BLAME HIM, NOT AMERICA; Greedy, Self-Interested and Arrogant, America Is Also the Most Incredible Social and Economic Machine in History. A Shamefully Ill-Defended Europe Has No Right to Sneer SATURDAY ESSAY
Byline: MAX HASTINGS
PRESIDENT George Bush's trip to Britain next week is perhaps the most unpopular state visit since that of the late Emperor Hirohito of Japan.
Indeed, the emperor attracted protests only from those who remembered his nation's ghastly past. The President provokes outrage among those dismayed by his present follies, and fearful of worse to come.
A friend, a highly intelligent middle-aged woman of liberal rather than Leftwing views, intends to be out there on the London streets next Thursday, determined to do her small part to show how unwelcome is George Bush in this town.
She will not, of course, be able to throw tomatoes at him in the traditional open carriage with the Queen, even were she so rude as to wish to do so.
There will be no open carriage.
This visit is to be conducted according to Bush custom, not British.
Unless our hapless monarch takes a firm line, she is liable to find herself asked to serve some Texan delicacy like okra with black-eyed peas at the state banquet.
'If only,' a Whitehall acquaintance with some marginal responsibility for The Visit observed wistfully, 'we could arrange it so that the President did not have to speak. It is when he opens his mouth that things go wrong. The rhetoric is awful.' Tony Blair was, of course, foolish to encourage Bush to come. The trip was planned in the faraway days before matters went pear-shaped in Iraq. But it has been evident for a long time that this President and the British people are not soulmates.
Britain, amid the misgivings of many of its people, stuck its neck out for the sake of the Atlantic Alliance, in Afghanistan and in Iraq.
Even if it is wrong to regard international relationships entirely as a matter of horsetrading, it is dispiriting to …
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Publication information: Article title: BLAME HIM, NOT AMERICA; Greedy, Self-Interested and Arrogant, America Is Also the Most Incredible Social and Economic Machine in History. A Shamefully Ill-Defended Europe Has No Right to Sneer SATURDAY ESSAY. Contributors: Not available. Newspaper title: Daily Mail (London). Publication date: November 15, 2003. Page number: 12. © 2007 Daily Mail. COPYRIGHT 2003 Gale Group.
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