Friday, January 21

"MUST READ" OF THE DAY: IMPLICATIONS OF A SINO-SOVIET RAPPROCHEMENT?

Charles Krauthammer puts a keen perspective on the foreign policy challenges that lay ahead for the Bush Administration and succeeding administrations in dealing with what is, has been, and always will be a dangerous world. China is fast becoming a force to be reckoned with and that's not new news. MacArthur saw that ominous prospect back in the early 50s (much as Patton saw Russia for the adversary it would become after World War II). And while China is not among the Axis of Evil countries that President Bush identified in the war on international terrorism, it and a bended, but unbowed Soviet Union still constitute the greatest strategic threats to the United States. Were they to ally with one another that threat becomes much greater than the sum of their parts. In this respect, improving relations with our traditional allies or, better, having the steel to re-constitute NATO and re-arm Japan may become Bush imperatives if the promise of his Second Inaugural Address has a hope in hell of being realized in this century.

And for those who keep banging the drum (yes, pun intended) that America's dependence on oil, rather than noble ideals and the fight against terrorism, was the real motivator of the Bush Administration's invasion of Iraq and deposing of Saddam Hussein, than they had better turn a critical eye towards China's unquenched thirst for oil, as its economy grows by leaps and bounds, and its economic ambitions heighten.

Indeed, owing to the war on international terrorism and the rising tide of China's international ecocomic influence, detractors of President Bush ought to step back and take a hard, objective look at what two terms of Bill Clinton wrought: his Administration never responded to terrorist attacks and thus encouraged them; and, his Adminsitration permitted China to acquire technological know-how that it might otherwise have taken it decades to come by.

So don't dismiss Krauthammer out of hand. His column is something you may just want to save.