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Indeed, Tim. And don't forget the upcoming confrontation with Iran and the widespread anti-UN position of most Americans. I think most Europeans (and Brits) don't know how discredited the UN is here in the US, while it appears to me that across the pond, it has a decidedly better reputation.


Anti-US activism is always lower when Democrats are in power, except for LBJ. Nixon, Reagan, Bush had much worse press throughout their terms than any Democrat. It is much as the old adage that media owners in the US are Republican and their employees Democrat; the links between journalists and their 1968 roots produce the links from one region to another and infect BBC as well as ARD.

This is very similiar to the Anglophobia prevalent in the USA 1918-1941 as evidenced in John Moser's book Twisting the Lion's Tail and how some Senators saw no difference between Chamberlain and Hitler and that the British Empire was the source of all evil in the world.

Few people note that George VI and his Queen were invited to the USA from their visit to Canada, and that Britain loaned the Magna Carta original to the USA at The World's Fair in 1939 (it remained there throughout the War) to try to create a positive spin to Anglophobe Americans.

There is far too much emphasis on this issue without regard to historical precedent. Wasn't it Ben Hecht in the US who used to say he lit a candle in his heart whenever a British soldier was killed in Palestine ?

We have been there, now the US can see what it's like to be top dog. Hollywood is propaganda, the world doesn't love you, desn't love us; you are either on top or on bottom; feared or respected

Michael McGowan

I think you are right. The UK chattering classes have a very limited understanding of the United States and Bush has provided them with a useful pantomime villain which avoids the need for analysis. The USA has its problems and is not the world force that it was but the Americans have a much better grasp of the geo-strategic and economic future than our politicians. The real reason for anti-Americanism is that Europe is a continent in decline, its military power all but gone, its demographics only kept afloat by mass immigration (often from very unstable parts of the world) and its economies steadily losing ground to the emerging giants in the East. That process shows no signs of being turned around.

Alan S

With Bush in charge the world's policeman is an insensitive policeman.

With Clintons in charge the world's policeman is a sleeping policeman.


I think the Americans get too worked up about things. They at least have had no play produced in London, nor any lobby group place adverts in newspapers, on a par with what Ben Hecht did in New York when Britain was in deep difficulty in 1947

Hecht's post war ads were particularly bold in their open support for breaking British laws and the use of violence against the British military authorities in Palestine. An ad headlined "Give Us the Money ... We'll Get Them There!" explicitly appealed for money to smuggle Jews on the "underground railway" from Europe to Palestine in defiance of the British. Another proclaimed, almost threateningly, "There Will Be MORE Violence," warning that "the explosion of grenades and mines in Jerusalem this week are but a prelude to what is ahead" unless the British immediately withdrew from Palestine.

The most controversial was titled "Letter to the Terrorists of Palestine." Mocking the British description of the Jewish fighters as "terrorists," Hecht praised them as heroes, compared them to George Washington, and declared that there was widespread support for the Jewish militias among grassroots American Jews. "In the past 1500 years every nation of Europe has taken a crack at the Jews, " Hecht wrote. "This time the British are at bat. You are the first answer that makes sense--to the New World. Every time you blowup a British arsenal, or wreck a British jail, or send a British railroad train sky high, or rob a British bank or let go with your guns and bombs at the British betrayers and invaders of your homeland, the Jews of America make a little holiday in their hearts."

Hecht's assertion caused such a stir that it was quoted on the front page of the New York Times, as well as in many other publications. The British government delivered a formal protest to the Truman administration against what it called Hecht's "incitement to murder British officials and soldiers." London also pressed Washington to find a way to revoke the Bergson group's tax-exempt status. After exploring the issue, U.S. officials informed their disappointed British counterparts that "no legal means" were available to withdraw Bergson's tax-exemption and, in any event, such action might provoke American Zionists to lobby Congress against U.S. economic assistance to England.

Now Hecht was such an extremist that he even attacked Ben Gurion and his government, since he was an avolyte of Begin........but consider if the words were changed in that quotation and a Muslim produced such a play in London or placed such adverts......how would people react ? Yet only 60 years ago such claims were being made against a country that had just spent 6 years fighting Germany and Japan and Italy

John Hayward, The Difference

You are right that anti-Americanism pre-dates Bush and 9/11, but you omit mention of the Blair factor, which has caused a significant deterioration in the average Brit's perspective on the States. As I posted this morning, if our trans-Atlantic relationship is once again characterised by honesty and the space to express criticism in the post-Blair era, then we can hope that recent damage may be reversed.


Michael, yours is an accurate appraisal for a Brit and unfortunately uncommon. I have mixed feelings but over all pessimism when I see Brits place emphasis of blame on Bush or Blair. On the one hand it can be rather heartening to see many claim ignorance and prejudice can largely be reduced to a mere 2 men. On the other realities go much deeper, its wishful thinking having no real basis for reassurance once these two are out of office. There has always been this person, that group - a sprinkling of people within each society looking down on the other. What we have today is far more pervasive and substantial, with the UK and much of Europe. And the powers to be, largely big media, have extraordinary influence playing on the most base emotions.

Americans are more realistic in judgement (tho I wonder for how long) and are willing to face the threats to our mutually shared freedoms. We basically don't look down on you other than in response to you with us. We want you strong and free. But you're in contortion, increasingly scoffing at values which have sustained your existence and feeling near compulsion toward antithetic sympathies. You can't continue not acknowledging and acting upon the seriousness of those who would destroy your very foundations. Those who have convinced many of you we are a big part of the problem. It is easy to wonder... 10 to 20 years from now.


TomTom, when is the last time an ally of the US had a movie produced in which the sitting president is assassinated? The pure malevolence coming out of the UK directed at the US is far worse than the Ben Hecht play, because at least the Hecht play could be attributed to a singular cause, whereas the deranged hatred of the UK MSM cannot be ameliorated in any way.

John Bull

Can I send sympathy to our American readers. The news is horrific and our heart goes out to you at this time. When we had a shooting like this a few years ago there was a great feeling of grief throughout the country and I'm sure you will feel the same. Love or hate the USA, outrage and support does unite the people of Britain.

John Bull

Love or hate the US, out thoughts go out to you today.

Fred Baker

The USA needs to show repentance for past mistakes and do something towards putting things right.

For instance; it was American exploitation that brought about the Cuban revolution and without any help from their US neighbours the Cubans now have a health care system respected around the world. Cuba now has one doctor per 200 citizens, compared to one per 400 in the US! It has 21 medical schools which graduate 4,000 doctors annually. All education is free. The pupil teacher ratio is 10 to 1.

Cuba has a highly advanced biotechnology industry. It works on many important problems. However, the refusal of the US to allow Cuba to import chemicals it needs, slows down research progress and hurts the progress of medicine world wide.
Their land mines still sit where they were laid in the Vietnamese war area. The unwary are still getting limbs blow off. From their huge population and resources they could at least make an attempt at clearing up their old ordinance.


Fred Baker, that's an interesting perspective. I think the US may consider taking action when the UK takes responsibility for the exploitation of its colonies in the Middle East and creating the endless wars there, for its role in the creation of Apartheid, the death as a result of its partition of India and Pakistan, etc. The UK is probably responsible for much more death and exploitation than the US--don't forget, you once ruled a quarter of the globe. Maybe Russia can take responsibility for the destruction wrought in the USSR and China can take responsibility for the millions who died in the Great Leap Forward. Shall I go on?


I agree with the comment that anti-Americain feelings are prevalant in the U.K today.
In my opinion, the resentment felt towards America is firstly, due to the effect within the U.K of policies derived from our governments need to support and emulate the U.S governments geo-political strategy.
In the forefront is the military campaigns embarked on, however legislation enacted after the 'war on terror' was devised has helped accumulate resentment. The policies and legislations are eroding our legal institutions and the principle of 'due process of law' are damaging the fabric of British justice (however flawed it may be on occasion).
The governments failure to confront our ally regarding the treatment of prisoners in Guantanamo bay prison and other detention facilities and the U.K government's complicity in the rendition of prisoners to these facilities.
Add to this draconian legislation curtailing free-speech,protest and hence genuine dissent. This gathering erosion of privacy/civil liberties (freedoms)in an apparent pursuit of freedom have been justified by and attributed to the needs of the U.S led 'war on terror'.
The breaches of international law being perpetrated, have bee aided and abbeted by the personal relationship between PM Blair and President Bush.

Secondly, in my opinion it helps to view this from a western European perpective. Since the post WWII days when the grateful Europeans embraced America with gratitude, it has been the slow realisation that subsequent U.S adminstrations have had geo-political goals that differ fundamentaly from European aims.
Europe has played the game of imperial domination since the mid 16th century. Europeans have had two world wars, numerous Royal wars(domestic and internaional). Europe also colonised large swathes of the earths surface and exploited their peoples for geo-political influence.
Post WWII Western Europe as a whole was energised as it started working on closer social, political and economic union to prevent any future conflicts. It also had a collective sigh of relief as it relinquished it's colonies with the responsibilities costs inherent in such expeditions. Post WWII Europe, has neither the will or resources to follow any grand imperial escapades that lynchpin American global desires.
The 'faustian'desire of the current labour government to attempt to sheepishly bask in any 'reflected glory' of the 'war on terror' is fuel for anti-American sentiment.


TomTom, when is the last time an ally of the US had a movie produced in which the sitting president is assassinated?

Oh you mean the film the Turks made about Turkish troops fighting US GIs in Iraq as American doctors sold body parts and abused Muslims ? Yes that was quite a hit last year among Turks.

No, I mean the systematic destruction of Britain by the US - the ending of Lend-Lease in May 1945, the McMahon Act, the actions of J F Dulles and Eisenhower.

The dismantling of the Sterling Area. The fact is Britain has been used as a US satrapy, never more evidently than under Blair.

Ben Hecht was something very much more than a trivial film - just look at who backed him. When they put on plays in London talking about the joy each time a US GI is killed, or each time a British installation is bombed.....maybe if London newspapers carried ads from Al-Qaeda or Hisbollah or Al-Sadr you would see the similarity.

Great Britain has certainly been abused by the United States over decades to serve its own domestic constituencies; and now the country is simply economically and politically unable to play major roles on the world stage - the Us wanted to dislodge Britain from the Middle East in 1956 - it succeeded.

Britain is faced with the true mediocrity of its own position now Blair has exposed the bluff of British defence policy


"Grand imperial escapades that lynchpin American global desires"... oh brother. No gut prejudice, its just fact our country's ambitions are damn rotten. So your anti-Americanism is not real anti-Americanism in like racist-like nationalism anti-Americanism. Its actually everything-related-to-everything-Iraq-war anti-Americanism. Sorry but I don't see the poll results concluding that.

But it seems the blame game has now moved into the next logical phase as we veer more from Bush the man to consequences of the war in Iraq. Perverse glory with a war that has never been about fighting terror. Is that right?

Lets look at some facts about you naysayer blamers. We've been fighting for liberation all along while you claimed it was "oil for blood." We did not install a new puppet dictator as you said we would. You said there would never be legitimate elections but there have been three national elections in a row certified by international observers. You claimed before the '04 elections we would not stay the course but do everything possible to get out of the country and you said the same again before the '06 elections. Now you naysayers in many cases are hoping for your Parliament and our Congress to force us out of Iraq even though the war supporters consistently say it would be morally and strategically wrong.

One more thing: your typical smear over Guantanamo. The prisoners at Guantanamo are suspected of war using means that are outlawed, at least so far as anything in war can be outlawed. Under our Constitution and under our treaty obligations, they are not entitled to anything more than what the rules of war, including the Geneva Conventions state. It's gravely wrong to suggest that we've done wrong. We bent over backwards to try to do right, and get no credit at all. People captured as prisoners of war do not get the same rights as people arrested by police. Combatants captured in wartime have a completely different set of standards than arrested criminals. This has always been true - always.

You cannot imply - based on no evidence - that a mistake has happened. And if one has, the consequences here would be that some innocent was deprived of his freedom for a great length of time in comfortable conditions where his religious and leisure concerns were well taken care of. On the grand scale of wartime mistakes and their consequences, that just doesn't add up to a grave injustice. I'm sorry, but it doesn't.

Fred Baker

Thank you JF, but in my considered opinion, by and large, the British left it's colonies in a far better state in which they were found and left them in a far better state than they are now! And that includes the USA.

Teddy Bear

Dennis - Re your post of 4.23am

Do you have one view that isn't media generated? One thought to claim as your own?
Just because the media doesn't give space or airtime to those challenging their views, while they chip away at everything against their agenda doesn't make them wise or knowledgable. It just shows the potency they have to affect public opinion, and you demonstrate that fully.

Everyone of your 'conclusions' is pure supposition, and other than suck in the media line (ala Guardian or BBC), you cannot substantiate it.

Teddy Bear

Re FB's post
When one lives in a society that is degrading and eroding daily, it's sad that all one has left is an unfounded arrogance and a disjointed version of history to bolster ones identity.

Since the British government tells us daily "we've never had it so good", it must be true, isn't it?

Alan Douglas

I remember anti-Americanism when age 6 I was in Vienna in 1947, when children used to shout at me "Ami geh heim" - American go home, which was a slogan daubed all over walls. There was NO similar campaign of "Russki go home" because the whole thing was propaganda created by the left. It is worth noting that the Russians were generally far more hated there than the Americans.

Anti-Americanism has become a Frankenstein's monster which runs and runs, even if the originators are long dead, more a knee-jerk now than a thought-process.

It will never end.

Alan Douglas


"This is very similiar to the Anglophobia prevalent in the USA 1918-1941"

And Anglophobia is--rather remarably, when you think about it--nearly absent in the US today. About the most negative thing you'll encounter about Britain is the stereotype of British men being effete, and surely, that's the weakest stereotype in existence, since all the British men Americans are most familiar with contradict the stereotype (Cary Grant, Sean Connery, Churchill. Blair, need I go on?) You'll find anti-Europeanism here, and for good reason, but you see, we don't think of the UK as Europe. Brits didn't used to. It's a pity so many of them do now.


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useful things. They increase our knowledge, broaden our minds and strengthen our character. In other words, they are our good teachers and wise friends


JF: 'The UK is probably responsible for much more death and exploitation than the US--don't forget, you once ruled a quarter of the globe.'

As an American it always fascinates me when Americans don't know there own REAL history. It is an embarrassment when our genocidal colonialism and destruction and displacement of the native nations of America is ignored, and yet we feel morally at liberty to criticize others' colonialism (they've gone home, we haven't!) without the slightest embarrassment of hypocrisy, or reference to our own Manifest Destiny!

It's easy to criticize the negative aspects of the British Empire, and yet just look at what it has given us (which nobody wishes to give up whether they be in the US or Israel): English liberty (our own constitution set up by our ethnically British Founding Fathers), the Agricultural & Industrial Revolutions, global credit, Parliamentary democracy, the globalization English common and constitutional law, etc.

The list to the benefit of mankind is endless - much of which we tend to take credit for ourselves!

Our tendency to project our overly pronounced moral superiority and principles, ignore our real history, consider other nations' right to exist as inferior to our own, and at the same time engage in actions that are contrary to our stated principles is the real reason for anti-Americanism.

I think you will find the root to anti-Americanism lies, not in jealousy, but in American hypocrisy and double standard.

From my own experience overseas I think Americans are generally liked, but there is also also an acknowledgement that American imperialism still has a strong undertone of the 19th Century in it!

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Great Britain has certainly been abused by the United States over decades to serve its own domestic constituencies; and now the country is simply economically and politically unable to play major roles on the world stage - the Us wanted to dislodge Britain from the Middle East in 1956 - it succeeded.

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