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Trocadero Donating Member (892 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-13-09 10:15 PM
Original message
One 8-year administration ago today:
Edited on Mon Apr-13-09 10:19 PM by Trocadero
http://www.carnegieendowment.org/publications/index.cfm?fa=view&id=675&prog=zgp&proj=zusr


We Lost

Robert Kagan, William Kristol

CARNEGIE

WASHINGTON POST, APRIL 13, 2001
Reprinted from the Washington Post, April 13, 2001

In the United States today, Americans are celebrating the return of the aircrew from China. President Bush is being widely praised for his deft handling of the hostage crisis. In China today, the government-run media are celebrating a great "victory" over the American superpower. Chinese leaders are being praised for extracting an apology from the United States for its aggressive invasion of Chinese territory. Who is right to celebrate? Comforting as it would be to believe otherwise, the Chinese see more clearly than we do that -- so far -- they have won and we have lost.

First, make no mistake: The United States has apologized. And the fact of our apology is all the more humiliating because the United States was in no way to blame for the incident. ...

Confronted by this direct and deliberate challenge, the United States has apologized. We have not only expressed regret and sorrow for the loss of the Chinese pilot and plane. We have publicly declared that we are "very sorry" for violating Chinese airspace by landing our crippled plane in Chinese territory. And let us not forgot why we apologized. The letter that our ambassador delivered to the Chinese government this week was not the product of high diplomacy. It was not the product of Sino-American "cooperation" -- a welcome harbinger of future "crisis management" between the two powers. It was the product of Chinese extortion. They held our troops hostage until we said, "Uncle." When we finally said something that in Chinese sounds a lot like "uncle," they let them go.

We can kid ourselves all we want, but we have suffered a blow to our prestige and reputation, a loss that will reverberate throughout the world if we do not begin immediately to repair the damage. The problem is not merely that we have lost face -- though the Chinese are right to believe that great powers should place a high value on their reputation. The bigger problem is that our reliability as defender of the peace and protector of friends and allies, especially in East Asia, has been thrown into doubt. If we do not have the will to stand up to the Chinese when they hold 24 Americans for 10 days, who can believe we will stand up to China when it threatens Taiwan and dares us to risk thousands more troops to defend that democratic ally?

...




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Tangerine LaBamba Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-13-09 10:17 PM
Response to Original message
1. One year ago?
What am I missing here, besides eight years?
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Trocadero Donating Member (892 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-13-09 10:18 PM
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2. oops! fixed!
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Occam Bandage Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-13-09 10:20 PM
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3. Well, yeah. William Kristol was a huge anti-China hawk before 9/11 changed everything. nt
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