America and Europe Divided on Terror War

Many Europeans are aghast to find the American president tromping through their front yards talking about a war on Iraq, and realizing that he doesn't seem to get it: They don't want a war with Iraq, and don't understand why he keeps insisting on it.

Various Europeans — government officials, editorial writers, protestors — paint President Bush's determination for a regime change in Iraq, which will only come with some kind of an American-sponsored war, as farcically simple minded and needless.

They invent all sorts of reasons why Bush would be so stupid. Maybe it's because he wasn't a brilliant student, or because he isn't the smartest of George Bush Sr.'s sons. Maybe it's because he and his family are tied up in the business side of war, and need a war to make money...

This European theorizing about Bush misses the point completely... and here it is: The president realizes America is the terrorists' target. The Europeans instinctively know they are not. Their anti-Americanism and their anti-Zionist positions exempt them from being targeted.

Oh yes, a few years ago there was a plot to run a plane into the Eiffel Tower... but that was then.

This is now, and now America is such a delicious target for every discontented Islamist on the planet, that it doesn't make sense that they would waste one of their bombs on a few Frenchmen who are on their anyway.

As Dick Morris said... the safest place to live is London because all the terrorists live there. They're not going to blow themselves up.

The Europeans think America is being overly sensitive to this terror thing, and that an actual war against an actual perp like Iraq is — how shall we say — too much?

The Europeans don't want a war because wars are messy and they have business interests in Iraq. Europe is not a target, so its people don't feel the imperative to act.

President Bush is smart enough and focused enough to realize that America is the bulls-eye. This terror game is like darts. You throw more than one dart at the bulls-eye...

Bush also knows that the bad guys are going to come at us again, and so he figures that a good way to stop them would be to go where they come from — Afghanistan and Iraq.

Bush is right. Europe is wrong.

That's My Word.

What do you think? We'd like to hear from you, so send us your comments at Some of your emails will be featured on the air or on our site.

• Looking for some previous My Word columns? Click here!