Everybody's Got One
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Saturday, September 04, 2004

Enemies and friends  

Marcus Tacitus of Between Hope and Fear - a valuable new find for my daily blogwatch - has a recent post titled The Enemy of My Enemy is My Enemy about China and the looming threat of aggressive anti-Western nationalism. It's good to know that someone insightful is paying attention, reminding us that it's not as simple as Us against Them. There's also Them, and Them, and those Others, too, and a temporary convergence of interests does not make for permanent alliances. The world is more complicated than that.

FDR and Churchill needed Stalin to beat Hitler, and eastern Europe was the price paid, setting up forty years of WW3. Reagan used Islamists (or their money) to fight Soviet expansion in Nicaragua and Afghanistan, and surrendered to them in Lebanon, as Clinton did in Africa. (Turning a blind eye to their infiltration into the Balkans is an unexamined aspect of Clintonian diplomacy, with consequences that haven't yet come to light.) All these actions helped set the stage for WW4.

Many don't believe that there's really a war (perhaps fewer, now, after Beslan) or, if there is, it can be proscribed to defeating Al Qaeda - as if a German withdrawal from Poland would have solved WW2. Or that the alliances of the last war aren't still in effect; that the Enemy of My Last Enemy is still My Friend. Or, more remarkably, that the Friend of My Enemy is - or should be - My Friend, too.

posted by Kelly | 8:57 PM link