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Misguided Mission
King Features Syndicate, Inc. ^ | 12-19-03 | Reese, Charley

Posted on 12/19/2003 6:40:14 AM PST by Theodore R.

Misguided Mission

It's clear that the president's brain is occupied by the neoconservatives who surround him. It's clear from their writings and policy statements that the neoconservatives believe the United States can become the dominant power on Earth.

This is a bad judgment that is dangerous and could become lethal. This is why thoughtful people believe it is imperative to defeat George Bush in the 2004 elections. This wrongheaded policy, cooked up by academics and journalists, is not one that will merely embarrass the United States. It is a wrongheaded policy that could have dire consequences for the American people.

This wrongheaded idea that the United States can now dominate the planet rests on a number of fallacies. Let's look at them.

Fallacy No. 1 is the belief that the rest of the world will acquiesce to American dominance. Russia, China and India, not to mention the Islamic World, are not about to go quietly into the sunset. All three have large populations, large amounts of natural resources, and nuclear teeth. Their nuclear teeth mean that the U.S. attempts to bully them will always fall short of being effective.

Fallacy No. 2 is the false belief that the United States is as strong as it was in 1945. The truth is we are much weaker. The great manufacturing capacity that became the "arsenal of democracy" has been eroded almost beyond recognition. Our agricultural base has been eroded. Iron ore and oil supplies have been seriously depleted. We are in fact dependent on imports not only for energy supplies but for manufactured goods, strategic minerals, parts for our own strategic weapons systems, and increasingly for food. We are running high federal deficits, high trade deficits and high current account deficits. The value of the dollar is eroding rapidly.

Fallacy No. 3 is the false belief that our military is undefeatable. This falsehood has been fed by the fact that since Vietnam, we have used our high-tech forces to attack small, poor, defenseless countries such as Grenada, Panama, Serbia, Afghanistan and Iraq. But even Afghanistan and Iraq, both dilapidated and lacking all modern military technology, have put a great strain on America's military forces. We do not yet have full control of either country.

Our strength is not in our ground forces but in our high-tech air power and the ability to coordinate the two. One breakthrough in air-defense technology could seriously weaken us, and you can be sure both Russia and China are working assiduously to make that breakthrough. Before you dismiss Russia, you should remember that we are now dependent on Russian spacecraft to reach the space station and that Russia, not us, has the world's largest mobile intercontinental ballistic missile force.

If we are so strong, why has the president tread so carefully in his dealings with North Korea? Why not bully them as he did Iraq? Why not issue ultimatums? For the simple reason that we would pay a very high price in American casualties if we got into a war with North Korea. Don't forget, it is their civilian sector that is poor. They have put most of their resources into their military.

In 1945, the United States was the strongest and richest country on Earth. In 2003, we are one of, if not the, most indebted countries on Earth. Foreign holders of that debt could wreck our economy simply by deciding to dump their holdings on the market. Domestically we are a divided people with a decadent culture, if you can even call it a culture.

Far from entering a period of dominance, we are entering a period of great danger. Most empires have lasted about 250 years, and we are approaching that number. What we need are not empty heads controlled by pseudo-intellectual ideologues but the smartest, wisest leaders we can find. Our future depends on it.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- © 2003 by King Features Syndicate, Inc.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS: afghanistan; bush; charleyreese; china; culturaldecline; decadence; decliningdollar; empire; grenada; imports; india; iraq; manufacturing; nationaldebt; neoconservatives; northkorea; oneworlders; russia; serbia; spacestation; us

1 posted on 12/19/2003 6:40:15 AM PST by Theodore R.
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To: Theodore R.
Listen to me carefully Charley...Take the crack pipe...put it in a paper bag...now hit it against the floor until you hear a cracking noise!
2 posted on 12/19/2003 6:47:29 AM PST by gr8eman
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To: Theodore R.
Quick! Run! The Sky is Falling!
3 posted on 12/19/2003 6:47:54 AM PST by txzman (Jer 23:29)
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To: Theodore R.
neoconservatives believe the United States can become the dominant power on Earth.

psst, Charley...we already are the dominant power on Earth. Neocons believe that power should be used.

4 posted on 12/19/2003 6:53:26 AM PST by Mr. Bird
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To: Theodore R.
Most empires have lasted about 250 years, and we are approaching that number.

What a silly statement, on so many levels. Even if you believe that America is an "empire" today (I don't), it would be pretty foolish to claim that it was an empire from the moment of its founding...

5 posted on 12/19/2003 6:53:47 AM PST by The Electrician
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To: gr8eman
This pos article and may be the poster should be zotted.

Charlie is beyound redemption! He is a certified lunatic.
6 posted on 12/19/2003 7:03:03 AM PST by Grampa Dave (George $orea$$ has owned and controlled the Rats for decades!)
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To: Theodore R.
"Domestically we are a divided people with a decadent culture, if you can even call it a culture.

Far from entering a period of dominance, we are entering a period of great danger. Most empires have lasted about 250 years, and we are approaching that number. What we need are not empty heads controlled by pseudo-intellectual ideologues but the smartest, wisest leaders we can find. Our future depends on it."

Reese bangs this one out of the park. He is quite correct and we need to heed the warning. Look closely at the current state of America:
Our military was decimated by the clintonistas
We are more dependent than ever on foreign oil due to the liberals and enviro-nazis
Our highest court has upheld a law that erodes the rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Founding Fathers
Our level of education has been declining for decades
We have few friends in the international community (Iraq has proven that)
We are at odds with the UN, an organization we were fundamental in creating
We have become apathetic and lazy

For those thinking that Mr. Reese is off his meds, look at the list again and reconsider. Those are not the traits of a powerful nation.
7 posted on 12/19/2003 7:04:49 AM PST by DustyMoment (Repeal CFR NOW!!)
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To: Theodore R.
It's clear from their writings and policy statements that the neoconservatives believe the United States can become the dominant power on Earth.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union the USA IS the dominant power on earth.

Russia or China might give us a run for our money but neither, alone, can topple us from that position.

There is no other country on earth that can even come close.
India? Yes, they have a bunch of people but how are they going to move them? They don't have enough nuclear tipped ICBMs to tip the balance of power without plunging the entire world into WWIII. (or IV)

North Korea? With an egomaniacal ruler, the better part of the citizenry starving, and, most likely, a bitter internicine fight coming when the egomaniac dies, North Korea is a dead horse prospect to topple the USA from it's position of preimminence. Also, like India, North Korea doesn't have enough nuclear tipped ICBMs to tip the balance of power without plunging the entire world into WWIII. (or IV)

What other country has the power, will, backing of it's citizenry, and ba!!s enough to actually tell the USA to pack sand?

8 posted on 12/19/2003 7:04:52 AM PST by Just another Joe (FReeping can be addictive and helpful to your mental health)
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To: Theodore R.
What nation would Charley like to be the dominate power on Earth ?
We all know the Clintons had a side bet on the Red Chinese
9 posted on 12/19/2003 7:06:17 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks
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To: txzman
"Most empires have lasted about 250 years and..." The USA did not become an "empire" ever. But if we did it started in 1989 so there is still a few years left on the clock.
10 posted on 12/19/2003 7:07:21 AM PST by q_an_a
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To: DustyMoment
We have few friends in the international community (Iraq has proven that)

If we have so few, you could probably name them right?

We are at odds with the UN, an organization we were fundamental in creating

Who cares? It is probably better to say "The UN is at odds with the hand that feeds it" than to put it the way you did. The UN, what's that? I'm supposed to worry that we are at odds with an organization populated by the likes of Red China, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Libya, Iran, Cuba, Pakistan, France etc? The UN can kiss my posterior.

I'd like to see a list of the few countries we have as friends if you'd care to list them and also, why I should be worried about the ones who are not our friends. If you ask me, Iraq has shown us who our real friends are. Always a useful thing to know.

11 posted on 12/19/2003 7:14:28 AM PST by Prodigal Son
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To: Grampa Dave
Charlie Reese = Barf Alert.

That said, he does have some points worth considering. Our trade balance sucks, and too much of our manufacturing is done in foreign nations. Worse, we produce too many lawyers and not enough engineers, scientists and techies... That more than anything will be our downfall.
12 posted on 12/19/2003 7:33:35 AM PST by Little Ray (When in trouble, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout!)
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To: Prodigal Son
The list that Bush provided of nations that are allowed to bid on Iraq contracts lists 63 nations.

In a world that consists of hundreds of nations, 63 would qualify as "few".

Some of our (one time) staunchest allies are not on that list.
13 posted on 12/19/2003 7:53:44 AM PST by DustyMoment (Repeal CFR NOW!!)
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To: DustyMoment
Of the hundreds of countries in the world that you mention- how many even rank consideration? Zimbabwe? Should I be concerned if Robert Mugabe is angry with us? Somalia? Sudan? Angola, Congo, Liberia? Iran, China, Pakistan, Syria? You see there's a whole lot of nations out there that I want to be on the bad side of. I thank the lucky stars that these nations don't like us.

Other nations like France- France is not a staunch ally. Nor is Russia. If these two countries disagree with us, you won't see me losing any sleep over it. Germany on the other hand is a different matter but you can surely not blame Bush for the Germany peoples' thick headeness.

We have nations that matter on our side. The UK and Australia for example. I would take these two nations over any number of assorted thugocracies and panty-waisted socialist states.

14 posted on 12/19/2003 9:05:04 AM PST by Prodigal Son
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To: Theodore R.
Pssssst. Charlie...? Two words: "Reagan" and "Doctrine." "

... bangs this one out of the park"...? Cripes, he can't even see the frickin' BALL. :)

15 posted on 12/19/2003 11:24:14 AM PST by KentTrappedInLiberalSeattle ("The Clintons have damaged our country. They have done it together, in unison." -- Peggy Noonan)
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To: Theodore R.
"can become the dominant power on Earth."

Can become? We already are.

16 posted on 12/19/2003 11:27:42 AM PST by MEGoody
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To: DustyMoment
"Some of our (one time) staunchest allies are not on that list."

Because they have shown themselves not to be allies of the U.S. or of a democratic Iraq.

17 posted on 12/19/2003 11:29:10 AM PST by MEGoody
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To: Theodore R.
This is why thoughtful people believe it is imperative to defeat George Bush in the 2004 elections

This guy is insane

18 posted on 12/19/2003 6:10:46 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: Theodore R.
Fallacy No. 1 is the belief that the rest of the world will acquiesce to American dominance

look dummy, if that were true we wouldn't need the military and we wouldn't have been attacked over and over.

19 posted on 12/19/2003 6:12:25 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: Mr. Bird
we are now dependent on Russian spacecraft to reach the space station

So? and they rely on us to pay for it to keep their space program running.

20 posted on 12/19/2003 6:13:48 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: Theodore R.
Far from entering a period of dominance, we are entering a period of great danger.

we;; DUH! Thats why Bush is doing what he is doing, you dummy!

21 posted on 12/19/2003 6:15:12 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: The Electrician
we've been an 'empire' since , oh, about 1900 or 1920 or most likely 1945
22 posted on 12/19/2003 6:16:38 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: DustyMoment
No, thats not the problem. We are entering a dangerous era and we are not 'dominant' (in his definition) and thats why his conclusions are the exact opposite of what they should be.

Problem: Other countries won't kowtow to us... Bush will defend us and Reese thinks we should surrender.

Problem: The world is a very very dangerous place....... Bush will defend us and Reese thinks we should surrender.

Its his idiotic conclusions.

23 posted on 12/19/2003 6:19:48 PM PST by GeronL (Saddam is out of the hole and into the quagmire!)
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To: GeronL
Hey, at least Dean won't have those dreaded "neocons" running about in his administration. Just socialists and neomarxists. And don't worry. They aren't interested in America being "too powerful."
24 posted on 12/19/2003 6:26:13 PM PST by stands2reason
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To: GeronL
I disagree that Reese wants us to surrender. Charley Reese has been a stalwart voice of conservatism.

Yes the world is a dangerous place and we are not a dominant power. I think that what Reese is promoting is a warning that we should not invest a lot of energy living in the past but should face up to reality. We are not the same nation that had such notable achievements in the 1940s. In fact, it is doubtful that we could repeat those achievements today.

I think he is just saying that we shouldn't get so caught up in the successes we have had recently in Iraq and in re-living ancient history that we believe ourselves to be invincible. We aren't and, as soon as we start thinking that we are, that's when we are most likely to be taken out by an unexpected source.
25 posted on 12/19/2003 7:40:03 PM PST by DustyMoment (Repeal CFR NOW!!)
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