Well, that was quick. In 2003, the idea of empire became fashionable in Washington, DC. But the flirtation has lasted little more than three years. The imperial eagles are being put back in the cupboard. The challenge for the US now will be to avoid sliding straight from imperialism to isolationism.
It is true that President George W. Bush always insisted that the US had no imperial ambitions. But – as ever – his vice-president had his own agenda. In 2003, just after the invasion of Iraq, the Christmas card that Dick Cheney sent to his friends read: “And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?” [complete article]