America First was our foreign policy before Pearl Harbor, as Buchanan admits. The nice thing about not addressing threats abroad is that they will come to us soon enough - after gaining numbers, strength, confidence, momentum, riches, weapons and a few victories under their belt.
Buchanan was the most anti-Iraq-war of all Republicans, he opposed the first gulf war too, after Saddam invaded and took control of Kuwait. But I haven't heard his answer or Obama's or Trump's to what they would have done otherwise (nothing) about Saddam Hussein joining the nuclear club. Iraq Study Group, said Saddam was 5-7 years away from the capability. From 2002-2003, that makes Saddam's Iraq nuclear in roughly 2007-2010. The 2016 equivalent strategy for 'stability in the region' would be to hand Iran that capability. Thank you President Obama, mission accomplished. (
Buchanan: "Military intervention for reasons of ideology or nation building..."
This is a straw man argument right out of the Obama left vocabulary. Those motives are not among the 23 compelling reasons in the authorization approved by a 3:1 margin in the House and a majority of both parties in the Senate, nor were they the hidden reason. We didn't go into Iraq for ideology or nation building; we were addressing a threat recognized at the time by all the best intelligence agencies in the world as 'grave and gathering'. Saddam had attacked four of his neighbors by the time we deposed him, had gassed the Kurds and given financial support to suicide bombers. The first World Trade Center bombers traveled under Iraqi passports. What threat?
The lesson AFTER overthrowing Saddam, and after he was hanged after a fair trial, is that if we were going to spend hundreds of billions more and lose thousands more lives in pursuit of stability, don't needlessly squander the gains when we're done. We didn't abandon Germany or Japan immediately after that 'surge'.
A couple others (from the right) join my criticism of Trump's foreign policy speech (famous people reading the forum?):
Noah Rothman at Commentary: After again demonstrating that he doesn’t know what a trade deficit is by contending that it should be balanced “quickly,” he asserted that the world should “look at what China is doing in the South China Sea.” Without defining what that is, he noted: “they’re not supposed to be doing it.” You’ve heard the same turn of phrase from Secretary of State John Kerry when he’s utterly flummoxed by the actions of American adversaries and has no way to counter them. https://www.commentarymagazine.com/foreign-policy/trumps-flawed-foreign-policy/
Charles Krauthammer: "His foreign policy speech is an incoherent jumble of contradictory ideas."
"Trump...is inconsistent and often contradictory. He pledged to bring stability to the Middle East. How do you do that without presence, risk and expenditures (financial and military)?"
"More incoherent still is Trump’s insistence on being unpredictable. An asset perhaps in real estate deals, but in a Hobbesian world American allies rely on American consistency, often as a matter of life or death."
"Trump’s scripted, telepromptered speech was intended to finally clarify his foreign policy. It produced instead a jumble. The basic principle seems to be this: Continue the inexorable Obama-Clinton retreat, though for reasons of national self-interest, rather than of national self-doubt. And except when, with studied inconsistency, he decides otherwise."http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/charles-krauthammer-world-donald-trump-article-1.2617950