Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don't

It seems to me, that a lot of folks out there hate us here. Not just a little bit, but a lot.

A lot of you say, "Neil, you're imagining it."

Oh, contraire, my friends. I'm just back from London and I saw it. First hand. Up close. In person.

I was attending an international investors conference. Some of the finest financial minds in the world were there. And little old me.

The timing was interesting. President bush was in the middle of his European and Russian tour.

One panel devoted an entire discussion as to whether, to quote one of the speakers, "Cowboy Bush is blowing it."

It didn't end there. It began there.

On the war on terror: He's over-doing it.

On the Iraqi threat: He can't prove it.

And on helping developing nations: He isn't cutting it.

When it was my turn to speak, I said simply... surely there's something my country is doing right? It got a nervous chuckle. But my point there and here is the same. We are damned if we do and damned if we don't in this country.

Damned for overdoing it in our war on terror. But damned for not doing enough to rid the world of Al Qaeda.

Damned for trying to go after Saddam now. But damned for not really going after the guy a decade ago.

Damned for meddling in other countries' business. But damned for not meddling enough in places like Pakistan and India.

I politely reminded my hosts there is a difference between "debating" and "doing." A difference between appeasing a butcher like Slobodan Milosevic as many in Europe wanted and doing something about him as we ultimately did.

History shows that evil debated is evil ignited. A threat ignored is a threat unleashed. And when it is unleashed, it's up to us, the United States, to leash it, stop it and crush it.

But what's crushing is the reaction we get for the work we do. The problem isn't that we're not doing enough for the Europeans. The problem is we're doing too much.

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