Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Alliances, Not Concerts
And it isn’t.
Christopher Preble and David Rieff made it clear that in opposing this idea, “This does not mean that the United States should wall itself in from the outside world or that Americans will balk when force really is required. The issue is not legitimacy so much as good judgment.”
Norway and New Zealand are both liberal democracies, and both have at one point or another been allied to the United States, but neither Norway nor New Zealand would view each other as allies or even as strategic partners. Why should they, simply because they share similar forms of domestic governance?
Thucydides argued that “identity of interests is the surest of bonds whether between states or individuals.” The world’s most successful alliances and commonwealths have been those predicated upon common and shared interests. Grandiose alliances based on ideology (like the vaunted Holy Alliance) have never endured.