A mere four year later, New Europe no longer exists. Aznar, Blair, and Berlusconi are finished, partly victims of failure in Iraq. Central Europe's mood has changed profoundly, from pro-American to deeply skeptical. On Friday, President Bush plans to spend precisely 3 hours and 10 minutes on the ground in Poland, making no speeches and seeing no one much besides the Polish president. And it won't be a very wide-ranging discussion. Mortally wounded by Iraq, damaged further by the U.S. administration's lack of interest in its concerns--change in the U.S. visa regime, military assistance--New Europe probably will now be killed off completely by American plans to build a missile-defense shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.
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