Streetwise Professor

February 20, 2019

Maybe We Should Have Bombed Them More

Filed under: History,Military,Politics — cpirrong @ 8:07 pm

Poor widdle Angela Merkel is apparently flustered that the Bad Orange Man is such a meanie to her. She’s “ruffled” by the prospect of more meanie-ness. And indeed, after meeting with Trump, Austrian president Sebastian Kurz said Trump “seems to have it in for German in particular.”

Well boo frickin’ hoo.

What? You have a problem with that? Not me! Merkel’s Germany is truly loathsome, and hardly an American ally. Furthermore, their hypocrisy–on issues like Nato, Russia, and Iran–is off the charts.

Who do you think is the bigger threat to Nato? Trump, who insists that Nato members make contributions commensurate with those of the US, and the sizes of their economies? Or Germany, whose pathetic military–to quote Patton–“couldn’t fight its way out of a piss-soaked paper bag“?

Germany military expenditure is about half of the minimal level of 2 pct of GDP it pledged to Nato, so spare me the lectures on how the US under Trump is undermining the alliance. And even that is exaggerated by including spending on the autobahn. And as the linked Politico article shows, what money they do spend is absolutely wasted because it provides precisely zero combat power.

Who is a bigger patsy for Russia? Trump, who has imposed sanctions, increased military spending, green-lighted military aid to Ukraine, repeatedly sent destroyers into the Black Sea, etc.? Or Germany, which has jammed NordStream II down the throats of the rest of Europe, thereby selling out not just the Ukranians, but the Poles and other eastern European members of the EU?

Who are the real antisemites? Trump, whose daughter converted to Judaism (hence making his grandchildren Jewish), and who has done more for Israel than any president in American history (perhaps only Truman excepted), including greatly ramping up pressure on Israel’s sworn enemy Iran? Or Germany, which cringingly sucks up to the Mullahs in Tehran?

Case in point. The execrable German Foreign Minister, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, slobbered all over Iran on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of its Islamic Revolution:

Germany’s largest paper Bild reported on Wednesday “On the 40th anniversary of that day, friendly greetings from Berlin arrived in Tehran by telegram: the President of Germany, Frank-Walter Steinmeier (63), sends ‘Congratulations’ on the occasion of the national holiday, ‘also in the name of my compatriots.”‘

“Friendly greetings” to a nation dedicated to completing what Germans started, but failed to finish: the annihilation of Jews.

How nice of him. And his “compatriots.” I think I understand the true roots of his friendliness.

Truth be told, German antisemitism has been sublimated, not eliminated. Opposition to Israel and support of Iran is objectively antisemitic, but can be portrayed as subjectively humanitarian (e.g., portrayed as supporting oppressed Palestinians).

So Trump is perfectly justified if he “has it in for Germany.” They’ve earned it. Maybe we just didn’t bomb them enough, so they need a supplemental dose of corrective measures.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Instead of bombing Germany, we should just help the Poles build some nuclear power plants in what used to be called Pomerania and Silesia.

    Just think how the Germans would feel about that.

    Better yet, have them built using French technology, ensuring French support.

    Comment by I.M. Pembroke — February 20, 2019 @ 9:46 pm

  2. By pure coincidence, the film “Putin and the Mafia” was pulled from ZDF at the last moment yesterday. The link to ZDF website is now broken, e.g. here: . Russian media standards come bundled with Russian natural gas.

    Comment by Ivan — February 21, 2019 @ 1:39 am

  3. Is it too late to dust off the Morgenthau Plan? Asking for a friend.

    Comment by Christopher L Hunt — February 21, 2019 @ 11:51 am

  4. Germany is nobodies friend.

    They can’t help themselves. The nation that has produced the best of Western, Christian High Civilisation never seems able to shrug off its barbarian soul. There has always been a tendency to hysteria when pushed.

    Interesting that the German descended Trump feels no atavistic connection.

    Comment by Recusant — February 21, 2019 @ 1:14 pm

  5. @Recusant–It can be plausibly argued that the Battle of Teutoburg Forest in 9AD, which resulted in the withdrawal of the Romans to the west of the Rhine, was responsible for many of the tragedies that occurred nearly 2000 years later. The battle ended the prospect of Romanization of Germany, and as you note, allowed the barbarian soul to persist. (German nationalists idolize(d) Arminius–note the huge statue erected in his honor.) The line that divided the Roman and Germanic worlds–the Rhine–became the front line in the conflicts from 1870 onwards. This is not mere coincidence.

    Hysterical is indeed the right word. I am also reminded of Churchill’s line: at your feet, or at your throat.

    Comment by cpirrong — February 21, 2019 @ 4:42 pm

  6. Ahh, the ol’ “Trump is being tough on Russia – honest!” chestnut. So tough he employed a campaign manager who was actively undermining US interests in Ukraine and is now facing a 24 year+ stint in jail. As I said before, thin thin gruel.

    Re Germany you may want to check out the recent BBC doc on the EU (..) which aired a few weeks back. Unsurprisingly the recent past still looms large in their minds – they’re much more about the exercise of soft power, leaving the heavy lifting to the likes of the US, France etc.

    Comment by David Mercer — February 22, 2019 @ 3:55 am

  7. Glad, you noticed the visit of our chancelor (he is not president). A great politician…
    Nobody in his right mind likes Merkel
    It is a little unfair to blame the nonsensical Russian collusion Story on the German’s though: they are just parroting what the elite US media Feeds them (NYT WaPo). You will find the same phenomenon all over Europe. Politicians pick it up, because it suits them. No, This is pure US home-made bullshit. Probably a version of “checks and balances” in action 🙂

    As Recusant correctly Points out: much of modern western thought Comes from Germany – Protestantism, probably the most obvious example. (I already once recomendet the book: the German Genius – Europe’s third Renaissance, on this Topic)
    This flies in the face, of what you claim: Germany never having been part of the West, IMHO. After all, the Frank’s – a germanic tribe – from whom the Name France is derived, were quite influential in the cultural formation of Western Europe.
    Not sure how the teutonburg Story, proves your point. You once promised, I think, you would Elaborate…
    In the meantime science marches and in Terms of genetics (especially if you exclude eastern Germany) teh case is settled: there is not much difference in composition between Germany and the rest of western Europe:…17843.21235..21912…0.0..0.151.1423.22j1……1….1..gws-wiz-img…….0i67j0j0i30j0i5i30j0i19j0i8i30i19j0i8i30.6iCSwOo2HEw#imgrc=qTpzmxSN7jAhHM:

    Hope to read from you this time…

    Comment by vienncapitalist — February 22, 2019 @ 4:38 am

  8. “There has always been a tendency to hysteria when pushed.” Ah: so does the mass immigration from Germany in the 19th century explain the tendency to hysteria of US foreign policy?

    Comment by dearieme — February 22, 2019 @ 5:19 am

  9. David Mercer

    Kudos for attempting to create a nine-course meal out of nothing but rice water, but, yes, Manafort as evidence of Trump/Russia collusion is the thinnest of gruel.

    As for that BBC documentary you mentioned, I watched it and came to the conclusion I generally do about modern German politics and diplomacy: they will use their appalling past to absolve themselves from having to make hard and expensive decisions, in all other respects its Deutsche Wirtschaft every time.

    Comment by Recusant — February 22, 2019 @ 5:56 am

  10. Ah, David Mercer, gullible consumer of outrageous epithets by MSM. If to all facts (FACTS) presented in this post you can only counter with “but…but..Manafort!” you must be really desperate.
    And not very smart.

    Comment by ETat — February 22, 2019 @ 6:39 am

  11. 5, it could have been a fair trade-off, what kind of mayhem and economic stillbirth could have resulted with a more Latin/Romance (similar to Italy, Spain, France, not Latino in the modern sense) influence in northern Europe? This may have also sublimated or deferred the Norman invasion of Britain, the Protestant Reformation, the printing press etc.

    Comment by urbanleftbehind — February 22, 2019 @ 11:57 am

  12. Using the BBC as a reference source to make a point is absurd: that organization is simply the mouthpiece of statist elitism.

    Comment by I.M. Pembroke — February 22, 2019 @ 5:09 pm

  13. @ETat – fancy a wager on how many years he’ll get? I reckon 10 years minimum. As for Craig’s “facts”, Trump’s predecessor did pretty much the same and then some – wrestling the Ukraine from Putin’s dead-hand was some achievement, you’ll agree (it wasn’t all the work of the EU you know…)

    @Pembroke – it’s okay to admit you haven’t seen the documentary. I actually found it pretty eye opening (even as a hard-boiled EUrophile…). If it was trying to present the organisation as some faultless, rational enterprise, it clearly failed.

    @Recusant – yet Germany took way more Syrian refugees than any other member state. Hardly dodging the problem or going cheap.

    Comment by David Mercer — February 23, 2019 @ 6:42 am

  14. David Mercer

    Waving the Syrian refugees in was exactly the point I was making: a supreme example of dodging the hard decisions. It was the easy, morally narcissistic, move. The hard move would have been putting in place a strong border system for the European Union and taking the sentimental hits for it.

    Comment by Recusant — February 23, 2019 @ 8:15 am

  15. As the BBC has a vested interest to remain in the EU it is no surprise that they should attempt to carry water for the Germans, reminding randy Brits of how haunted the Germans are by their past. The strategy is the usual one employed by leftist institutions: show the “other” as a complex entity that needs to be engaged with multiple levels of “understanding.” All sudden moves and decisions should be eschewed in favor of ongoing, never-ending multilateral discussions.

    This ignores the reality that it is German willfulness, German unilateralism that has fundamentally shaped the EU into an entity that helped cause the Brexit vote in the first place.

    Germany’s taking in of Syrian refugees should also be understood in the context of the West German importation of Turkish “guest workers” in the sixties, seventies and eighties, when Germans calculated correctly that there would be a labor shortage due to falling birth rates (falling demographics being the bane of welfare states).

    That the Syrians are there to plug the latest gap is rarely mentioned. That doubtlessly would not fly well with eastern Germany.

    Comment by I.M. Pembroke — February 23, 2019 @ 9:38 pm

  16. @David Mercer

    “it wasn’t all the work of the EU you know”

    You mean all that hard work of deep concern, calls for deescalation and the like? Yep, Obama did some impressive work on that front, almost rivalling the “reset” and the “whole bunch” reddish line. The public reasoning exercise about how “the Russians have escalation dominance because they give a f*ck and we don’t” was especially memorable. But Putin’s hordes were stopped largely by Ukrainian grassroots efforts and probably by the threat to gas exports in case of a larger escalation. Now Merkel is working hard to remove that latter threat, and how much further mass murder this will provoke from her Geschäftspartner in the Kremlin is anyone’s guess.

    Comment by Ivan — February 24, 2019 @ 9:01 pm

  17. Prof

    TED talk by Malcolm Gladwell about the Norden bombsight.

    Some of this was new to me, eg that it cost $1.5 billion to develop, around 0.5 of a Manhattan project. I did know it was no more accurate than other countries’ bombsights. The RAF abandoned daylight bombing because the accuracy was shit and the bombers got slaughtered, so the sacrifice wasn’t worth the improvement. The USAAF persisted with it only because long-range escorts had become available, but even so the accuracy was still shit (about 50% of drops would fall within 1200 feet of the mark, the rest outside that). Gladwell notes that at Hiroshima Little Boy missed the mark by 800 feet. That was a drop from 31,000 feet under otherwise perfect bombing conditions but uselessly wide of the mark for any conventional munition.

    What’s novel is Gladwell’s conclusion. As bombing and drone strike accuracy has increased, so have insurgent attacks against US ground forces. These events are causally connected, it appears. The bad guys are so irate about being bombed accurately that they attack more. Gladwell apparently thinks the solution is to stop bombing them. Clearly we need to focus on hitting the target less accurately so they won’t be upset.

    This is excellent out of the box thinking. We should reintroduce the smoothbore musket so we don’t piss the enemy off with accurate small arms fire. The heat seeking gear in air to air missiles should be replaced with cement so we don’t anger enemy air forces by shooting their aircraft down.

    I laughed at this until I thought of Germany (not capable of bombing anybody). They’ve constructively implemented this strategy and so I wondered if he actually has a point.

    Comment by Green as Grass — February 25, 2019 @ 7:57 am

  18. @Ivan

    I was more referring to the events which preceeded Yanu doing a runner, with all those EU flags being waved in Kiev etc etc. As I said at the time – and much to the annoyance of the hordes of Putinbots online – it must have really bugged Putin that two women (particularly with names with such imperial connotations) were instrumental in undoing all his work in Ukraine. Still makes me laugh when I remember him at the Sochi closing ceremony with his rictus grin, knowing that his nascent empire was going to sh*t – not too mention that he’d just spent a small fortune trying to sell Russia to the world.

    Comment by David Mercer — February 25, 2019 @ 11:12 am

  19. Now the German foreign ministry is demanding apologies for stating the obvious:

    At the very least, some personal sanctions for aiding and abetting a terrorist regime (or two, given the efforts to circumvent the Iran sanctions) are long overdue.

    Comment by Ivan — February 28, 2019 @ 10:43 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a comment

Powered by WordPress