Wednesday, May 07, 2003

The record of nation-building during the past decade is clear: The United States failed in Somalia and Haiti, where it pulled out troops prematurely. Bosnia, Kosovo and Afghanistan show more promise because U.S. troops remain stationed there. Afghanistan would be making even more progress if the United States and its allies had made a bigger commitment to secure the countryside, not just Kabul.

If we want Iraq to avoid becoming a Somalia on steroids, we'd better get used to U.S. troops being deployed there for years, possibly decades, to come. If that raises hackles about American imperialism, so be it. We're going to be called an empire whatever we do. We might as well be a successful empire.

I have to say, I like a lot of the stuff going on here. Especially the brazeness of taking the Leftist term of opprobrium and reacquiring it, kind of like the way gay people have reacquired "queer" as a positive term. Its certainly a good way to piss off the Left if they say America is imperialist and we reply "of course it is, and a damn good thing too". Of course, all of this could lead to hubristic arrogance pretty quick, but, as this guy quite rightly points out, the opposite problem is just as dangerous.


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