New Solidarity with an Old Nordic Friend; Denmark Remains One of Our Smallest, Yet Strongest allies.(OPED)

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), September 10, 2002 | Go to article overview

New Solidarity with an Old Nordic Friend; Denmark Remains One of Our Smallest, Yet Strongest allies.(OPED)


Byline: Anders Fogh Rasmussen, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Denmark is among the smallest allies of the United States. But it is also true that Denmark is among the biggest allies of the United States.

No other country has maintained unbroken diplomatic relations with the United States for longer than the Kingdom of Denmark.

After my meeting with the president of the United States in the Oval Office earlier this year, I was therefore particularly pleased to be able to state that the relationship between the United States and Denmark has never been better. Our common values, shared destiny and visions have been further fortified by the horrors of September 11.

On the first anniversary of that somber date, Danes will think back with sympathy and sorrow on the victims of the terrorist attacks against the United States and their bereaved families. One year later, our solidarity with America is undiminished.

September 11 was a defining moment calling for determined action in defense of humanity and fundamental freedoms. Acting can entail dangers but the dangers of inaction are far, far greater. In the face of today's new threat, the only way to pursue peace is to pursue those who threaten it.

Denmark's close ties with the United States and the trans-Atlantic bonds between Europe and the United States are of paramount importance to Denmark. These relations are at the very core of Danish foreign policy. Denmark will never forget the essential contribution of the United States in defense of European democracies in two world wars and the Cold War. Nor shall we forget the generosity of the United States when it came to the staggering task of rebuilding a ruined Europe.

America and Denmark see eye-to-eye on the real challenges facing us today. In the fight against terrorism, Denmark was, is and will be fully behind the United States. Our best soldiers have been in Afghanistan on the ground and in the mountains, fighting alongside U.S. special operations forces. The danger is far from over and the international community must not waver now.

Our agreement is unequivocal that international terrorism must be fought and that the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction must be prevented. Such weapons must not fall into the hands of terrorists and ruthless dictators.

Denmark shares with the United States a grave concern with the spiral of violence in the Middle East. Both the United States and Denmark have deep-rooted ties with Israel. As many Americans remember, the Danes in 1943 managed to save most Danish Jews from the Nazi occupation regime.

Israel has a right to defend itself when attacked by suicide bombers. But military intervention is not a viable solution to the conflict. Israel's defense against terror should not lead to the death and suffering of innocent Palestinian civilians.

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New Solidarity with an Old Nordic Friend; Denmark Remains One of Our Smallest, Yet Strongest allies.(OPED)
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