Maureen Dowd's 3/12/11 column had just the answer I've been looking for in trying to assess whether it makes sense for the USA to be militarily involved in promoting democracy. She referred to David Rieff's book " At the Point of a Gun" in which he quotes John Quincy Adams about America: “Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy ... she is the champion and vindicator only of her own.”
Why not heed the words of John Quincy Adams. Beating the drums of war every time there is a burp in some area of the world has not been productive. The neocons would not agree with Adams and would argue that Superpowers must exercise their military power to bring about "order". Perhaps it is time to reevaluate what a Superpower is obligated to do. In my opinion a Superpower is a power which has demonstrated that it has the power to be an influential voice in world affairs without exercising their military might and at the same time provides for the welfare and defense of its citizens. A Superpower should not be expected to be the policeman of the world. Isn't that what The United Nations is for?