Yugoslavia’s republics were entitled to
independence and at least one province was entitled to autonomy
amounting to independence. A few years ago, this was the position
of the United States, its NATO allies, and the United Nations.
Tibet and Taiwan are accepted as integral parts
of China according the world powers.
Basing foreign policy on “humanitarian”
considerations is questionable at best. When that “humanitarian”
policy is tempered by realism it is rather unappealing. There
is something less than noble about not tolerating a bully unless
the bully is really big.
Perhaps it would be better to intervene in other
people’s affairs only when there is some U.S. interest at
stake. Following that rule, and freely admitting that we are following
the rule, would seem a more honest approach to foreign policy.