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The Clinton Legacy Abroad

By Kagan, Robert

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Book Id: WPLBN0000673728
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 94.36 KB.
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Title: The Clinton Legacy Abroad  
Author: Kagan, Robert
Language: English
Subject: Political science., Philosophy & politics, Politics & international relations
Collections: New American Century Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: The Project for the New American Century


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Kagan, R. (n.d.). The Clinton Legacy Abroad. Retrieved from

Government Reference Publication

Excerpt: To watch Bill Clinton flit around the world these past few months, desperately and in some cases dangerously seeking some final ?accomplishment? to add to his legacy, has been to see with stunning clarity a fundamental truth about this president?s foreign policy: It has been mostly about him. Over the past year especially, Clinton has been preoccupied with his lasting fame. There was the signing, on the last day of 2000, of the agreement establishing an International Criminal Court, a vain and cynical gesture given the serious flaws of the agreement, which even Clinton acknowledges, and the certainty that the treaty will never be ratified. There was the meaningless trip to Ireland this fall, a visit the president?s aides admitted had no substantive value but which provided a lovely and, for Clinton, much-needed spectacle of cheering throngs celebrating the great almost-peacemaker. There was the meaningless visit to Vietnam, with still more cheering crowds, and old Communist bosses offering their thanks for Clinton?s long-ago opposition to his own country?s effort to protect millions of innocent South Vietnamese from a Communist takeover. And then there was Clinton?s evident eagerness to visit an even more brutal Communist thug in North Korea, a visit he called off at the last minute. What stopped him cannot have been the lack of progress toward a meaningful agreement on Pyongyang?s ballistic missile program, since Clinton?s other lame-duck voyages were entirely futile. Perhaps Clinton reviewed the tapes of Secretary of State Madeleine Albright?s trip to North Korea in October and decided he did not want the last, lingering image of him to be anything like the shots of her smiling idiotically while starving, terrified children ate their first hearty meal in weeks.


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