For those under 30 or so who haven't studied history, "appeasement" is a policy of making concessions to aggressive dictators. The theory--actually a rationalization--is that if you give dictators what they demand, they won't demand anything else.
And with a deft flourish of a pen, a bloody conflict is avoided. Prizes for all the diplomats!
Except the conflict is never
averted, only postponed. Because soon the aggressive dictator will be back with another demand, and then another.
When appeasement is phrased as "give dictators what they demand and they won't demand anything else," almost everyone instantly sees the problem: The theory is utter crap. Nonsense. Horseshit. Anyone with a lick of sense knows that giving in to demands from megalomaniacs absolutely guarantees more
demands. After all, it worked so beautifully
for the guy before, right? Because making demands costs a dictator nothing, conceding to those demands--even fractionally--actually encourages them to keep making more.
You'd think intelligent people would instantly recognize the futility of appeasement, but Leftists/socialists/"progressives" just *love* the tactic, for many reasons. First, they're absolutely certain that "War is never the answer." Appeasement avoids war--at least for today--so it must be the right tactic. It lets the elites pat themselves on the back and feel good about how compassionate and moral they are compared to the folks warning about the inevitable consequences of their appeasement--namely eventual war on far less-favorable terms.
The problem is worsened because the Elites are absolutely certain
that they're smarter than everyone else. After all, they went to elite schools, and have important positions in government and the media. They say appeasement works (though they don't call it that), all their friends agree, and that's the end of what passes for "debate" on the Left.
Another reason appeasement is so popular with the Left is that it's a vote-getter: Building up a nation's military to prepare for war is scary and expensive. Who wants to do that when the Left can simply claim it's not necessary? Far more productive to spend the money on...um...free gender-change surgery for people on medicaid. Yeah.
The appeasers can get away with claiming that preparing for war is "not necessary" because the future, by definition, isn't known with certainty. They claim--correctly, of course--that despite the repeated lessons of history, the people warning about the dangers of appeasement are only speculating about a possible bad outcome.
No matter how many times we've seen appeasement end with the bad outcome, appeasers insist that if we just avoid war today...and tomorrow, and so on...war will never be necessary.
See how well that works?
Except when it doesn't. Example: In 1938 Adolph Hitler demanded that Czechoslovakia give Germany a big chunk of its territory bordering Germany. The pretense--there usually is one, to allow appeasers to propagandize the demand so it doesn't seem so outrageous--was that many people living in Czechoslovakia near the border were ethnic Germans who were being persecuted in some way. So it was only right that...mumble diplomatic-bullshit nonsense doublespeak.
The region Hitler demanded was called the Sudetenland.
Sudetenland was of immense strategic importance to Czechoslovakia
, as most of its border defenses were situated there, as well as many of its banks and heavy industries. But the Czechs were hopelessly outgunned by the German military. Their only hope of keeping their nation intact was if other European nations made it clear to Hitler that this was not gonna happen. The Czechs were part of a "military alliance" with the U.K. and France, so they were optimistic that those two nations would back them.
So in September of 1939 appeasers from Britain, France and Italy held a conference with Hitler in Munich. (They're always having conferences, eh?) And in the early hours of 30 September, the appeasers signed an agreement giving Hitler the Sudetenland.
The Czechs weren't even invited to the conference--thus depriving them of a very public forum to demonstrate Hitler's aggression and the perfidy and betrayal by the Allies. And of course that "formal military alliance" the Czechs had with France and Britain proved utterly useless, as you could have guessed.
But wait, it gets better.
The "negotiator" (tell me, what was actually "negotiated"?) for Britain was its prime minister, Neville Chamberlain. On returning from the Munich conference--the one where he and the French gave away territory of another nation in the utterly deluded, foolish, naive notion that this would satisfy the maniac Hitler--Chamberlain faced a crowd of supporters at the airport and proudly declared
The settlement of the Czechoslovakian problem, which has now been achieved is, in my view, only the prelude to a larger settlement in which all Europe may find peace. This morning I had another talk with the German Chancellor, Herr Hitler, and here is the paper which bears his name.... I would like to read it to you: ' ... We regard the agreement signed last night...as symbolic of the desire of our two peoples never to go to war with one another again.'
Later that day he stood outside 10 Downing Street and again read from the document, concluding:
For the second time in our history a British Prime Minister has returned from Germany bringing peace with honour. I believe it is peace for our time. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Go home and get a nice quiet sleep.
Who do you suppose he was thanking? Hitler?
German troops promptly marched into the Sudetenland. And that would ensure peace in our...oh wait: on 16 March 1939--less than six months after Britain and France ceded the Sudetenland to Hitler--German troops took over the rest
The demands never stop.
Six months after that, i.e.less than a year after Chamberlain brilliantly ceded the Sudetenland to Germany--on 1 September 1939 Hitler invaded Poland and the Second World War was on.
"Peace in our time," eh?
But, says the Left, "no one could have predicted...." Spare me. Hitler's demand that Germany be given the Sudetenland was not even remotely the first aggressive demand that the allies surrendered on. The guy did it again and again. Example:
After the vast carnage of "The Great War" (later simply "the First World War") the treaty that ended it banned Germany from stationing troops in a region known as the Rhineland. This was followed in 1925 by a second treaty reaffirming the same terms. The treaty explicitly provided that any violation would be considered as a "hostile act...and as calculated to disturb the peace of the world." Which is as clear as diplomatic language ever gets.
One historian called the demilitarized status of the Rhineland "the single most important guarantee of peace in Europe," claiming it made it impossible for Germany to attack its neighbors.
Of course Hitler also knew this--but also that agreements made years earlier could be...modified...if sufficient pressure was applied.
The Treaty of Versailles stated that the Allies would withdraw all troops from the Rhineland by 1935, but in 1929 Germany announced that it wouldn't pay any more reparations unless the Allies withdrew their troops immediately. The British agreed, and managed to persuade a very skeptical French government. In 1930 the last Allied forces withdrew.
Six years later, on 7 Mar 1936, Hitler ordered the German army into the Rhineland. In interviews later he admitted that if Britain and France had sent troops to oppose the move, he would have had to withdraw because the German forces weren't yet strong enough to prevail. And in fact his commanders were given orders to withdraw if they encountered military opposition. But the Allies did nothing. And bit by bit, Hitler became convinced he would always win, because his enemies lacked the courage to oppose him.
With the benefit of hindsight all Hitler's moves can be seen as part of an overall strategy. For example, in March of 1935 Germany had unilaterally repudiated the provision of the Locarno treaty that it not re-arm. But then just two months later (21 May 1935) Hitler gave a so-called "peace speech" in which he Grubered that Germany would "uphold and fulfill all obligations arising out of the Locarno Treaty, so long as the other parties are on their side ready to stand by that pact."
This is breathtakingly brazen: Just two months earlier Hitler had violated the same treaty, but was now pledging
to uphold "all obligations" in it, if the other parties would do the same. This is the same brazen Grubering we see in Obama's "promise" on 25 occasions that "If you like your health insurance you can keep it," while knowing full well that this was a Gruber.
A history of the many, many instances of appeasement of Hitler by Britain, France and with the explicit support of the U.S. Democratic party can be found here.
It's long, but you really need to read it all to begin to understand how utterly naive the appeasers were. But the linked article (Wiki--yeah, I know) does exactly what the left-dominated Wiki empire always does: sugar-coats appeasement. Here's a typical passage:
James P. Levy argues against the outright condemnation of appeasement.
"Knowing what Hitler did later," he writes, "the critics of Appeasement
condemn the men who tried to keep the peace in the 1930s, men who could
not know what would come later. ... The political leaders responsible
for Appeasement made many errors. They were not blameless. But what they
attempted was logical, rational, and humane."
Yeah, baby: They "could not know what would come later"--I guess because they had no knowledge of history or psychology or negotiation. They were easily outmaneuvered by the canny Hitler.
Okay, fast-forward to today: History is repeating itself yet again. Western appeasers are making endless concessions to Islam, either due to outright treachery or naivete. And yes, Obama is in one of those two camps. While I suspect most of us would prefer the latter, the end result is the same either way.
Iran is pursuing uranium enrichment and atomic bomb design. Obama wanted a deal that would showcase him as the brilliant negotiator. Iran's mullahs told him to fuck off, and he responded by unilaterally ordering the removal of economic sanctions against Iran. Is there any way that can be interpreted as *other than* appeasement.
The alleged "deadline" for reaching a comprehensive deal has come and gone twice, and each time Obama has extended it. Same question: How can anyone interpret that as anything other than appeasement?
A Muslim U.S. Army officer kills 13 U.S. soldiers and wounds 30 others--while screaming Islamic phrases--yet Obama absolutely insists it has nothing whatsoever to do with Islam. Appeasement.
Nine months ago Nigerian terrorist group Boko Haram kidnapped 276 mainly Christian school girls--who haven't been seen since--and Obama claims it has nothing to do with Islam. Appeasement.
Over the next few years, every time a group of Muslims kills ten or 20 or 50 unarmed civilians in France or Belgium or Sweden--or here--listen for the chorus of appeasers. It starts instantly and is repeated endlessly by all the mainstream media and Democrat politicians (and RINOs too). No countervailing voices are allowed in the mainstream media.
Just remember how well appeasement worked in preventing WW2. And the appeasers didn't just work with Hitler: The same pattern of aggression and concession was repeated with Japan and Italy. It would be repeated again starting just a year after the end of WW2 with Soviet demands (the Berlin blockade was an attempt by the Soviet Union to starve West Berlin into voting to join communist East Germany; it failed only because good Americans marshalled an airlift and flew thousands of tons of food to the beseiged city for a year, until the Soviets realized they were getting clobbered in the PR war).
But don't worry, citizen: The left (and socialists/"progs") assure you that despite what you think you may have heard, history really doesn't
repeat itself. They tell you normal common sense doesn't apply to international conflicts, and that appeasement really will work this time
And you can trust them because they really, totally interested in your welfare. Period.