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Robert Kagan: "Obama the Neocon"

TO: Distinguished Recipients
FM: John Whitbeck

For those who hope for a radical change for the better in America's
approach to the world if a Democratic president (and, in particular, the
"charismatic" Mr. Obama) were to replace George W. Bush, this Washington
Post op-ed offers a depressing -- indeed, terrifying -- reality-check.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/27/AR2007042702027_pf.html
washingtonpost.com <http://www.washingtonpost.com/?nav=pf>

<http://www.washingtonpost.com/?nav=pf>
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*Obama the Neocon*

By Robert Kagan
Sunday, April 29, 2007; B07

America must "lead the world in battling immediate evils and promoting
the ultimate good." With those words, Barack Obama
<http://projects.washingtonpost.com/2008-presidential-candidates/barack-obama/>
put an end to the idea that the alleged overexuberant idealism and
America-centric hubris of the past six years is about to give way to a
new realism, a more limited and modest view of American interests,
capabilities and responsibilities.

Obama's speech
<http://obama.senate.gov/speech/051122-moving_forward_in_iraq/index.html>
at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs last week was pure John
Kennedy, without a trace of John Mearsheimer. It had a deliberate New
Frontier feel, including some Kennedy-era references ("we were
Berliners") and even the Cold War-era notion that the United States is
the "leader of the free world." No one speaks of the "free world" these
days, and Obama's insistence that we not "cede our claim of leadership
in world affairs" will sound like an anachronistic conceit to many
Europeans, who even in the 1990s complained about the bullying
"hyperpower." In Moscow and Beijing it will confirm suspicions about
America's inherent hegemonism. But Obama believes the world yearns to
follow us, if only we restore our worthiness to lead. Personally, I like it.

Read more...Collapse )

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