This morning I came across a post by fellow-blogger Erik Hare, writing as Barataria, that made much sense to me and I wanted to share it with you. I have not yet written about the summit between Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump, because I am taking time to step back and let time give me a better perspective than I initially had. Erik’s thoughtful post puts the summit and its results into perspective, I think, and gives us some things to consider. Thank you, Erik, both for the post and permission (implied) to share.

Barataria - The work of Erik Hare

When Neville Chamberlain returned from the Munich Conference with Adolf Hitler in September 1938, he believed he had an answer to his primary question. “What does Mr. Hitler want?” was on the mind of the Prime Minister going into the meeting, and it colored all of the proceedings.

The perception was that Germany was wronged in the Versailles Treaty and that Hitler, as the leader, was simply acting in his own nation’s interest. Chamberlain completely neglected the growing body of evidence that Hitler was indeed a psychopath who had his own interests in mind and was simply using Germany as a tool.

Diplomacy is always complicated, but with such people it is even moreso. More than seeking the right answers, it often becomes critical to ask the right questions in the first place.

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20 thoughts on “Appeasement

  1. It is not easy to assess men’s characters even when they are exposed by the burden of leadership, but Mr Chamberlain is in a totally different league to Donald Trump. He led the country for the first eight months of the war and declared war when Poland was invaded and resigned when he thought an all party government was needed. Mr Trump is in a different league to Kim and can hardly be accused of such dire murderous behaviour , it would be a better comparison to compare Kim to Assad another ruthless remorseless murderer of innocents.
    To a lesser degree, as far as we can tell, the ruthless Mr Putin guards his own skin and I think is capable of murder to keep himself in control.
    What about Xi Jingping the Chinese president — a nice friendly man , benign , good natured — not at all he rules with a rod of iron .
    The article talks about starving citizens of North Korea let me make it clear men and women would rather eat and live in some degree of comfort than take up a political banner or wave flags . China now has a middle class of about 300 million ! Why should they rock the boat.
    Kim has made a bid to stay in power a different way , to pile glory on himself using Mr Trump ; remember he has been driven into a tight corner and the last thing he wants is to loose the lucrative reins of power. Assad slipped the noise by shaking hands with the Russians a very similar move. There is a Christian viewpoint that we should never fatrernize with evil I would ask is such a policy possible ? are those 300 million Chinese turning a blind eye or just being sensible?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I agree, and I don’t think that Erik meant to actually compare the men, so much as the single event. Chamberlain was certainly in a league far above Trump in all ways. There is no doubt that Putin would kill … or rather have someone do the dirty work for him … to stay in power, as would Erdogan, Kim, Duterte, and perhaps even Trump. In fact, let me rephrase that … and Trump. Xi is like Putin … he can be charming to cover the snake beneath. Trump fits in much better with the dictators, those whose sole goal is power and wealth, rather than the good of their nations and people, than he does with the likes of May, Trudeau, Macron and Merkel. I think he sees them as weak because they are not bullies like him. Will he someday learn? No, he is 71 or 72 … if he hasn’t learned by now, I am not holding my breath. I’m sure Herr Trump and Herr Hitler would have gotten along just fine, and Donnie would have come home raving about how Hitler really loves his people.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. As for the Daily Tweeter and the Korean Jellybean, they both are related to Hitler in a lot of ways, but at least Kim has some maturity for his young age. The older Trump gets, the less mature he acts. Who is ghe bigger danger?

    Liked by 2 people

      • He kina looks like one, doesn’t he? But in case Kim is having your blog monitored to test the warmth of the American wsters, I do want him to know, the pet name is an honorific, not a nickname of disgust. I cannot imagine how hard it was for him to sit down peacefully with the “man” who coined the term “rocketman” to describe him. A jellybean is much more cuddly than an orange turd.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Ha ha … funny, because I was looking at a side-by-side pic of them and thinking that Kim is rather like a cute little teddy bear, while Trump makes me gag. The man’s inner ugliness seems to ooze out through his pores.


  3. To finish that thought, after having accidentally hit the “send” button…
    Nuclear war between North Korea will end more life than North Korea, it will destroy the populations of South Korea, eastern China, Japan, and most of Canada and the USA.
    Remember Chernoble, and how much damage that leak caused. With any nuclear war, you can multiply Chernoble by a million times, and you still might not reach the destruction caused by that.
    Remember the effects of chlorine and mustard gas in WWI? The gases could not be controlled by their users. They attacked both sides, no matter who used them. Radiation and nuclear fallout are the new chlorine and mustard gas. They will cover the earth!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Exactly. And this is why we had MAD, mutually assured destruction, that kept both the U.S. and Russia’s fingers off the bloomin’ buttons for years. Khrushchev and Kennedy were not stupid men. Unfortunately, Trump is a very stupid man and thinks himself invincible and the rest of the world expendable. Therein lies the danger. I trust Kim Jong-un far more than I trust Trump.


  4. Hare concluded:

    Very much like Chamberlain, Trump has gone into this whole process looking for a quick-fix and asking the wrong question. We cannot and should not care what Kim wants. To look at the situation from that perspective can only be called appeasement, and we see what that got Neville Chamberlain.

    I agree with Bushka. Comparing Trump to Hitler is more appropriate than comparing him to a sane political leader who happened to make a tragic foreign policy blunder (i.e. Chamberlain at Munich in 1938). Trump isn’t looking to appease Kim. Even he understands that North Korea can achieve nothing but its own destruction if it initiated nuclear war. In my opinion, Trump is enraged by the intense opposition he’s facing at home and abroad. He failed to repeal Obamacare and has a long year-and-a-half list of other political setbacks. Such frustration is unbearable to egomaniacs. Trump is looking for something, anything, to turn his political fortunes around especially considering the ongoing Mueller investigation and the upcoming midterm elections.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yes, I agree with Bushka too, and in fact had that thought when I first read Erik’s piece. I hadn’t thought about it in the terms you describe, but what you say makes a great deal of sense … he needed a ‘win’. However, this one isn’t going to turn things around for him, methinks. But, it might, for his followers are loyal and blind as bats!

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you … I thought of it more as comparing the specific situation, rather than the men themselves. And, as Bushka said, the comparison of Kim to Hitler could also be made of Trump to Hitler. No, there is nothing bright about Trump. Crude, rude, obnoxious, egomaniacal … there are many adjectives I would apply to him, but honest and intelligent are definitely NOT on that list!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Excellent piece of writing…indeed! What stirs in my mind is that the comparison with Hitler is as much applicable to Kim as it is to Donald…..As I read the piece I substituted Trump for Kim…….Intriguing!😨 Hugs.

    Liked by 2 people

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