Our Friends in Europe?

The Daily Mirror is supposedly a very left-wing, anti-U.S. rag in the United Kingdom.  But one of their top journalists, Tony Parsons, wrote moving articles about America on Sept. 11, 2002 and again on Feb. 3, 2003 after Columbia crashed.  Now he has written this:

The Daily Mirror. London
Mar 17, 2003

By Tony Parsons

I hope that the continent of Europe never again needs help from the United States of America.

I hope that there’s never some murderous little tyrant – another Hitler, another Milosevic – that Europe needs help in taming.

I hope that there’s never some economic catastrophe that requires American dollars to make it right, as they did at the end of the Second World War.

I hope that the Euro experiment works. I hope that all those peace-loving souls in Belgium, Germany and France can somehow muster an army to protect themselves.

I hope that the continent I live on never again needs to go cap in hand to the Americans.

Because if that black day ever comes, I have the feeling that America might just tell Europe where to go.

On the eve of war, there is a tangible anger in America.  But surprisingly not all of it of it is directed against the Saddam Hussein and his regime. It is the French and their government who are detested by the Americans.

“This is all about oil,” the Brits hear all the time. And Americans think there is some truth to it being “all about oil” too. In this case – the $50 billion worth of oil contracts that France has with Iraq. In American eyes, that is why the French are so keen to avoid a war to remove Saddam Hussein and his regime in Iraq.

Anti-French feeling in the United Kingdom is rarely any more than a passing fancy, a jokey bit of “hop-off-you-Frogs” banter.  This is currently NOT true in America.  Their anti-French feeling is no joke or passing fancy.

The cafeteria in the House of Representatives no longer serves French fries – chips to you and me, guvnor.  Now they sell something called “freedom fries”.  That sounds nuts – and of course it is.  But that is a small example of the growing feeling in America that France has no respect for the U.S.

But when a furious Congresswoman presents a “bring home our dead” bill demanding that the 75,000 American men and boys who died in France during two world wars be dug up and brought home, you definitely realize that this is more than “hop-off-you-Frogs” banter.

Congresswoman Ginny Brown-Waite says, “The remains of our brave servicemen should be buried in patriotic soil, not in a country that has turned its back on the U.S. and on the memory of Americans who fought and died there.”

That’s the difference between the British and the Americans.  We do not feel that the British casualties in two world wars died to liberate the French. We believe that we were fighting for our nation’s survival.  Just like the Russians.

It is different for Americans.  Throughout the 20th century, through two world wars and one Cold War, America gave all the blood and money Europe needed to keep it free.

They feel that the current crisis has proved that Europeans are, when all is said and done, an ungrateful bunch of Euro bastards who do not give a flying baguette about the 75,000 American graves in Europe.  This is a very serious matter, not to be taken lightly.

Anti-European feeling in the U.S. goes right across the board of public opinion, even among the thousands of Americans who are passionately against attacking Iraq.  America is united in feeling betrayed by Europe. America is finally starting to understand that – to Europe’s eternal shame – there is a European opinion that 9/11 was America’s comeuppance.

Secretaries and waiters leaping from the top of the burning twin towers — The fault of American arrogance???

A terrified four-year-old girl cowering at the back of a hijacked plane —
Blame it on America’s support for Israel???

A stewardess with her throat slit by a carpet cutter — One in the eye for American imperialism???

Those 3,000 dead, murdered on live television — Europe blames America???

When 9/11 happened, you might have expected to see Palestinians dancing in the street — but who would have expected the grim look of satisfaction on the faces of old Europe???

Those Americans who are against the war admire Britain because we had a peace march where a hundred thousand people filled the streets of England.

Those millions of Americans for the war admire Britain because Tony Blair has been a true friend to America.  And although the average man on the English street might make jibes about Blair being a “poodle,” among American hawks, our Prime Minister is seen as strong-willed.  He is seen as strong willed by the Americans – and we English should be bloody glad of it!

It has been good to be British in America these past few weeks.  For America has been reminded that Britain is the best friend it has in the world, joined by blood, language, history, instinct and culture.

When will the uninformed masses of British wake up from their pathetic little dreams of being Europeans and realize that we have been looking for our future in all the wrong places?

Who wants to be European today?  Who wants to be an ungrateful,
unprincipled, two-faced, pacifist, Euro-grasping, oil-hungry Lilliputian?

No matter what happens over the coming days and weeks, it is true what they say – the English Channel is far wider than the Atlantic.

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