Instapundit, the most prolific and best known of the conservative bloggers, seems happy to join in the current trend for Euro-bashing with this piece of nonsense, which kind of sums up what I mean by the knee-jerk anti-Europeanism of some on the American right:

“The United States would, I think, be happy if Europe took actual responsibility for some of the world’s problems instead of carping from the sidelines.”

Would they really? Is expressing an opinion or a criticism not taking responsibility? Or does ‘taking actual responsiblity’ mean to just do as we are told by the Americans?

And then there is this from the same source: Most of America’s biggest problem areas, after all, from Vietnam to the Middle East, were inherited from others. But so long as Europe favors subsidies over substance, carping from the sidelines will be all it can do.

Now then, who was it who armed Saddam and helped him in his war with Iran? Who was it who armed the Mujhadeen in Afghanistan and who used radical Islamisist groups as anti-Soviet hitsquads?

And what the hell have state subsidies got to do with the rise of terrorism?

EDIT: Interesting piece in the Washington Post on this theme

Commenting on the dumb ‘Old Europe’ jibe from Saddam’s old pal Rumsfeld, Michael Dobbs writes:

Although it may be true that NATO’s center of gravity is shifting to the east, military analysts point out that France and Germany contributed many troops to peacekeeping efforts in the Balkans and could have a similarly important role in stabilizing a post-Hussein Iraq. Without strong European participation in the Iraq peacekeeping effort, said Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution, the United States might even have to expand its standing army to provide a long-term occupation force.

“If Rumsfeld had thought through how much we will need these allies for the occupation of Iraq, I presume he would not have made such a stupid comment,” said O’Hanlon, who estimates that the postwar stabilization force could number about 100,000 troops for the first three years and 50,000 for five more years. “In Kosovo and Bosnia, we provided only 15 percent of the peacekeeping forces. Europe provided most of the rest.”