Thursday 02 Apr 2020 | 13:30 | SYDNEY
Thursday 02 Apr 2020 | 13:30 | SYDNEY

The Interpreter World Leader of the Year, part 2


Hugh White

18 December 2008 09:09

I missed the earlier round of nominations, but my pick is Richard Nixon.

Why? Because American power remains the most important influence on the world, and nothing is more important than the careful use of that power by one who fully understands both its scope and limits. Nixon, for all his faults, was such a leader: he did much to shape the world we have enjoyed for the past thirty years, when out of failure in Vietnam he conjured decades of uncontested US primacy in Asia. 

America’s new leader will need some of that. He will find that America’s problems in the world today are not all George W Bush’s fault, and as he searches for ways to define America’s role in the Asian Century, Nixon’s example might be the best he will find.