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2004 — Challenges for Global Politics

Our most compelling quotes from 2003 on the global political landscape.

December 30, 2003

Our most compelling quotes from 2003 on the global political landscape.

The year 2003 was one of the more interesting in recent memory — mainly because there was so much fragmentation. Within the United States, as well as the European Union, there were ever more pronounced internal divisions. And while China was on its second great march — the Middle East dominated the headlines. We highlight key items on the global political agenda for 2004.

“China is a big country with 1.3 billion people. So to press ahead with political reform, it has to be done in an orderly fashion — and in a well-organized manner.”

(Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao)

“China has a deeply and systematically competitive relationship with the United States. Cooperate now, compete tomorrow.”

(Hugh White, director of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute)

“There are a thousand and one difficulties facing us as we work to institute democracy in the Arab world and the larger Middle East. And yet, what choice do we have except to try once, twice — or as often as we must?”

(Saad Eddin Ibrahim, head of the Khaldun Center for Development Studies in Cairo)

“Modernization in the Middle East is not only about politics. It is also about development and economics.”

(German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer)

“Italy is today the best friend that we have in Europe. We have never had a country holding the EU presidency that has been as friendly as Italy is today.”

(Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon)

“Paradoxically, American power worldwide is at its historic zenith — while its global political standing is at its nadir.”

(Zbigniew Brzezinski, former U.S. national security advisor)

“I say to the United States that the day must come when that interventionist obsession must end.”

(Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez)

“Pique isn’t a foreign policy.”

(David Ignatius, Washington Post columnist)

“The advance of freedom is the calling of our time. It is the calling of our country.”

(U.S. President George W. Bush)

“The neoconservatives have long acted with a kind of historical certitude — exhibiting an almost Leninist ruthlessness toward any institution that would impede America’s hegemony.”

(Harold Meyerson, editor-at-large of the American Prospect)

“Whether you like it or not — whether you wish it or not — we are moving toward a multipolar world.”

(French President Jacques Chirac)

“For all the talk of an American empire, the price of saying no to the United States has been going down.”

(Michael Ignatieff, Carr professor of Human Rights at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University)

“Social Democrats everywhere face the same alternatives: Either we modernize ourselves as a social market economy — or we will be modernized by the unrestrained force of the markets.”

(German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder)

“The EU as such is the biggest European peace initiative in our history. It has led to lasting peace on the European continent for the first time.”

(German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer)

“The revival of Franco-German co-operation has — to put it bluntly — happened at the expense of Europe.”

(Anne-Marie Le Gloannec, Fondation Nationale des Sciences Politiques)

“Among some antiglobo activists, there’s a strange nostalgia for the nation-state — as if it’s one of the innocent structures that globalization is undermining.”

(Doug Henwood, contributing editor of the Left Business Journal)