Democratic Underground

Bush's Failed Foreign Policy
October 8, 2001
by Walter Dean

Printer-friendly version of this article Tell a friend about this article Discuss this article

This American can't help but wonder whether George Bush's unilateralist, in-your-face policy of thumbing our nose at the rest of the world is not somehow partially responsible for the intensive increase in anti-Americanism worldwide, which leads to despicable acts like the World Trade Center attack.

From the start, what the Bush administration has told the rest of the world is: "We don't care what you think or what we've agreed to before, we're going to do things differently, whether you like it or not." This has been particularly evident on issues like the Kyoto treaty, Star Wars, the antiballistic missile treaty, among others.

Coupled with this newfound American defiance towards the world is the Bush administration's record, thus far, of yelling loudly and carrying a soft stick. The best example of this is regarding the incident earlier this year when China intercepted an American aircraft. Despite all the bluster and posturing of the Bush administration at the time, just a few months later our policy towards them has virtually returned to what it was.

I'm not a hawk, and I am certainly not suggesting that we should overreact to circumstances with "a big stick." What I am suggesting is that it undermines our credibility in the world to talk one way and act another. It also undermines our credibility to adopt a foreign policy which says to the rest of the world that "We don't care what you think," which sums up Bush's foreign policy thus far.