The title sounds like a PBS Special for a Sunday Night….
As an analyst of foreign policy I am always interested in what candidates have to offer….and these days I am not too thrilled with our current leader…..his foreign policy seems a bit amateurish and infantile…..
In the last 60+ years our foreign policy can be labelled a “liberal” foreign policy…..and in that time the hypocrisy of our policies have come to light….
Former US vice-president Joe Biden asserted at the 2019 Munich Security Conference that ‘this too shall pass’, referring to the Trump administration’s challenges to the transatlantic alliance structure and US commitment to multilateralism. Unfortunately, any assumption that America’s commitment to global engagement will revert to the status quo ante in 2021 if President Donald Trump is not re-elected belies the growing polarization in US public opinion about America’s role in the world.
This partisan divide in Americans’ sentiment pre-dated Trump’s election and is likely to continue whatever the outcome of the next US presidential election. Americans have long held ambivalent feelings about their relationship with the rest of the world. Many are descendants of people who turned their backs on their homelands to seek a better life in the New World. Thomas Jefferson’s admonition against ‘entangling alliances’ was a mantra taken up by isolationists in the first half of the 20th century who argued against early US entry into both world wars.
If anyone else were president, the “liberals” would be celebrating. After all, pulling American soldiers out of a couple of failing, endless wars seems like a “win” for progressives. Heck, if Obama did it there might be a ticker-tape parade down Broadway. And there should be. The intervention in Syria is increasingly aimless, dangerous and lacks an end state. Afghanistan is an unwinnable war – America’s longest – and about to end in outright military defeat. Getting out now and salvaging so much national blood and treasure ought to be a progressive dream. There’s only one problem: Donald Trump. Specifically, that it was Trump who gave the order to begin the troop withdrawals.
Lost in the haze of their pathological hatred of President Trump, the majority of mainstream liberal pundits and politicians can’t, for the life of them, see the good sense in extracting the troops from a couple Mideast quagmires. That or they can see the positives, but, in their obsessive compulsion to smear the president, choose politics over country. It’s probably a bit of both. That’s how tribally partisan American political discourse has become. And, how reflexively hawkish and interventionist today’s mainstream Democrats now are. Whither the left-wing antiwar movement? Well, except for a few diehards out there, the movement seems to have been buried long ago with George McGovern.
Then we elected Trump and in the beginning I was with him on some of his foreign policy issues but that quickly went down the toilet after he was elected and his true self came to light……
Those anticipating that President Donald Trump would spend a considerable part of his State of the Union address on foreign policy likely came away disappointed. With the exceptions of his bragging about the U.S. military being stronger and better than ever before, killing one of the al-Qaeda operatives who planned the USS Cole attack over 18 years ago, and condemning Nicolás Maduro-style socialism, Trump was noticeably subdued on events beyond America’s shores.
The Islamic Republic of Iran, the Trump administration’s favorite target, was portrayed as led by depraved fanatics intent on committing murder and mayhem throughout the Middle East. Russia—a country that has caused Trump all sorts of political trouble in Washington—was called out for violating the 1987 Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty. Chinese President Xi Jinping was described as a friend while his government was excoriated as a predatory economic behemoth that has sapped America of its wealth, killed its manufacturing sector, stolen its intellectual capital, and decimated its blue-collar workforce. And Trump minced no words when briefly talking about Venezuela’s Maduro, who has plundered a once wealthy Latin American nation.
Keep in mind the above link is a conserv link and in as such can be a bit neocon in content…..
I then read an article that says that Americans want a less aggressive foreign policy….really?
For decades, American foreign policy has rested on a consensus view about the United States’ role in the world. In an international order where there is one unrivaled superpower, foreign policy experts agree that U.S. soldiers and taxpayer dollars are essential for preserving global stability. But that is an assumption that is not necessarily shared by the American public, based on the findings of a new study Worlds Apart: U.S. Foreign Policy and American Public Opinion, conducted by the Eurasia Group Foundation (EGF), an organization I serve as Board President.
No matter what party they claim allegiance to, Americans favor a foreign policy that resists entanglements abroad, the survey found—and it’s not limited to conservative libertarians on the right and liberal pacifists on the left. In every age group polled, respondents exhibited a waning appetite for the obligations and impositions of imperial governance.
I am NOT sure I agree with that conclusion. Why? I do not believe that most Americans have a grip on foreign policy beyond their favorite news channel…..
Another look at this survey…….https://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/americans-want-greater-restraint-in-foreign-policy/
I disagree because of the public acceptance of the many many wars we are currently fight…..
It seems the only people that are fighting against all these wars are the people that had to fight them….our veterans….https://truthout.org/articles/veterans-demand-congress-end-the-forever-wars/
We need to find a way to educate the voter on our foreign policy….for as long as they stay uninformed the military can run rough shod over their decisions and as long as the MSM works as the propaganda arm of our polices we will stay in a forever war.
What we need is a Progressive foreign policy….
The 2020 election will not turn on global issues of – and more’s the pity. After all, thanks to decades upon decades of accumulating executive power in an increasingly imperial presidency, it is in foreign affairs that the commander-in-chief possesses near dictatorial power. Conversely, in domestic policy, a hostile Congress can – just ask Barry Obama – effectively block most of a president’s agenda.
Still, the vast majority of Americans don’t give a hoot about issues of war, peace, and international diplomacy. Why should they care? It’s not as though anything is asked of them as citizens. By cynically ditching the draft, Tricky Dick Nixon took the wind out of the sails of current and future antiwar movements, and permanently cleaved a gap between the U.S. people and their military. Mothers no longer lose sleep over their teenage sons serving their country and they – along with the rest of the family – quit caring about foreign policy. Such it is, and so it will be, that the 2020 presidential election is likely to be decided by “kitchen-table” affairs like healthcare, immigration, race, and taxes.
Turn The Page!