Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Czech Pres. Vaclav Klaus Enrages Eurocrats

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KlausVaclav Klaus, president of the Czech Republic, can drive communists, leftists, Greens, and one-world globalists to near apoplectic fury. However, the popular Czech statesman (finance minister, 1989-1992; prime minister, 1992-1997; president since 2003, reelected 2008) has become a hero to a growing tide of Europeans from Prague to London who are resisting the increasingly oppressive rule by the European Union's bureaucrats in Brussels and the socialist-dominated European Parliament in Strasbourg.

Klaus, a free-market economist who grew up under the tyranny of communism, is an outspoken critic of the "new European Soviet" — as former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has approvingly referred to the sprawling EU bureaucracy.

In January, the Czech Republic assumes the six-month rotating presidency of the European Union. Which means that Vaclav Klaus, an adamant "eurosceptic," will serve as the ceremonial head of the EU, a supranational behemoth which he has described as a threat to freedom and national sovereignty. This will mark a sea change in attitude from that of France's Nicolas Sarkozy, who is (reluctantly) stepping down from the current EU presidency. Sarkozy has basked in the glory of his EU spotlight and has campaigned for expanded EU powers, most especially for ratification of the stalled Lisbon Treaty. President Klaus has campaigned just as energetically in opposition to the Lisbon Treaty, a slightly disguised version of the EU Constitution that was rejected by French and Dutch voters.

President Klaus also stirs opponents to paroxysms of frenzied sputtering by referring to human-caused global warming as a myth, and by his opposition to the Kyoto Protocol and other climate change regulatory regimes. I interviewed him for The New American in New York City in March 2008, where he was a main speaker at the International Conference of Climate Change, featuring top scientists from around the world who challenge the Al Gore-United Nations thesis of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming.

Acutely anxious that Klaus may inspire increased resistance and spark political imitators, the European and U.S. media have gone into overdrive to neutralize and marginalize the maverick nationalist. Unable to effectively defeat his articulate and persuasive arguments on the political field, they are resorting to smears and ad hominem. "Grumpy," "rude," "arrogant," "egotistical," "vain," "disagreeable," "nasty," "an embarrassment" — these are some of the recurring descriptions with which the press have been stamping him, in an effort to destroy his influence.

"Grumpy Uncle Vaclav" is the title of a major hit piece in the December 4 issue of The Economist, the British Fabian Socialist magazine influential among political and financial insiders. Unwilling to risk subtlety in such an important matter, The Economist featured a drawing of Klaus as a sharp-clawed gargoyle ready to pounce on the EU flag.

The International Herald Tribune (the global edition of The New York Times) quoted a critical Czech KGB report on Klaus from the 1980s as evidence of his supposedly  "famous arrogance."

One of Klaus's nastiest critics is "communitarianism" guru (and former terrorist) Amitai Etzioni, a professor at George Washington University, who went after the Czech President in a December 29 piece on the Huffington Post entitled "Bad News Vaclav Klaus."  Etzioni, an ardent socialist and equally ardent advocate of world government, bashes Klaus as an egotistical bully, contrasting him unfavorably with his predecessor, Vaclav Havel, the socialist playwright who has ever been the darling of the internationalist set. Unlike Klaus, Mr. Havel has been a firm supporter of EU centralization and integration, has an unblemished Green pedigree, and is a regular attendee at one-world confabs with Henry Kissinger, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Prof. Etzioni's fellow members of the Council on Foreign Relations.

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