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« A real liberal, Britain’s Ann Clwyd wonders why Saddam wasn’t removed earlier | Main | Arab dictators are addicted to dictatorship »

March 30, 2004

Comments

Ludmila Vladimirova

Maybe Vlad sees the emerging fascist government just south of Canada as a threat to not only Russia, but to all of humanity !

Do not underestimate Russian engineers, they may be paid like crap, but they can do the math !

jj

Nobody on U.S. soil underestimates the talents and capacity of the Russian people, but they have been raised in a terrible system to which Mr. Putin will return them if they do not wake up soon. Dictators love to parade their new toys across Red Square on May Day. Big missiles to assuage the Russian feelings of insecurity.

Frank Warner

Ludmilla is confused about which government is fascist. Saddam Husssein's government was fascist. Saddam held the world record among living dictators for deaths by war, genocide and state-ordered executions, and yet Ludmilla probably wanted to let Saddam continue his tortures and killing forever.

A fascist government is one that allows no freedom of the press, no freedom of speech, no opposition parties, no free elections and no independent courts. A fascist government is one that calls for aggressive expansion and, when it goes to war, it intends to keep the land and imprison the people of the nations it invades.

The U.S. government today is too conservative for my taste, but its defense of freedom is in stark contrast to the fascism of Saddam or even to the creeping fascism of Putin. In freeing Afghanistan and Iraq, this U.S. government also has done more for liberalism and progress than all other governments on the face of the Earth.

Remember U.N. Resolution 688. The United States enforced it.

Frank Warner

jj

Reference to the U.N. as a source of legitimacy is dated. It used to provide a conduit of communication between the USSR and the US. Now it provides a conduit of cash between our pockets and those of dictators and third world bureaucrats. I have a hard time picturing what purpose it serves except its minimal benefit as a social club where contacts can be developed and language skills can be honed.
The U.N. has been replaced by direct relationships. On that score, unfortunately, I expect to read in years ahead that Bush has given Putin the green light to do as he sees fit in Moscow as well as Chechnya as a reward for non-interference. To that extent we are fascist. We coddle the dictators for the sake of our immediate national concerns. But -- can anyone fault FDR for dealing with Stalin? We can be sure that Khadafi will get plenty of perks now that he's one of the good guys. That would be fine if we also pursued the nation-building concept a little more seriously when we have the chance.
To me, the action in Iraq is a sign that Bush is a liberal democrat. Kerry's position is probably similar, but with him it's hard to say. All in all, I have hope for the future, but there are many setbacks along the way.

chris tedder

Putin is playing off the fears of the democrats in America, that we can't build a nuclear defense without starting another arms race and possibly wasting billions and billions of dollars. It's obvious what they're doing. They're not only telling the world that they are back in the arms race, but that they've also one-upped the military-minded U.S. It just so happened that right after we decide to set up our missile defense program Russia miraculously comes up with an unstoppable weapon. They are almost certainly lying about the weapon. I also have a very hard time believing that they could even consider re-entering the arms race given the state of their economy; and EVERYBODY remembers who was bankrupted first in the last arms race, especially Russia. Russia is full of hot air, and I don't think their propoganda or the liberal's scoffing is going to stop us from putting up our sheild.

jj

Chris: I agree with that assessment.

I was told once by an old Air Force guy that the Soviets used to send out their interceptors at Mach 3 to intimidate our planes when we got near the edge of Soviet air space. But it turned out that the Soviet jet engines couldn't really handle the heat. They had to limp home after putting on a great show, and then the planes were retired.

Apparently they were always trying to scare us, which pretty much succeeded. It was, however, counterproductive, in that we just upped the ante and spent them under the table. I guess traces of the Evil Empire are not quite gone, and they're up to their same old tricks. I just don't think they are serious about keeping up with us any more. They're still scaring us, but it's really more for domestic consumption.

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