Sunday, May 06, 2007

Leon Hadar -- Iraq War May End With an Isolationist US

I hope he's wrong, but I fear he may be right.

The Kaiser, like Saddam in 2003, was ousted from power. Gone also were the authoritarian regimes that ruled the Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman and Russian Empires. But replacing the Czar in Russia were the even more ruthless Bolsheviks while in Europe and in the Middle East, a militant nationalism took hold, leading eventually to the rise of Mussolini, Hitler and other Fascist dictators, and to the seeds of the conflict between Arabs and Jews in the Holy Land.

As Congress launched major investigations of US intervention in World War I, with new revelations pointing to various conspiracies between businesses and politicians to involve the US in that conflict in Europe, the American people turned more and more inward, with Congress refusing to support American membership in the League of Nations and backing a series of protectionist measures that helped produce the economic depression.

Indeed, public opinion polls are now suggesting that post-Iraq War, Americans are also becoming more skeptical, if not hostile, towards the notion that they have the obligation to resolve global conflict, liberalize world trade and open the country's gates to new immigrants.

As in the case of Mr. Wilson and his war, the main legacy of Mr. Bush and his war would probably be a more nationalist and isolationist US.

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