In their day, the Romans had a political hand in almost every geographical area they touched, and because of this they were in equal parts feared, respected and despised. Their presence was always felt.
In recent weeks, a lot of the international media's coverage has focused on America's culpability in the international arena. Time magazine recently published an article in which it posited that the US must bear some responsibility for the famine that is crippling Somalia, borne of its policies in the war against terrorism. Its foreign policy in the wake of prolonged campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq, its uneasy relations with China and the still felt repercussions of 9/11, as we near its tenth anniversary, have absolutely hurt its international standing.
Tariq Ali's column for the Guardian makes a lot of valid leftist points, that, along with the Time article, along with the usual China Daily coverage, just goes to show how now we are far quicker to our criticisms than we have been for a long time.
Generally, culpability is something that has been widely protected with Freedom of Information acts that have sought to insert decades between documentations being made, and documentations being made available. Under the prism of Wikileaks, the empires are falling, and the information is increasingly cynical, sharpened, published.
I abhorr politics. I find it nauseating, repetitive and stagnant; more an arena in which politicians are serving themselves and their re-election hopes than the people that voted for them. That said, I find international politics fascinating, because unlike domestic politics, international politics is not very forgiving; new world orders rise and fall in the blink of an eye, and it can be like watching the zeitgeist, basically trying to plot where the energy, where the mood, where the new interests and power are going to be.
The price of a high profile is increased scrutiny. Check out the Guardian's 9/11 coverage to see what I mean.