-German alliance will fail as they have in the past. I agree that we will need to be more active between now and 2007 (Chirac re-election) to exacerbate the economic and social problems (already affecting Schroeder) in France. My thoughts:

The European Stock market will underperform the US even after the Iraq liberation.

France and Germany will not be able to meet the 3% budget deficit ceiling in 2004 as called for by the EU charter, further undermining the Eurozone economics. Schroeder will be politically impotent because of the economic reforms required, but opposed, to move to a less burdensome socialistic welfare state.

The weakened dollar will continue to drive down trade imbalances with Europe, and increasing American exports worldwide.

Legal, possibly criminal, actions will be brought by individuals in the US against European companies violating sanctions and treaties in trading with Iraq.

Isreal/Palestine and North Korea will force continued international efforts, further exposing the impotence and hypocrisy of the Franco-German anti-Anglo foreign policy, which would be forced onto other EU members under their un-democratic constitution.

I'm sure there are more, but just a short list I can come up with - top of the head.

4 posted on 03/16/2003 1:19:47 PM PST by optimistically_conservative (We're approaching the one-year anniversary of Democrats accusing Bush of a "rush" to war.)
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To: NonZeroSum
Monday war-time bump...
5 posted on 03/17/2003 8:44:47 AM PST by NonZeroSum
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To: NonZeroSum
Very interesting. And to think I almost stayed at a steady job for a French company that was new to the Los Angeles area in 1985. I only worked for the French company for a week. The job required me to install and maintain a computer controlled laser fabric cutter. The laser was strong enough to cut leather and there seemed to be no protective guides anywhere that would prevent it from cutting the finger of the operator or the repair person. I inquired about this to some of the salesman of the device and was told that French regulatory agencies were not that great. Luckily I was offered a higher paying job by a US company after working for the French company for one week (previous interview). At any rate, I informed the French manager that I was leaving. Later that day when I was packing up to go, the manager came out and verbally assaulted me in front of the other employees. He then handed me a letter and told me to read it later. The letter basically apologized for the verbal assault, which was intended as a show for the other employees. The letter stated that he hoped I could return to work for them later and that his company would be able to pay more money later on. I now finally understand why I was 'slapped' by this French manager who also sent me the private letter. What frogs !
6 posted on 03/18/2003 1:18:54 AM PST by justa-hairyape
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To: NonZeroSum
bumpity, bump.
7 posted on 03/18/2003 10:31:38 AM PST by FBD (You've got until sundown tomorrow, Sodom.)
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