Commentary Magazine ran a post asking “Can American Save Europe Again?” It seems to me that the better question is should America save Europe again? Europe is certainly a repository of some of the world’s greatest art and architecture, not to mention some damn fine food, but I am not feeling the love for Europeans, who always seem to learn the wrong lessons from history.
The problem, as I see it, with continental Europe is that it has absolutely no tradition of individual liberty. It is statist to the bone. Whether Europeans are indulging in garden-variety-dictatorships, medieval/Renaissance theocracies, monarchies, aristocracies, oligarchies, socialist parties (communist or otherwise), or rule by bureaucrat (i.e., the EU), the European model is always directed at total state control. That’s why there is no conservative movement in Europe, as we in America understand conservatism.
To Americans, conservativism means small government, free markets, and maximum individual liberty, a belief in the common man’s energy, imagination, and initiative that paved the way for America’s dynamic emergence on the world stage in the 20th century. To Europeans, being “right wing” or “conservative” still means total government control — it just means total government control with varying degrees of nationalism, as opposed to all those other -isms, thrown in. The European “right-winger” still wants his government checks and government regulations. It’s just that he just doesn’t want the “other,” whomever that other happens to be (sometimes Muslims, sometimes Roma, sometimes Italians or Greeks, and always Jews) to live with him under that tight government control.
Europe’s obsession with citizen control, whether it comes through the socialist party, the communist party, the church, the bureaucracy, the aristocracy, or the monarchy, may go some way to explaining Europe’s endless hostility to the Jews — the Jews have never and will never yielded to state control. They can be confined to ghettos or forced into a narrow range of professions or even routinely slaughtered, but they still insist on being Jews. They refuse to bow down to anyone but their God.
How frustrating for control freak nations to have these stubborn people living among them. If they are that stubborn, they must be dangerous. And in a total control society, when something appears dangerous, you must destroy it.
This control-freakism also explains why Europeans have a grudging respect for Muslims. Muslims are just like them: total control, complete domination, universal micromanagement. As with the Europeans, there is no room for individual liberty in Islam. After all, Mohamed hated the Jews because, just as Jews wouldn’t bow down before European tyrants of whatever stripe, they wouldn’t bow down before Mohamed either. Even as both Muslim and European nations have a pretense of democracy, in that they allows citizens to hand in votes at the ballot box, the reality is that governance is invariably a top down affair with no regard for the actual political will and desires of the masses.
Despite the fundamental difference between the United States’ liberty-oriented paradigm, and the European’s obsession with control, we saved their bacon twice during the 20th century. Both times, our intervention came at great cost to us, although it would be lying to pretend that we didn’t reap the benefit in the years after each war, as Europe slowly recovered.
Still whatever benefits we reaped, we surely earned with blood and money. When we went into Europe in 1917 and defeated the Germans (allying America with England, the nation that seeded our liberties), our financial participation in the war cost us roughly $22,625,253,000 in World War I dollars. The cost in lives was just as steep: 116,516 dead and 204,002 wounded. Although it initially appeared as if we had achieved victory, the sad fact was that we’d helped lay the groundwork for WWII.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t have entered WWII on Europe’s behalf against the Nazis. After all, although most don’t know this, Germany declared war on America the day after Pearl Harbor. We were in the war whether or not we wanted, unless we sued for peace, instantly ceding total control over Europe to the Nazis. To a nation that resented being attacked (those were the days, weren’t they?), preemptive defeat wasn’t a possibility.
Even if going in was the right thing, it still didn’t come cheap. The financial cost is estimated to have been $288,000,000,000 in 1940s dollars (which would be approximately $3,826,921,348,314 in today’s dollars). The cost in lives of our two front war was also horrific: 405,399 dead and 670,846 wounded.
For a little perspective, keep in mind that, during WWI, the American population was roughly 100,000,000, with 116,516 war dead. During WWII, the American population was roughly 132,000,000, with 405,399 dead. And during the 21st century, with our population at roughly 300,000,000, we’ve lost fewer than 7,000 people over 13 years.
The horrible irony is that, after both wars, Europe still managed self-immolation. After the First World War, it took Europe only 20 years to become completely dysfunctional again, at a cost of 40 million or so lives (including most of European Jewry). After the Second World War, probably because we funded it through the Cold War, Europe decayed more slowly, taking it 70 years to become an economically broken, antisemitic, basket case, willingly subsuming its national identity, its children and its women to the every-increasing demands of its every-increasing Muslim population.
We’ve spilled a lot of American blood in and for Europe — and for what? Europeans en masse are fundamentally unchanged: They are inherently tyrannical, although for several decades after WWII the tryannical instincts were dressed up as a soft, friendly socialism. Now, though, with Europe under economic and demographic stress, all the nationalist, antisemitic ugliness that lurks beneath the surface is coming out. Should we really spill more blood on its behalf?
(And yes, I know that there are lovely, decent, freedom-loving people in Europe. I strongly suggest they come here or go to Israel before it’s too late. After all, nothing America does in the short term will protect them from their new Muslim overlords or from the blood that will need to be spilled to dislodge that new ruling class.)
I would certainly agree that America should go boots on the ground in Europe or planes in the air over Europe if America’s national security were at issue. This would be true whether we were helping Europeans fight back against an Islamic invasion or w were defending ourselves against an Islamic Europe.
But now, looking at Europe falling back into her old bad habits, and then making those habits worse by embracing Islamism and antisemitism . . . well, I just don’t see that Europe is worth American money or blood.
Feel free to argue me out of this position. I’m obviously in a grumpy, Europhobic mood this evening. As much as anything I’m putting the idea out there to see what you all think.
UPDATE: While I’m on the subject, yet another news report out of Europe:
France’s politicians and community leaders have criticised the “intolerable” violence against Paris’ Jewish community, after a pro-Palestinian rally led to the vandalizing and looting of Jewish businesses and the burning of cars.
It is the third time in a week where pro-Palestinian activists have clashed with the city’s Jewish residents. On Sunday, locals reported chats of “Gas the Jews” and “Kill the Jews”, as rioters attacked businesses in the Sarcelles district, known as “little Jerusalem”.
Manuel Valls, France’s prime minister said: “What happened in Sarcelles is intolerable. An attack on a synagogue and on a kosher shop is simply anti-Semitism. Nothing in France can justify this violence.”
The toxic combination of Progressives and Muslims is revving its Nazi revival. We’re now seeing repeats of Kristallnacht. The Jews — and anyone who loves individual liberty — had better leave before these antisemitic, anti-Christian and (with Muslims in the lead) misogynistic homophobes do their next replay of 1938 or 1939 or 1940 or. . . .