Thursday, May 22, 2003

Not an Imperial People

Now it seems that Colonel Tim Collins is being stitched up by some of his incompetent (incidentally American - so much for the Anglosphere) inferiors for his actions in Iraq.

Once you get over the hysterical "war crimes" tag, they seem to be either untrue - delaying food distribution to conscripts - or the actions of a normal occupier - stopping looters by blowing out the tyres of trucks that refused to stop at a roadblock. Is cutting up rough with the Fedayyin really a crime against humanity when they were shooting British prisoners?

The point is if you are going to carve out empires you can't act by the Cub Scout rule book. Occupation is a dirty and brutal business. Perhaps if the American officers showed some of the no-nonsense attitude that Collins did then there would not be looters and Shiite militias in Iraq at the moment.

Prissy witch-hunts are no way to go if you want to bend the world to your will. This is why any American carve up will fail, they are not up to it. Some of the most admirable qualities of Americans, their concern for constitutional decencies and their appreciation for the benefits of capitalism - are directly opposed to the brutality and sacrifice that will be demanded over the long term of an imperial people. They will either lose the admirable qualities or lose their bid for Empire. Indeed we British are no longer robust enough for an Empire.

That is one reason why Britain should keep well away from an American Empire. The other, which is merely illustrated rather than proved in this example, is that the Yanks will leave us holding the baby once we get in too deep.


Post a Comment

Blog Archive