Sunday, January 18, 2009

Bush did great on China

Thomas PM Barnett has lots of negative findings on President Bush. But he will admit success also. A big one Excerpts from Great Powers, part 1 (Thomas P.M. Barnett :: Weblog): A Bush administration success greater than its failures in Iraq "The lack of a serious U.S.-China confrontation in the years since 9/11 is the most important dog that did not bark during the Bush-Cheney administration. In the grand sweep of history, this is arguably George W. Bush's greatest legacy: the encouragement of China to become a legitimate "stakeholder" in global security--[Deputy Secretary of State Robert] Zoellick's term. This sort of effort at grooming a great power for a greater role in international affairs is a careful balancing act, and the Bush team sounded most of the right notes, from reassuring nervous allies in Asia, to avoiding the temptation of trade retaliation while simultaneously pressuring Beijing for more economic liberalization, to drawing China into the dynamics of great-power negotiation over compelling regional issues like the nuclear programs in North Korea and Iran. We can always complain that Bush-Cheney didn't do more to solidify what was the most important bilateral relationship of the twenty-first century, but we cannot fault them for any lasting mistakes, and that alone is quite impressive. Indeed, history will be likely to judge this success as greater than the Bush administration's failures in Iraq." (pp. 8-9)

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