America in denial?


IN THE late summer of 2001, America could have been forgiven for feeling smug. ‘Victory’ in the Cold War was a decade old, and in the period between the collapse of the Soviet Union and the new millennium, the country’s technological edge over its rivals had widened. Her military dominance rivalled that of Britain in the late 19th century. The ease of her campaigns subduing Iraq in a matter of weeks, bringing Slobodan Milosevic to heel without a loss of American life testified to a supremacy nobody could contest. The world quaked before US might, and as President Bill Clinton had testified in his 1992 acceptance speech at the Democratic Convention, the world was America’s oyster.

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