Bolton cannot be Ambassador to the UN

By Patrick Burke

In a time when United States foreign policy is ambiguous and volatile, John Bolton is the last person that should be representing the nation in the United Nations. As a result of the Iraq debacle, needless to say the United States already has a questionable reputation in the United Nations. It is not only the image of the United States in the UN that the confirmation of John Bolton could sabotage. With a history of aggressive, myopic views with regard to international relations, John Bolton’s presence in the UN could further exacerbate the effects of the Bush administration’s flawed international philosophy. At this point in time, the United States is in need of a significantly more moderate UN representative. Although patriotism may not be detrimental to the security and image of the United States in theory, Bolton’s esteem for his homeland seemingly verges upon a US-centric view of the global community.

There is a time and a place for diplomatic hardliners like John Bolton. Ever since the 9/11 attacks the Bush administration has been seeking to will a particular world into existence. This specific geopolitical climate seems to constitute a fusion of the Second World War and the Cold War. Only, as the Bush administration sees it, the adversary is not embodied in another state but rather in a more abstract, ominous, nebulous form. For the Bush administration the contemporary international adversary is terrorism. Accordingly, the Bush administration deems it necessary to appoint a hardliner such as John Bolton to represent the United States in the United Nations. From the perspective of the Bush administration, terrorism is not much different in nature than Communism. The Bush administration is under the illusion that as long as the United States remains aggressive, intolerant, and intrusive in the international arena, terrorism will eventually be contained and ultimately eradicated.

Only there is a notable disparity between the American battle against Communism during the Cold War and the current war on terror. Undoubtedly, the United States sought to combat Communism on some levels through encouraging self-determination. However, the Bush administration has taken the concept of self-determination to an entirely different level. Men like John Bolton epitomize the nature of the Bush administration’s ideological counter to the fundamentalism that supposedly spawns terrorism. To elaborate, the Bush administration is seeking to fight terrorism through an intense American orientation. Inherent in some of John Bolton’s more notorious past diatribes against the United Nations, this orientation aspires to redefine liberal democracy. The Bush administration, through men like John Bolton, is not enterprising to incite an influx of traditional self-determination into states such as Iraq. More specifically, the Bush administration desires to essentially establish states such as Iraq as satellites of the American system of ideals. The motives of the Bush administration, to be fair, in regard to the promotion of American replication remain unclear.

Of course, the most popular conspiracy theory about the Bush’s intent internationally involves the expansion of the American military-industrial complex. Whatever the shallow, opportunistic motives of the Bush administration, the fact of the matter is that men like John Bolton are more than fit to carry them out. Hopefully, the Senate will rise to the occasion and preclude Bolton’s confirmation. At least by blocking Bolton the prospect of a more moderate diplomat being appointed by the Bush administration arises. The designs of the Bush administration in regard to the war on terror, which are most likely rooted in the military industrial complex, may result in nothing more than the tarnishing of the reputation of the United States abroad over the next four years. Nevertheless, to ensure that the Administration’s aggressive policy does not threaten the security of the United States, the less men like John Bolton in power the better.