Friday, April 10, 2015

Hello Kettle, This Is Pot

Self awareness is not an American national trait, and most certainly is not something commonly displayed by American leaders in foreign affairs. I often wonder what the people of other nations think when they hear, for instance, our president declare that Venezuela presents a “grave and immediate existential threat” to the US.

Or when they hear Secretary of State John Kerry advise us in a PBS interview that “Iran needs to recognize that the United States is not going to stand by while the region is destabilized or while people engage in overt warfare across lines, international boundaries, in other countries.” We do, however, expect that the rest of the world will stand by while we do all of that, as it has done for us for the past couple of decades.

And then there is Obama’s recent complaint that China “is using its sheer size and muscle to force countries into subordinate positions.” Fortunately, I was not drinking coffee when I read that, or I would have had to buy another new keyboard. His remark was made as part of a complaint that China is building bases on islands, that is to say, outside of their own national borders. How dare they?

Just because we have built over 700 such bases doesn’t mean that it’s okay for China to build five or six of them. In the China Sea. The irony of that location apparently escaped Obama completely. We have bases in the Indian Ocean, but…

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