American Maximalism

President Bush's reputation as a radical is exaggerated.  He is following in the footsteps of bold predecessors.  So why is he making such a mess of it?

Issue: Spring 2005

As long as you act daringly, you will be able to succeed very quickly . . . . You need to . . . feel superior to everyone, as if there was no one beside you. . . . [J]ust act recklessly and it will be all right.-Mao Zedong

American foreign policy of the past four years, both defenders and detractors agree, has been based on radical views about how the United States should conduct itself in the world. Some scholars call the diplomatic operating principles of the Bush presidency a "revolution." And those few who see continuities with past practice reach back to the 19th century for their antecedents.

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