Sunday, March 30, 2008

'The Economist' appraises America's foreign policy

Awaiting me when I go to my home away from Anderson Hall is the weekly number of The Economist.  While I don’t always agree with the views of this conservative, British-based  publication, I value the depth of its reports, elegant graphics and sense of humor.  It is also available on line in a richly hyperlinked verson at

This weeks number featured a 14 page special report on The Future of America’s Foreign Policy, which merits serious reading by all AU students, indeed, by everyone.  It offered a surprisingly harsh critique of President Bush, whom, as I recall, the Economist endorsed in 2004.  

“....Whereas September 11th had brought America together, his [President Bush’s] decisions to invade Iraq and turn the “war on terror” into a partisan issue relentlessly divided the country.  Democratic opposition to the war gathered strength with the insurgency in Iraq and exploded into fury as it became clear that Saddam Hussein’s regime had neither weapons of mass destruction or close ties to Al Quaeda.

The opposition to the war eventually spread beyond the Democratic Party.  And public unease about the iraq debacle has turned into much broader unease about American foreign policy.  Mr. Bush’s foreign policy has turned its author into one of the most polarizing presidents in American History.  At home he is about as popular as Richard Nixon at the depths of the Watergate scandal; abroad he is seen as a war mongering buffoon.


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