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Sunday, October 10, 2004

White House alienating allies all across Europe

The Associated Press reports:

"From Britain to the Baltics, many sense a sea change in sentiment toward an America they once admired — largely linked to what they call an arrogant contempt of others after 9-11...

Like many Europeans who see the American chief executive as reshaping their world, [Cedric] Judicis wishes he could vote.

'To us, America was always the gold standard,' he said. 'It made mistakes, but it always meant well. We were like pupils who admired the master.'

Judicis has made six trips to the United States and, unlike some others, he is eager to go back.

'But America is different now,' he said. 'It rules by force, not by the weight of respect. There's a sense of 'do what I say and not what I do.' It was always so open. Now it seems to us totalitarian.'

Jillie Faraday, a British filmmaker based in Paris, still loves to visit American friends. She knows the society well, avoiding generalities that often lead its critics astray.

Still, she excoriates the Bush administration because of Iraq. 'Can't they see that they're just making more terrorists, more bitterness, more frustration?' she asked.

And she thinks a Republican cabal is conning an apathetic, foolish mainstream. She is outraged, for instance, at the new electronic voting system in Florida which leaves no paper record.

'If they tried to do that in anywhere in Europe, people would riot in the streets," she said. "Americans are fed propaganda, and they say it's democracy.'"

Full story here


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