Biden Visits Poland
Illustration c/o Andriy Bartashev
During a Sunday appearance on CBS' Face the Nation, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said U.S. President Joe Biden should get as close to Ukraine as he possibly can.
“It's fine to go to Berlin,” he said.
Why not visit Kyiv, as well? Bring Olaf and a copy of Spandauer Tagebücher.
We are already on one side of one big war for the foreseeable future.
We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind.
We have before us many, many long months of struggle and of suffering.
We must offer more than a total misunderstanding of the conflict.
Invaders must die.
It’s not as if we didn’t warn Christoph. But he didn’t want to listen. Now he’s sorry. Don’t be like Christoph.
Repeated statements by western leaders, including Joe and Olaf, about not being parties to the war are curious. Last time I checked, the United States and now Germany were providing intelligence, lethal weapons and even helmets (thanks Olaf!) to Ukraine. The scale of intervention on the side of Kyiv has continued to grow over the last three weeks. Repeated promises by leaders in the West not to interfere sound like an invitation for Putin to ramp up the invasion. Tickling Russia with sanctions to boost motivation for agreeing to a negotiable peace agreement won’t be enough, because Putin’s regime can survive as long as China sits on the fence.
Before I forget, I want to say something nice about Melinda’s chit chat with callers on C-Span.
Nothing comes to mind. Maybe something will occur to me later.
Spandau Prison used to be clearly visible from Teufelsberg in Forst Grunewald in western Berlin before it was turned into a shopping mall. The castle was home to seven top Nazi leaders convicted in the Nuremberg trials, including Alfred Speer, who spent 20 years there. Speer later became a best selling author - Inside the Third Reich (in German, Erinnerungen, or Reminiscences) and Spandau: The Secret Diaries (in German, Spandauer Tagebücher).
Joe and Olaf should keep this passage in mind:
“Despite the ideological kinship and growing personal ties, the decision was not an easy one. For several more days, Hitler grimly remarked that the situation had forced him to take this step, and was greatly relieved when the sanctions adopted in the final vote a few weeks later turned out to be relatively mild. From what happened, Hitler concluded: both England and France do not want to take risks and seek to avoid the slightest danger. His actions, which later seemed reckless, were the result of precisely those observations. Western governments, as he commented at the time, showed their weakness and indecision. His opinion was confirmed on March 7, 1936, when German troops entered the demilitarized Rhine zone, which was an open violation of the Locarno Treaty and could provoke military countermeasures from the Allied countries. In nervous excitement, Hitler waited for the first reaction. In all the compartments of the special train on which we were traveling to Munich, a tense atmosphere reigned, the epicenter of which was the compartment of the Fuhrer. At one of the stations, a message was brought to Hitler, and he breathed a sigh of relief: ‘Finally! The English king will not interfere. He keeps his promise. This means that everything will be fine…’ In any case, even after the message he did not calm down, and even later, when he was already at war against almost the whole world, he always called the entry of troops into the Rhine zone his most daring action.”