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« Getting lotsa good feedback emails on Thurs talk in DC | Main | The book first mistake found--by me. »
2:12AM

12-step recovery program for America from Great Powers

 

The Twelve-Step Recovery Program For American Grand Strategy

 

from

 

GREAT POWERS:

 

America and the World after Bush

 

By Thomas P. M. Barnett  

 

1. ADMIT THAT WE AMERICANS ARE POWERLESS OVER GLOBALIZATION.  

 

2. COME TO BELIEVE THAT ONLY A BIPARTISANSHIP FAR GREATER THAN THAT DISPLAYED BY OUR NATIONAL LEADERS CAN RESTORE SANITY TO AMERICA'S FOREIGN AFFAIRS.  

 

3. MAKE THE DECISION TO COORDINATE ALL ELEMENTS OF AMERICA'S NATIONAL POWER ACCORDING TO A GRAND STRATEGY THAT WE HAVE COLLECTIVELY DEFINED.  

 

4. MAKE A SEARCHING AND FEARLESS MORAL INVENTORY OF THE "GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR."  

 

5. ADMIT TO THE WORLD AND TO OURSELVES THE EXACT NATURE OF OUR MISTAKES IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN.  

 

6. WE ARE ENTIRELY READY TO WORK WITH THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO REMOVE THE DEFECTS OF WARTIME INJUSTICE.  

 

7. HUMBLY ASK THE INCOMING PRESIDENT TO REVERSE AMERICA'S RECENT UNILATERALISM.  

 

8. MAKE A LIST OF ALL THE GREAT POWERS WHOSE NATIONAL INTERESTS WE HAVE HARMED, AND BECOME WILLING TO MAKE CONCESSIONS TO THEM ALL.

 

9. MAKE DIRECT OVERTURES TO VIOLENT NONSTATE ACTORS WHENEVER POSSIBLE, EXCEPT WHEN DOING SO WOULD DAMAGE EXISTING ALLIANCES.  

 

10. CONTINUE TO REVIEW OUR GOAL OF ACCELERATED DEMOCRATIZATION AND, WHEN WE ARE WRONG IN OUR STRATEGIC APPROACH, PROMPTLY ADMIT IT.  

 

11. SEEK TO CREATE STRATEGIC ALLIANCES WITH RISING POWERS THROUGH DIPLOMATIC LINKAGES AND MILITARY-TO-MILITARY COOPERATION.  


12. HAVING HAD A STRATEGIC AWAKENING AS THE RESULT OF THESE STEPS, AMERICA MUST TRY TO SELL THIS GRAND STRATEGY TO THE WORLD, AND PRACTICE THESE PRINCIPLES IN ALL ITS EFFORTS TO SHRINK THE GAP AND MAKE GLOBALIZATION TRULY GLOBAL.

 

 

 

From GREAT POWERS, to be published by G. P. Putnam's on February 5, 2009. 

 

Reader Comments (5)

To concentrate on just one aspect [in point 12]: 'America must try to sell its grand strategy to the world.'

Until the strategy is sold, essentially to the newly rich countries - the ones with big trading surpluses - the US will no doubt want to borrow infinite trillions from them. Both to stimulate its economy and to maintain/increase levels of national/international public services. Will these countries want to lend, politically?

Moreover international loans are becoming difficult to attract. In fact the default premium on American debt is now said to be higher than for McDonald's, the fast food chain. Will the newly rich countries want to lend, commercially?

Put this on the agenda of the G20 which meets in London in April?
January 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterIJ
6. WE ARE ENTIRELY READY TO WORK WITH THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO REMOVE THE DEFECTS OF WARTIME INJUSTICE.

All injustice, particularly as occasioned by war, is a defect of global relations that we wish to remove.

7. HUMBLY ASK THE INCOMING PRESIDENT TO REVERSE AMERICA'S RECENT UNILATERALISM.

Civilized nations, even former/current allies, will at times strongly (reasonably or unreasonably) disagree on a particularly serious global threat/concern/urgency. Effective timely (and intrusive) unilateral action may be seen (by one or a very few nations) to be a more responsible, wiser, and more prudent choice of action than ineffective non-intrusive multilateral action/inaction.
January 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGilbert Garza
I'm attending a two day seminar on Counterterrorism at the Cato Institute next week. I copied your "12 step program" so I would have it available for talking points as it eloquently captures (and adds substance to) my view of the world. Your comments that we owe the world a bit of humility particularly resonated with me.

I look forward to your next book.
January 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAl Alborn
I should have added, I copied the "12 step program" into my Blackberry. I mention this because others might want to follow suit.
January 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAl Alborn
Funny, but now I get emails asking if I'm recovering!

Why doesn't anyone ask me if I'm going to hell?
January 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTom Barnett

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