This story could correctly be entitled, “Cycles.” For most of the 20th Century and the first decade and a half of the 21st, we’ve watched this cycle occur in our foreign and defense policies. It began with Wilson, continued with FDR, Carter, Clinton and now Obama. Each iteration of liberal polices led to disaster. It always seem to require a conservative administration to put our house back in order…until the next liberal administration betrays us once again.
The next president will be forced to face down tyrants whom Obama ignored
– – Wednesday, May 27, 2015
For a time, reset, concessions and appeasement work to delay wars. But finally, nations wake up, grasp their blunders, rearm and face down enemies.
That gets dangerous. The shocked aggressors cannot quite believe that their targets are suddenly serious and willing to punch back. Usually, the bullies foolishly press aggression, and war breaks out.
It was insane of Nazi Germany and its Axis partners to even imagine that they could defeat the Allied trio of Imperial Britain, the Soviet Union and the United States.
But why not try?
Hitler met no opposition after militarizing the Rhineland. He annexed Austria with impunity. He gobbled up Czechoslovakia without opposition.
Why shouldn’t Hitler have been stunned in 1939 when exasperated Britain and France finally declared war over his invasion of distant Poland?
Six years of war and some 60 million dead followed, re-establishing what should have been the obvious fact that democracies would not quite commit suicide.
By 1979, the Jimmy Carter administration had drastically cut the defense budget. President Carter promised that he would make human rights govern American foreign policy. It sounded great to Americans after Vietnam — and even greater to America’s enemies.
Then Iran imploded. The American embassy in Tehran was stormed. Diplomats were taken hostage. Radical Islamic terrorism spread throughout the Middle East. Communist insurrection followed throughout Central America. The Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan. China went into Vietnam.
Dictators such as the Soviet Union’s Leonid Brezhnev and Iran’s Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini assumed that Mr. Carter no longer was willing to protect the U.S. postwar order. Or perhaps they figured that the inexperienced American president was too weak to respond even had he wished to do so.
Then, Ronald Reagan defeated Mr. Carter in 1980 on the promise of restoring U.S. power. At first, both America’s friends and enemies were aghast at Reagan’s simplistic worldview that free markets were better than communism, that democracy was superior to dictatorship, and that in the ensuing struggle, the West would win and the rest would lose.
Foreign media damned Reagan as a warmonger for beefing up the U.S. defense budget, reassuring America’s allies and going after terrorists with military force.
The column continues onto a second page with Hanson’s analysis of Obama. The pattern is well established. Liberal, i.e., democrat administrations, weaken the nation, creates choas within our military with massive cuts and misappropriation of funds, thus allowing our enemies to become emboldened. The problems resist until a conservative administration is elected to fix the problems the liberals have created.
The column ends with this final statement:
The Obama foreign policy cannot continue much longer without provoking even more chaos or a large war. Yet correcting it will be nearly as dangerous.
Jumping off the global tiger is dangerous, but climbing back on will seem riskier.
Now you know why I said this section could rightfully be titled, “Cycles.”
Here is an item where the ACLU and Missouri conservatives agree. The use of ‘StingRay’ technology should be banned within the state. The St Louis Post Dispatch published this editorial on Wednesday.