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August 14, 2007

Giuliani's Foreign Policy

The Council of Foreign Relations is providing a useful public service by getting the candidates to articulate their foreign policies at think tank -- that is to say, excruciating -- length. Rudy Giuliani's manifesto went up today, and it's interesting, if only for its intense attention to new names for the War on Terror. First we get "the Terrorists' War on Us," followed quickly by "the terrorists' war on global order" and "the long war." The War on Us" neologism seems best suited for fear-mongering and aggressive self-righteousness, their war on "the global order" is probably for those times when Giuliani wants to pretend to be a multilateralist, and "the long war" is for all those NeoCons desperate to imagine themselves in some sort of World War II style clash.

From there, Giuliani promises to expand the military by at least 10 brigades, which probably means between 15,000 and 35,000 new soldiers. We also need a missile defense system, because "Rogue regimes that know they can threaten America, our allies, and our interests with ballistic missiles will behave more aggressively, including by increasing their support for terrorists. On the other hand, the knowledge that America and our allies could intercept and destroy incoming missiles would not only make blackmail less likely but also decrease the appeal of ballistic missile programs and so help to slow their development and proliferation." This makes, so far as I can tell, no sense.

Giuliani also calls for a Reagn-esque type of diplomacy, wherein we "The next U.S. president should take inspiration from Ronald Reagan's actions during his summit with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Reykjavík in 1986: he was open to the possibility of negotiations but ready to walk away if talking went nowhere. The lesson is never talk for the sake of talking and never accept a bad deal for the sake of making a deal," before taking a shot at Pelosi: "Members of Congress who talk directly to rogue regimes at cross-purposes with the White House are not practicing diplomacy; they are undermining it."

Giuliani also calls for expanding NATO to "to any state that meets basic standards of good governance, military readiness, and global responsibility," presumably so it can serve as a replacement for the UN, which he says "has proved irrelevant to the resolution of almost every major dispute of the last 50 years," and though it "can be useful for some humanitarian and peacekeeping functions...we should not expect much more of it."

So let's be clear: Giuliani, who's advised by Norman Podhoretz, is running to uphold the foreign policy of the NeoCons. He is their champion, and his platform reflects their influence. He's the closest thing to Cheney in the race -- right down to the authoritative, secretive streak -- and is probably the most dangerous of the Republican contenders.

August 14, 2007 | Permalink

Comments

I don't think it's fair to attach this to Neocons. This policy is just dumb. Like really...dumb. The stupidest foreign policy i've ever heard in my life.

Posted by: Phil | Aug 14, 2007 1:57:01 PM

This policy is just dumb. Like really...dumb. The stupidest foreign policy i've ever heard in my life.

What, then, would differentiate it from Neocon foreign policy?

I don't think Rudy will get the nomination, let alone win the White House, but I agree that he's the most dangerous candidate - at least insofar as we can tell.

His rhetoric is terrifying.

Posted by: Stephen | Aug 14, 2007 2:06:39 PM

And Hillary Rodham Clinton will do the same damn things. The only difference will be that she'll be frowning while she does it, and say that it's with a heavy heart that she subverts the constitution, invades iran, and continues fighting in Iraq. Rudy, on the other hand, will smile and relish it with glee.

Not enough of a difference to matter. They will both serve the same masters, and neither one is really going to do anything differently than the other. We get the choice between a Neocon in sheeps clothing, or an Unabashed Neocon. Yipee.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 2:35:34 PM

Soullite, you're paranoid.

Posted by: Sanpete | Aug 14, 2007 2:44:18 PM

Oh, such a brilliant articulation of foreign-policy exposition by a would-be President:

"War, War, War!!"
"Terror, Terror, Terror!!"
"Danger, Danger, Danger!!"
"Weapons, Weapons, Weapons!!"
"War, War, War!!"

Oh, and as coda: " USA RULZ, UN DRULZ!!"

Brilliant in its simplicity -

emphasis on "simple".

Posted by: Jay C | Aug 14, 2007 2:44:57 PM

And you're naive. I don't pretend that a person will act differently in power than they have during their entire public life. It's not like I'm pulling this out of my ass. Hillary is a hawk. Hillary does not respect the constitution. She likes war, and doesn't believe in either privacy or freedom of speech. Guliani maybe more gung-ho about this shit, but she's just as bad.

It's not like I've always hated her. I was happy to vote for her in 2000. I supported her and still have several of her campaign buttons from that time. But she's proven too right wing for me to support. I'm sorry, but she's not a liberal. She's no better than they are and you'll be singing the same tune come 2012 when we still have 200k troops in Iraq and she's been rattling her sabre at Iran for 4 years.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 3:13:41 PM

Soullite, you may hate her more now because you're more paranoid than you were in 2000. She's not going to (if elected) invade Iran, and she'll never have 200,000 troops in Iraq. And she is a liberal, according to her voting record. More than most Democrats.

Posted by: Sanpete | Aug 14, 2007 3:23:11 PM

One can't help be struck by the utter incoherence and general silliness of these policy prescriptions. Ten new brigades and a missile defense system aren't going to do jackshit against Al Quaeda which, dare I say it, poses more of a police/intelligence problem rather than a military threat. Although fond of WWII analogies, these guys really want to refight the Cold War with the idea that Bin Laden is the new Kruschev.

The Soviet Union posed an actual existential threat to the U.S. with thousands of nuclear warheads aimed in our direction. The Islamists, on the other hand, can possibly engage in some unnerving, yet relatively small scale terrorism within the U.S.

A policy directed at this threat would emphasize better intelligence, greater cooperation with other governments toward this end, a lower profile for the U.S. in the Islamic world, steps to strengthen energy independence, and limited and selective use of military assets where they can be directed at very specific targets and threats.

Posted by: Klein's Tiny Left Nut | Aug 14, 2007 3:38:57 PM

Sanpete, I think it is fair to say that Clinton believes her own hawkish rhetoric. It's up to tthe voter to decide whether that outweighs her liberal policy positions on other issues or not.

Posted by: Tyro | Aug 14, 2007 3:44:27 PM

Tyro, Clinton's hawkish rhetoric isn't significantly different from Edwards' hawkish rhetoric, and is somewhat less hawkish than some of Obama's (which is more hawkish than Bush's on Pakistan).

Posted by: Sanpete | Aug 14, 2007 3:55:10 PM

On Iraq, their rhetoric (and records) are quite different. You can take that for what it is, you can think she doesn't really believe it, or you can think that her other stances outweigh her history of pandering/believing in-the-hawkish wing, but that's what it is. One of her inner-circle foreign policy advisors in Albright, who was, to a large degree, an architect of Bill Clinton's hawkish stances and rheotric on Iraq and Yugoslavia. By any standard, Clinton is running as the "hawkish" candidate in the Democratic field, and you seem to be the only one claiming otherwise and/or that her rhetoric is not distinguished from that of the other candidates.

Posted by: Tyro | Aug 14, 2007 3:59:52 PM

On Iraq, their rhetoric (and records) are quite different.

No, they really aren't in any substantial way. If you think they are, explain how.

Posted by: Sanpete | Aug 14, 2007 4:32:22 PM

Rudy Guliani isn't going to be their nominee. Mitt Romney is. He has the money, people like him, and he's ahead in most of the early states. Rudy is banking on the notion that he'll survive a few weeks and make it to Florida. He won't. Republicans follow, and when some start voting for Mitt Romney the rest will follow in that too.

His Mormonism just isn't a big enough deal to any but the very small section of evangelicals who believe in a 6k year old earth and rant about moon dust. Even among self identified "Evengelicals", which the press has praised to the point where most simply think this means "Devout", the anti-mormon hordes are too small to matter. To the extent that it does, those people won't be voting for a Catholic either.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 4:51:33 PM

Sanpete, I must have missed the reports of foreign policy types telling the press that Edwards has assured them that troops will still be in Iraq come the end of his SECOND term.

I've only heard those reports about one candidate. It stands to reason that if she's telling us on thing and the "serious" people another, that she's likely just pandering to us. She considers those people her friends and equals. We're just plebs to her.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 4:55:15 PM

Soullite, you're right. I should have said that on that particular point Edwards is crazy, while Clinton isn't as much, which is a difference. No, he won't keep troops in Iraq. He'll keep them next door so that if there's the likely genocide he can reinvade. Reinvade. To intercede in an already hot war. They'll have to fight their way in, and you know everyone here and in Iraq will love reoccupation. Brilliant. So there is that difference. Clinton will keep troops in Iraq where they can act immediately if needed without the added drama, death, and whoops-too-lateness of reinvading. But the idea is similar: both will keep troops on hand to deal with the likely violence there.

Posted by: Sanpete | Aug 14, 2007 5:16:26 PM

soullite, care to back up your claim that the wide majority of evangelicals won't have a problem with Romney's Mormonism?

Posted by: Tyro | Aug 14, 2007 5:24:12 PM

On Iraq, their rhetoric (and records) are quite different. You can take that for what it is, you can think she doesn't really believe it, or you can think that her other stances outweigh her history of pandering/believing in-the-hawkish wing, but that's what it is. One of her inner-circle foreign policy advisors in Albright, who was, to a large degree, an architect of Bill Clinton's hawkish stances and rheotric on Iraq and Yugoslavia. By any standard, Clinton is running as the "hawkish" candidate in the Democratic field, and you seem to be the only one claiming otherwise and/or that her rhetoric is not distinguished from that of the other candidates.

Tyro

Last time I checked Obama, Edwards, and Clinton were all planning on leaving troops in Iraq. Also didn't Obama call for aggressive military action in Afghanistan? Speaking of Obama...he has the same voting record on Iraq as Clinton since entering the senate. Given this information please tell me how Clinton is different then Edwards or Obama as far as foreign policy.

Posted by: Phil | Aug 14, 2007 6:01:07 PM

Sanpete, I must have missed the reports of foreign policy types telling the press that Edwards has assured them that troops will still be in Iraq come the end of his SECOND term.

I've only heard those reports about one candidate. It stands to reason that if she's telling us on thing and the "serious" people another, that she's likely just pandering to us. She considers those people her friends and equals. We're just plebs to her.

I imagine that the genocide issues Edwards wants to prevent will not be fixed in four years.

Posted by: Phil | Aug 14, 2007 6:02:55 PM

Rudy is the most dangerous - to the country, but also to the Democrats' chances of taking the White House in '08. I'm not sure why some people are convinced that Rudy won't win. The GOP race seems wide open to me, and while Romney could certainly snatch the nomination from Rudy, it could just as easily go the other way.

I would like to believe Rudy won't win the nomination, because he does seem like the hardest candidate to beat in the general election, and Romney seems like the easiest. (Mitt shares quite a few flaws with one John Kerry.) But I'm not seeing it. Rudy has, I think, made up for his "liberal" positions on a couple issues by making sure nobody can outflank him to the right on US military hegemony.

Posted by: Jason G. | Aug 14, 2007 6:37:46 PM

Phil, you can't really respond to an answer with a discussion of a different issue. Even of John Edwards would go into Darfur killing people randombly, it still would have nothing to do with his position on Iraq. Nothing at all.

this makes no sense to anyone not a political hack:

"They have the same positions on Iraq"- clinton suppoert A
"What about this..."- Me
"John Edwards will invade a ton of other countries"-you

You, sir, fail at life.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 9:02:34 PM

Not to mention I don't really believe that you seriously think John fucking Edwards is going to go rampaging around the planet with his army of democracy bringing death and destruction wherever he goes. That's just not a credible accusation to make. Wanting to do something about an issue can mean any number of things. From sanction, to assistance to negotiations.

I think you said that because you're a Hillary supporter and you couldn't really think of anything else to say. Some accusations make sense, some are clearly made for the sake of sophistry. If the idea of war bothered you, you wouldn't be defending Hillary Clinton. If you really though John Edwards would be so Gung-ho in the use of the military, I'd wager that would improve his standing in your eyes.

Posted by: soullite | Aug 14, 2007 9:08:09 PM

Not to mention I don't really believe that you seriously think John fucking Edwards is going to go rampaging around the planet with his army of democracy bringing death and destruction wherever he goes. That's just not a credible accusation to make. Wanting to do something about an issue can mean any number of things. From sanction, to assistance to negotiations.

Excuse me...where did Hillary Clinton say she was going to go around the world using the military to spread democracy? Can you give me specfic scenario's she's proposed? Because you seem to be making a lot of assumptions and just talking out of your ass and quite ineffectively at that.

Furthermore, my genocide argument was made in reference to Edwards' desire to keep troops in Iraq/the region to prevent a genocide not the genocide in Sudan

Way to go there buddy

Usua

Posted by: Phil | Aug 14, 2007 9:53:50 PM

Hi Ezra,

You missed the bit about layered missile defense. That means space-based weapons, something the Heritage clowns have been after for a while. Guess we know who wrote Rudy's article for him.

Regards, C

Posted by: Cernig | Aug 14, 2007 10:38:40 PM

It's bizarre. I can understand Rudy's health policy being a sham to allow shallow insults. But his foreign policy is bullshit too, albeit scary bullshit.

The man is a bona fide fascist. And Podhoretz's wet dream. Whoda thunk it? I'd lean towards Romney getting the nom, but it really depends upon the GOP bandwagon, and then it's up to the media to turn its blind eye on Romney's shameless hucksterism, rather than Rudy's authoritarian streak and moral vacuity.

Posted by: pseudonymous in nc | Aug 14, 2007 11:38:55 PM

The next U.S. president should take inspiration from Ronald Reagan's actions during his summit with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Reykjavík in 1986

Yes! Finally, someone sensible! My God, I never thought I'd see someone support this. Reykjavik was Reagan's finest hour: he wrong-footed everyone by suggesting a complete abolition of nuclear missiles on both sides, and an international agreement (involving SDI) to prevent proliferation. No president since has had the nerve to revisit this proposal, and I'm glad to see Rudy is taking it seriously.

I suspect, however, that this wasn't what he meant.

Posted by: ajay | Aug 15, 2007 5:55:46 AM

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