January 13, 2000

A recent column by Arnold Beichman in the Washington Times asks if the United States is really a superpower. After all, nearly every day we hear this country referred to as a superpower like no other in the world or in history. If America is a superpower, then Beichman asks some penetrating questions:

If it is, then why are we paying tribute to North Korea, the world's biggest basket-case?

If it is, then why is Saddam Hussein still a functioning dictator in Iraq? If it is, then why are we pleading with Iran's theocracy to let's be friends again? If it is, then why is Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic still in power?

If it is, then why is Osama bin Laden functioning in Afghanistan, the world's second biggest basket-case? If it is, why are we trying to do the impossible, to seal the unsealable Canadian-American border against terrorists? If it is, why, with all our super-dooper power and expenditure of billions of dollars can't we rid ourselves of the multi-billionaire Latin American drug lords?

Beichman wonders if the United States is becoming a paper tiger rather than a superpower. This is especially important at a time when so many people are talking about the "American Century."

The next president as well as the American people are going to have to confront reckless dictators and international terrorism in the 21st century. And the United States is the only nation that possesses the military capability to keep a balance of power in the world. We aren't called to be the world's policeman, but neither can we shrink from our responsibility to confront evil in its many forms around the world. Let's make sure that America in the 21st century is a true superpower, not a paper tiger.

I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.