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It is a curious thing to read this book in 2003, post-9/11 and after the U.S. overthrow of the tyranny of Saddam Hussein, as many of the prescriptions here, written nearly a decade earlier, address the same issues that Weigel would find himself articulating in making his case for U.S. foreign policy in Iraq for the Bush administration in 2003. This book is a fairly quick read at 236 pages, but there's a lot packed into it. Part One (pp. 1-59) examines the revolutions of 1989 and 1991 leading to the overthrow of Communism (both the reality of the Soviet Union and in the grand illusions held by liberal academics). Part Two (pp. 50-125) examines the lessons we can learn from the Cold War; "beyond moralism and realpolitik, toward redefining "America's Purpose"; responding to the proposal of English historian Paul Johnson for a "new colonialism" with the help of a more forceful U.N. centered on the Security Council (favorable, with reservations) and the radical isolationism of Pat Buchanan (disagrees). I found Part Three (pp. 143-213) to be the most fascinating in light of recent events -- for here Weigel examines "just war after the Gulf War, touching on Saddam Hussein's continued quest for nuclear capability and the limits of national sovereignty with relation to pre-emptive strikes against despotic and aggressive regimes (such as Iraq) which pose a threat to international peace and order). Also addressed in the third section is the justification for and reasonable constraints on U.S.Read more ›
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