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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The World Will Have To Make Do

I'm not sure I'd buy the argument that the world has been free of hardship and strife since America rose to the exalted position of  Superpower after World War II.  In which year exactly have we seen that Pax Americana again?

The Wall Street Journal kinda skips over that point to make this one:
A Leaderless World

Not so long ago much of the world griped about an America that was too assertive, a "hyperpower" that attempted to lead with too little deference to the desires of those attending the G-20 meeting today in Mexico. Well, congratulations. A world without U.S. leadership is arriving faster than even the French hoped. How do you like it?

• In Syria, a populist revolt ...

• Iran continues its march toward a nuclear ...

• Again President of Russia, Vladimir Putin snubbed President Obama's invitation to ...

• In Egypt ...

For the Putins of the world and many American liberals, these signs of fading U.S. influence are welcome. They have finally tied down the American Gulliver. The era of "collective security" through the U.N. has arrived, and, whatever the future difficulties, at least there will be no more Iraqs.

But note well that the substitute for U.S. leadership is not a new era of U.N.-administered peace. It is often a vacuum filled by the world's nastiest actors. That is nowhere clearer than in Syria, where Russia and Iran have a free run to fortify the Assad dictatorship. [link]
Problem with this piece is? I think I could make the opposite argument using the same examples.

Yeah, Syria, Egypt, and Iran are problems. But when haven't they been?

Syria has been ruled by the same ruthless family for 42 years - when we ruled the world and now when we don't. Nothing's changed.

Iran was a thorn in our side even when Ronald Reagan governed the planet.

Egypt has been a basket case since forever.

And Russia? It was much more the totalitarian state when we weren't pulling back our influence.

So, yeah, the world today is a violent place.

Like it's been for ... ever?

American oversight or no.