Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Reagan's Courage in Calling Out The Evil of The Berlin Wall

"To see what is in front of one's nose needs a constant struggle," George Orwell.

Many times in history it takes hindsight to realize that a great moment in history had occurred - a teachable moment. One of those teachable moments was the fall of the Berlin Wall - that hideous symbol and prison that entombed half of Berlin with the power-lusters of Communism. The starkness of the contrast between the moderate freedom of West Berlin and the total lack of freedom of East Berlin was too in your face even for mushy leftists to deny. Today however, in America, we have experienced slow creeping toward socialism (which is communism light) for the past 100 years. But, under Obama, we are at galloping speed. There won't be cement walls built separating Americans from Americans but there will be the stultifying drabness of existence that comes about when your options have been shorted because government rules, regulations and insane laws rule your life. Petty, small bureaucrats making decisions about how much you can earn, what taxes you will pay, where you can live, what you can eat, what you can express and how you can express it, on and on and on.

We need another revolution BACK to our Founding Principles. We need to look at our history and realize that the war fought against the British was to unshackle ourselves from excessive taxation and no representation. To do this we must see through, as the WSJ writes, the propagandists, the moral equivocators and diplomatic finessers and simply look at the Wall - the figurative wall we have today that is made up of Washington politicians. Will we have the courage to make our "wall" of political schemers and power-lusters crumble?

...There was Mikhail Gorbachev, who made it clear that the Soviet Union would not violently suppress people power in its satellite states, as it had decades earlier in Czechoslovakia and Hungary. There were the heroes of Poland's Solidarity movement, not least Pope John Paul II, who did so much to expose the moral bankruptcy of communism.

And there was Ronald Reagan, who believed the job of Western statesmanship was to muster the moral, political, economic and military wherewithal not simply to contain the Soviet bloc, but to bury it. "What I am describing now is a plan and a hope for the long term—the march of freedom and democracy which will leave Marxism-Leninism on the ash-heap of history," he said in 1982, to the astonishment and derision of his critics. Now, there was the audacity of hope.

...To know what the West stood for during most of those years, one merely had to go to Berlin, see the Wall, consider its purpose, and observe the contrasts between the vibrant prosperity on one side of the city and the oppressive monotony on the other.

Those contrasts were even more apparent to the Germans trapped on the wrong side of the Wall. Barbed wire, closed military zones and the machinery of communist propaganda could keep the prosperity of the West out of sight of most people living east of the Iron Curtain. But that wasn't true for the people of East Berlin, many of whom merely had to look out their windows to understand how empty and cynical were the promises of socialism compared to the reality of a free-market system.
Read "Why The Berlin Wall Fell" at WSJ.

1 comment:

Vancouver BC real estate said...

Interesting reading. But what I miss in the discussion about the fall of the Berlin Wall nowadays are all those victims who died or suffered because of the totalitarian regime in East Germany and the rest of communistic world. These victims should remember us that any kind of totalitarian regime is not good. What is more, we should pay attention to leftist movements in recent years despite the world crisis because we learned from history that communism can be very dangerous.