I just finished grading final exams, one of which asked what the life of George Washington teaches about American self-government. This led me to re-read a portion of Washingtons Farewell Address, which gave advice on American foreign policy that was prescient for our times. To wit,
Taking care always to keep ourselves, by suitable establishments, on a respectable defensive posture, we may safely trust to temporary alliances for extraordinary emergencies.
Washington looked forward to the day when the United States would be united and independent enough not to "entangle our peace and prosperity" in the machinations of foreign powers unless it was on our terms. As Washington put it, "when we may choose peace or war, as our interest guided by our justice shall Counsel."
Looks like President Bush has borrowed a few pages from our Founding Fathers playbook. Now that the Iraqi tyrant has been ousted, and attention turns to securing the freedom of American liberation, the U.N. is trying to intrude on the situation. The U.N. forfeited its credibility as a global peace-keeping entity when it refused to become the forerunner of the Coalition of the Willing. In fact, the fatal flaw of adopting a "U.N."-style approach to global peace may have been revealed by Washington when he said:
Tis our true policy to steer clear of permanent Alliances, with any portion of the foreign world.
May God bless our current president and commander-in-chief as he follows in the footsteps of the man we remember and revere as "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen."