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News ::
Boston Globe Editorial on Bush's Hubris (english)
06 Oct 2002
When the Globe is coming out this strong against Bush, at the same time as the Congress is lying down for the pResident-'n-thief, it's time for us activists to hit the streets, raise our voices and be heard. NO TO BUSH'S WAR AGAINST THE WORLD!!!
A BOSTON GLOBE EDITORIAL

A strategy of hubris


10/6/2002

S A LONE superpower, the United States enjoys unchallenged military superiority over all potential rivals. Because of its military edge, combined with the economic, technological, and pop culture advantages that constitute what has been called America's ''soft power,'' the United States is perched at the apogee of a unipolar world order. For that reason - because of the very preponderance of its power and influence - this nation has a greater interest than any other country in fostering a world order rooted in international cooperation.


By undervaluing such cooperation and asserting a penchant for unilateral and preemptive actions, the document ''The National Security Strategy of the United States,'' which President Bush submitted to Congress last month, projected a portrait of the United States as a muscle-bound simpleton afflicted with a fateful case of hubris.

Although it is hardly a secret that sovereign states generally reserve to themselves the privilege of doing whatever they wish to advance their interests, to say so openly is to flaunt the arrogance of a lone superpower. Whether in the current conflict with Osama bin Laden's terrorist gang or the looming showdown with Saddam Hussein, however, the United States needs the good will and cooperation of other countries.

An enlightened US president should be in favor of treaties, institutions, and organizations that preserve peace, halt the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, and help prevent or punish crimes against humanity such as those committed in Rwanda, Cambodia, East Timor, Bosnia, Kosovo, and Iraq. Bush instead favors ''counterproliferation'' - a euphemism for playing the role of a global sheriff forcing other countries to abjure weapons of mass destruction.

In a letter to Congress accompanying his strategy statement, Bush said: ''In keeping with our heritage and principles, we do not use our strength to press for unilateral advantage. We seek instead to create a balance of power that favors human freedom.'' These platitudes conceal blatant contradictions.

The Bush doctrine asserts at several points precisely the unilateral privileges he denies seeking. And Bush commends policies that are meant to preserve what is currently an egregious imbalance of power in the world.

The document's concluding section promises: ''Our forces will be strong enough to dissuade potential adversaries from pursuing a military buildup in hopes of surpassing, or equaling, the power of the United States.'' This formulation means that American taxpayers will be obliged to underwrite ever-increasing levels of defense spending for the purpose of maintaining what may be the greatest imbalance of power the world has ever known.

When combined with Bush's hostility to the International Criminal Court, the Kyoto agreement, and various arms control treaties, this pledge to preserve indefinitely the United States' role as the world's sole, unconstrainable superpower illuminates the hubris of his strategy. Bush's boasting of his determination to keep all possible competitors inferior forever is the surest way to provoke some of them to resist the superpower's designs.
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