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Victor Davis Hanson: Anti Anti-Americanism
The Amereican Enterprise ^ | June 2005 | Victor Davis Hanson

Posted on 05/02/2005 9:01:49 AM PDT by quidnunc

An entire industry has arisen to account for the recent anti-Americanism. In the case of the Europeans, the end of the Cold War lessened the need for subsidized American protection, emboldening them to caricature Americans as fat and materialistic.  

Did envy arise because the world's sole superpower ignored weaker Europeans' efforts to tie up the U.S. with multilateral strings? Did the Cold War make us forget that we were always different peoples — Americans the freer, richer, more religious, fertile, and optimistic? Perhaps George W. Bush — drawling, Christian, and Texan — earned us their fury, so unlike French-speaking John Kerry or obsequious Bill Clinton?  

The Middle East was spoon-fed this European anti-Americanism. Twenty-one autocratic governments also deflected popular outrage onto us through state-run media. The bogeymen Israel and America were responsible for everything from stealing oil, even when it was sold to us at sky-high prices, to killing a few hundred Palestinian terrorists, when hundreds of thousands of Arab civilians were butchered by the Husseins and Assads.  

But mostly anti-Americanism was a boutique enterprise, revealed as such when the U.S. was the most desirable destination of the world's migrating poor and its popular culture had swept the globe. It is always surreal to read Mexico City elites slurring the United States as millions of illegal aliens risk their lives to cross our borders and escape the corruption and racism of their home country.

-snip-

(Excerpt) Read more at taemag.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: antiamericanism; vdh; victordavishanson

1 posted on 05/02/2005 9:01:50 AM PDT by quidnunc
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To: Tolik

FYI


2 posted on 05/02/2005 9:03:53 AM PDT by quidnunc (Omnis Gaul delenda est)
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To: quidnunc
Europe opted to pay "protection money" to the Barbary pirates instead of taking them down as well.

How many ransoms have been paid for kidnapped civilians now???
3 posted on 05/02/2005 9:10:14 AM PDT by weegee (WE FOUGHT ZOGBYISM November 2, 2004 - 60 Million Voters versus 60 Minutes - BUSH WINS!!!)
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To: quidnunc

Hanson just rocks!


4 posted on 05/02/2005 9:11:50 AM PDT by jumperbones (The dreams of a man in his old age, are the deeds of a man in his prime.)
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To: weegee

Excellent point. Even Jefferson, a pacifist by nature, sent the Navy and Marines to take care of them when they started hanging our merchant sailors on hooks outside their walled cities. Hence the "From the shores of Tripoli to the ...." in the Marine Corps Anthem.


5 posted on 05/02/2005 9:15:04 AM PDT by MattinNJ (Stop voter fraud-enact voter ID cards with photos w/ magnetic stripes that prevent multiple voting)
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To: MattinNJ

MattinNJ, yours is the EXCELLENT point! PING!@


6 posted on 05/02/2005 9:26:40 AM PDT by poobear ("Stategery Bushism")
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To: weegee
Europe opted to pay "protection money" to the Barbary pirates instead of taking them down as well.

It goes even further back than that. Hundreds of years earlier, the king of france paid off the Vikings so they would not sack akd loot paris.

7 posted on 05/02/2005 9:27:16 AM PDT by rllngrk33 (It's time to end life-time judicial tenure)
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To: rllngrk33

akd=and


8 posted on 05/02/2005 9:28:28 AM PDT by rllngrk33 (It's time to end life-time judicial tenure)
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To: quidnunc

bttt


9 posted on 05/02/2005 9:29:18 AM PDT by expatguy (http://laotze.blogspot.com/)
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To: rllngrk33

weren't the barbery pirates called the musslmen? where they not muslims?


10 posted on 05/02/2005 9:34:01 AM PDT by Khepera (Do not remove by penalty of law!)
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To: weegee
Europe opted to pay "protection money" to the Barbary pirates instead of taking them down as well.

So did the US much of the time. It was a lot cheaper than fighting a war.

BTW, it was the French who finally ended the practice, by invading and conquering the Barbary states.

11 posted on 05/02/2005 9:34:58 AM PDT by Restorer
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To: MattinNJ
Hence the "From the shores of Tripoli to the ...." in the Marine Corps Anthem.

Hate to nit pick but... It's "From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli..."

12 posted on 05/02/2005 9:35:23 AM PDT by mc5cents
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To: Khepera

The Barbary pirates were indeed Muslim. Although many of their more effective leaders were renegade Christians.

In some cases, when these leaders retired they switched religions again and took their loot home to live in Italy or Greece.


13 posted on 05/02/2005 9:36:50 AM PDT by Restorer
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To: quidnunc

Save.


14 posted on 05/02/2005 9:37:04 AM PDT by Eagles6 (Dig deeper, more ammo.)
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To: quidnunc

VDH bump


15 posted on 05/02/2005 9:37:14 AM PDT by freeangel ( (free speech is only good until someone else doesn't like what you say))
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Geopolitics
By Victor Davis Hanson

Anti anti-Americanism

An entire industry has arisen to account for the recent anti-Americanism. In the case of the Europeans, the end of the Cold War lessened the need for subsidized American protection, emboldening them to caricature Americans as fat and materialistic.



Did envy arise because the world's sole superpower ignored weaker Europeans' efforts to tie up the U.S. with multilateral strings? Did the Cold War make us forget that we were always different peoples--Americans the freer, richer, more religious, fertile, and optimistic? Perhaps George W. Bush--drawling, Christian, and Texan--earned us their fury, so unlike French-speaking John Kerry or obsequious Bill Clinton?



The Middle East was spoon-fed this European anti-Americanism. Twenty-one autocratic governments also deflected popular outrage onto us through state-run media. The bogeymen Israel and America were responsible for everything from stealing oil, even when it was sold to us at sky-high prices, to killing a few hundred Palestinian terrorists, when hundreds of thousands of Arab civilians were butchered by the Husseins and Assads.



But mostly anti-Americanism was a boutique enterprise, revealed as such when the U.S. was the most desirable destination of the world's migrating poor and its popular culture had swept the globe. It is always surreal to read Mexico City elites slurring the United States as millions of illegal aliens risk their lives to cross our borders and escape the corruption and racism of their home country.



Things are changing, however, both here and abroad. Thousands of American troops have left Europe. Its denizens now sense that the American people no longer wish to subsidize their defense only to earn ingratitude. The E.U. dream of heaven on earth may be mired in high taxes, low growth, high unemployment, and demographic and entitlement time bombs--not the sort of platform from which to hector a supposedly sinking U.S.



Things are even more evolutionary in the Middle East. Dissidents in Egypt or Beirut are not singing the praises of the E.U. or U.N. Nor are the new democrats in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is still too early to appreciate much of this shifting, but historical forces are now in play which are not conducive to vaunted European "soft power," so often a mask for crass profiteering.



Soon, freed Middle Easterners are going to make a few simple deductions: France profited mightily from Saddam; America removed him. The E.U. wanted nothing to do with the new democracy in Baghdad; Americans from places like San Antonio and Tulsa died to preserve it. An Iranian knows that the U.S., not Germany or Belgium, wishes him to be free and is more likely to take the risks to see it happen. An Afghan could assure him of that.



The muscle-flexing of China has given Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan second thoughts. They worry not that the United States invites them into partnerships, but that we might not. The Americans allow outsourcing to India, buy thousands of Hondas, and send young men to the Korean DMZ. Europe sells China new bombs, the French fleet goes on maneuvers with the communists, and the E.U. keeps it tariffs and subsidies high. A once-caricatured America starts to look very good again.



There is another wild card at play that explains the decrease in anti-Americanism. After September 11, the American people are in a much less apologetic mood--more likely to pull troops or cut off aid than to ask forgiveness for imaginary grievances. No one here laments that we left the Philippines or are departing Germany. We took out Saddam without Belgians and Frenchmen, without bases in Turkey, and despite, not because of, the U.N. or Arab league.



America runs high trade deficits with Asia and Europe. It lets 20 million illegal aliens cross our borders. It spends liberally on defense, patrolling sea-lanes and protecting commerce rather than setting up autocracies and stealing oil.



Americans are finally beginning to wonder whether all these ungrateful folks are worth the toil and treasure. In response, critics abroad are beginning to sense that their cheap rhetoric may have real consequences, that maybe the U.S. was a good deal for the world, after all.



George W. Bush did not cause this new round of anti-Americanism. But he may well have done more than anyone to end it.


16 posted on 05/02/2005 10:00:56 AM PDT by Slings and Arrows ("You would have to double your IQ to be stupid. " --zip)
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To: quidnunc; neverdem; Lando Lincoln; .cnI redruM; yonif; SJackson; dennisw; monkeyshine; Alouette; ...


    Victor Davis Hanson Ping ! 

       Let me know if you want in or out

17 posted on 05/02/2005 10:11:21 AM PDT by Tolik ("Whatever it is, I'm against it" http://www.barbneal.com/wav/marxbros/groucho/grouch61.wav)
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To: quidnunc

bttt


18 posted on 05/02/2005 10:25:30 AM PDT by Christian4Bush (Prayers for Laura Ingraham and her family as she is treated for breast cancer. 4-26-05)
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To: Tolik

ping bump.


19 posted on 05/02/2005 10:41:09 AM PDT by G.Mason ( Because Free Republic obviously needed another opinionated big mouth ... Proud NRA member)
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To: Slings and Arrows

"Americans are finally beginning to wonder whether all these ungrateful folks are worth the toil and treasure."

I find Hansen a little slow on the uptake. Americans have wondered about this unequal exchange with ungrateful foreigners for a long, long time. Its the American political class that has finally begun to feel the heat from the American people to put a final stop to this idiocy. Bush, himself, is merely responding to a groundswell of public opinion on this matter, that reached a crescendo after 911. Bush is reacting to this, not driving it.


20 posted on 05/02/2005 10:41:50 AM PDT by bowzer313
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To: Restorer

I never heard that about their leaders. Have any examples or documentation about that?


21 posted on 05/02/2005 11:17:21 AM PDT by Khepera (Do not remove by penalty of law!)
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To: quidnunc

"Americans are finally beginning to wonder whether all these ungrateful folks are worth the toil and treasure."

Yeah...like this American. Right on as usual Victor Davis Hanson.


22 posted on 05/02/2005 11:39:15 AM PDT by Tempestuous
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To: Khepera

Not really. Just various things I've read over the years about them. They were in more or less continuous existence for almost a thousand years. For most of this time, they had approximate equivalents on the Christian side, the Knights of Malta or Rhodes, various Venetian and Genoese groups. Both sides used POWs as galley slaves.

The difference is that the "Christian" countries moved past piracy and the corsairs stuck with it well into the 19th century, until eventually putting up with them became more of a hassle than going in and squashing them, which the French finally handled, starting in the 1830s if I remember the dates correctly.

There are obvious parallels to today's terrorists, who mistake our unwillingness to use all the force available to us for weakness. Of course, the corsairs never had a chance of getting hold of a nuke!


23 posted on 05/02/2005 11:47:05 AM PDT by Restorer
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To: poobear

Thanks


24 posted on 05/02/2005 11:57:28 AM PDT by MattinNJ (Stop voter fraud-enact voter ID cards with photos w/ magnetic stripes that prevent multiple voting)
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To: mc5cents
Hate to nit pick but... It's "From the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli..."

D'oh.

Man I hope there's not a Marine ping list and one of them sees this.

25 posted on 05/02/2005 11:58:49 AM PDT by MattinNJ (Stop voter fraud-enact voter ID cards with photos w/ magnetic stripes that prevent multiple voting)
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To: Restorer
"Just various things I've read over the years about them."

I think you may be referring to the "janissary" who were employed by the Turks as corsairs operating primarily along the barbary coast. Many of these janissary were recruited from Christian portions of the Turkish empire like Greece and the Balkans. Barbarosa was the most famous of these.

26 posted on 05/02/2005 1:06:58 PM PDT by Pietro
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To: Pietro

The janissaries were, at least originally, Christian slaves levied from the Turkish lands in the Balkans. They were converted to Islam and composed for a couple of centuries the most efficient army units in Europe or the Middle East.

They gradually became corrupt and even hereditary, eventually winding up as a sort of armed mob that deposed deys, beys and sultans as they chose.

But what I was talking about were actual adult Christian men who chose to join the corsairs, either after being captured or out of ambition. For the last couple of centuries of the corsairs' existence these men dominated the corsairs, as the natives slipped farther and farther behind technologically.


27 posted on 05/02/2005 1:16:24 PM PDT by Restorer
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To: Pietro

Barbarossa was the son of a janissary, but he was raised a Muslim rather than being "drafted" as a child from the Christian natives.


28 posted on 05/02/2005 1:17:40 PM PDT by Restorer
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To: Restorer

The Janissaries (or janizaries; in Turkish: Yeniçeri, meaning New Troops) comprised infantry units that formed the Ottoman sultan's household troops and bodyguard. The force originated in the 14th century; it was abolished (and massacred) by Sultan Mahmud II in 1826.


The first janissary units comprised war captives and slaves. After the 1380s Sultan Selim I filled their ranks with the results of taxation in human form called devshirmeh. The sultan’s men would conscript a number of non-Muslim, usually Christian, boys – at first at random, later by strict selection – and take them to be trained. In later centuries they seem to have preferred Greeks, Serbs and Bulgarians. Usually they would select about 1 in 5 boys of ages 7-14 but the numbers could be changed to correspond with the need for soldiers. Later they would extend the devshirmeh to Greece and Hungary. Of course, residents could hardly appreciate the custom.

Janissaries trained under strict discipline with hard labour and in practically monastic conditions in acemi oglan schools, where they were expected to remain celibate and were at least encouraged to convert to Islam. Most did. For all practical purposes, janissaries belonged to the sultan. Unlike free Muslims, they were expressly forbidden to wear beards, only a moustache. Janissaries were taught to consider the corps as their home and family and the sultan as their de facto father. Only those who proved strong enough earned the rank of a true janissary at the age of 24 - 25. The regiment inherited the property of dead janissaries.

Janissaries also learned to follow the dictates of the dervish saint Haji Bektash who had blessed the first troops. Bektashi served as a kind of chaplain for janissaries. In this and in their secluded life, janissaries resembled Christian knightly orders like the Johannites of Rhodes.

I am reading a book involving them.


29 posted on 05/02/2005 1:25:23 PM PDT by razorback-bert
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To: razorback-bert
it was abolished (and massacred) by Sultan Mahmud II in 1826.

A rather direct approach to abolition!

30 posted on 05/02/2005 2:47:00 PM PDT by Restorer
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To: Restorer
Barbarossa was the son of a janissary, but he was raised a Muslim

Oh Oh! I may have learned something new. shudder

31 posted on 05/02/2005 8:20:24 PM PDT by Valin (There is no sense in being pessimistic. It would not work anyway)
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To: razorback-bert

Title please. Thanks


32 posted on 05/02/2005 8:22:41 PM PDT by Valin (There is no sense in being pessimistic. It would not work anyway)
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To: quidnunc
It is always surreal to read Mexico City elites slurring the United States as millions of illegal aliens risk their lives to cross our borders and escape the corruption and racism of their home country.

Racism?

33 posted on 05/02/2005 8:24:37 PM PDT by jordan8
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To: Valin

"The Confusion"

Neal Stephenson


34 posted on 05/02/2005 8:40:14 PM PDT by razorback-bert
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To: razorback-bert

I just took a quick look at Amazon, looks interesting. Thanks


35 posted on 05/02/2005 9:00:16 PM PDT by Valin (There is no sense in being pessimistic. It would not work anyway)
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To: Tolik

Thanks for all the VDH pings!


36 posted on 05/02/2005 9:46:40 PM PDT by rightinthemiddle (Free Speech is a Right. Being Wrong is Just...Wrong.)
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