Bush Victory: Czech Politicians’ Reactions

This is from the end of a longer article on the Natoaktual.cz server about European reactions to reaction to George W. Bush’s election win yesterday. In this case, because the French and western European reactions are relatively well-covered in the English-language press, I’m just translating the end part, which has to do with Czech politicians’ reactions.

Czechs don’t expect a turnover

Jan Nálevka, a historian at Charles University and a member of the Czech Euro-Atlantic Council, presumes the US will not go through major changes in its foreign policy. “The US would probably step back from its unilateralism mainly in the struggle against terrorism,” he judges.

It will depend on the Alliance itself, and therefore on the Czech Republic, what kind of pressure NATO can put on the US. “We have to clearly say that the Americans should not act entirely alone.”

Czech Foreign Minister Cyril Svoboda considers relations between the Czech Republic and US as good. “Our relations with the United States were, are and will be good, so nothing will change,” he said.

President Václav Klaus, through his spokesman Petr Hájek, said that Bush’s re-election “means mainly a continuity in America’s policy thus far.”

Defense Minister Karel Kühnl had no great expectations from the Bush administration. “The Czech Republic would have to get along with whoever won the election; the truth is that we know the Bush administration already, and know what to expect of them.”

Christian Democrat leader Miroslav Kalousek spoke similarly. According to Kalousek, it would be hard for the results of the American election to change relations between the US and Czech Republic.

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