Well, as the death toll spirals upward, it is perhaps a bit early to talk seriously about the political reaction to this global disaster. After an initial pledge of 15 million was regarded with disgust, the Bush administration upped the pledge to 35 million and announced a plan to form a long term alliance or "coalition" to respond to the disaster. This "coalition" (catchy name TBA) includes the United States, Japan, India and Australia. OK, so aside from the P.R. aspects of this move, what is its political impact?
I think that this is an concerted effort by the Bush administration to undermine the U.N.'s role in humanitarian relief. Just as Iraq under cut the U.N.'s role as a collective security organization, this is an effort to make the U.N. irrelevant in humanitarian relief as well. I believe this is seen by the neo-cons as an opportunity to further their "Realist" agenda (see the first posting I put up on this blog). They have a strong ideological commitment to the dominance of nation states in general (as opposed to international organizations) and the United States in particular.
I saw an interview with Bob Barr on CNN where he argued that the U.N. was too corrupt to be trusted with American humanitarian relief contributions and that the United States should (and would) focus more on "bi-lateral" government to government aid transfers.
I'm interested in what the other Citizens and our visitors think not only about the US reaction but about political implications of this disaster both with regards to the US and "the West" and in the countries actually hit by the tsunami.
Thursday, December 30, 2004
Posted by Raised By Republicans at 3:23 PM