What do you believe is the national goal of the United States? Today you'd probably be hard put to come up with an answer. And the reason why is simple: the United States no longer has a clear-cut goal! But in another sense, the United States does have a goal — but it is the very worst goal that any country could ever have. That goal is to try to hang on to what we've got, to enjoy as much as possible the "pleasant present." But in the dynamic world of geopolitical relationships, to stand still is to go backward! As a result, the United States is actually in retreat all around the world. We want the approval, the acceptance, the love and approbation of all nations. We want to be "good guys," everyone's friend. So we cravenly bend over backwards to appease, to placate, to assuage, to right every supposed wrong of our national past — not realizing that by such actions we earn instead the contempt and scorn of the world. Now, as a part of this ill-conceived program of appeasement, the U.S. government is trying desperately to give back the Panama Canal, a vitally strategic waterway which has served and protected the American people, and the rest of the free world as well, for over six decades. The "gunboat diplomacy" days of President Theodore Roosevelt — a time when the United States had a sense of purpose and a pride in its power — are now seen as a black splotch on the pages of American history, something to apologize for and feel guilty about. Men who explored, who discovered, who built nations, who vanquished enemies are now all viewed as terrible sinners, whose deeds must be atoned for. Will we end up giving Alaska back to the Soviets, the Louisiana Purchase to the French, the American Southwest to Mexico, the original Thirteen Colonies to England? I mean, this could get serious! Another aspect of this program of placating and mollifying nations is our disastrous " human rights" offensive. In an attempt to play the " good guy" in the eyes of black Africa and the Third World, we self-righteously indict and condemn the governments of Rhodesia and South Africa for their racial policies. Yet at the same time, in dozens of other nations throughout Africa, multiple millions of innocent people suffer and die under the heels of brutal, bloodthirsty dictatorships. But there is no mention in Washington of the excesses of those governments; there is no public outcry, there are no demonstrations, no campus rallies, no calls for sanctions and embargoes, no demands for removal of press censorship. Is this a national orientation America can be proud of? Can we be proud of a national policy which openly condones "freedom-fighting" terrorist acts against innocent civilians in southern Africa and remains silent on the butchery of perhaps more than two million civilians by Communists in Cambodia? Can we be proud of a national policy which calls for an arms embargo against South Africa, cynically labeling her a threat to world peace — while at the same time permitting the training of Ugandan pilots in the United States, enabling Idi Amin's butchers to improve their systematic purging of uncounted tens of thousands of men, women and children of rival tribes? America no longer has a clear-cut world view. She can no longer distinguish between friend and foe. After all, our own President has pronounced that we have matured so much as a people that we have shed our "inordinate fear of communism." As a result of our "maturing," Washington will likely never again send U.S. troops overseas to die in an attempt to say "No Trespassing" to communism. Just look at what we're doing to South Korea and Taiwan! The days are over when the military might of the United States is used to accomplish what America perceives as correct and proper. We do not in my opinion, have the courage to carry out such a daring and sensational exploit as the Israeli Entebbe rescue, or the rescue by the German government of hostages aboard the Lufthansa jet in Somalia. America's influence and prestige is on the rapid decline. The pride of our power has been broken. The time is fast approaching when the United States will be so weak and so fearful of its own shadow that, as the prophet Ezekiel predicted, the trumpet will sound the call to battle, but none shall answer (Ezek. 7:14). We will "flee when none pursues" (Lev. 26:17). It is time for America to get a grip on itself and acquire a sense of national purpose — before it's too late!