Bullies and Appeasers

Burt Prelutsky

5/30/2008 12:01:00 AM - Burt Prelutsky

Recently, President Bush made a few derogatory remarks about appeasers while addressing Israel’s governing body, the Knesset. Over there, his comments earned him a nice round of applause, while over here, Barack Obama took umbrage.

A spokesperson for the administration was quick to point out that, although no names were mentioned, Bush had been referring to -- and the Israelis understood him to be referring to -- America’s foremost ambassador of bad will, Jimmy Carter. After all, just a few weeks earlier, Carter had been given the cold shoulder by the Israelis when he was in the Middle East for a meet-and-greet with his chums in Hamas.

Well, I hate like the dickens to question the word of an official spokesperson, but if Bush didn’t have Obama in mind, he should have. Obama, after all, has been very candid about his intention to meet with Muslim terrorists if and when he becomes the commander-in-chief. Clearly, he thinks he can charm them as easily as he charms America’s hopelessly naïve college students.

Appeasers, I should point out, aren’t evil. After all, they want to be peacemakers. They are brimming over with good intentions. But we all know what the road to Hell is paved with, and it’s not tar or concrete.

Appeasers are terminally gullible and, at the same time, unbelievably egotistical. When quite soon after Neville Chamberlain ceded Czechoslovakia to Germany, Nazi tanks predictably rolled into Poland, Idaho’s Sen. William Borah suggested that he could have prevented that unfortunate turn of events if only he had had a chance to talk to Adolf Hitler.

People such as Obama and Joe Biden are always going on about how everyone in the world hates America because Bush invaded Iraq. What they neglect to mention is just who they have in mind. For one thing, several other nations signed on for the invasion, including Italy, Denmark, El Salvador, South Korea, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Spain, the Dominican Republic, the Philippines, the Netherlands and Japan. It’s true that Russia, China, France and Germany, stood in opposition, but that’s mainly because they all had sweetheart oil deals with Saddam Hussein, and didn’t wish to see their cheap oil supply jeopardized. However, in the past few years, there have been leadership changes in Germany and France, and unlike Francois Mitterand and Gerhard Schroder, both Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel are very friendly allies of the United States.

I’m not saying that America is universally beloved around the world. Heck, America isn’t universally beloved even in America. There are leftists here, there and everywhere, who despise our nation. They think we’re gun-happy. And, frankly, I am happy about the guns. The fact that we had them and were willing to use them, brought down Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union and, God willing, will do the same to Islamic fascism.

The fact of the matter is that when Democrats absolutely gloat about all the countries that are anti-American, the ones that come immediately to my mind are such bastions of freedom and liberty as China, Syria, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Myanmar, Yemen and the Sudan. Sometimes, I would suggest, you can better judge a nation by its enemies than by its friends. But it appears that Obama, Biden and a host of other left-wingers, are kept up nights by the knowledge that Yemen doesn’t like us.

What keeps me up nights is that Barack Obama, who’s convinced he could iron out our differences with despots and Islamic butchers if he could just sit down with them and flash his pearly whites, might wind up in the Oval Office. This is a guy, after all, who not only thinks we have 57 states, but that John Kennedy brought about a successful conclusion to the Cuban missile crisis by hashing things out over a cup of tea with Nikita Khrushchev.

What appeasers fail to understand is that once you sit down as equals with those who wish to slice your throat, your head is already halfway off your neck.

If I had the opportunity to chat with Barack Obama, I’d tell him a story about me and my cousin Rodney. When I was a kid, I used to dread family get-togethers because I knew that if Rodney showed up, I would be in for an afternoon of non-stop Indian burns, noogies and being wrestled into submission. My entire miserable day would be spent saying “Uncle!” to my cousin.

One day, even though Rodney was bigger and stronger than I was, I decided that enough was enough. The moment he started in, I punched him right in the nose. Even I was shocked when it started to bleed, but I must confess I was pretty happy when the tears welled up in Rodney’s eyes and he ran off to tell his parents.

Is it just possible that Barack Obama has never had to learn how to deal with a real life bully? If that’s the case, I sure don’t want him getting on-the-job training at America’s expense.

Just as a side note, Rodney never again tried to pick on me. In fact, the next time I saw him was when his parents, as a peace offering, I suppose, invited me to join the three of them for a game of miniature golf. On that occasion, I made my cousin bleed again when I whacked him in the skull with my golf club. But I swear that was an accident, and I felt awful about it. Still, just in case Rodney had been harboring any thoughts of revenge, I’m pretty sure I knocked them clear out of his head.