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the armor of the body politic

"The American homeland is the planet" Not content with a militarized southern border, the U.S. is now militarizing borders around the world (slsa)
posted by allkindsoftime on Nov 19, 2013 - 7 comments

Obama in Australia

US President Barack Obama is in Australia today. The main policy announcement is a new, permanent US Marine Corps presence on Australian soil. This is interpreted unambiguously as a 'containment strategy' for China and other Asian nations, with Australia playing the loyal deputy Sheriff. Most Australians don't think we should be forced to choose.
posted by wilful on Nov 16, 2011 - 130 comments

The people of India love you deeply!

"Certainly, Uncle Sam, disowned by Pakistanis, has found innumerable devoted nephews in India. Indian and Pakistani perceptions of America now wildly diverge: A 2005 Pew poll conducted in 16 countries found the United States in the highest regard among Indians (71 percent having a favorable opinion) and nearly the lowest among Pakistanis (23 percent)." Why do India and Pakistan see America in such opposite ways?
posted by vidur on Aug 17, 2011 - 45 comments

The Economist: The World in 2010

In 2010, Obama will have a miserable year, NATO may lose in Afghanistan, the UK gets a regime change, China needs to chill, India's factories will overtake its farms, Europe risks becoming an irrelevant museum, the stimulus will need an exit strategy, the G20 will see a challenge from the "G2", African football will unite Korea, conflict over natural resources will grow, Sarkozy will be unloved and unrivalled, the kids will come together to solve the world's problems (because their elders are unable), technology will grow ever more ubiquitous, we'll all charge our phones via USB, MBAs will be uncool, the Space Shuttle will be put to rest, and Somalia will be the worst country in the world. And so the Tens begin.

The Economist: The World in 2010. [more inside]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Nov 14, 2009 - 60 comments

Annexing Khuzestan -

Battle plans for Iran... resonates with the sad ring of real possibility.
posted by Muirwylde on Feb 17, 2006 - 63 comments

On the Great Atlantic Divide

On the Great Atlantic Divide Published on Sunday, October 26, 2003 by TomDispatch.com. By Susan Sontag. I came across this piece at dailyKos "Two weeks ago during the Frankfurt Book Fair, the Association of German Publishers and Booksellers awarded the Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels (the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade) to Susan Sontag. She was cited for standing up for "the dignity of free thinking" and for her role as an "intellectual ambassador" between the United States and Europe. The association's director Dieter Schormann commented, "In a world of false images and distorted truths, she defends the honor of free thought." In its over half-century of existence, the Friedenspreis Prize has been awarded to Chinua Achebe, Max Frisch, Jurgen Habermas, Yehudi Menuhin, and Vaclav Havel among many others. An excerpt from Susan Sontag's acceptance speech was published today in the Los Angeles Times Book Review section, but I thought the whole speech, which focuses on the increasingly embattled relationship between Europe and the United States, or rather between much of Europe, especially the various peoples of Europe, and the Bush administration, was well worth reproducing as a whole. Near its end is a rare moment in which Sontag considers an aspect of her early life in public. Her most recent book, by the way, is Regarding the Pain of Others. What follows then, with her kind permission, is her full acceptance speech. (The title and subheads are, however, mine.) Tom "
posted by Postroad on Jan 5, 2005 - 9 comments

An American in Mongolia

An American in Mongolia. A new breed of American soldier—call him the soldier-diplomat—has come into being since the end of the Cold War. Meet the colonel who was our man in Mongolia, an officer who probably wielded more local influence than many Mongol rulers of yore.
posted by kablam on Feb 20, 2004 - 7 comments

We're the good guys. You will agree.

Article 98. From 1995 through 2000, the U.S. government supported the establishment of an International Criminal Court. In 2001, the Bush Administration ended US participation in ICC meetings and, on 6 May 2002, officially nullified the previous signature of the Rome Statute. [more inside]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken on Dec 16, 2003 - 32 comments

More Cognitive Dissonance

To Invade Or Not To Invade?
Many have expressed the sentiment that unilaterally invading other countries can be justified as serving the best interests of its people. We can all agree that brutal dictatorships are a bad thing. What should be done when they are identified? Engagement or invasion? Should cognitive dissonance by our leaders be ignored and/or accepted? Are double standards justified by financial interests? Here is another case where all litmus tests fail.
posted by nofundy on Nov 18, 2003 - 38 comments

To what degree are we different?

Friedman quotes a former Swedish prime minister. "Our defining date is now 1989 and yours is 2001," I find this to be true. For most of the 90's, the US struggled to find a new purpose for its power. A few peace-keeping missions, a skirmish in Iraq (the first time), but for the most part, no real global strategy. Europe, on the other hand, has made significant progress with developing the EU, the euro (which no one believed would ever come about so quickly), and a semi-unified policy concerning the rest of the world (GB being the notable exception). NY Times
posted by BlueTrain on Nov 2, 2003 - 72 comments

Stumbling Into War: a textbook study in how not to wage a diplomatic campaign

Stumbling Into War by James P. Rubin, From Foreign Affairs, September/October 2003

Why did most of the world abandon Washington when it went after Saddam Hussein? The war in Iraq could never have been an easy sell, but nor should it have been such a difficult one. The Bush administration badly botched the prewar maneuvering, presenting a textbook study in how not to wage a diplomatic campaign.
posted by y2karl on Sep 21, 2003 - 16 comments

Fair-Weather Friends

Coalition of the willing (if they know what's good for them). A decent little collection of articles about one of the most shameful events in Australian political history: the Whitlam dismissal. From an article that begins with a quote from former CIA agent Victor Marchetti: "Australia is going to be increasingly important to the United States, and so long as Australians keep electing the right people then there'll be a stable relationship between the two countries." to an interview with Christopher Boyce, whose experiences and actions were recounted in the book The Falcon and the Snowman and in the later John Schlesinger film of the same name. Attach some platitude about the virtues of friendship.
posted by chrisgregory on Jun 18, 2003 - 2 comments

USA! USA!

Unprecedented victories for Republican foreign policy. A new survey from Pew Global shows that in the past 2 years the Muslim world has been further alienated from the US, Europe wants to be more independent of the US, and the UN's reputation has been dramatically weakened. The Cliff notes. A wide variety of other interesting results are in the complete report.
posted by badstone on Jun 4, 2003 - 38 comments

Official Hired to Improve U.S. Image Resigns

Official Hired to Improve U.S. Image Resigns I don't know about you guys but I find this hilarious. I can't say I blame him. This current administration has the worst bed side manner that I've ever seen in a government.
posted by tljenson on Mar 3, 2003 - 15 comments

Nuke this, Rush!

"A little invasion is precisely what Canada needs" wrote Jonah Goldberg last November. According to Rush Limbaugh, Canada isn't a country, it's a "country". Tucker Carlson on CNN has said Canada "should be bombed" so that they are taught a lesson. Doesn't he remember April 17th? No matter. Since Canada will never be able to defend itself from the US using conventional means, it's time for Canada to reactivate it's nuclear weapons program.
posted by johnnydark on Feb 28, 2003 - 31 comments

Israel to conduct killings in the us

From UPI: Israel is embarking upon a more aggressive approach to the war on terror that will include staging targeted killings in the United States and other friendly countries, former Israeli intelligence officials told United Press International. I am so NOT trolling. I am simply curious to see what MeFi users have to say about this interesting news item.
posted by pejamo on Jan 16, 2003 - 36 comments

America vs. Europe

The End of the American Era? Well, at least according to that person. However, this guy says that America is the future, and Europe is the past. Is Europe becoming another Soviet Union? These people have something to say about it. What do you think? 20 years from now, who will be leading the world?
posted by eas98 on Dec 4, 2002 - 40 comments

President Bush is in fact doing just about everything his critics demand:

President Bush is in fact doing just about everything his critics demand: If the administration really had contempt for the UN, it could withdraw its support and let that organization complete its collapse into a Third World debating society. If Bush wanted to lash out at every threat in the world, America's near-$400 billion defense budget could provide the soldiers, tanks, airplanes, and missiles to wage several small wars at a time, from Libya to North Korea (and most places in between). If America were trying to seize the world's oil reserves, we could have swept aside the Saudi sheiks long ago. If we were indifferent to the casualties of enemy civilians—and the only alternative is to be indifferent to the deaths of our own soldiers and civilians—then anti-war academics would have to give up tallying those casualties one-by-one. But none of this is actually happening.
posted by dagny on Oct 23, 2002 - 100 comments

The End of Empire?

The End of Empire? "You can't sustain an empire from a debtor's weakening position--sooner or later the creditors pull the plug. That humiliating lesson was learned by Great Britain early in the last century, and the United States faces a similar reckoning ahead."
posted by homunculus on Sep 9, 2002 - 39 comments

Talk about culture clash

Talk about culture clash -- the personal opinions of a U.S. military attache/observer concerning Arab military practices. See also the EgyptAir Flight 990 investigation. Big question: how can we make some progress here? [courtesy aldaily.com]
posted by apollo3000 on Aug 29, 2002 - 3 comments

interference in bolivian elections by usa (why if he is unlikely to win?)

interference in bolivian elections by usa (why if he is unlikely to win?) The US Ambassador to Bolivia has told the Bolivian people not to vote for the indigenous Indian candidate for the Movement for Socialism (MAS), Evo Morales Ayma. If he is elected next Sunday, the USA will suspend economic aid and will review its agreements.

why?.. he is unlikely to win, this will surely give him a boost in the polls instead
posted by trismegisto on Jun 30, 2002 - 10 comments

Saudis in the worst squeeze play yet.

Saudis in the worst squeeze play yet. SA is in a triangulation of criticism from Afghanistan, from within the country, and from Washington. The fall of this Muslim regime, a US ally, with a horrible human rights record and repressive culture, the largest supplier of oil in the world, and huge supplier of contract business for the US, is not something to take lightly. Catch-22.
posted by mmarcos on Oct 28, 2001 - 10 comments

Fundamentalism Reaches Fever Point on U.S. Soil.

Fundamentalism Reaches Fever Point on U.S. Soil. Extremism is spreading and is now affecting our very own. Or as Greta Garbo's famously didn't say "I vont to be alone!". The question is: do you?
posted by MiguelCardoso on Sep 21, 2001 - 31 comments

China warns against US hegemony.

China warns against US hegemony. "Jiang Zemin has called for a new world order to counter the dominance of the United States." Geopolitics route around nations that don't play nice.
posted by Vetinari on Jul 17, 2001 - 10 comments

Unilateralism means never having to say you're sorry.

Unilateralism means never having to say you're sorry. Kyoto Accord? Bah! Anti-ballistic missile treaties? Bah! Didn't you hear, man? We won the freakin' Cold War! Now that we've got a Real Man in office, we don't have to listen those pussies in foreign countries anymore. (found on Plastic)
posted by RylandDotNet on May 29, 2001 - 5 comments

Why Europe hates us, and why we don't need to care.

Why Europe hates us, and why we don't need to care. Given the large amounts of US v Europe discussion here of late (see the death penalty and Eurovision threads as examples), I thought this opinion piece would be of interest.
posted by aaron on May 13, 2001 - 79 comments

"Britain to install early warning bases in Oregon."

"Britain to install early warning bases in Oregon." These will be sited on US air bases in areas of protected wilderness, but will be leased out to the UK and solely answerable to HM Govt, with no state or Congressional accountability. If you protest outside, you'll be prosecuted on trumped-up charges. Oh, and they'll be tapping your phones and emails as well. (more inside...)
posted by holgate on May 2, 2001 - 11 comments

What Europe thinks of America

What Europe thinks of America - the Guardian newspaper has a light-hearted look at the way Europe and America perceive each other. Also amusing is something they wrote for Dubya; 'The World: A Primer'.
posted by adrianhon on Apr 4, 2001 - 61 comments

Is everyone asleep at the wheel?

Is everyone asleep at the wheel? "The Senate on Tuesday approved a bill to normalize trade with China, marking a turning point in a half-century of stormy relations between the world’s strongest power and its most populous nation. In return, trade relations will no longer hinge on China’s human rights record, a link that has long irritated Beijing." It is a sad day for human rights in China.
posted by Brilliantcrank on Sep 19, 2000 - 25 comments

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