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From: Humberto Fontova, firstname.lastname@example.org
Bravo to Mr Gottfried! Superb analysis! Nails it. I thought only reactionary, Papist foreigners like myself noticed the “tendency of American elites to condemn their civilization and heritage while exuding individual moral arrogance.”
James Burnham based his Suicide Of The West on it, but without ever getting to the root of the problem.
My compatriots (Cuban-Americans) are always at wits end trying to comprehend this apparent masochism or suicidal tendency of North Americans, especially in regard to Castro. The more he insults them, the more they grovel.
“They`re either Communists or Fools!” was how my parent`s generation explained the actions of the U.S. government over the years. Their Mediterranean minds locked up while trying to make any sense out of this suicidal lunacy. “Why don`t they take Fidel out!…What excuse do they need!!”
My distant Spanish relatives though much the same about Churchill and FDR`s WWII strategy. “They`re idiots!..Why are they aiding the heirs of Genghis Khan!..Why are they toasting Mongol savages raising the hammer and sickle over the capitals of middle Europe?!…They`ll be sorry!”
Gottfried explains it perfectly. A typical Cuban-American (I use the hyphen because I was born in Cuba. My children don`t merit it) I yield to no one in my rabid, wild-eyed, spittle-spewing anti-communism. But it was clear to me that a “Communist plot” wasn`t why the Reds advanced so spectacularly in the middle of the last century. True, FDR`s regime was riddled with Reds. But their damage was minimal compared to the effects of the ethos Gottfried describes.
I`ve passed the article along. Though, in truth, it probably wont change many minds. We might speak English, but still think in Spanish.
February 05, 2001