Woodrow Wilson was an avid imperialist, and in World War I he universalized the new Americanmission in the belief that only the U.S. had the grace and power to pacify a world rent byrevolution and war, and create a new world order. Accordingly, Americans invented four newtraditions over the course of the twentieth century, representing various strategies for thefulfillment of that noble quest: Progressive Imperialism, Wilsonianism, Containment, and GlobalMeliorism, or the promotion of democracy, growth, and social reform world-wide.Various mugwumps, nationalists, isolationists, and realists periodically warned that crusadingzeal might breed arrogance and hubris in American policy, and that a permanent mobilization of American power would erode liberty and civic virtue at home. In the event, the U.S. did greatgood in the wicked twentieth century, thanks to its willingness to spend blood and treasure toslay imperialism, fascism, and communism. But the U.S. also did much that was bad or justugly, and did harm itself in the process.The question before us after the Cold War, therefore, is whether the time has come to take arest from crusading, as Jonathan Clarke has advised, and become a normal nation again, asJeane Kirkpatrick has said. Or whether this unipolar moment makes America all the more the"indispensable nation," and placed on her still greater responsibilities to design, impose, andpolice some new world order?I will not recite all the eloquent arguments made by advocates of an American "benevolentglobal hegemony," such as Bill Kristol, Bob Kagan, Senator McCain, Joshua Muravchik, WarrenChristopher, Madeleine Albright, and Tony Lake. Nor will I recite the eloquent rebuttals to their vision advanced by Clarke and Kirkpatrick, Owen Harries, Robert Kaplan, Michael Mandelbaum,Fareed Zakaria, Samuel Huntington, Charles Maynes, Charles Krauthammer, James Kurth, or even myself.I mean instead to do something wildly tangential to the debate over America's future role in theworld, but for that reason wildly original. I want to ask what it means to be a Crusader State,whether the U.S. is indeed one, and what the history of the original Crusades can contribute toour current debate. I mean to discuss, not the twenty-first century, but the twelfth and thirteenth.Last year we celebrated, or lamented, the hundredth anniversary of our nation's first crusade inthe Spanish-American war. So far no one has noted that July 1999 will mark the nine-hundredth anniversary of the original Crusaders' conquest of Jerusalem. Preached by PopeUrban II in 1095, the First Crusade was a military success, and inspired future popes, kings, andmilitary orders to launch a score of others against the Muslim world, pagans on Europe'speriphery, and heretics inside of Europe.But while the various crucesignata, the soldiers who went into battle with the sign of the crosson their hauberks and shields, justified their campaigns as holy wars in defense of the Catholicfaith, their motives-and those of the popes who exhorted them-went far beyond self-defense.