Obama's Misguided Foreign Policy Aspirations

Do America’s friends and enemies believe that Illinois Senator Barack Obama is weaker on terrorism than John McCain? If so, things could get very rough should Obama be elected.

In December 1998, Iran and Libya struck, blowing up a Pan American Airliner above Scotland as a welcoming gift to the incoming Bush 41 administration. The USS Cole was blown up just before the 2000 elections. In 1993 the World Trade Center, on the anniversary of Saddam’s surrender in the first Gulf War, was attacked as another welcoming gift to a new American administration. And we all remember the Chinese attack on a US intelligence plane in early 2001 just as the new Bush 43 administration was getting its government feet on the ground.

Every new administration is tested by our enemies, and these “tests” are terribly important. Senator Obama claims that he will “talk” to our adversaries. He said to Wolf Blitzer that Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and John Kennedy did, so why can’t he?

As columnist Jack Kelly has so brilliantly noted, Roosevelt did not talk to Tojo, or Hitler, or Mussolini, nor did Truman talk with Kim Il Sung, the Korean dictator who ordered the invasion of the Republic of Korea. One called for unconditional surrender and the other saved the Republic of Korea from a communist holocaust. It is true, as Obama notes, that President Kennedy talked with Khrushchev in Vienna — but the latter saw Kennedy as weak and untested, leading to the deployment of nuclear missiles in Cuba in October 1962. That perceived weakness almost led to Armageddon.

Would Obama trek not only to Damascus, but Tehran, Pyongyang and Caracas, just as Speaker Pelosi did to Syria? And to what affect? To blackmail and intimidation (and worse), because of a perception, in Khrushchev’s words after meeting Kennedy, we, the United States, are “too liberal to fight?”

This is the core issue raised by the President in his speech in Israel. Many Democrats, including Pelosi, Reid, Obama, and Biden, reacted with horror: how dare the President mention that appeasement often leads to war, as in World War II?

The issue is not, as some have claimed, that the Democratic Party is only proposing to use diplomacy. The US through five successive Presidents, from 1979 to 2008 — has largely been using diplomacy in dealing with the Mullahs in Tehran. What has been the affect? The Iranians have nearly destroyed Lebanon with their Hezbollah proxies. They are trying to destroy Israel. And they are killing in Afghanistan and Iraq, trying to destroy the emergence of political openings in those two countries which would allow Moslems to choose an alternative to terrorism. And they are seeking to establish the totalitarian law of Sharia throughout the world

Obama advisers claim they simply want to follow the example of Ronald Reagan in his dealing with the Soviet Union. What unadulterated baloney. The liberal wing of the Democratic Party opposed everything Reagan did to strengthen the US security — from the deployment of the INF missiles, to the building of the Peacekeeper missile, B-1 and B-2 bombers, to helping the government of El Salvador and the democratic resistance in Poland. They waged relentless political battles against Reagan’s policies. I know. I fought these appeasers every square inch from Capitol Hill to the White House.

When Reagan bombed Libya, they opposed him. When he reflagged the Kuwaiti tankers, they opposed him. When he liberated Grenada from a Marxist dictatorship, they opposed him. When he armed the “Contras” to eliminate the Ortega regime in Nicaragua, they opposed him. When he said deploy Peacekeeper missiles, they opposed him. When he said let us build missile defenses, they opposed him.

One Democratic Senator sent a colleague to the Soviet Union to encourage Soviet President Brezhnev to adopt a better public relations campaign to defeat Reagan’s strategic modernization program. They opposed even the deployment of the GLCM and Pershing missiles in Europe, as the Soviets spent hundreds of millions to defeat in a campaign of intimidation and propaganda. Most Democrats embraced the wacky nuclear freeze, another Soviet initiative; even as they swallowed the nuclear winter scare stories that one new book by a former KGB agent says was purely Soviet disinformation.

On top of which Obama has surrounded himself with defense advisers who ridiculed the very policies Reagan used to win the Cold War. Seemingly forgotten down a rabbit hole of fairy tales is that Reagan’s vision was described at the time, again by these same people, and by the drive-by media and their academic and Democratic Party allies, as dangerous and wrong-headed.

Reagan dealt with the Soviets from a position of strength, military power created in the teeth of a hurricane of opposition from the overwhelming majority of the Democratic Party. He laid out principled positions that could be described very simply: “We win; they lose”. Senator Obama has reversed that idea. In the Senators view, in Iraq, the jihadists win and we, the United States, lose. As one of his principle advisers told me, “we have to lose in Iraq”, just as “we had to lose in Vietnam” because then things will work out for the better.

Obama blames 9/11 and the terrorism being waged against us as the result of the US failure to provide the Palestinians a homeland. What rubbish! Syria, Iran, and the terror allies are killing us, Senator Obama, because they want to destroy our way of life. They care nothing about the Palestinians. On the other hand, Libya, Afghanistan and Iraq have been cut from the tree of state sponsored terrorism by the extraordinary bravery of our coalition soldiers, their private sector and civil service compatriots, and our national leaders, including George W. Bush.

In short, Senator, you are wrong on history, wrong on strategy and wrong on the threats we face. While you may try to wrap yourself in the mantle of President Reagan, whatever you may be, Senator Obama, you are no Ronald Reagan.

I know, Senator, I worked for Ronald Reagan.