Monday, May 12, 2008

Where is America's Michael Corleone?

I love it when someone can write something that brings together things I love, in this case film and politics.

Here is a seriously brilliant article on American foreign policy through the eyes of The Godfather (film). After Don Corleone (USA) is wounded (9/11) by Sollozzo (upstart Middle Eastern powers), his 3 sons meet to decide which approach to take with the upstarts.

Adopted son Tom Hagen represents the Democratic (Liberal Institutional- bring it back to status quo pre-9/11) approach, which is negotiation and all its flaws. Through the eyes of the Godfather, we can see (according to the article), why Russia sits back and allows Iran to gain nukes and has no incentive to help.

Eldest son, Santino (Sonny) represents the approach of the present administration and the NeoCons and its flaws, which we see in the film (Sonny dies at the hands of the weaker upstart when he enacts an ill advised war) and in our present situation (US bled dry economically and politically through an ill advised war).

The youngest son, and future head of the syndicate, Michael, represents the Realistic approach. He is not swayed by negotiation or force alone. He only cares about saving the family from ruin, using any and all means at his disposal. But he harbors no idealism that it can return to the "good ole days." He knows the family will have to adapt to a new world in order to survive.

These are the 3 approaches to foreign policy "vying for control in today's disarranged world order," one in which the last approach is the strongest. The writer then asks this important question, "can any of the Iran policies currently being advocated by the leading candidates of both parties be said to proceed from these assumptions?"

You must read the entire article if you have an inkling of interest in politics or foreign policy. it is brilliant. His insight into how we must emulate Michael is quite good.

*I guess that leaves Fredo as France, the weak link pushed over the side of the boat by the rest of the family.

hat tip to Andrew Sullivan

No comments: