Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Kerry’s foreign policy

Here is Matt Bai’s long article published in The New York Times Magazine on Kerry’s foreign policy. It is very much worth reading, for it reveals more than it hides. And this is the Belmont Club’s take on it. As usual, very thoughtful. I like these two paragraphs:

"Bai’s article reminds me of one of those products which are described on the packaging as being a new space age, high-technology, portable illumination aid which on closer inspection turns out to be a flashlight. When the newfangled description of terrorism as a ’blended threat’ is subtracted, the entire program consists of the policies of the late 1990s. Bilateral talks with North Korea. Oslo. G-8. The United Nations. Warrants of arrest. Extradition requests. Not a single new element in the entire package, except the fancy rationale. There is nothing wrong with that, any more than there is anything objectionable about a flashlight, but a more candid characterization of Kerry’s proposals is not a voyage into uncharted waters so much as return to the world of September 10; in Kerry’s words ’back to the place we were’. It has the virtue of producing known results, and suffers only from the defect that those results do not include being able to prevent massive attacks on the American mainland.

Kerry’s world, in a way, is where one goes if George Bush’s vision proves false: the frying pan, as a place of refuge if one lands in the fire. As a negative vision it will always hold some attractions; which will grow in proportion to failures in the Global War on Terror and fade in proportion to its successes. Roger Simon succinctly described Bai’s article as a plea to return to ’business as usual’, a call to the past from ’the ultimate conservative’. It is heartbreakingly pathetic in its own way."   

Discussions - 2 Comments

Bai’s article is an extremely revealing peek into the mind of John Kerry, and the barely warmed-over McGovernoid-cum-Carteresque mush that fills it. The man’s ideas about foreign and national-security policy are a study in fecklessness and folly, leavened by delusions of grandeur. I found particularly alarming his fatuous boasting near the end about the allegedly massive strategic significance of presidential PR diplo-flackery and personal ties to the likes of Arab-world dictators such as Hosni Mubarak and King Abdullah. Kerry seems actually to believe this nonsense. Get it? He’ll be just like Clinton, but without the charm. Very frightening.

It’s funny to think that the Gray Lady’s editors must have believed they were doing Kerry a favor by publishing it, damning "nuisance" quote and all.

The great impression I take away is that the Democrats--for whom Kerry represents the "realistic" alternative they felt forced to settle for, let us recall--really and truly are the Bourbons of American politics: They learn nothing; they forget nothing.

Kerry really is a "European"--he’s totally in line with cynical, world-weary old Europe’s resigned and allegedly sophisticated approach of trying to "manage" a worldwide movement of would-be mass murderers through a mixture of occasional enforcement measures and good old-fashioned appeasement.

Problem is, you can’t appease a maniac who’s lunging for your throat with a knife. And you can’t opt out of the fight, no matter how slick you think your diplomatic skills are.

And check out this report on the GOP ad using the "nuisance" remark:

The Dems are squealing like pigs. They know this one will leave a mark.

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