As Europe's rulers, France's embattled president Hollande in the lead, watch themselves destroy the European Dream of a united, socially responsible example to the rest of the world, swaying like snakes to the tune of the US charmer, ordinary citizens, some trained soldiers, others channeling their grandfathers who fought in Spain against Hitler's ally Franco, are joining the pro-Russian minority in Eastern Ukraine, determined, like them, that Nazis 'no pasaran'.[tag]
Ignoring this replay of history, the media features other young people who, reacting to rejection by a culture of 'anything goes' that contradicts their traditional mores, join intolerant versions of Islam that some equate with Nazism, but which is closer to born again Christianity and other orthodoxies claiming to speak in the name of a superior power.
As summer 2014 comes to a close, Europe is acknowledging the hundredth anniversary of the greatest slaughter ever committed by man, some still remembering its successor. As their leaders warn of a terrorist threat, Europe's peoples see on the horizon not the Russian tanks they have been taught to fear, but Hitler's beefy children, who sport the Nazi wolfangel, carry iron bars and refer to Russians, Jews and Communists as cockroaches to be burned.
The leaders of the European Union - just as clueless as their national counterparts - had hoped to enlarge the peninsula they rule by stitching to it a piece of the Eurasian landmass. Now, no longer able to deny the fact that the 'bread-basket' - with its mines and furnaces - is farther from the culture of Europe than Lebanon or Syria (over which France long held sway), they have told its chocolate king president that he must stop calling his opponents names, shelling them while claiming he wants to embrace them, and implement measures that will enable them to come quietly.
These leaders have just completed a changing of the guard: the colorless Luxemburger Herman von Rompuy was succeeded as President of the Council of Ministers by Poland's center-right Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who as a new member of the club in 2004 stamped his feet until he obtained equal decision-making status with France and Germany. In a total mismatch, the post of EU Foreign Affairs and Security Representative, first occupied by Britain's Lady Catherine Ashton, now goes to the young, left-leaning Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Federica Mogherini.
Poland's existence has historically been intimately bound up with that of modern-day Bela Rus, Ukraine and Russia. Its European pretensions reflect its relative size but also a determination to vindicate its former status as a Soviet satellite, as well as its dismemberment in the late eighteenth century that eliminated it as a sovereign state for 123 years. Add to a history that is very much alive in Polish minds the current turmoil in neighboring Ukraine, and the choice of Donald Tusk to lead the European Union becomes very worrisome indeed.
One of the reasons why Tusk was chosen is that under his leadership the Polish economy grew while the rest of Europe suffered from the 2008 economic meltdown. Tusk's political affiliation is close to that of the America's Neo-Conservatives, as evidenced in the fact that he took on Angela Merkel to defeat tighter guidelines on shale drilling, a victory for industry groups and a defeat for environmental lobbies. click here
Whether or not Victoria Nuland played a role in the decision, the choice of Tusk for Europe's top job shows that unlike the Poles, for whom centuries of history are as real as yesterday's news (Anna Appelbaum, the wife of Poland's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Radislaw Sikorski, just published a column in the Washington Post http://www.washingtonpost.com/people/anne-applebaum entitled 'War is Not a Hysterical Idea', accusing Russia of a long list of evil intentions"), Europe's leaders appears to have forgotten that three wars were fought on their soil between 1870 and 1945, following which it was divided into East and West until 1989.
While the EU can be expected to continue its rightward, drift under Polish influence, the new NATO chief is the head of Norway's Labor Party, former Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, who successfully negotiated a border dispute with Russia in 2010. In the run-up to the biggest ever NATO summit in Wales that Stoltenberg will preside over this coming Thursday and Friday, a seasoned French general has just confirmed on France 24's news program the divergence of views between Poland and Lithuania, who are campaigning against a Ukraine/Russia agreement in today's talks in Minsk, and Western Europe on the other, that seeks to diffuse the crisis.
While the media emphasizes costly security measures against an Islamic terrorist attack, British and European activists are gathering in Cardiff to oppose what is shaping up as a Polish/Ukrainian push for a third world war intended to erase past offenses - as Angela Merkel decides to send weapons to Iraqi Kurds, breaking with Germany's post-war policy of not participating in military conflicts ".