Day By Day

Friday, June 12, 2009

Resetting the Relationship

The Left likes to claim that under George W. Bush US-European relations reached an all-time low and that Obama's election signaled a new era in which mutual respect would be restored.

Ralph Peters, no admirer of the younger Bush, sets the record straight:
Bush's problems weren't really with Europe -- only with Germany and France, both of which had been profiting hugely from business deals with Saddam. Most of Europe stood with us. France and Germany then voted in conservative governments.


Our relations with Europe were better in Bush's second term than today. The Obama administration bullies allies on economic policy, favors Muslim immigrants in internal disputes, insists (against the wishes of Europe's voters) that Turkey be admitted to the European Union and excludes traditional partners from foreign-policy initiatives.
Read the whole thing here.

Peters argues that Obama, holding a third-world perspective, has a personal animus against Europe for its colonial past. I'm not sure that's the case, but he certainly has taken great pains to show America's traditional allies that he has little interest in them. We have indeed entered a new era in American diplomacy, but it is hardly the one that Bush's Eurocritics envisioned.


Obama infuriates Britain. From the Times of London:

The British Government responded with ill-disguised fury tonight to the news that four Chinese Uighurs freed from Guantanamo Bay had been flown for resettlement on the Atlantic tourist paradise of Bermuda.

The four arrived on Bermuda in the early hours, celebrating the end of seven years of detention after learning that they were to be accepted as guest workers.

But it appears that the Government of Bermuda failed to consult with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the decision to take in the Uighurs – whose return is demanded by Beijing – and it could now be forced to send them back to Cuba or risk a grave diplomatic crisis.

Read it here.

Frank Gaffney argues that Obama is trying to "reset" our relationship with Britain. [here].