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Hot under the collar in Europe

It was bound to happen. Writers in Europe have woken up to the fact that Americans do not regard the European chattering classes with particular fondness and respect. Paul Gottfried in a singularly bad-tempered article in this week’s edition of The Spectator magazine, broadly tries to argue that there is a right-wing smear campaign in American intellectual and political circles to discredit Europe and to portray Europeans as anti-Semitic, cowardly, cynical, socialistic idiots.

Well, Gottfried makes a few decent points, and it is undoubtedly true that there has been a strain of hostility towards Europe in some of the commentary emanating from Jefferson’s Republic (den Beste at USS Clueless and some of the Weekly Standard writers are particular offenders). But Gottfried does not pause to consider why this hostility has arisen. It is not because Americans are jealous of Europe, why should they be? It is not fear of us…that’d be the day! It is a lack of patience with the sneering, dishonest rubbish coming out of the lips of the likes of Chris Patten and the rest. From what I read, I get the impression that all but the most bigoted paleo-conservative commentators appreciate that most European folk like and are sympathetic to the U.S., want it to beat terror, and will help in that cause.

God Save the Queen and God Bless America.

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