Friday, February 22, 2008

Kosovo and Culturist Basics

Serbians are attacking U.S. embassies because we have destroyed their country. Serbia used to include the area now called Kosovo. Kosovo was forming militant separatist cells. Serbia tried to stop this and it got ugly. Both sides claim war crimes. We intervened on the side of the Kosovars. The U.S., in cooperation with NATO, gave them police protection, stood by as all signs of Serbian life and property were destroyed.

Culturism cautions us against getting into the middle of civil wars where we don't really know what is going on. As this conflict is on European turf we had more cause to intervene than normal. Still, we can never be sure who are "the good guys" and who are "the bad guys" in distant conflicts. Certainly, at a minimum, we can expect our intervening will infuriate one-half of the neighborhood. As the obvious culturist truths would predict, Serbians are infuriated with us.

Culturist philosophy tells us we are situated. The ideal of a neutral observer does not exist. When we interfere we are taking a side. In this conflict we took the side of the Kosovars. At this point in world history, the sides are Western civilization versus Western civilization. America is not a neutral space. NATO is not a neutral organization. Australia does not exist in some cultureless ethereal space. We are all part of Western civilization. If it is relevant, that basic fact should tip the scales when deciding whom to back in a conflict.

All of these lessons should be so mundane as to merit snide comments about "Captain Obvious being in the building." But, in the Balkans we have taken the Islamic side against the Western side. We dismantled a Western nation, secured an Islamic enclave and have helped the training of a police force that is - gasp - armed by Al Queda. Al Queda provides Kosova arms because they know who is on their side and what their goals are. Beyond creating a safe haven for Al Queda in Europe we have pledged to up their foreign aid from $77 million to $355 million next year. We need to stop pretending we are neutral. We had better remember our culturist basics.
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