Oliver Willis

Republicans Bankrupt On Foreign Policy

Barack Obama has gotten U.S. foreign policy back on track after the disaster of the Bush years. He’s ended the war in Iraq, killed Bin Laden, helped remove middle-eastern strongmen, and on and on. He’s proving that via progressive leadership, America can be strong and respected in the world. The era of going blind into Baghdad has ended.

Republicans, who loved during the Bush years to run on the falsehood that they were strongest on national security, have mostly run away from the issue now. After the Bush failure, America really doesn’t have any interest in invading the wrong countries or pushing lies about nonexistent weapons in order to avenge someone’s sense of inadequacy about their father or whatever. We’ve kicked the cowboy syndrome.

It was no mistake that the GOP debate on foreign policy was scheduled during the TV dead zone of a Saturday night. What little the field did say consisted of the same discredited ideas from the last decade of the right: sullying America’s good name with torture, bellicosity as a substitute for smart foreign policy, an America that leads with its fist instead of its brain. The usual Republican garbage that gets Americans killed and makes us less safe.

Obama’s made mistakes by not being aggressive enough on domestic fiscal policy, but on foreign policy he’s continued the legacy of America being a respected leader — something we have seen from both parties before the fecal smearing of the Bush years.

It may not be — understandably — the top of mind issue this coming election, but it’s worth remembering and hammering away at the notion that the modern Republican/conservative movement has nothing to offer America on foreign policy.