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The Steep Decline of Courage in the West

French political philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy has a very passionate article of conclusions about the war in today’s Wall Street Journal:

– Western public opinion fell with disconcerting facility for the thesis advanced — from the very first day — by the Kremlin’s propaganda machine. We know now that the Russian army had been hard at work on its war preparations since before Aug. 8. We know that it massed at the “border” between Georgia and Ossetia a considerable military and paramilitary logistical presence. We know the Russians had methodically repaired the railroad tracks that the troop-transport trains were to take, and we know that at least 150 tanks went through the Roky tunnel separating the two Ossetias the morning of Aug. 8. In other words, no one can ignore the fact that President Saakhashvili only decided to act when he no longer had a choice, and war had already come. In spite of this accumulation of facts that should have been blindingly obvious to all scrupulous, good-faith observers, many in the media rushed as one man toward the thesis of the Georgians as instigators, as irresponsible provocateurs of the war. We must re-examine all of this. We must analyze in greater depth the mechanisms of a blindness that may, if we are not careful, perpetuate the Western “decline in courage” denounced in his time by Alexander Solzhenitsyn, but which we thought belonged to the past. Reason, if not honor, demands that we go to the rescue of Europe in Tbilisi.