Which is it? Separate Wash. Times opeds compare Obama administration to 1930s Germany, 1930s England
Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF
From Walter E. Williams' June 13 oped in The Washington Times, headlined, "Americans love government:
I don't think that stupidity, ignorance or insanity explains the love that many Americans hold for government; it's far more sinister and perhaps hopeless. I'll give a few examples to make my case. Many Americans want money they don't personally own to be used for what they see as good causes such as handouts to farmers, poor people, college students, senior citizens and businesses. If they privately took someone's earnings to give to a farmer, college student or senior citizen, they would be hunted down as thieves and carted off to jail. However, they get Congress to do the identical thing, through its taxing power, and they are seen as compassionate and caring. In other words, people love government because government, while having neither moral nor constitutional authority, has the legal and physical might to take the property of one American and give it to another.
The unanticipated problem with this agenda is that as Congress uses its might to take what belongs to one American to give to another - what President Obama calls "spreading the wealth around" - more and more Americans will want to participate in the looting. It will ultimately produce something none of us wants: absolute control over our lives.
The path we're embarked upon, in the name of good, is a familiar one. The unspeakable horrors of Nazism, Stalinism and Maoism did not begin in the '30s and '40s with the men usually associated with those names. Those horrors were simply the end result of a long evolution of ideas leading to consolidation of power in central government in the name of "social justice." In Germany, it led to the Enabling Act of 1933: Law to Remedy the Distress of the People and the Nation. After all, who could be against a remedy to relieve distress? Decent but misguided Germans, who would have cringed at the thought of what Nazi Germany would become, succumbed to Hitler's charisma.
Today's Americans, enticed, perhaps enchanted, by charismatic speeches, are ceding so much power to Washington, and like yesteryear's Germans, are building the Trojan horse for a future tyrant.
From Jeffrey Kuhner's June 13 oped in The Washington Times, headlined, "Capitulation in Cairo?":
The liberals' mantra is that the majority of Muslims are nonviolent moderates. This is undeniably true. But it misses the point.
During the 1930s, appeasement was based upon the notion that a majority of Germans were decent people who simply wanted peace and national self-determination. Thus, British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain made the fateful decision to give away the Sudetenland, Czechoslovakia's ethnic German region, to Adolf Hitler's Nazi regime.
By betraying the Czechs at the Munich conference, Chamberlain believed he had secured "peace for our time." Instead, he had emboldened Hitler to wage a war of conquest. The end result was a Europe in tatters, 50 million dead and the Holocaust. The fact that there were countless moderate, anti-Nazi Germans meant nothing. Their refusal to speak out against Hitler's Aryan racialism guaranteed its march to power - and destruction. History reveals that it is militant minorities - not reasonable majorities - that often drive events.
Across the Muslim world, Islamists are on the march. They may represent only 10 percent of the Muslim population, but that still amounts to nearly 150 million people. Mr. Obama rarely mentioned democracy and never said the word "terrorism."
Yet the Middle East does not need greater empathy nor multicultural sensitivity. Rather, it needs to hear cold, hard truths: Its backwardness is rooted in the lack of Enlightenment modernity and liberal democracy. The region's despots foster anti-Semitic, anti-American hatred to distract citizens from their profound misrule. The absence of press freedoms, political accountability and the rule of law has only fueled Islamic fascism. The darkness of dictatorship breeds jihadism; to drain the terrorist swamp requires systemic democratic reform - which Mr. Obama refused to address openly and candidly.
He could have called for Egypt's corrupt autocracy to release democratic dissidents rotting in its jails. He could have called for Saudi Arabia to no longer fund radical madrassas. He could have called on Arab rulers to stop persecuting Jews and Christians. He could have called on Syria to end its support for Hamas and Hezbollah. But he did not.
Instead, Mr. Obama highlighted the core principle of his foreign policy: a tough line against Israel. He repeated his call for an independent Palestinian state and for Jerusalem to halt expanding settlements. The key issue in the region, however, is not Palestine. It is Iran.
Mr. Obama is repeating Chamberlain's tragic mistake - except this time, the Israelis are to play the role of the Czechs, the sacrificial lamb at the altar of appeasement. Senior Israeli intelligence officials admit the Obama administration has privately told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Washington can live with an Iranian nuclear bomb. Mr. Obama believes it is only a matter of time. Moreover, should Israel attack Iran's nuclear sites to prevent the mullahs from achieving the bomb, Jerusalem - not Tehran - will be blamed for any military conflict.