Monday, August 3, 2015

“…a Munich-like arrogance...”

“…a Munich-like arrogance...” Victor Davis Hansen on the Iran deal.  His conclusion:
We are seeing this predictable caricature as well, as the Obama administration keeps insisting that there was no alternative to the deal other than either an apocalyptic nuclear Iran or yet another ill-starred Western preemptive attack in the Middle East — even as sanctions had crippled the Iranian economy to the point that the theocracy in extremis limped to the negotiation table seeking relief.

Today we see a Munich-like arrogance that men of assumed reason and sobriety, by their winning charisma, rare mellifluence, or superior wisdom, can convince Khamenei of the errors of his ways. Western humanists habitually preen that they can demonstrate to authoritarians why their bellicosity is supposedly against their own self interests — as if autocratic aggressors envision risking war, and shorting their own people, as unimaginable evils in comparison with the acquisition of honor, glory and respect that follows from easily bullying neighbors and successfully gobbling up real estate. John Kerry believes that the bomb is not in Iran’s real interest; Iran believes that so far even the idea of a bomb most certainly has proved very much in Iran’s interest.

As the democracies negotiated away Czechoslovakia to Hitler at Munich, the Japanese and Italians had earlier offered the world clear instruction about the wages of appeasement. Their serial aggressions in China and East Africa throughout the late 1930s had sated neither dictatorship, but rather convinced both that there were lots of weak countries that could be safely harvested without incurring a larger war with the West.

While John Kerry ignored the long-term security of Israel and the Sunni states in the Middle East, Vladimir Putin had earlier demonstrated that Ossetia led to the Crimea that led to Eastern Ukraine that may well soon lead to the Baltic states. Failed reset no more wised up John Kerry than Abyssinia or Manchuria had enlightened Neville Chamberlain. Munich’s 1938 hype led to catastrophe in 1939, in a way that the current 2015 self-congratulation may well become frightening in 2016.

The Iran deal is not Munich, but the same naiveté, vanity, and foolishness of Western leaders is close enough to warn us about what happens next. And it will not be good.
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