James Delingpole launches a rather unfair attack on Frank Gaffney and gets it wrong on the Ukraine. After 8 paragraphs of aimless juvenile snark, he gets around to making his point.
“Fast forward to the present and does anyone, anywhere in Western Europe or North America, seriously imagine that Putin’s Russia poses a threat even remotely comparable to the one once offered by the Soviet Union in the bad days of the Cold War?”
Let’s not beat a strawman too hard around the bush. Putin isn’t Stalin, but neither is he the obscure bit player with no relevance to our lives that Delingpole tries to make him out to be.
Russia is an enemy, aside from the espionage, it encourages its allies to engage in conflicts with the United States and sees itself as locked in a global power struggle with the West. Delingpole can sneer about Red Dawn all he likes, but it doesn’t change the reality that Putin sees this as a zero sum game and that he views the UK and the US as enemies.
The idea that a malicious world power should be disregarded when it invades another country in order to expand its empire and that anyone who feels otherwise is a warmongering buffoon is leftover rhetoric from Cold War lefties.
That doesn’t mean we should be going to war, but it is a topic that is at the very least worth taking seriously.
And if Delingpole really thinks Putin is irrelevant to his life, he might want to follow some of the polonium trails that Vladimir left around London back in 2006.
I believe they turned up a few in Heathrow Airport.
“What has suddenly possessed them to decide that the integrity of an independent Ukraine is of such paramount importance that the leaders of the free west should be prepared to hazard all to prevent the wicked Putin sending any more of his troops into thingummyjig and sealing off the airport of wotsisname?”
Or the integrity of an independent Czechoslovakia or Poland.
No one seriously believes that Putin is going to stop at his latest invasion point. Is there anything short of London that Delingpole does believe should merit an armed response?
Aside from the moral principle that small countries shouldn’t be gobbled up by large countries, especially large nasty totalitarian countries that are declared enemies, there are more practical considerations.
As Frank Gaffney has pointed out, Putin is trying to reconstruct a version of the USSR via the Eurasian Union. That’s not of minor relevance to us considering that a Eurasian Union would further escalate its conflict with the US and UK.
And for various historical reasons, Russia sees the UK as a bigger enemy than the US. Choosing to ignore that fact will not make it go away.
On Breitbart Radio last night, the admirable Frank Gaffney – a former defence adviser to the man who did more than anyone to bring about the end of the Cold War, Ronald Reagan – was ramping up the rhetoric about global conflagration…
… which might suggest that maybe Gaffney knows what he’s talking about.