Monday 6 February 2006

Hitler on a spit-roast

Dastardly comparisons
In trying to keep ahead of issues, events and people I regularly check my news on three sites – BBC News, TheWorld News site – a news aggregator that takes topics from local media in a global context and Expatica – a news site in English for Expatriates in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Spain.
However, in the space of just a few days, the name of Adolf Hitler has been invoked in comparisons by Donald Rumsfeld, Hugo Chavez and Angela Merkel.
It brings to mind the saying about turning in one’s grave, which indicates that a person now dead would have been utterly displeased if the event had happened in that person’s lifetime.
By inference, Adolf Hitler having turned thrice might as well be in a spin on a spit-roast {You can read more into this as to burning and fire}.
The rise of Chavez
Mr Rumsfeld speaking from an Unknown, Unknowns perspective raises hackles about the elections in Latin America that have favoured people who would appear to be hostile to the American hegemony.
As far as Latin America is concerned, America has not been able to transfer the quality of their economic progress beyond their borders; Mexico and Cuba are case in point.
The history of American intervention in Latin America is long, varied and unsavoury. We have the good fortune of the world being a bit more civilised than the 1970s or we would have had a Chilean putsch deposing Hugo Chavez for some puppet to America’s liking.
For a country that just over 200 years ago fought imperialism, their imperialist credentials rival those of other empires and are ever so recent.
The people’s leader
In a nutshell, Hugo Chavez was elected the President of Venezuela by popular consent having once served a term in jail for plotting an unsuccessful coup.
Whilst he many not be to anyone’s liking, I can contend that this is the first developing world leader who is ploughing profits of oil back into the country to help his people, regardless of how populist his ideas and tirades are.
His liaison with Fidel Castro stems from the fact that just being 90 miles south of America, the overwhelming force of sanctions and blockades still has Cuba as a country able to evacuate its people out of the way of disaster in time and efficiently, they also have probably the best medical services in the world.
Probably, the question Hugo always asks Fidel is “How can I keep America out of my backyard?” Well, the evidence is America is miffed that they cannot influence events in Latin America just as they once did.
Good on you Hugo.
Hitler is a baby
I have sometimes wondered about the even-handedness of the United States in world affairs. It is sometimes difficult to find instances where America has not acted in complete self-interest regardless of the platitudes that eventually emerged to just the ends.
The raid on Afghanistan did free the people of Afghanistan but it was really to go after Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
The all-encompassing mirage of nuclear annihilation wrought by Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction formed the basis of war in Iraq to inadvertently secure oil which does not seem to flow as much as when he was in power.
We have a similitude of democracy but it would not be in the flavour that America likes, just as they learnt of the Palestinians.
America has form, creating fear
However, Hugo’s diatribe links so many American activities as the failed coup to overthrow him that American seemed to acquiesce, the continued animosity between both countries and the veiled threats that come from senior officials of the government.
Just as countries of Europe feared the invasion of the Hitler armies, it is probably plausible that some governments in Latin America might fear the invasion of Bush armies.
This however, might not happen because the US forces are a bit pre-occupied with sorting out the Iraqi quagmire.
Hugo, that comparison is a bit far fetched, Bush has only polarised his people he is far from hypnotising them.
The Nile (denial) of the Holocaust
Dr Ahmadinejad has been quite instructive in a number of pronouncements as he has poured scorn on the half-baked solution that created Israel at the expense of Palestine.
We are still nowhere near a solution to that problem, as Europe helped the Jews reclaim the land of their fathers; they left the cousins of the Jews bereft of land which is also of their fathers.
As history would have it, the land belongs to the children of Abraham, to the line of Isaac and Jacob (Israel) by promise but then the other significant children as Ismael – purported to be the scion of Muslims of Arabia – and Esau who gave up his birth-right for a pot of porridge, hence losing the right to sire the promised nation.
The victorious powers after World War II assuaged their guilt by helping create the nation of Israel, but left it in perpetual turmoil by displacing others and not setting in clarity the status of Jerusalem and Palestine.
An Israel in Europe
Dr Ahmadinejad takes-off from this perspective as he berates Europe for having created a problem and solution in the Middle-East and lays bear in more graphic detail the injustice that represents itself as the new world order.
One can then see why he has adopted an all-or-nothing perspective which is Israel cannot exist at the expense of Palestine, the prevailing circumstances give no encouragement toward a ready solution.
In that light, it might sound plausible that the nation of Israel as a people which was so decimated by the Hitler should exist somewhere else in the West, as a recompense for the Hitler atrocities and the European indifference at the time.
However, Israel does need to exist in the Middle-East, if Dr Ahmadinejad’s comments force Europe and American to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian crises with more impetus, it would have been a thing done right.
Defence of the realm
Finally, when you are surrounded by your sworn enemies in Iraq and Afghanistan, the defence of the realm becomes the paramount objective, even if it includes nuclear weapons, and as long as those prime powers think they are more deserving of nuclear exploitation than you are, well, the debate would continue.
Another oil crisis looms probably with Angela’s help.

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