ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Sunday, December 04, 2005

The Big Four in the 21st Century

Read this essay at the American Enterpirse Institute for a glimpse on the direction of our foreign policy in this century.

The Big Four Alliance - The New Bush Strategy
By Thomas Donnelly
Posted: Friday, December 2, 2005

Over the past six months, the Bush administration has upgraded its budding “strategic partnerships” with India and Japan. Along with the steady "special relationship” with Great Britain, what is beginning to emerge is a global coalition system--it is too soon to call it a true alliance--for the post-Cold War world. Much work remains to be done to translate the expressions of similar political interests and values into usable military strength. Still, the prospects for expanding the number of genuine “stakeholders” in the Pax Americana are quite bright.

It used to be the fashion to pillory the Bush administration for its unilateralism. The worst offense was not removing Saddam Hussein from power, but “going it alone” (never mind the British and the other members of the coalition). And even in Afghanistan, the snub of NATO’s offer to slow the operation down to a Kosovo-like pace was thought to cloud the justice of the war.

Now, the editorialists of the New York Times have discovered:
[T]he Bush administration has been going out of its way to build up its military ties with countries surrounding China. India and Japan are the two most troubling examples. Washington has pressed ahead with an ill-advised initiative to share civilian nuclear technology with India, despite that country’s refusal to abide by the restrictions of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. And it has actively encouraged an already worrisomely nationalist Japanese government to shed postwar restraints on its military and embrace more ambitious regional security goals. Washington has also taken steps to strengthen military cooperation with Vietnam and Indonesia. Mr. Bush’s stopover in Mongolia [was] likewise . . . aimed at cementing a new security partnership.[1]

The reactionary Left is shocked, but there has been an even larger pattern of alliance-building that has been going on out of sight of the newsrooms of the mainstream media. Indeed, far from maintaining a unilateralist approach to American security, the Bush administration has been cementing a globe-spanning structure of strategic partnerships that has the potential not only to “contain” China, but also to sustain and enhance the liberal international order of the post-Soviet era.

You might call this emerging set of alliances the “four-by-four” strategy. It is built around four great powers--the United States, Great Britain, Japan, and India--who share four basic strategic principles--that the dangers of radicalism, failing despotic governments, and nuclear proliferation in the greater Middle East are too great to ignore; that the growing military strength and political ambitions of Beijing’s autocrats make it far from certain that China’s “rise” will be a peaceful one; that the spread of representative forms of government will increase the prospects for a durable peace; and that military force remains a useful and legitimate tool of national statecraft.
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Read the whole thing...

Frankly, I think that even the haughty, French-looking Kerry (who by the way served in Vietnam) would find it difficult to alter the alignment from the Anglosphere to a closer alliance with the French... It's just inevitable that the US, the Brits, the Indians, and the Japanese will strengthen their relationships and interdependence. However, it might have taken longer (resulting in perhaps more pain in the long term).

And it's especially interesting that Angie Merkel seems to recognize that "the West" is moving beyond old (and useless) structures...

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Comments (1)
Monterey John said...

You gotta love The Old Gray Lady! I guess they think we should just lie down in the highway of history and get run over by a Chinese truck. They are nothing if not consistant; consistantly stupid.