Bush's bullying will rebound

<em>Letter of the week</em>

Your description of George Bush as a "playground bully" (Leader, 30 July) is not inaccurate. Under the present regime, the US has already taken giant strides towards losing moral leadership in world affairs. In their unprecedented selfishness, they do not perceive that hegemony, especially in world affairs, is seamless. Breaking treaties (on behalf of a nation founded on the rule of law) and disregarding the interests of all states but their own will rebound in ways no one can yet predict.

The American people should recall the reign of Commodus, successor to Marcus Aurelius as Roman emperor, from which, arguably, that empire never recovered. Gladiator could take on a whole new meaning.

Antony Black
Professor in the History of Political Thought
University of Dundee

This article first appeared in the 06 August 2001 issue of the New Statesman, The Murdochs: a family saga