Dyepes, what you say is definitely not lost on me. The fact is the U.S. is no longer financially capable of supporting its imperial ambitions. Having
an international military presence isn't quite feasible when you are no longer a major power, which will be the case in the next few decades. A U.S.
presence won't be tolerated for much longer. Europe, even Africa, is capable of defending itself. Though that is probably not the reason why we have
bases in those regions of the world anyway.
I think it's time to approach reality. U.S. imperialism is coming to an end; its militaristic and ideological influence is no longer a powerful,
world-shaping force. Its political sphere of influence is waning, as is evident in this past year's events, with Russia not afraid to assert its
territorial claim on ethnic Georgian provinces, its brazen opposition to a missile defense shield in Poland; Venezuela is not afraid to invite the
presence of foreign military powers, not to mention European ones, something so implicitly forbidden by the U.S. Monroe Doctrine. South America is now
beginning to take its own shape politically... North Korea just restarted a nuclear reactor capable of producing weapons grade uranium just months
after it agreed (or more probably was forced) to halt its program.
The thing with history and the world is that everything really is cyclic. Most will say that we learn from our mistakes. However, our "mistakes" are
human in nature, and many will never cease to repeat themselves. In 2003, the U.S. invaded Iraq, declaring they were liberating an oppressed people
under a dictatorial regime. In 1883, just over a hundred years ago, Africa was being divided under the guise of liberating “those ignorant millions
from their horrid ways” (Conrad, Heart of Darkness), an extension of European philanthropy if you will.
Old politics never die. It's time for Obama, a President that will engage in genuine discussion with America's most politically estranged nations,
without any precondition as to the extent of the meaning of those discussions for either party.
The world is changing. We have to accept that there will always be change, and we need to muster the humility and audacity to deal with those changes.
Barack Obama is a keen observer of the world around him, and he will instigate the change we need by at first admitting the U.S. will soon have to
face decisions as to determining their political place in the world, and having the humility to address those concerns. The first step, and this is
where he differs from the past eight years of foreign policy, is a recognition of growing foreign powers, which the Bush administration has made many
to believe pose an imminent threat to the safety of America itself. That idea could not be further from the truth. Open dialogue is the only way to go
when you are no longer in a position to place sanctions on every country that opposes your way of thinking.
Or rather, if those countries no
longer feel threatened, as is becoming a trend over the past year or so. But more importantly, open dialogue is key in addressing the causes of
contention between nations that would otherwise never be revealed, for the sake of political impunity, or political contrivance. All nonsense.
I think this will really be a time of intellectual and spiritual growth for the American people. This century will be the first in over two hundred
years where the country will not be financially or militarily superior, where Western ideology will not be the forerunner to political power, where
people from all over the world will no longer emigrate to find sanctuary on the North American continent, for an expectation that their own countries
[edit on 30-9-2008 by cognoscente]