As one who has spent his entire adult life either overseas or working on foreign affairs, I subscribe heartily to John Lukacs’s thesis as presented in your March issue. Mr. Lukacs correctly points out in “America’s True Power” that our prestige overseas remains formidable even as our economic power (temporarily) wanes. My experience as American ambassador here confirms that the symbolism of the American experience is still a subject of fascination and respect. Both the English language and American studies attract steadily growing interest among university students and faculty in this former French colony, which professes Marxism as its prevailing ideology.
In return, I find it disturbing that a majority of Americans either cannot even find the Congo on a world map or confuse it with its neighbor across the river: Zaire, the former Belgian Congo.