Skip to comments.US focus on 'terror war' sinks image to all-time low: report (AFP)
Posted on 11/06/2007 7:34:14 PM PST by NormsRevenge
WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States needs to shift from muscle-flexing to alliance-building when it seeks to wield power in the world if it wants to patch up its battered global image, said a report on Tuesday.
"America's reputation, standing and influence are at all-time lows, and possibly sinking further," the report by a 20-member think-tank commissioned by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) said, citing half a dozen opinion polls from around the world.
"The terrorist attacks on 9/11 caused America to become a frightened and angry nation," it said.
"We reacted in ways that alarmed people the world over ... we relied excessively on hard military power to fight the war against terrorists and violent extremists.
"Ultimately this is a battle that will be won by ideas, not bullets. Just like the Cold War, we will prevail when the world chooses the opportunities we defend over the despair offered by our enemies."
The report, which was more than a year in the making, said the United States has focused too much on the war on terror and relied too heavily on military might in its foreign policy.
"The Pentagon is the best trained and best resourced arm of the federal government ... it tends to fill every void.
"The United States must become a smarter power by investing once again in the global good -- providing things that people and governments in all quarters of the world want but cannot attain in the absence of American leadership."
It called on the next US president to chart a new course towards a "smarter" foreign policy that balances hard power -- "wielding carrots and sticks to get what you want" -- and soft power -- "the ability to attract people to our side without coercion."
By shifting its foreign policy focus from the war on terror to championing the global good, the United States will not only defeat terrorism but will also restore its greatness, the report said.
The commission included former military commander in Iraq Anthony Zinni; ex-US ambassador to the United Nations, Russia and Israel Thomas Pickering; former Supreme Court justice Sandra Day O'Connor; members of congress; business leaders and the heads of non-profit organizations.
Before the United States seeks to redress its global image, it has to tidy up its own back garden, the report said.
"One of the terrible lasting impressions of Hurricane Katrina is that the US government is both unfair and inept in the face of real challenges that impact people's lives.
"Implementing a smart power strategy depends on the government's ability to organize for success. Many Americans, though, have lost faith in government's ability to adapt and work effectively in today's world.
"This perception of an uncaring, ineffective US government is even more pronounced abroad among non-US citizens."
Among recommendations the commission gave to help restore the good image of the United States were a renewed commitment to international treaties and institutions, and reinvigorated alliances.
The United States must also not have double standards in terms of international legal norms, the report said.
"The images of prisoner abuse from Abu Ghraib ... seemed emblematic of this double standard."
The commission urged more commitment to global development, more equitable global trade talks, a revitalized public diplomacy effort under which "every US citizen serves as a diplomat", and greater investment in education to ensure the United States does not fall back from the cutting edge of science and technology.
It urged more openness to foreigners -- in particular to students -- and concrete steps to enhance energy security.
"America has the capacity to be a smart power," the report concluded.
"It is the most important mandate for our next president."
I guess we as a nation should have just curled up in a fetal ball and wished away our attackers with pleasant thoughts.
It may make one pause and wonder if it would have been better to just let Germany and Japan have their ways with the rest of a world that doesn't appreciate freedom and liberty and prefers tyranny and treachery.
CSIS Commission on Smart Power
America must revitalize its ability to inspire and persuade rather than merely rely upon its military might. Despite the predominance of U.S. hard power, there are limits to its effectiveness in addressing the main foreign policy challenges facing America today. America’s standing in the world is diminished, and although there have been discrete “soft power” successes most notably the progress against HIV/AIDS and malaria, and the creation of the Millennium Challenge Corporation - many of the traditional instruments of soft power, such as public engagement and diplomacy, have been neglected and fallen into disrepair.
In addition, there remains a lack of strategic vision for how to integrate soft and hard power into “smart power” to address current and future challenges. The next year offers a unique opportunity for the United States to engage in a national dialogue on the best way to draw to its side the support of friends and allies in the pursuit of its national security interests.
all time low?
Yeah, when the start refusing to take our money, get back to me.
Moonbats trying to influence Voting Day.
What else is new?
Isn't the CSIS affiliated with the Dems?
Abu Grahib?? Did Alan Combs write that?
This is just pure BS. We are kicking al qaeda’s ass around the world without the help of the CSIS.
Just in time for the release of the movie, Lions for Lambs, and to hear Robert Redford utterly trash the United States WoT on Larry King tonight.
I should qualify my statement..
It may make one pause and wonder if it would have been better to just let Germany and Japan have their ways with the rest of a world that doesn’t appreciate freedom and liberty and prefers tyranny and treachery.
Choosing Isolationism versus Engagement, building a Fortress America and staying out of foreign entanglements may have been a more viable path to have taken in the short-term, but in the long term, it would only be a matter of time before those and other enemies would come to our shores... and have.
No amount of alliance building was going to stop certain events from happening and from the events to come.
Reputation is only what others think of you.
Character is what you are in the dark.
In his speech, Huckabee said the United States has a self-
important image on the world stage. “Our prestige in the world has been marred, not because we are a superpower, but by the manner in which we handle our power. (Anything) we can do to encourage our neighbors, rather than simply showing our muscle, is an important part of rebuilding America’s prestige.” Council on Foreign Relations speech - Sept 28. 2007
“I would say this to every other nation in the world:
when you were sick, the Americans brought medicine. When you
were hungry, the Americans brought food. When you had
earthquakes and tsunamis and floods, the Americans came. And
when when you were insecure and you were attacked,
the Americans left the safety of their own homes and came
to defend you. I will never apologize for the United States
of America”. - Iowa Straw Poll, August 2007
Maybe the CSIS should pick up a few history books.
The un and the rest of the third world disorder (along with 1/3 of our population) like it best when America has been struck and seems vulnerable. Thats why they liked carter and clinton. They didn't kick ass and take names, they asked "How did we hurt your feelings?"
Translation: "We want more money." -The World
CSIS Commission on Smart Power
Project Staff & Scholars
Carola McGiffert chief of staff; co-project director for the Commission on Smart Power
Craig Cohen deputy chief of staff; co-project director for the Commission on Smart Power
Grant Aldonas, William M. Scholl Chair in International Business
Jon Alterman, director and senior fellow, Middle East Program
Pierre Chao, director of Defense Industrial Initiatives and senior fellow, International Security Program
Jennifer Cooke, codirector, Africa Program
Reginald Dale, senior fellow, Europe Program
Peter DeShazo, director, Americas Program
Gerald Epstein, senior fellow, Homeland Security Program
Moana Erickson, deputy director and fellow, Scholl Chair in International Business
David Heyman, director and senior fellow, Homeland Security Program
Gerald Hyman, senior adviser and president of Hills Program on Governance
Sarah Ladislaw, fellow, Energy and National Security Program
Alex Lennon, editor in chief, The Washington Quarterly
Eric Lief, senior associate, Africa Program
Sarah Mendelson, director, Human Rights and Security Initiative; senior fellow, Russia and Eurasia Program
Johanna Mendelson Forman, senior associate, Office of the Chief of Staff
Derek Mitchell, senior fellow, International Security Program
Stephen Morrison, executive director, HIV/AIDS Task Force and director, Africa Program
Erik Peterson, senior vice president; William A. Schreyer Chair in Global Analysis; director, Global Strategy Institute
Vincent Sabathier, senior fellow and director, Human Space Exploration Initiatives
Teresita Schaffer, director, South Asia Program
Julianne Smith, director and senior fellow, Europe Program
Karin von Hippel, codirector, Post-Conflict Reconstruction Project and senior fellow, International Security Program
Sidney Weintraub, William E. Simon Chair in Political Economy
Anne Witkowsky, senior fellow, Homeland Security Program
Sorry, no more Mr. Nice Guy. We kick butts rather than play with them.
I have no doubt the report is in the main correct. What we have to do to get into the good graces of the world’s mullahs, communists, socialists and appeasers is to be more like them. Maybe we should all become Muslims—that’d make the world happy.
I actually agree with much of what the article describes about the report. Soft power is exceedingly important for us, and we’ve neglected that greatly. However, even in our successes such as funding for HIV/AIDS and malaria and other efforts, we do virtually nothing to publicize those efforts. We allow others to dictate our image. This is one area where the EU and, yes, even the Chinese have us beat hands-down: Learning how to toot your own horn effectively.
I also disagree with the frequent assessment that we became “angry and frightened” as a nation. I think we have every right to be angry, and that we are perfectly within reason to expend a great deal of our resources in what we perceive to be a war on terror. Fear is certainly a component of that, but to describe us repeatedly as a “frightened” nation or people is silly. At worst on this point we have an administration that has put too much of its public time (what little there is of that) on terror. Repeatedly going to Asian economic summits and talking about little more than the WoT, for example, is ridiculous. To me, though, this is representative of poor PR management, not of a frightened, scared nation.
Board of Trustees and Counselors
CSIS trustees are drawn equally from the worlds of public policy and the private sector. They contribute a wealth of expertise to the Centers mission and management. One asterisk (*) denotes a member of the Executive Committee and two asterisks (**) denote a CSIS Counselor.
Sam Nunn* ** — Cochairman & CEO, Nuclear Threat Initiative
Vice Chairman & Co-Founder
David M. Abshire — President, Center for the Study of the Presidency
Chairman of the Executive Committee
William A. Schreyer* — Chairman Emeritus, Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.
Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee
Anne Armstrong* — Former U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain
President & CEO
John J. Hamre* — President & CEO, CSIS
George L. Argyros — Chairman & CEO, Arnel & Affiliates
Richard Armitage — President, Armitage International
Betty Beene — Former President & CEO, United Way of America
Reginald K. Brack — Former Chairman & CEO, Time, Incorporated
William E. Brock** — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Harold Brown** — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Zbigniew Brzezinski** — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
William S. Cohen — Chairman & CEO, The Cohen Group
Ralph Cossa — President, Pacific Forum/CSIS
Richard Fairbanks — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
William H. Frist — Trustee, CSIS
Michael P. Galvin* — President, Harrison Street Capital, LLC
Linda W. Hart — Vice Chairman & CEO, The Hart Group, Inc.
Ben W. Heineman, Jr. — CSIS Trustee and Senior Adviser
Thomas O. Hicks — Chairman, Hicks Holdings LLC
Carla A. Hills** — Chairman & CEO, Hills & Company
Ray L. Hunt — Chairman & CEO, Hunt Consolidated, Inc.
E. Neville Isdell — Chairman & CEO, The Coca-Cola Company
James L. Jones — Trustee, CSIS
Henry A. Kissinger** — Chairman & CEO, Kissinger Associates, Inc.
Kenneth G. Langone — President & CEO, Invemed Associates, LLC
Donald B. Marron — Chairman & CEO, Lightyear Capital
Joseph Nye — Distinguished Service Professor, Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government
E. Stanley ONeal — Chairman and CEO, Merrill Lynch & Company, Inc.
Joseph E. Robert — Chairman and CEO, The J.E. Robert Companies (JER)
Felix G. Rohatyn — President, Rohatyn Associates, LLC
David M. Rubenstein — Cofounder and Managing Director, The Carlyle Group
Charles A. Sanders — Former Chairman & CEO, Glaxo Inc.
James R. Schlesinger** — Senior Adviser, Lehman Brothers, Inc.
Brent Scowcroft** — President, Forum for International Policy
Rex Tillerson — Chairman & CEO, Exxon Mobil Corporation
Murray Weidenbaum — Hon. Chair, Weidenbaum Center, Washington University
Frederick B. Whittemore — Advisory Director, Morgan Stanley
Dolores D. Wharton
Amos A. Jordan
William E. Brock — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Harold Brown — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Zbigniew Brzezinski — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Frank C. Carlucci — Counselor, CSIS
Richard Fairbanks — Counselor and Trustee, CSIS
Carla A. Hills — Chairman & CEO, Hills & Company
Henry A. Kissinger — Chairman & CEO, Kissinger Associates, Inc.
Theodore McCarrick — Counselor, CSIS
Sam Nunn — Cochairman & CEO, Nuclear Threat Initiative
James R. Schlesinger — Senior Advisor, Lehman Brothers, Inc.
Brent Scowcroft — President, Forum for International Policy
“report by a 20-member think-tank...”
Why not just say “20 idiots?” These think tanks usually consist of politically motivated underachievers who were chosen because they would produce the report that the appointers wanted.
AFP = Agence France Press, a left wing hate-America French news agency.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.