The inevitable American imperium: the case for recognising the inevitable — and its limitations
Fascinating, thoughtful New York Times Magazine piece by my former Observer colleague, Michael Ignatief, explaining why the US is becoming an imperial power, and what the dangers of that will be. Quote:
“Those who want America to remain a republic rather than become an empire imagine rightly, but they have not factored in what tyranny or chaos can do to vital American interests. The case for empire is that it has become, in a place like Iraq, the last hope for democracy and stability alike. Even so, empires survive only by understanding their limits. Sept. 11 pitched the Islamic world into the beginning of a long and bloody struggle to determine how it will be ruled and by whom: the authoritarians, the Islamists or perhaps the democrats. America can help repress and contain the struggle, but even though its own security depends on the outcome, it cannot ultimately control it. Only a very deluded imperialist would believe otherwise. ..”.
Nothing new here, perhaps, but the case is put thoughtfully and eloquently.