Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Liberalists split on anti-terror legislation in Danish Parliament - votes from DPP may secure the majority

(The Danish People Party may look nice and dynamic on their posters all over the land, but they are not giving breath of fresh air to human rights by being Mr. Rasmussen's bleating sheep!)

Seven members of the liberalists' (Venstre's), the governing party's group in parliament (Folketinget) consider voting no to the liberalist-conservative government's anti-terror legislation. That may make it difficult to get the laws through parliament, as the big oppositon party The Social Democrats are also against the laws.

The sceptical liberalists are worried that the police should get increased powers to eavesdrop on citizens without a warrant. They're against the expanded video surveillance that may herald a big brother society. And finally they don't like the way the government tries to rush the anti-terror bill through parliament with the authoritarian conservative Danish People's Party. It may turn Denmark into a stronghold of conservative authoritarianism in Europe.

It is a question, though, if Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen can knock the obstinate liberalists into compliance with the party line. There is a tradition in Danish party politics of strong party allegiance. It is aganist the customs to vote against the party line in vital issues. It will be tantamount to exposing the weaknesses of Fogh Rasmussen and the government if they prevail. - But for the sake of freedom rights one must hope so.

Actually, liberal democracy was founded by the liberalists in the first place! The Danes have been a freedom loving people since the Vikings. That the foul breath from DPP and Osama Bin Laden should change this is beyond human comprehension. The Danes are suffering from an acute cosyness complex, in which welfare and comfort behind the privet hedge takes precedence over freedom!


Blogger Steven said...

I remember you still had a problem with that article. So here is more:

If it is Israel that decides on the deployment of American force, it seems odd that the first President Bush had to order them to stay out of the coalition to free Kuwait, and it is even more odd that the first order of neocon business has not been an attack on Iran, as Israeli hawks have been urging. Mearsheimer and Walt are especially weak on this point: They speak darkly about neocon and Israeli maneuvers in respect to Tehran today, but they entirely fail to explain why the main initiative against the mullahs has come from the European Union and the International Atomic Energy Authority, two organizations where the voice of the Jewish lobby is, to say the least, distinctly muted. Their theory does nothing to explain why it was French President Jacques Chirac who took the lead in isolating the death-squad regime of Assad’s Syria (a government that Mearsheimer and Walt regard, for reasons of their own, as a force for stability).

As for the idea that Israel is the root cause of the emergence of al-Qaida: Where have these two gentlemen been? Bin Laden’s gang emerged from a whole series of tough and reactionary battles in Central and Eastern Asia, from the war for a separate Muslim state in the Philippines to the fighting in Kashmir, the Uighur territories in China, and of course Afghanistan. There are hardly any Palestinians in its ranks, and its communiqués have been notable for how little they say about the Palestinian struggle. Bin Laden does not favor a Palestinian state; he simply regards the whole area of the former British Mandate as a part of the future caliphate. The right of the Palestinians to a state is a just demand in its own right, but anyone who imagines that its emergence would appease—or would have appeased—the forces of jihad is quite simply a fool. Is al-Qaida fomenting civil war in Nigeria or demanding the return of East Timor to Indonesia because its heart bleeds for the West Bank?


It is a shame it is not true, but unfortunately Israel does not have much of an influence.

7:59 PM  
Blogger Cosmic Duck said...


I think we interpret Mearsheimer and Walt's article differently. I do not interpret it as meaning that Israel determines American politicies towards the Middle East in all respects. That would be much beside the point. What they point out is that some fundamentals of American foreign policy must be understood by the big influence the Israeli lobby has in Washington. I think that part of their analysis is correct.

Of course, the big superpower is not a puppet of Israel.

But the fact that Israeli points of view and interests are taken into consideration to such a big degree as they are demonstrates a kind of superpower arrogance. The USA is so certain of its birhtright to dominate that part of the world that it disregards European interests and in some cases acts very foolishly, for instance with regard to Iraq, where it reinforces sectarian interests (shia) that the US has previously wanted to rein in. That Muqtada Al-Sadr is now leading strongman in Iraq is against what the Americans otherwise profess. But who played this power into his hands? I think there's no doubt it's the Americans.

In Palestine it would be more in line with American interests to soften the stance to Hamas, which has won an election. If the Americans talk of democracy but won't accept its implications, they are doing double talk.

10:29 PM  
Blogger Sophia said...

A just outcome to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would not appease bin Laden but it would dry up its message and its recruitment source i n the middle east. Bi n Laden's concern lies mainly in the overthrowing of the corrupted saudi regime who is a strong ally to the United States.

A lot have been said about Mearsheimer's and Walt,s article. I think you have to consider this article in the context of the aftermath of the cold war. The US support for Israel during the cold war was comprehensibe because, Egypt, Syria, Irak, Lybia and, to a certain extent, lebanon and some other middle eastern counbtries were in the former soviet union sphere and it made sense that the US stuck to a strong ally. Now, Arab countries are weakened and underdevelopped and it does not make sense for the US to stick to the same policy which is fomenting trouble, resentment and terrorrism.

I thnik the virtue of the article is to look to US policy from the point of view of US economic and political interests and it is clear that US middle east policy has no positive political and economic fallouts as it is conducted right now.
However, I think that the neo-con pro Israel lobby has interest in planting war and conflict in the region to distract the world community from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Oslo, however unjust for palestinains, was a wake up call for zionists. These people want a great Israel, their interest is in hegemony and they don't want a stable middle east neither a peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Did you notice that all this happened (9/11 and the Irak war) at a moment the international community was putting maximum pressure on Israel for a peace agreement.
Now all this is gone and Israel is free to draw its borders without negociations with Palestinians and in the way it pleases them and nobody, not even the EU, not even Arab countries (afraid and busy preserving their regimes in all this instability), is opposing the unilateral moves of Israel.

4:14 AM  
Blogger Cosmic Duck said...


You're right. It is remarkable how Israel can act unilaterally without anybody taking notice. If Israel is allowed to carry through with its project it'll leave deep scars of unresolved conflicts.

The EU have disappointed. It is not in the Europeans' interest to be virtual midwives in this process.

5:28 AM  

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