John McCain says: “My friends, we have reached a crisis, the first probably serious crisis internationally since the end of the Cold War. This is an act of aggression.”
Let’s run-down the list. Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, followed by the US expulsion of Iraq from Kuwait. Collapse of Yugoslavia and subsequent wars of aggression between successor states. US invasion of Afghanistan. US invasion of Iraq. There are a slew of other examples of serious international crises over last 16-18 years.
One of the great threats we face is the personal sense of grandiosity of the lead foreign hands who shape the course of our role in the world. Not national grandiosity, but personal grandiosity. Because if you’re a foreign policy hand or political leader your own quest for greatness is constrained by whether or not you live in times of grand historical events.
There’s a lot of this nonsense floating around today by pampered commentators who want to find a new world historical conflict to write bracing commentary about before we’re done with the one from last week. But John McCain might be president in six months. And whether it’s his own shaky judgment, temperament or just the desire to find a campaign issue, this loose cannon is a real threat to this country.