Scott Ritter speaks in Prague tomorrow afternoon at an event sponsored by some organization called "American Voices Abroad". Come hear Scott "tell truths", as prague.tv rather impartially pitches the event. I think I might go.
Hm. American Voices Abroad? Must be some kind of rah-rah group dedicated to improving the image of America around the world, right? Let's see: from the Prague chapter's web site:
American Voices Abroad is a non-partisan coalition with chapters in ten international capitols bringing together Americans abroad in opposition to current US foreign and domestic policy.
After September 11, 2001 we experienced an unprecedented outpouring of support and sympathy for the US in the countries where we live, only to see it squandered by aggressive unilateralism and disregard for world opinion.
AVA hopes to remind the countries that we live in that Americans do not stand united behind the policies of the present U.S. government and to encourage debate and discussion among Americans worldwide about the course of our democracy.
Oh. Apart from the squandering of goodwill theme, which I've been meaning to talk about and will do so later, there isn't much to get worked up about here. I can't object to somebody wanting Europeans to know that, well, not everybody supports Bush.
But - are Europeans really that stupid? Aren't we supposed to be the stupid ones? I'm not sure I've ever discussed Bush with an anti-Bush European who didn't take pains to point out that he didn't even win an absolute majority of votes. The papers are always full of polls showing how divided the country is and was over these issues. Guess what - Europeans actually don't think America stands united behind Bush. And ignoramuses that do aren't going to be swayed by efforts like this. So what's the problem here?
I think a little more honesty is in order: re-read the mission statement and replace each instance of "American" with "us", "our" or "we" and you just about have it. But more power to them. I'm not really complaining. Not that much ;).