Sunday, April 10, 2011

Not the best example

Rejoice! Prime Minister Donald Tusk has seen the light and finally saw European politics for what it is: a hypocrisy. You see, it turns out Poland did not join the military operation in Libya not because it does not have a modern air force or support troops that could be used in the operation, but because the Libyan intervention is a sign of Europe's hypocrisy! It is obvious that the Prime Minister does not want to be a hypocrite. Who would want to be?

However, as one of my favourite movie characters from Seksmisja says "That was not the best example". Mr Prime Minister, please correct me, but somehow I missed the part where Donald Tusk thought Poland's engagement in operation Iraqi Freedom was hypocrisy or where he said we will pull out of Afghanistan immediately or would quit the war on terror altogether. Nah, then, we are a "responsible member of the alliance," as Defense Minister Bogdan Klich likes to put it, and we will be stuck there until the end and then some.

Tusk in his analysis is of course correct. There are three main reasons for Europe's involvement in Libya: oil, oil and oil. The 180-degree shift in approach to Mr Gaddafi is a blatant display of hypocrisy, but that is what global politics is. For God's sake -- this is your job as prime minister. You want to be a high-rolling European politician. And that means dealing with a lot of dung. So, please spare us the "naive play" part as if you had no clue beforehand!

There is one more problem with Mr. Tusk's logic if you take it seriously. It basically gives a free pass for any tyrant, dictator, military junta or what-not on the planet. Why? Because it is impossible for Europe to have a consistent human rights policy and act on it universally. Therefore this all-or-none dilemma Tusk presents has only one plausible outcome: no action should be taken against the "bad guys" of this world because it would always be in someone's interest.

Imagine someone calling for help, fearing for their life. Donald Tusk walks by and says, "My dear fellow, given that I cannot help all the poor blokes of this world fearing for their lives, it would be hypocrisy to help you. I don't even know you after all, so goodbye and good luck."

The fact that we cannot right all wrongs in this world is not a reason to right the ones we actually see and can do something about. As I said, not the best example, Mr Tusk.

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