Skip to comments.Britain's special relationship 'just a myth'
Posted on 11/29/2006 10:32:28 PM PST by fragrant abuse
Britain's special relationship 'just a myth' Toby Harnden in Washington
A senior American official has spoken of "the myth of the special relationship" between the United States and Britain, arguing that Tony Blair got "nothing, no payback" for supporting President George W Bush in Iraq.
Kendall Myers, a leading State Department adviser, suggested that Mr Blair should have been ditched by Labour but the party had lacked the "courage or audacity" to remove him.
David Cameron, the Conservative leader, was "shrewd, astute" to have distanced himself from America.
In candid comments that will embarrass Mr Bush and Mr Blair, the veteran official said America "ignored" Britain, and he urged Britain to decouple itself from the US.
He asserted that the "special relationship", a term coined by Sir Winston Churchill in 1946, gave Britain little or nothing.
"It has been, from the very beginning, very one-sided. There never really has been a special relationship, or at least not one we've noticed."
The result of the Iraq war would be that any future British premier would be much less cosy with Washington than Mr Blair had been, and the Prime Minister's much vaunted view that Britain was "a transatlantic bridge" was now redundant.
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
And who the hell is "Toby Harnden"?
Advisory Committee for Studies of Eastern Europe and the Independent States of the Former Soviet Union
Executive Director W. Kendall Myers (INR/RES), Rm. 6841
Fax (202) 736-4851
The single greatest failure of the Bush Administration was its failure to clean house at State and CIA when it still could. Every misfortune suffered by the administration follows from it.
Unfortunately, the Al Gore-contested election forced an "accommodation" with the Democrat/Socialists. It's hard to remember that pre-9/11 mindset, but it was all the rage.
Sounds like his current affiliation with State may be somewhat loose. He's on a Congressionally authorized committee; may be a personal services contract or something. Possibly a former Clintonista/fifth columnist working with lefty Brits to destroy the very relationship he claims "no longer exists". In any event, your point's well taken. His statements should be denounced, and whatever ties he has to the State Department should be summarily severed.
So he is saying Tony Blair wanted something from the U.S.? Blair had our respect in regard to the WOT, but he is of the opposite party, after all. What else did he want?
David Cameron, the Conservative leader, was "shrewd, astute" to have distanced himself from America.As we Iraq spins out of control those who cast their lots with Bush are paying the price. This is really depressing.
It's funny how our 'foreign ministry', i.e. the State Department, is always undermining the nation's foreign policy.
A mysterious change came over the administration in the summer of 2003. My guess is that some kind of deal was struck between DoD on the one hand, and CIA-State on the other.
What Tony Blaire "got" from the US was their country saved twice in the last century at the cost of American blood and wealth.
Wrong. You've been paid:
On 3 May 2006, the British Treasury Minister, Ivan Lewis in a commons reply said "Repayment of the war loans to the US Government is expected to be completed on December 31 2006," The final payment will be £45 million (as reported by the BBC
We have been paying you back for 61 years.
Britain has stood with America in every conflict since World War II with the exception of Vietnam. As my previous post shows, you've been paid financially for the aid you've sent us. At some point, this "chip of entitlement" you have on your collective shoulder, expecting us to "snap to" whenever you call has got to end.
Then everything shut up in Seattle. Everything shut the hell up!
I lost thousands in the stock market, while others just went home.
I'll never go back to the West Coast again.
Bah, I'm carrying on. My bad.
I'm getting pretty sick of the myth that Britain just held America's coat while she dealt with the Nazis.
Britain sacrified just as much as the United States in the global struggle against fascist tyranny and it would be gracious of you to remember and honour it.
World War II casualties (from Wikipedia)
Military deaths: 382,600
Civilian deaths: 67,800
Percentage of population: 0.94%
Military deaths: 407,300
Civilian deaths: 11,200
Percentage of population: 0.32%
and you have to remember Amercia turned up late for both wars and would probably still be sitting on the sidelines if Pearl Harbour hadn't been attacked.
This is straight from Democrat talking points, destroy any relationship between President Bush and Prime Minister Blair and make it look as though poor Tony ended up holding the bag. I clearly remember Mr. Blair speeches right after 9/11 and his Country's supply of intelligence being sent to the U.S. about Saddam. There was startling info about Saddam's ties with Bin Ladin and training camps in Iraq for terrorists. Mr. Blair was deeply concerned about radical Islam and stood my his convictions. By standing with the Bush Administration in going after the bad guys I was impressed with both men's foresight and courage. Thank God that G.B. has not turned tail, as did France and Spain, and run from the terrorists. There is nowhere to run and Europe is paying a high price for their appeasement policies. Kendall is a leftist and seems to have no insight into the mindless destruction of terror and how this WOT is just beginning, something both leaders predicted time after time.
More Leftard wedge driving.
WTH was he supposed to get? Friendship and alliance isn't enough?
Chiefly, World War 2 was practically forced on the British. The Nazis were at your figurative doorstep. You (if you are British; considering your spelling, that seems the case) had to enter the war; you had little choice.
In contrast, the United States was helping out the Allies at the expense of the Axis powers long before Pearl Harbor.
Furthermore, the UK was in more of a position to stop Germany before Hitler went on the offensive. Mr. Chamberlain has been castigated by history for that.
The United States fought heavily in both the European and Pacific theaters (there's American spelling for you), even though the European one was neither a direct threat at the time, nor the power that attacked the country in the first place.
The UK focused primarily on Europe and defending their country.... at the expense of their colonies. Many countries in the Asia-Pacific region appreciate how after the British pulled their troops (many of colonial origin) to defend the UK, the Americans sent troops to liberate them from the Japanese.
Then there is the fact that Wikipedia, while extremely useful, is not exactly the most accurate website, especially when it comes to the United States. However, off hand, the casualty figures for the United States, at least, seem accurate.
Finally, while Americans should be more appreciative of British efforts in World War 2, and in conflicts such as the current one in Iraq, you should note that many of your (again, if you are British) countrymen are decidedly anti-American, including some of your politicians. Many more British (at least in percentage) seem to be anti-Ameri-can than Americans seem to be anti-British. So who are you (the tone is harsh, but it isn't supposed to be) to criticize the token American who unfairly gets angry at the UK?
The most-often raised criticism of Blair is that his own foreign policy priorities, particularly a push on an Israel-Palestine settlement, dealing with global warming and third world debt, etc, were effectively ignored by the Bush administration.
So what, you may ask. But during the run-up to the Iraq invasion, Blair's supporters tried to sell the war to a sceptical public in part on the notion that Britain's closeness to the US would enable Blair to get US support on his own foreign policy objectives. That was a false promise - hence the backlash.
By the Royal Navy. Hitler gave up on Operation SeaLion well before the Americans entered the war.
It was - and still is - the right thing to the UK to go into Iraq, and part of our NATO treaty obligations. Let's not go wobbly, and let's not let inconsequential gits like Myers mess with our heads.
"So who are you (the tone is harsh, but it isn't supposed to be) to criticize the token American who unfairly gets angry at the UK?"
You made fair points - I don't see any disagreement with you, FRiend.
Yes I am a Brit and just as I will defend the United States against British critics I will defend my homeland against American critics. I make no apologies for either.
Although you seem to have a clear grasp of history, there are all too many (yes, even here on FR) who are prepared to denigrate or dismiss the sacrifices that my country made alongside yours in WWII.
Ah, Joe McCarthy, where are you now that we need you?
The State Department is a cancerous den of vipers.
I agree too many people forge that Blair is a Socialist
Thanks for that Ivan it is something that always grates when that old chestnut is quoted.
Absolutely and that is what I believe Cameron's position is important relationship but sometimes we can disagree but that does not mean we are no longer friends - good friends often disagree without loosing the friendship.
Had Germany won, the British Empire would probably been dealt a blow, furthering the cause of self-determination the United States espoused. The Soviet Union, without much of their population and prime real estate on account of the treaty of Brest-Livotsk, would have been more probable to collapse. And in any case, World War 1 was a European squabble rather than an international affair.
As for World War 2, the United States aided the Allies long before Pearl Harbor (Americans preserve British spellings when part of proper nouns; Britons should do the same). Furthermore, the United States was not as responsible for war breaking out. France in particular was too harsh to Germany after World War 1. And then there was Neville Chamberlain.
The UK declared war solely because they were bound by treaty to do just that. Furthermore, they were in the path of the blitzkrieg. The United States had an ocean separating them from the Third Reich. Germany was not as much a threat for Americans as it was for Britons.
Our relationship with Britain seems to me to be built on the fact that we are relatives, cousins. We are like family.
Everytime I go to the UK I feel that in my bones. Lately there are lots of screwball family on both limbs of the tree, not to mention the strange outsiders who seem to have wandered into the den while we are happily watching TV. Some dress funny. Some talk in slogans.
I idon't think we ought to be insulting Britain here. And these two unknowns are just spouting off.
That stated, Cameron seems to be a shifty fellow (from readers comments on the BBC) who goes with the flow, figuratively.
Hellthere are more anti-AMericans in the US than anyplace in Britain. We have our very own Muslim elected to Congress and about 40Per Cent of the public HATE THIS COUNTRY.. Not to forget a good number of Freepers who hate this country.
But it remains that it was Neville Chamberlain who precipitated the war.
Basically, for such rude Americans: you do not deserve any special respect which you did not earn.
The same goes, of course, for any people.
There are a lot of American anti-Americans, though. No argument there.
There are some freepers who clearly just disagree.
But haven't you noticed the ones who come around periodically to cause dissension and to provoke freepers into arguments for the sake of sowing distrust.
They are easy to spot,,
What I mostly sense is a great strain in our country, people who just love to deconstruct whatever they can. They truly hate this country, they shelter our enemies, they defend our enemies, they use our system against us. They are not homogeneous but I suspect at the core a ruthless group, determined to bring us down. ANd I think they are Americans who hate America.
There are old-timers in both that still deny that Alger Hiss and Donald MacLean ever met...
Thanks, friend. And the same from me for your own countrymen's service and sacrifice.
"But it remains that it was Neville Chamberlain who precipitated the war."
Well, I take 'precipitate' to mean 'hasten' so I wouldn't put it that way. Chamberlain was a fool who couldn't see that war against fascism was inevitable and necessary. He hamstrung Britain's self-defense by deceiving himself and others of Hitler's real nature.
Ulimately, I think we can agree that the person who really precipitated World War II was Adolf Hitler.
I'm not sure I'd call it a "collective shoulder." I think most conservatives hope both countries have leaders who simply insist on doing the right thing. Unfortunately, the anti-war crowd has done much damage and politicians in both countries have suffered for it by becoming unelectable - or at least having a difficult time of it. There isn't a real anti-Brit attitude in the US or in the world that I see. To be sure, the anti-war people lump the Brits in with their rants, but it is really an anti-American rant more than anything else.
America has plenty of its own Chamberlains.
Richard North finds out much more about Mr Myers than the journalists in the Times and the Daily Telegraph (a surprise - not!). And what do you know - it appears that Dr Myers is associated with the European Union. A State - EU collusion acting against the interest of the elected US government. What a surprise!
Dog may actually be right. Myers appears to be on his way out. Good thing, too.
Agree, but we are talking about State. What diplomats ought to do and what they will do is often - if not always - two different things.
BTW that does not apply to John Bolton, which is why I like him, and why he will never be confirmed by the Congress.
Thanks, did not know that. Would like more info if you have any links.