Dart Board Diplomacy
by James Glaser
Would someone please explain to me where we are going with our foreign policy? What is this backing Albanian rebels in their drive to take a piece of Macedonia. Hey is just me or is it really hard to figure out who the good guys are with the Albanians, Macedonians, Serbs, and the Kosovoans? Throw in the different religious factions and I would have to say that our state department is really throwing darts at the map, picking one group over the others.
At the same time US planes are bombing Iraq again. Is this now our longest war or is Iraq our new Vieques? We might as well keep on bombing, as those people will hate us for generations to come even if we quit now.
The Talaban in Afghanistan have arrested American citizens who were trying to convert people there to Christianity. Who were these brilliant citizens?
Here we are again trying to tell Israel and the Palestinians not to fight. We warn and call killing moves on both sides "provocative". Lets get serious and stop giving money and arms to that area of the world. That might wake someone up and save us some serious tax dollars.
The Russia and China have been pushed into being friends again with Bush's "missile defense plan". Just what we need, those two countries working together on anything.
We still have 100,000 troops in Europe and over 30,000 in Korea. With military units in Panama, Turkey, Japan, Great Britain, Italy, Guam, Germany, Azores, Hungary, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Korea, Kuwait, Puerto Rico, and Spain. Oh!, I almost forgot Okinawa, where our troops have endeared themselves to the local population.
I think if we moved these troops to, let's say, Brownsville, Laredo, Del Rio, El Paso, Douglas, Nogales, Yuma, El Centro, and South of San Diego, we would be protecting America's interests better.
Is it really too much to ask for our country to set down some standards that our country goes by diplomatically, that would allow us (the citizens) to know that if country "a" did something that didn't fit our standards, they would be on the other side. I know that this is a complex world, but a little continuity would really help with the score card.
A set of standards based on our Constitution that would transcend administrations would allow the world to learn, what is acceptable to the United States.
President Bush is now about to abandon the 1972 ABM Treaty and the 1967 Outer Space Treaty, the latter banned the militarization of space. The world is awash in arms, with nations willing, ready, and currently using them, including the USA. Now President Bush wants to start moving the arms race to a spaced based force and deploy weapons in outer space.
If America would develop a non partisan foreign policy or even some standards that we believed in, then the world would be able to understand where we were coming from. This is the time in our history where America can set standards that we want others to follow and our constitution gives us some guidance in that department.
If we would follow the Constitution that all politicians like to tell us they defend, then we would bring the troops home, let whoever wants to duke it out with each other, and go in afterwards and start trading with the victors. What we are doing now just makes both sides hate us. The Constitution is a good read. Try it.
Jim Glaser [send him mail] is a Vietnam vet and a volunteer in veterans hospitals.
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