“The Yankees Are Coming, the Yankees Are Coming”
“The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming” is the name of a comedy film (1966) that reflects the fear of Western people from the Soviet threat during the Cold War. The main point of the film is the mockery of Westerners’ panic at that time.
It’s not known whether this fear of the USSR was justified or exaggerated–that is a topic for another article. However, today if they were to make a film, not a comedy, but a horror flick in Europe with the name “The Yankees Are Coming, the Yankees Are Coming,” it wouldn’t be surprising.
Yes, you read that right. Neither in the Middle East, nor in Russia, nor in China, nor in Venezuela or in Africa, but in Europe. Europeans’ fear of the United States and the attentive attitude of European capitals towards Washington is very clearly shown by recent polls and the semi-official European media.
Let’s have a look at some examples over the past year:
– Data from a controversial Pew Research Center study, which was published in February 2018, showed that the two allies, Germany and the USA, face the threat of separation. More than half of Germans (56%) described German-American relations as bad. And the common defense effort is considered urgent by only a small proportion of Germans (16%). (https://www.welt.de/politik/ausland/article174067166/Bilaterales-Verhaeltnis-Entfremdung-zwischen-Deutschland-und-den-USA.html)
– The results of a public opinion poll conducted by the Allensbach Institute for the newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine on May 16, 2018 showed that the German population follows the course of the United States with growing concern. The U.S., which for decades has been the Germans’ most important and most reliable ally and friend, is suddenly becoming foreign, even threatening. The overwhelming majority have the impression that Europe and the United States are drifting apart; for decades this was the opinion of a minority in Germany; now 70% are convinced of it. German-American relations are perceived as profoundly disturbed. Just under two-thirds of the population ranked relations as good or very good three years ago; now it is only 20%; 71% consider German-American relations to be tense. At the same time, more and more Germans treat the United States as a state that is “ruthless” in pursuing its interests. Five years ago, 24% of respondents negatively assessed the influence of Washington on events in the world; in the beginning of 2018 – 54%. (https://www.faz.net/aktuell/politik/allensbach-umfrage-zeigt-entfremdung-deutscher-von-amerika-15593293.html)
– The results of a Politbarometer poll, conducted by the research group “Elections” (Wahlen) from May 15 to 17, 2018 for the TV channel ZDF showed that according to 82% of respondents, the United States is not a trustworthy partner for Germany when it comes to political cooperation. Only 14% viewed the United States as a reliable partner. (https://www.zdf.de/politik/politbarometer/grosse-mehrheit-usa-kein-verlaesslicher-partner-100.html)
– The German Der Spiegel of May 28, 2018 depicted the relationship of the Trump administration to Europe with this cover:
– A YouGov survey in July 2018, commissioned by the German Press Agency DPA, found 42% of respondents want U.S. troops out, while 37% want them to stay and 21% are undecided or didn’t answer. Nearly one in two Germans want U.S. troops to retreat. (https://www.stripes.com/news/poll-42-of-germans-want-us-troops-out-of-country-1.537230) According to a YouGov poll in June 2018, the majority of Germans (59%) and French people (51%) negatively evaluate the U.S. (https://yougov.de/news/2018/07/03/europa-und-die-usa-beziehungskrise-mit-trennungssc/)
– A survey of 25 nations, conducted between May and August 2018 by the Pew Research Center, showed that America’s image continued to deteriorate in many countries during Trump’s first year in office, particularly in Europe. Only 30% of Germans have a favourable view of the United States, down five points from the previous year–the lowest score in the entire survey after Russi (26%). Only 38% of French said they had a positive view of the United States, down from last year. (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-image-survey/americas-image-worsens-under-trump-idUSKCN1MB3V9)
– A representative study carried out by Atlantik-Brücke and Civey in Germany in November and December 2018 shows the dwindling confidence in transatlantic cooperation and the USA. In the representative survey of 5,000 people who attended the panel, 85% rated the relationship as negative or very negative. In addition, a significant part of the respondents believes that now China is a more reliable partner for the Federal Republic of Germany than the United States and that it is necessary to distance itself even more from American partners. (https://www.atlantik-bruecke.org/wp-content/uploads/AtlantikBrueckeUmfrage2019.pdf)
– According to a poll conducted and published in February 2019 by the Pew Research Center, 49% of Germans (in 2013 — %9, in 2017 — 35%) and French (in 2013 — 20%, in 2017 — 36%) see the U.S.’s power and influence as a greater threat in 2018. (http://www.pewglobal.org/2019/02/10/climate-change-still-seen-as-the-top-global-threat-but-cyberattacks-a-rising-concern/)
– The Security Report 2019 of the Center for Strategy and Higher Leadership, which was published in February 2019, shows that the Germans see the U.S. as the biggest threat to peace. “The Security Report 2019 clearly shows that there is a central factor of uncertainty among Germans that scares them. And that is the USA under the leadership of Donald Trump” said Professor Klaus Schweinsberg of the Center for Strategy and Higher Leadership. (https://www.sicherheitsreport.net/wp-content/uploads/PM_Sicherheitsreport_2019.pdf)
The recent picture of the last Munich Conference confirms the above facts. Deutsche Welle, referring to the former president of Estonia and one of the old-timers of the Munich security conference Toomas Hendrik Ilves and the head of the Munich Conference Wolfgang Ischinger, writes the following:
“‘The division lines between the Atlantic have become more rigid,’ the politician said in an interview with DW. The Munich Conference is, first of all, a demonstration of what is called the transatlantic partnership of the United States and Germany, as well as the United States and the European Union. But the partnership that developed after World War II was started to be questioning from the beginning of Donald Trump presidency. ‘The current administration has destroyed the basic trust in the United States,’ says Ilves. ‘It will have to be built in a new way.’
Similar, although more restrained statements were made by the head of the Munich Conference, Wolfgang Ischinger. ‘If we called our conference ‘To the brink of the abyss and back,’ in previous years, it might be an exaggeration we would think, now, after many conversations, the majority of the participants say that there really is a problem,’ the former German diplomat said summing up the meeting.” (https://www.dw.com/ru/%D0%B3%D1%80%D1%83%D1%81%D1%82%D0%BD%D1%8B%D0%B5-%D0%B8%D1%82%D0%BE%D0%B3%D0%B8-%D0%BC%D1%8E%D0%BD%D1%85%D0%B5%D0%BD%D1%81%D0%BA%D0%BE%D0%B9-%D0%BA%D0%BE%D0%BD%D1%84%D0%B5%D1%80%D0%B5%D0%BD%D1%86%D0%B8%D0%B8-%D0%BF%D0%BE-%D0%B1%D0%B5%D0%B7%D0%BE%D0%BF%D0%B0%D1%81%D0%BD%D0%BE%D1%81%D1%82%D0%B8/a-47556723)
And the results of the conference are reported by Der Spiegel in the following way:
“America does not lead, it retreats. Others are pushing into the vacuum left by Trump’s erratic ‘America First’ policy. China, Russia but also Iran. And the U.S. does not lead, they give instructions.” (http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/muenchner-sicherheitskonferenz-die-befehlsausgabe-des-mike-pence-a-1253629.html)
As we can see from these examples, the whole world suffers from Washington’s aggression. It is not just Asia, Middle Eastern countries, Russia, China or Venezuela. The U.S. used to isolate other countries with its aggressive policies; now it’s isolating itself. It’s losing its closest allies. The reckless and barbaric aggression of the U.S. has been a problem for Europe too. The U.S. has no respect for its so-called allies Germany and France.
In the film “The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming,” the main idea was expressed in the words of the sailor Alexei Kolchin, who told a local girl: “I do not want to hate.” But the whole world has begun to hate the American aggressors. Thus, restraints on the U.S. relieve everyone.