Hysterical Hegemonic Hyperpower
profrv at nex.net.au
Wed Apr 21 19:00:51 PDT 1999
Resented for what it is, America also stokes antipathy by what it does.
Here things have recently changed for the worse. The US is often a
delinquent international citizen. It is reluctant to join international
initiatives or agreements, whether on climate warming, biological warfare,
criminal justice, or women's rights; the US is one of only two states (the
other being Somalia) that have failed to ratify the 1989 Convention on
Children's Rights. The present US administration has "unsigned" the Rome
Treaty establishing an International Criminal Court and has declared itself
no longer bound by the Vienna Convention on Law of Treaties, which sets out
the obligations of states to abide by treaties they have yet to ratify. The
American attitude toward the United Nations and its agencies is cool, to
say the least. Earlier this year the US ambassador for human rights called
for the early dismissal of the ad hoc tribunals for Rwanda and former
Yugoslavia even though these are integral to any serious war on
international terror and the US itself spent millions of dollars to bribe
Belgrade into handing Slobodan Milosevic over to the Hague tribunal. FROM
integral to any serious war on international terror and the US itself spent
millions of dollars to bribe Belgrade into handing Slobodan Milosevic over
to the Hague tribunal.
To many outsiders this inconsistent approach to international organizations
and agreements, some of which Washington helped to establish, belies
America's claim to share international interests and seek multilateral
partners for its goals. The same is true of American economic practices.
The US is both advocate and exemplar of globalizationfree-market
capitalism untrammeled by frontiers, special interests, restrictive
practices, protectionism, or state interference. But at home Washington
applies steel tariffs, farm supports, and de facto government subsidies
(notably for the defense industries) for domestic political gain.
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