6 Steps to Rebuild US Prestige

Bush's successor should make changes, but only some
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 2, 2008 7:19 AM CDT
President Bush, flanked by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and UN Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, speaks during a meeting of the United Nations Security Council.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – As the Bush era comes to a close, many outside the United States are hoping that a new president will revive America's standing in the world. For Bronwen Maddox, America needs to do a better job winning support abroad, but not at the expense of its central values. "There are some actions for which it should apologize, but there is a limit beyond which it should concede nothing," writes the columnist in the Times of London.

Maddox lists six suggestions that would improve America's post-Iraq image:

  1. Cooperate, just a bit. Bush has improved as his presidency wound down, but his unilateralism had already angered the world.
  2. Stop demonizing China. Trade's the best bet to get Beijing to modernize.
  3. Stay engaged in Iraq. Whatever happens with troops, America is the only party that can change the Middle East.
  4. Talk to Iran. Bush isolationism has been a colossal failure.
  5. Shut Guantanamo. It does far more harm than good, as does the meaningless phrase "war on terror."
  6. Let Europe know who's boss. The US and EU need each other, but their interests are not the same.