Dear Raphael and all,
Ashamed as I am of this fact, I am afraid these are not just fronts. There
are Americans who think this way. There are European neo-nazis, but
neither I nor anyone I know thinks they define Europe. So I repeat that
Kate speaks for Kate, not for America. Ignoring these people does not
make them go away, and even more unfortunately, they keep voting and
talking. I think if history teaches us anything, it is that they must never be
left to possess the forum.
It is a great comfort to me that Europe is openly speaking against Bush's
policies, that my local paper's letter page is full of Americans questioning
and challenging Bush's policies, that even his father's advisors are
speaking against Bush's policies. He did not go to the UN because he
wanted to from the start; he has been pressured. Everyone has a
responsibility not to ignore jingoism and foolish ideas. I spent much of the
summer reading about WWI because I believe Eliot was much more
immediately and directly affected by it and his poetry more focused on it
than has been usually discussed. What horrified me was the way current
rhetoric from the White House is the same as the absurdly cheerful belief
that the War would be quick (over by Christmas) and easy and glorious.
Ironically, American polls show support for "regime change" (the current
euphemism) but drop significantly if it means American soldiers would die.
No comment is necessary or possible on that.
I appreciate Frank's letter very much. But I do wish all such messages
would keep in the forefront that this is not about "America" but about
specific and hateful attitudes not restricted to Americans and equally
offensive to me and nearly everyone I know.
Date sent: Sat, 14 Sep 2002 14:36:17 +0200
Send reply to: "T. S. Eliot Discussion forum." <[log in to unmask]>
From: INGELBIEN RAPHAEL <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: OT Re: Towers and Dust
To: [log in to unmask]
Frank (and others, especially newcomers),
Some names on this list are just fronts for Jerry Falwell and neo-cons of
that ilk. No need to get all worked up when they start ranting about the
Middle East - just ignore.
[log in to unmask]
----- Original Message -----
From: frank kretschmer
To: [log in to unmask]
Sent: Saturday, September 14, 2002 10:56 AM
Subject: Re: Towers and Dust
"Yes, I am against war! I want my wife to be veiled and suppressed, fuck
you America! Hail the tyrant! Where can I sent my donation for terror
Is this, what you believe? Do you believe, the decision of anyone who is
against war is taken lightly? Irony or no, I do see the point of your
If anyone convinced me that a war on Iraq, which will, by the way, kill
these "women in veil chains and their children in ignorant obedience",
as well as those who keep the there, can achieve anything, I would agree
that it might be necessary - although I still would consider it a great
evil. But I don't think it will achieve anything. What will happen after
you have won this war, I may kindly ask. Just ask. We see what happed in
Afghanistan :One city which is relatively free, the rest of the country
still totally out of control. And the war on Saddam will be much more
difficult the situation being much more complex.
Your comparison to the liberation of Paris is utterly misleading: The
people there wanted to be liberated. They could be trusted to install a
democratic & fair Government after they had been liberated. They did not
eventually hate their liberators.
And even on ironic terms: I don't see the joke in saying we should
refrain from doing America "any great favor". Sending soldiers into
death just because of a favor. What a ridiculous idea.
The lady in the harbor glistens alright. And yes, your country is more
free than Saddam's. And so is mine. This is no big deal. And still the
lady should be a reminder for both our countries that we could do a lot
better in dealing with people criticizing our way of life; not by
throwing bombs at us but by the using those peaceful means that the idea
of liberty makes possible. (No, I have not forgotten the way the
American Government treated socialist during the time of the first World
war, virtually mocking every principle that America was claming to be
fighting for. Has this attitude improved?).
I do not want to be generalizing here. This is not a matter of living in
Europe or America. This is my personal Opinion versus Kate's. Being
apposed to war or being in favor of it is a personal decision based on
moral values or convictions. There is no other way.
In the 70th , Paul Fussel stated that "Every war constitutes an irony of
situation because its means are so melodramatically disproportionate to
its resumed ends." As long as you cant convince me otherwise, stop
talking of "lack of oil reserves" or "lack of character reserves."
As I said before, maye I am simply missing the irony or the point of
Kate's mail. If this is so, just for me, being the stupid European that
I am (soory to all my intelligent fellow Europeans ;-) ), could it be
made more clear?