February 25, 2003

Faulty Premises:

While continuing to poke around Der Spiegel I found this story about Chirac and his current gambit. With the title The Emperor of Europe I didn't expect to learn anything new, although the authors do present a more detailed analysis of Chirac's motivations than we typically see ... all told, it's worth the read.

Of most interest, though, is this paragraph, which we find near the end of the article ... after the authors make a relatively compelling case for the Chirac strategy:

President Bush recently threatened "the game is over." But, as Chirac's chief diplomat Villepin declares time and again, "history has not yet been written." The two men are confident that they will win the game in the end, as long as Saddam acts rationally and curbs his rhetoric.

Chirac's strategy will work "as long as Saddam acts rationally." Well ... I think we know how this will turn out.

This single sentence crystallizes the entire U.S./Old Europe/U.N. disconnect ... the Europeans and U.N. are working from the premise that Saddam will act rationally ... in the form of European rationality. We, however, are not. We learned a lesson from Neville Chamberlain. Our premise is that Saddam Hussein will act rationally based on Husseinian rationality ... and if you look at his history, it's easy to see that willful disarmament does not lie within the Iraqi leader's view of self-interest. There are no contradictions, only faulty premises ... and the Europeans have yet to learn that "A IS A."

Posted by Avocare at February 25, 2003 05:26 PM
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