Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Why America matters

Those readers of UCwho only follow American news media may not have heard, but Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa has just delivered a ringing condemnation of the ANC government. Tutu had invited the Dali Lama of Tibet to his 80th birthday celebration. But the South African government denied the Dalai Lama a visa at the behest of the government of China.

The article linked above excerpts some of Tutu's statement. I heard him on BBC World Service, and he is, justifiably, outraged. The ANC fought against the oppression of apartheid, but now it has power, it has adopted a new colonial master -- the new and growing power in the world, China.

I think this is an important illustration of the point I hoped to make in my Fourth of July post. The values Tutu is upholding are those of liberalism, of freedom. They are the values that America, more than any other country, has pioneered and promoted. These values are now in conflict with those of another power, another worldview represented by the PRC. America matters not because its government is a consistent representative of liberalism (it isn't) but because the values of liberty are fundamentally American. And as China's strength grows, and America's diminishes, the rest of the world will shift towards China.

America matters.

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