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News Link • American History

Will we see the end of American hubris?

•, By Stephen Kinzer
 Many Americans, including some who watched events unfold in Crimea last week, find this unsettling. We are much more accustomed to wielding decisive power and having our way.

Part of what built the United States is the optimistic determination sometimes called the “can-do” mentality. It tells us that when a person — or a nation — wants something badly enough and works hard enough to achieve it, the result will always be positive. This wonderful trait helped Americans tame a continent and astonish the world. Recently, however, we have been sobered by the realization that there are some things we want to accomplish in the world but cannot, no matter how much we wish for them or how hard we try.


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