Skip to comments.The New Neutrality
Posted on 04/14/2004 10:18:48 PM PDT by quidnunc
The Western alliance is fracturing.
France last year sent its diplomats abroad to cajole non-NATO governments to vote against the US resolution in the UN Security Council to depose Saddam Hussein's regime by force. Germany and Belgium poodled along for the ride. Turkey, at the last minute, denied the US the use of bases on its soil to open a northern front against the Iraqi Republican Guard. Meanwhile, Spain swept to power a Socialist government that announced a withdrawal of its troops from Iraq before it even took power.
The US is making alliances with European leaders rather than with European countries. Such provisional alliances are inherently unstable and ephemeral. Some, like Britain's Tony Blair and Italy's Silvio Berlusconi, may very well wish to continue supporting the US to the hilt in the Middle East. But they have every reason to fear their cooperation imperils them, that they may go the way of the Spanish ruling party and be voted out of office if attacks occur on their watch.
It looks like the position of Spain backpedaling, unreliable, and effectively anti-American could become the new norm. Europe and America are like a couple in deep denial who are lashing out at each other while approaching a breakup. We'll still remain friends once it's over. We might be friendly neutrals or less friendly rivals. Short of a drastic shift in European psychology, the relationship as we have known it is finished.
Spain's realignment may have had an identifiable trigger the terror attacks in Madrid. But a slow-moving tectonic shift is pulling Europe in general away from America. That shift can be chalked up to politics and culture as well as to history.
(Excerpt) Read more at techcentralstation.com ...