Reinhard Buetikofer, leader of Germany´s Green party, attacks Bush´s inauguration speech: "George Bush´s rhetoric is exceptionally double-edged", he says, "because it is capable of dragging the values of freedom into the mud." Iraq is a failure, says Buetikofer. Bush is "hijacking" the value of freedom but not delivering it.
Buetikofer´s own government is currently agitating for the lifting of the arms embargo on China. As such, it is well-positioned to lecture Bush on how to achieve global freedom and democracy. The trick, it would seem, is not to denounce dictatorships and their oppression, but to deal with them as equals, and encourage them to buy all the arms they need. Some folk may think this kind of stuff odd coming from the mouth of a Green politician. But as I noted below (see post of 13th January, "Peaceniks and Realpolitik"), the German Greens have compromised any values they haven´t ditched.