Mathias Doepfner writes today in The Australian about the shameful past of the Europeans and the added shameful fact that they don’t seem to learn from their mistakes of inaction and appeasement:
Appeasement cost millions of Jews and non-Jews their lives as allies Britain and France negotiated and hesitated too long before they realised that Adolf Hitler needed to be fought and defeated, because he could not be bound by toothless agreements.
Later, appeasement legitimised and stabilised communism in the Soviet Union, then in East Germany, then throughout the rest of Eastern Europe, where for several decades inhuman, repressive and murderous governments were glorified.
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Appeasement similarly crippled Europe when genocide ran rampant in Bosnia and Kosovo. Indeed, even though we had absolute proof of continuing mass murder there, we Europeans debated and debated, and then debated still more. We were still debating when finally the Americans had to come from halfway around the world, into Europe yet again, to do our work for us.
Europe still hasn’t learned. Rather than protecting democracy in the Middle East, European appeasement, camouflaged behind the fuzzy word equidistance, often seems to countenance suicide bombings in Israel by fundamentalist Palestinians.
Similarly, it generates a mentality that allows Europe to ignore the almost 500,000 victims of Saddam Hussein’s torture and murder machinery and, motivated by the self-righteousness of the peace movement, to harangue George W. Bush as a warmonger.