FDXmech: Well Bush the lightweight resumed the disarmament of Iraq which in 1998 seemed an impossibility.
The term "international lightweight" identifies a lack of understanding
about one´s standing in the international context.
In this case, the Bush administration - and that´s definitely not just GWB himself - has demonstrated a lack of insight and a lack of skill that would be breathtaking even for a country as small as - excuse me - Luxembourg
FDXmech: In your opinion, squandering political capital appears to me as Bush not following your agenda. Perhaps political capital to you means the U.S. being a pathetic poor victim. That isn't the American way, generally speaking, when we get knocked down, we get up and fight like hell.
That´s exactly the point. "Political capital" does not
mean being stronger than everybody else and therefore being able to bully everyone into submission (or not, as it turned out).
"Political capital" means the willingness of your international partners to carry heavier burdens than usual to help and protect you - in this case, the USA.
This willingness and the sympathy from which it came helped bringing the coalition against terror together in record time and even with some allies who might have been more reluctant otherwise. The sympathy for the american people has largely survived, actually, but the Bush administration´s chances to convert it into a concrete political advantage have largely vanished.
The massive alienation campaign
conducted through the past months and basically throughout the Bush presidency - with only a few exceptions - has helped flush this political capital down the sink. Right now, Bush not only doesn´t have willing allies, but has more or less forced
the creation of a strong and worldwide opposition to his policy. As an aside also resurrecting the whole list of past grievances that had been put to sleep after 9-11.
A little more insight into the individual positions, interests and sensitivities of others would have made a huge
difference, here. Simply filing everything under either "good" or "evil" just isn´t good enough when you´re dabbling in international politics.
The complete surprise
when his latest tactic blew up in his face does not really speak of competence
, I´d say.
FDXmech: You say nation building is done by Europe, well thank you, I mean that sincerely.
You´re welcome. Still, it´s not good to be known exclusively
for bombing cities and countries to ruins and being somewhere else when it´s about rebuilding them again. The populations somehow don´t seem to appreciate that.
FDXmech: Has any other world leaders experienced a faux pas?
The Bush family seems unusually
prone to them. Aggravating their tendency to just ignore other´s sensitivities even further (although Bush senior wasn´t that
Klaus: If there´s something the USA might need badly, right now, I´d say it´s a president who knows what he´s doing, for a change.
FDXmech: That seems to be a code phrase for needing a president who conforms to your ideas.
Up to a point, that´s natural. Beyond mere subjective agreement, the "blundering frequency" is
an indication of what´s going on.
FDXmech: I like the job Bush is doing, he's actually being a leader.
No doubt about it. The question is, where
he´s leading you. And the slope doesn´t seem to go up
, for some reason, especially not
where he´s actually making a difference
FDXmech: Well, Mr Clark can run for president and may the best man win. I imagine this thought occurs in some countries just prior to a coup, we prefer elections every four years.
No, you don´t want to go there
, do you?