Sunday, May 18, 2008

Negotiating isn't appeasement

J. Peter Scoblic wrote in Los Angeles Times In a speech to the Israeli parliament Thursday, President Bush took a swipe at Barack Obama for his willingness to negotiate with evil regimes.
He never mentioned Obama's name. Maybe Obama is feeling fuilty, He just as well could have been thinking of Jimmy Carter who recently met with terrorists, or Nancy Pelosi who recently met with Syria.
"Some seem to believe that we should negotiate with the terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along," Bush said. "We have heard this foolish delusion before. As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: 'Lord, if I could only have talked to Hitler, all this might have been avoided.' We have an obligation to call this what it is -- the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history."
But if there is anything that has been discredited by history, it is the argument that every enemy is Hitler, that negotiations constitute appeasement,
But if those negotiations result in your giving something, and not getting something other than a promise which will not be kept, like when Chamberlain signing of the Munich Agreement in 1938, conceding part of Czechoslovakia to Hitler, who then took the rest.
and that talking will automatically lead to a slaughter of Holocaust-like proportions.
Including talking to someone developing nuclear weapons who claims the Holocaust never happened, but promising to make it happen as he destroys Israel?
It is an argument that conservatives made throughout the Cold War, and, if the charge seemed overblown at the time, it seems positively ludicrous with the clarity of hindsight.

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