It’s very interesting, this controversy over the way Obama presents himself and the United States to the world. The right is outraged at the constant apologizing and obsequiousness, the sensitivity to the feelings and self esteem of Arabs, Russians, and Europeans. The left enthusiastically applauds because it coincides with their own assessments of imperialist America’s sins.
Reasonable people are not outraged or cheering, but they still disagree. Is this interpreted by the rest of the world as weakness? Or is it seen as good manners and respect for the other members of the international community, heretofore missing from America’s social skills set? Bottom line, does it advance or retard our interests in the dog eat dog anarchy of international politics?
It sickens me to hear Obama giving speeches all over the world, bowing and scraping and apologizing for the sins of the United States that occurred before he, Obama, took hold of the rudder of the pirate ship of our state.
Nevertheless there is a slight, nagging suspicion that just maybe this will have some salutary effect that could even be in our national interest. The fact that we, the United States of America, are far and away the bull goose loony superpower on the planet, is not something that needs to be emphasized, after all. Everybody in the world is, painfully or joyfully, fully aware of it. The same might be said, not only of our might, but of our many virtues. The rest of the world is gratefully or enviously, mostly enviously, aware of these as well.
Consequently, a case can be made for the apology tour. It’s like being born a Kennedy. We have an obligation to serve. It’s best not to carry the Kennedy analogy too far, but you know what I mean, noblesse oblige. Proof – pudding, as always. Time is needed for it to play out before we know for sure, just like the overthrow of Saddam Hussein.