Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Making a point in Darfur

Two pieces worth reading are out about Darfur, one in the NYT , and the other in its little sister the IHT. Both outline the truth about Darfur: the U.S. has decided to prove a point / give the Europeans and UN an opportunity to put up and shut up. They, are shutting up.

Very much from the, "You think you are so bright and better than everyone else, you do it..” line of thinking – after all the Monday morning quarterbacking and ankle biting from the Europeans over Iraq, with Darfur and Sudan we have decided to do things by their playbook and see how things go. Well, as expected:
When we talk about the genocide in Darfur, the one element that needs far more attention is the disgraceful role of Western Europe. … First, the European Union often presents itself, in alleged contrast to the United States, as the guardian of human rights in the world. Whatever the issue - capital punishment, gun control, avoiding war - the EU seeks to depict itself as occupying the moral high ground. The shamelessness of this posture in light of the inaction on Darfur must be exposed.

Now we need to state bluntly to Europe that the balance of the historical record lies in European hands. Europe can either join the United States in an aggressive campaign to place substantial forces in Darfur to prevent an even greater tragedy or continue on its current path and be held accountable for the consequences.

Indeed, given Europe's inaction on Darfur, the question must be asked: Is there truly a new Europe?
This all remind me of when I played Pee Wee football. When I started my mediocre career as a Left Defensive End after a stint as an 8yr old Offensive Lineman, we were scrimmaging one afternoon when the talented (but spoiled) 9yr old quarterback kept yelling at the offensive line and complaining that they were worthless and he was so cool, etc, etc… Well, in conjunction with the defensive line, the offensive line led by the Center (who as an adult is not a Trial Lawyer…go figure) decided to make a point. On the second down I think it was, one he hiked the ball, the offensive line would just stand still and the Backs (also in on the game) would run for the sidelines. That would give the Defence an open shot at the QB. Well, like all 9 yr old boys, we derived great pleasure in making the QB cry, and taught him a lesson about leadership and the value of the Offensive Line. True, when not laughing, the coaches yelled at us and made us run forever afterwards, but I don’t think I have ever had a better memory of Pop Warner football.

Unfortunately, we are doing the same thing to the Europeans, but instead of sweat and tears, the cost here are hundreds of thousands of lives and millions of lives destroyed. This serves a greater purpose: imagine a world without America. I know a lot like to. Be careful what you ask for. From the Left or Right – or both: we are very close to going back to the “hell with you all” attitude of 100 years ago. Think about it; we are. Scoring short term political points can have long term consequences.

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