—"Imperialism is absolutely necessary to a people which desires spiritual as well as economic expansion.
America has survived, the Last and Only Superpower, while so many others have fallen by the wayside, their bones littering the road from empire: Rome, Spain, Portugal, France, Russia, and—closest to ourselves—a once-great Britain, whose tatterdemalion "Commonwealth" is not even a ghost of her Britannic Majesty's former glory. Are we immune from the decadence that sets in after dreams of empire are realized, or is hubris likely to catch up with us in the coming century? This is the question asked, and answered, in Patrick J. Buchanan's A Republic, Not an Empire—a tour de force of riveting historical narrative, pyrotechnical polemics, and programmatic clarity that is likely to inspire a whole new generation of conservative noninterventionists.
We have extended guarantees to the Baltic nations, who clamor for NATO membership; the doomed princes of the Gulf, who live in fear of the "Arab street"; the Koreans and the Taiwanese, the Albanians, and the East Timorese— all of which may seem, for the moment, a burden of empire that can be shouldered with relatively little effort. Who, after all, will stand against us? The question may soon be answered, says Buchanan. We feel invincible,...