The American Interest

State of the Union: An Empire, Not a Republic

President Bush’s recent State of the Union Address was an historic occasion.  His speechwriting staff went through nearly 30 drafts and finally presented him (and the rest of us) with a mature ideological framework that reflects the balance of outlooks within the present administration.  The preceding debate may have been the last chance for any remaining republicans (small “r”) within the national-security team to raise their voices and insert certain qualifications into what has emerged as the “Bush doctrine,” but this did not happen.  The neoconservative policy of permanent global interventionism has triumphed.

In addition to “ridding the world of thousands of terrorists” in Afghanistan, the U.S. military had “saved a people from starvation and freed a country from brutal oppression.”  Its women “were captives in their own homes, forbidden from working or going to school, while now they are free, and take part in Afghanistan’s new government,” all of which is “a tribute to the spirit of the Afghan people, to the resolve of our coalition and to the might of the United States military.”

The President was vague concerning the estimated number of terrorists still at large, but “our war against terror is only beginning” and will cover the whole world, because 

Thousands of dangerous...

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