Tuesday, November 11, 2008

At last, we get the real US back

Blogzilla is mid-way through a zip around India, which is why things have recently been quiet. But even halfway around the world, the US election result was huge news. India's first interest is in Obama's intentions regarding Kashmir. However, the immediate boost in US standing and soft power brought about by his election is clear.

As a great fan of the US and its system of government, my strongest emotion last Wednesday while watching Obama's victory speech live in Mumbai was relief. Relief at the end of the excresence of an administration of war criminals who had mounted a coup d'etat against the US Constitution. Relief at the rejection of a vice-presidential candidate whose proudest attribute seemed to be ignorance. Relief most of all that in Andrew Sullivan's words: "With men and women finally back in power I can trust to act reasonably and ethically and within the rule of law, I feel less hesitation in getting on with life."

Obama clearly cannot be the saviour of pre-election hype. But once he has closed Guantanamo Bay, stopped the CIA from torturing detainees, and started to act once again as if the Constitution applies to the President, we might start to see the return of the US's reputation as a beacon of freedom that George W. Bush has done so much to destroy.

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