America: The Global Outcast?
Many Europeans view the United States as a nation concerned only with its own agenda, repeatedly imposing its will upon the rest of the world.
Protests over the U.S. ballistic missile defense initiative and its refusal to submit to a UN emissions-control treaty have dazed President George W. Bush’s administration.
Notice this analysis: “The moral role of the United States has…deteriorated in European eyes, resulting in a loss of respect. With a quiet shaking of the head, many Europeans express bewilderment and concern at the internal weakening taking place in the United States. Europeans feel that these problems are unfortunately turning the United States inward. Such a trend, if perpetuated, could lead to a United States neglect of its responsibilities and relationships in the rest of the world.” Interestingly, these words were written almost 20 years ago—in the October 1973 Plain Truth (emphasis mine throughout).
If, in the 1970s, America was weakening internally and turning inward, today the situation is many times worse. This is witnessed by the many strong words and protests taken against the “egocentric” rule of the United States. Today, anti-Americanism is manifesting itself in much more than a “quiet shaking of the head.”
America was until recently the world’s lone superpower—but it severely neglected that leadership role. As a result, other nations, most notably the EU, are vying to fill the vacancy.
The Oxford English Dictionary defines a superpower as “a nation or state having a dominant position in world politics; one which has the power to act decisively in pursuit of interests which embrace the whole world.”
Ask yourself, honestly: Does that definition sound like America? If so, surely most nations would support America’s actions. Yet, in reality, this is not what is happening today.
On the world scene, the U.S. is mocked, scorned, ridiculed and threatened. Jealousy, resentment and America-bashing abound. Unpredictable nations like Iran, Iraq, Libya and North Korea—and even some allied nations—are attempting brazenly, others subtly, to send America hurtling out of the top spot. This situation is not unlike the children’s game King of the Mountain: Whoever gets to the top becomes the immediate target.
The simple truth is, America no longer has the desire or will to take the lead! It has neglected its critical leadership role, long ago abandoning the idea of setting the right example for the rest of the world to follow. It has become inward-focused. Thus, the world’s nations have become disillusioned, no longer content to look to the U.S. for guidance or help.
Asian specialist Philip Bowring, in an article for the International Herald Tribune, wrote this on May 31: “Much of the world has long wanted the United States to take leads because it believed that America was well motivated and in the forefront of social and technological progress. It likes to see America lead by example.”
Complaints from around the globe are mounting against the United States. As Bowring wrote, nations know that whenever America “lectures other countries on the need for legal frameworks and institutions, its own refusal to accept international jurisdiction is seen for what it is”—hypocrisy.
A hypocritical nation is easily despised. The U.S. claims to abide by international rules in the interest of all; but this is not how other nations view it. The American-led nato war against the Yugoslavian nation of Serbia is a good example. Yugoslavia was in a civil war. No nation, even a superpower, can rightfully interfere in such a conflict without violating international law, yet the U.S. broke that law, initiating an illegal war in the Balkans. In the process, U.S. air force bombers, from 14,000 feet up, killed innocent Serbian civilians—a coward’s war indeed! People can clearly see a double standard and have now turned their support away from the U.S.
Recently, the EU nations colluded within the United Nations to oust the U.S. from its long-held seat on the UN Human Rights Commission—an entity which the U.S. was instrumental in creating in 1947. And worse, nations with brutal human rights records—China, Sudan and Libya—have been added to the commission!
The vote against the United States is just one of many links in the chain of dissatisfaction. The UN climate is such that nations with far worse records can divert attention from themselves by focusing world attention on contentious U.S. issues. The issues that effected the rejection of the U.S. include its refusal to approve the ban on anti-personnel land mines, rejection of establishing an international criminal court, and ongoing use of the death penalty.
Kyoto Protocol Criticism
One cause of recent criticism is America’s rejection of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change, a treaty designed by 163 countries.
This set of international rules demands that industrialized nations drastically decrease the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions that come from burning fossil fuel. The concern addressed in the 1997 mandate is global warming and its (unproven) consequence of worldwide upset in weather patterns and harmful effects on human societies. U.S. industries are allegedly some of the greatest producers of CO2 emissions. (President Bush recently countered that China and India were the world’s biggest polluters.)
Whether or not global warming is a genuine threat, the framework for the Kyoto Protocol appears to be inherently weighted against the U.S. The burden is upon American industry to comply with this agreement, while other rapidly increasing industries in China, India and Mexico are allowed to operate unabated. Not surprisingly, hypocrisy can work both ways.
Early in his first term, President Ronald Reagan faced a similar situation with Law of the Sea Treaty. One hundred and fifty countries had negotiated the treaty for years, and so Reagan was being pressured into accepting it. Secretary of State Alexander Haig knew the treaty was flawed but explained that the U.S. had no choice but to sign.
Reagan refused, believing that making good decisions was what he was supposed to do as president. He thought it natural to say no, even if 150 countries had already agreed to a “really stupid” and harmful treaty (Wall Street Journal, June 11). For Reagan, good leadership was “the whole thing.” And eventually, because of the cold war, Europe’s will bent to that of its great protector, America.
Likewise, President Bush is holding fast to his decision not to sign the Kyoto Protocol, believing it would greatly harm the American economy. Yet, that hasn’t stopped the criticism. Many heads of state and government officials are brazenly using the Kyoto Protocol to bash the U.S.
French Finance Minister Laurent Fabius said in a speech to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development ministers, “Whether it’s about climate change or money laundering and tax havens, the leading world power cannot brush the problems of the planet aside.” This, despite the fact that since 1990 the U.S. has invested $18 billion on climate research. That is more than the EU and Japan combined.
America is being accused of ignoring the world’s problems for saying no to a fatally flawed treaty. Would Laurent Fabius have America alone undergo the most drastic reforms no matter the harm caused? If the Kyoto Protocol is so good for the world, why haven’t any countries in the European Union ratified it? Still, they criticize Mr. Bush at full volume!
Is CO2 Really the Issue?
The National Academy of Sciences released a report on what the science community knows about climate change. Most news agencies reporting on the story wrote that global warming was real, calling the report an implicit endorsement of the Kyoto Protocol.
“I can state that simply this is untrue,” replied Richard S. Lindzen, a professor of meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and one of the 11 scientists who prepared the report (Wall Street Journal, June 11). “I cannot stress this enough,” he said. “We are not in a position to confidently attribute past climate change to carbon dioxide or to forecast what the climate will be in the future.”
So much uncertainty exists because no one really knows the causes of climate change. Thirty years ago scientists feared global cooling. Some climate change is normal. Yet politicians, activists and the media twist scientific reports to echo their opinion that the U.S. must ratify the Kyoto Protocol.
“My own view,” said Lindzen, “consistent with the panel’s work, is that the Kyoto Protocol would not result in a substantial reduction in global warming” (ibid.).
The bottom line is, Europe and many other nations are hypocritically vilifying the U.S. for refusing to comply with a scientifically dubious, unfair protocol that Europe itself hasn’t ratified. The only conclusion to draw from these facts is that something much deeper is going on than would appear.
Consider the extreme views expressed over the U.S.’s decision. “We are all environmental criminals,” said Patrina Dumaru, climate officer for Pacific Concerns Resources Center based in Fiji. She continued, “But there must be a new category for the United States. I would like to see an international justice system that would recognize this crime.”
An “international justice system” is already on the rise—and perhaps someday it will “recognize” America’s crimes. European Commission President Romano Prodi recently announced that the European Commission has launched a new program to make the European Union into an environment-friendly economy. Prodi, head of the EU’s executive law-drafting body, believes the EU will become theworld leader in sustainable economic development. He said, “We are committed to fulfilling our international responsibilities…. We believe we should start by putting our own house in order and thus provide global leadership in translating rhetoric into action” (Reuter, May 16).
These are the words of an ascending superpower.
Who’s Climbing the Mountain?
President Bush recently stated, “I appreciate good competition,” naïvely adding this: “I believe the stronger Europe is, the better it is for America” (Telegraph, London, June 15).
The EU wants nothing more than a “stronger Europe” via a larger EU!
At a meeting in Göteborg to discuss EU enlargement, all 15 heads of EU nations formally declared, “The enlargement process is irreversible” (Agence France Presse, June 17). This came right after Ireland voted not to ratify the Nice Treaty, a condition necessary for European enlargement. Curiously, Germany’s Constitution forbids national referendums.
The EU is ready to compete with the U.S. for global leadership. In time, the spirit of this “competition” will be proven not to be good. The German-led EU is clearly asserting its dominance on the world scene, and not only in the environmental arena. It is in the process of filling the power void left by the U.S.’s generally indecisive and lackluster foreign policy.
President Bush’s administration has lost the fight to convince the North Atlantic Council that there is a common threat of a ballistic missile attack with 37 different states in control of over 13,000 missiles. “German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said it was important that no decisions be made on the missile defense issue until further consultations have occurred” (Associated Press, May 29). The United States is respecting these wishes, waiting on Germany for “further consultations.”
What the U.S. seems blind to is Europe’s openly stated aim to check American power. Europe does not want what is best for America!
Richard Burt, ambassador to Germany under President Reagan, said that because the Soviet threat is gone, “there are some Europeans who want to define Europe in opposition to the United States” (Associated Press, June 14).
The May 30 edition of the Wall Street Journal Europe pointed out that Germany, along with France, speaks with authority about world issues, and that “these two core governments of the EU are steering a course away from the U.S.”
French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin, in a May 28 speech on the future of the EU, used the occasion “to lambaste the U.S. on everything from the death penalty to its rules on financial disclosure…. Franco-German policy seems driven more by a desire to strike an independent posture than to construct a rational policy” (ibid.).
France, Germany and the rest of the EU are quickly climbing the mountain of world dominance. In reality, France is entertaining a mere illusion of leadership. Germany is the real boss.
Allies Prophesied to Turn
Your Bible prophesied that America’s “allies” would change the way they feel about this once-world-dominating country. In Lamentations 1:2 it is written that “all her friends have dealt treacherously with her, they are become her enemies.” Jeremiah 4:30 states, “thy lovers will despise thee, they will seek thy life.”
This is already happening!
Many nations, principally a German-led European Union, are now plotting to overthrow the U.S. They see an apprehensive approach in American foreign policy—and, cautiously but steadily, are moving in for the kill.
The Washington Post accurately revealed the U.S.’s foreign-policy fears when it stated, “The [Bush] administration has shown reluctance to get or stay involved in places of the world that need help: the Balkans, the Middle East, Northern Ireland, Sierra Leone. It has not much increased funds for the military or for foreign aid. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has given an impression, perhaps false, of preoccupation with pulling forces back—from the Balkans, from the Sinai Peninsula, from Germany” (op. cit.).
Many European leaders see the U.S. heading toward isolationism, thus giving the opportunity for them to act independently from America. The U.S. lacks the vision to see its own problem of internal weakening. The latest actions of the EU and other nations of the world prove that America is becoming the world’s pariah, moving rapidly closer to the day when God’s words will be fully accomplished!
Whatever America might do to try to solve its leadership problems, it will not succeed without God’s help. No nation will. That is why God will allow America (as well as Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and the other nations of modern Israel) to soon suffer like never before.
“Sometimes one hopes for a strong and equal Europe if only to save Americans from overweening pride and ignorance,” said Peter Schneider, a writer based in Berlin and author of 18 books (Wilson Quarterly, Spring 2001). Schneider also asked this question: “What to do, then, when the justified [the U.S.] have eyes only for the sins of others and not for their own?”
The world can see America’s sin, but, more importantly, so can God! God will use the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire—the European Union led by Germany—as His instrument in chastising America for its national sins.