Elder Patriot – Elitists have always turned their noses up when forced to listen to commoners. Even as they turn to us to fight their wars they give us no countenance.
Nothing illustrates the great English Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s disdain for Europe’s elite’s better than this statement he made about James Ramsay MacDonald who was the first Labour Party politician to become Prime Minister of Britain: “He’s a sheep in sheep’s clothing.”
This, of course raised the ire of Britain’s lapdog media who considered Winston a borish blowhard. Sound familiar?
Churchill didn’t reserve his criticism to Labourites, either.
From 1937-1940 during the lead up to WWII Churchill was the single most high profile and outspoken critic of conservative Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s appeasement policies towards Germany.
Britain’s extraordinary and devastating security concessions to Hitler were as feckless as Obama’s red lines proved to be. Churchill was particularly critical of what he saw as the prime minister’s purposeful obstruction of British rearmament in the face of the manifest threat from Germany.
By 1939, having seen enough of Hitler’s growing war machine and aggression, Churchill chastised Chamberlain’s ill-placed trust in his ability to make peace with Germany:
“Neville – who has been a second time deceived by the Dictator in whom he particularly trusts and invites us to trust… There is a great danger in refusing to believe things you do not like.”
Oh my, no matter what leaders might think they just don’t say these things.
Britain was not alone in its folly. France, like Britain, had paid dearly in blood and fortune fighting World War I were also naive enough to chase a dream of peace and appeasement, and a politics of denial and pacifism.
Churchill had long realized the inevitability of what had unfolded and when American President Franklin Roosevelt asked him for a suggestion about what to name the war he answered, “The Unnecessary War.”
In his memoir of WWII, the Gathering Storm, Churchill wrote that there never was a war more easy to stop.
All of this is important today because if you closed your eyes yesterday and listened to Donald Trump dress down the member nations of Europe for failing to pay their agreed upon share to NATO you could envision Winston Churchill speaking.
The outrage from the media that followed Trump’s comments – “How dare Trump call out our allies so indelicately!” – were laughable to those with any sense of honor and/or leveraging negotiations and/or modern warfare threats..
With the development and proliferation of intercontinental ballistic missiles, Europe no longer stands as America’s first line of defense against Soviet aggression as it once did. In fact, with the Soviet Union now reduced to Russia the threat of an invasion of Europe with tanks and bombers isn’t likely.
At this point we are picking up 70% of the bill for NATO and committing to the defense of other nations while they ignore their financial obligations and direct that money to building welfare states instead.
That alone justifies Trump’s public chastisement of these deadbeats. But there’s also the fact that Americans are sinking a trillion dollars further into debt each year because of deals that President Trump inherited, like this one. It’s the American taxpayer who is footing the bill as many of the so-called allies in Western Europe shove their thumbs in our eye on so many other issues.
Trump holds all of the leverage in this negotiation. Our military is more than able to protect us. There’s aren’t. Coupled with the EU’s fierce trade tariffs standing as impediments to U.S. imports it’s hard to see where we much benefit from this arrangement.
That was made abundantly clear by Germany’s decision to buy 70% of its natural gas from Russia – from who they want protection – and not the U.S. whose protection they require.
Yesterday, summoning the ghost of Winston Churchill, Trump reminded our “allies” that these agreements are two way streets.