American Foreign Policy

PRINCIPLES

From its very inception, the basic principle of American foreign policy has been rooted in the Westphalian system and its embrace of the notion of sovereignty, understood as political independence and territorial integrity. Not only did the former colonies reject British rule; they specifically opposed all foreign intervention in American affairs. Such was the essence of the foreign policy recommendations offered in his Farewell Address by the young republic’s first president, George Washington, who advised against “entangling alliances” as threats to national sovereignty. This stance was supported by our geographic position, as well as by a unique national identity derived not from ethnicity, but rather the voluntary and independent decisions of millions who chose to become Americans. Becoming an American was not dependent upon the accident of birth.

The essence of American national identity and, by extension, American foreign policy, became American exceptionalism. This notion views the United States as an historically unique entity, a shining “city upon a hill” worth emulating throughout the world. American expectionalism has informed our decisions in the international arena throughout our history, albeit this Weltanschauung, or world view, came under an intense assault during the counter-cultural revolution of the 1960s and 1970s. The radical leftists (not infrequently communist “fellow travelers” or “useful idiots”) embraced cultural relativism, while labeling America as the alleged source of the world’s greatest evils (“AmeriKKKa” – as the spiritual successor of the Third Reich). Not surprisingly, the counter-cultural revolutionaries dismissed American exceptionalism as a quintessential expression of supposed American arrogance. Barack Hussein Obama’s administration appears to have been strongly influenced by this anti-exceptionalist current.

This loss of faith in American exceptionalism among a part of American society and influential elite policy-making circles obviously translated into the realm of foreign policy during the late 1960s and the 1970s. The detente period of constructive engagement witnessed a resolution of the perennial tension between “idealism” and “realism” in favor of a shallow caricature of the latter. In general, “realists” emphasize power relationships and rationality while downplaying the role of ideology and moral concerns in international relations. Paradoxically, “realism” misapplied to intensely fanatical and ideological regimes – such as the Nazis, communists, and Islamists – becomes an exercise in naiveté. For instance, as a result of the Sonnenfeldt Doctrine (named after State Department counselor Helmut Sonnenfeldt) the U.S. unofficially recognized the Soviet domination of Central and Eastern Europe, although the move failed to deter aggressive Soviet penetration, particularly of the Third World. Thus, the U.S. and the West ended up essentially appeasing the communist world, while the latter continued its offensive.

No less so was the 1972 Nixon-Kissinger rapprochement with communist China viewed as strategic appeasement culminating in the Shanghai Communiqué and the advent of the “One China” policy – a complete reversal of our foreign policy where Chaing Kai-Shek’s government, which had fled the mainland to Taiwan in 1949 following Mao Tse-Tung’s revolution, remained the sole legitimate government of all China.

Fortunately, the foreign policy of Ronald Wilson Reagan succeeded in achieving a balance between the two approaches of idealism and realism. Reagan viewed Taiwan as the legitimate government of China and the Soviet Union not only as a dangerous adversary but, first and foremost, a moral challenge, i.e. an “Evil Empire.” His administration’s reading of Soviet objectives and modus operandi was soberly realistic. It sought to break the “cold peace” stalemate (“balance of power”) by winning the Cold War. The idealistic aspect of Reaganite policy consisted in its undoubtedly ambitious objectives, which included the fostering of a more peaceful world and bringing freedom to the captive peoples subjugated by the communists, such as the Poles, for instance. In her memoir, No Higher Honor, George W. Bush’s Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, observed that “Poland was a vivid reminder that U.S. foreign policy, grounded in both power and principle, had helped change what seemed to be immutable circumstances.” To further his ends, the fortieth POTUS employed a diverse yet complimentary set of tools, including increased defense spending, economic sanctions, and public diplomacy. In effect, the Reaganite blend of “realism” and “idealism” accelerated the implosion of the Soviet bloc.

Not unlike in the wake of the First World War, the U.S. victory in the Cold War, which marked the collapse of the Soviet Communist system on December 25, 1991, sparked a subsequent quest for the ever elusive “peace dividend.” As a result, America’s national security, sovereignty, and defense capabilities suffered. In the end, our adversaries utilized the lapsed time to wax in strength and Islamist terrorists attacked us on our own soil on September 11, 2001.

The post-9/11 world rudely awakened America to a new set of foreign policy challenges. We faced an enemy who was at once transnational but also benefited from the covert and overt support of various rogue state actors. Furthermore, rogue regimes of various stripes – such as North Korea, Iran, and Venezuela – collaborated with an emerging anti-American coalition of such powers as communist China and post-Soviet Russia. Meanwhile, some of our significant NATO allies in Western Europe were dismissive towards America’s national security concerns and friendly towards her adversaries. Such obvious conflicts of interest demonstrated that, in order to protect her national interests, the United States was compelled to distance herself from the suffocating constraints of multilateral, international organizations, such as the United Nations, demonstrably only with whose sanction could legitimacy be conferred.

The Young Republic

In addition to these principles, America’s geographic position also played an important role in helping us to develop a conception of nationhood. The words “from sea to shining sea,” and the notion of geographic (manifest) destiny, expressed early guiding principles and represented an aspiration for our ambitions as a nation. Geography was thus a vital factor in creating the conditions for our becoming an exceptional nation. Coastal access to both the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans were a blessing that enabled us to extend our reach north to Alaska, into the Arctic, and south to the Gulf of Mexico, while building a sea route across the Isthmus of Panama. Because we had access to the seas and developed an essential naval capability, Latin America, Europe, Africa, and Asia were well within our reach as prospective partners in economic and political endeavors. This also entailed an abundance of natural resources which supported the growth transforming the United States into an industrial state, as well as a global military superpower.

Not surprisingly, one of the first foreign policy initiatives of the young American nation was the Monroe Doctrine. Introduced in 1823, it was a statement of our determination to resist outside interference in the affairs, not only of the United States, but of the entire Western Hemisphere as well. President James Monroe’s proclamation of this principle exerted an enduring impact on U.S. foreign policy. It has stood from those early days until contemporary times, when it was invoked by presidents such as John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and countless others in the service of American diplomacy.

While the Monroe Doctrine represents an American response to a European threat to regional security, it marked the beginning of a period in which the United States began to recognize responsibilities beyond those of simply protecting our own national sovereignty. The next century brought a new conception of our role in the world. First, this meant our eventual entry into the Second World War, an action that was qualified by our rejection of Woodrow Wilson’s poorly conceived internationalist League of Nations. Although the interwar years are often described as dominated by an isolationist impulse, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration set the stage for an expanded world role for the United States. The Lend-Lease program was an important early innovation for facilitating U.S. involvement in a global conflict. Our prominent military role in the Second World War – measured in terms of both material and manpower – was followed by an international activism expressed by our commitment to the nascent United Nations.

Aftermath of the Second World War

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill who popularized the term “Iron Curtin” in a series of 1945 telegrams to President Harry Truman and later in 1946 with his famous speech at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri declared, “From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an iron curtain has descended across the Continent. Behind that line lie all the capitals of the ancient states of Central and Eastern Europe. Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia, all these famous cities and the populations around them lie in what I must call the Soviet sphere, and all are subject in one form or another, not only to Soviet influence but to a very high and, in some cases, increasing measure of control from Moscow.”

In 1946, career State Department diplomat George F. Kennan sent a cable to Washington describing what he saw as the new post-war reality. Soviet expansionism, he explained, represented a threat to free nations and should be opposed by a combination of military and economic means. Known as the “Long Telegram,” this document became the genesis of a policy of “containment,” the creed of foreign policy consensus and remains its fundamental precept.

Soviet containment in Europe set the stage for the Truman Doctrine; whose architect Under Secretary of State Dean Acheson oversaw one of the most dramatic foreign policy shifts in American history. In 1947, when Britain announced it could no longer sustain military operations against the communists in Greece, Truman responded with his declaration that both Greece and Turkey were likely to fall to the communists, if the West did not provide help. Outlining what eventually became known as the “domino theory,” Truman argued that the fall of one nation would immediately endanger neighboring states, until the USSR radically altered the global balance of power in its favor. The Grand Alliance that had won the war was no more. This proposition meant that eschewing entangling alliances in Europe was no longer an option for the United States, having just emerged from the Second World War, a conflict for which both sides had paid a very high price in blood and treasure – 50 million lives and more than $1.5 trillion. We had, Truman maintained, an obligation “to support free peoples who are resisting attempted subjugation by armed minorities or by outside pressures.”

The Cold War

Soviet expansionism marked the turning point of a new era with the communist coup in Czechoslovakia on March 17, 1948, arguably ushering in the advent of the Cold War. As the Truman Doctrine amounted to a reversal of the Monroe Doctrine, it committed the United States to a global mission of collective security. Along with the creation of a series of post-war institutions, both national and international, that mission could be fulfilled only by creating a network of allies who would be supplied with military equipment by the U.S. An almost immediate consequence of this new doctrine, albeit an entangling alliance, was the establishment of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) between Western Europe and the North America powers of Canada and the United States, with Iceland serving as the a steppingstone between the two continents. Another Cold War success, NATO endures today long after the implosion and transformation of the Alliance’s enemies. Domestically, Truman’s Cold War strategy included the signing into law of the National Security Act on July 26, 1947, with the creation of the National Security Council, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Joint Chiefs of Staff and eventually leading to the establishment of the Department of Defense, accounting for a complete restructuring of America’s foreign policy and defense apparatus.

A logical consequence of the Truman Doctrine was Dean Acheson’s development of an ambitious effort to reconstruct war-torn Europe through what became known as the Marshall Plan – the work of State Department officials William L. Clayton and George F. Kennan. American officials saw the ravaged European continent as a potential site for revolutionary unrest that could propel the USSR into control of the entire region unless the West responded with a program for economic reconstruction. The response took the form of a $17 billion “European Recovery Program” announced by Secretary of State George Marshall in June 1947. The projected aid was described as purely humanitarian and available to both Western and “Eastern” European states. Stalin ordered his satellites to reject the aid and proclaimed the program as a sinister American effort to undermine socialism.

That obligation led the United States to a commitment to defend West Berlin in the face of a Soviet blockade. The crisis was sparked by Western efforts to restore economic stability in their post-Second World War occupation zones through the creation of a new currency, the Deutsche Mark. On June 24, 1948, following the introduction of the Deutsche Mark, the Soviets imposed a blockade of rail and road links from the Federal Republic into Berlin, ostensibly to stem the flood of devalued older marks into the West. The Western powers, led by the U.S., used their three air corridors to West Berlin in order to operate an airlift for all the supplies needed for the city’s population of over two million people. Although the Soviets did not shoot down the airplanes, an act that would likely have led to war, weather conditions represented a challenge that led to the crash of numerous aircraft and the deaths of over one hundred Allied military personnel. On May 12, 1949, after an eleven-month-long airlift, the Soviets realized that they had been defeated and terminated the blockade. For the U.S., this victory represented a vindication of Truman’s policies. Created on April 5, 1949, NATO became a direct consequence of the Berlin blockade.

Confronted with large and active communist parties in the Western European countries, including Greece, France and Italy, with the Red Army poised in Eastern Europe, the need to counter the post-Second World War communist expansion throughout Europe became essential U.S. policy. Among the Cold War institutions created under the Truman Doctrine were two anti-Communist broadcast arms, Radio Free Europe (1949) aimed at the Soviet satellites and Radio Liberty (1951) aimed at the Soviet Union, which George Kennan and John Foster Dulles understood to be essential in the war of ideas. Both RFE and RL were authorized and funded by Congress.

The post-Second World War occupation of Germany in Europe and Japan in the Pacific achieved their intended objectives to demilitarize and democratize both former enemies, while rebuilding each country’s economic base. As a result of America’s nation building policy following the devastating destruction of the war, Germany and Japan became strong U.S. allies and trading partners.

The Challenge of the 21st Century: Multilateralism and Globalization

During the Cold War, 1948 to 1991, a structure that lasted well over 40 years, multilaterism within the framework of the UN became a standard modus operandi for U.S. foreign policy. Yet, these convenient responses to special circumstances were not consistent with our national sovereignty as expressed in the Monroe Doctrine and, more broadly, in the U.S. Constitution. Today, we find ourselves in a post-war environment based on international relationships, such as with the United Nations, and on the development of further multilateral innovations, which will presumably advance vaguely defined “national interests.” In this environment, there is a growing assumption that multilateralism is preferable to unilateralism, simply because it is “global” and thus more “sophisticated.”

The fall of the Berlin Wall and the concomitant collapse of the Soviet Union have advanced the conception of transnationalism or globalization, which seeks to subordinate American national sovereignty to global governance, with its attendant laws, regulations and institutions. Supranational institutions, such as the United Nations (UN), the World Trade Organization (WTO), and even the European Union (EU), along with America’s elite, seek to establish a global rule of law enforced by supranational courts like the International Court of Law, where the United States and our Constitution would become subordinated to transnational authority. The creation of the WTO in 1994, described as a transformational moment, would transfer from the United States a significant amount of authority to a new global organization, further eroding our national sovereignty.

The latter-day financial bailout of the EU, particularly for a profligate Greece, with U.S. taxpayer funded IMF loans is simply untenable. Closely related to this is the rejection of multilateralism as an attempt to advance our national interests. While this goal does not necessarily prevent collaboration with other countries, whenever a consensus exists regarding the resolution of complex international problems, reliance upon multilateral organizations has resulted in policy failures and the erosion of national sovereignty and independence.

After 9/11, the George W. Bush administration demonstrated the viability of coalitions in the formation of the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI), where over 90 countries came together to stop “international trafficking of materials related to weapons of mass destruction.”

Further, U.S. sovereignty can be preserved only by a clear recognition of the constitutional limits on the treaty-making power. International treaties can undermine sovereignty, and deny U.S. citizens the rights to which they are guaranteed under the Constitution. The Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST) would conflict with our “Freedom of the Seas” and make it a right granted by the United Nations as the central, sovereign, global authority, with the power to tax over nearly 70 percent of the earth’s surface. This regulatory power would grant the UN control over our seabed mining, oil and gas development, fishing and environmental policies, not unlike how matters are handled in the European Union. While the UN’s Kyoto Protocol – predicated upon the scientifically unproven claim of anthropogenic “global warming” – would constitute a transfer of wealth from developed nations like the United States to the less developed.

Our sovereignty can be assured only by exercising our independence and by embracing the natural resources with which this country has been blessed through our exceptional geographic circumstances. Failure to fully utilize our own abundant resources – simply to comply with globalist dictates based on politicized scientific assumptions – constitutes a rejection of the natural resource wealth with which we have been so endowed.

It is increasingly apparent what the future will hold for the United States should it continue to adhere to the global financial order spawned at the Bretton Woods, New Hampshire Conference of July 1944, a path set for the post-Second World War era by the Establishment in New York and Washington. The United Nations Monetary and Financial Conference established a global financial framework of institutions, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD), all sustained by American largess. A policy based on multilateralism and a rejection of the traditional conception of national sovereignty, while channeling initiative through multilateral transnational global institutions, will deplete our treasury and cause America to lose control of its destiny, becoming what Alexander Hamilton called a “nation, without a national government….”

Aftermath of 9/11 and the War on Islamic Terrorism

Influenced by Truman-Acheson, George W. Bush’s post-September 11 anti-terrorism strategy included the signing of the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2001 renamed the PATRIOT Act by Congress. Truman’s restructuring of the government at the onset of the Cold War served as a successful precedent for Bush in June 2002 to call upon Congress to create a Department of Homeland Security, which ultimately combined 22 uncoordinated agencies. Bush writes in his book Decision Points where key agencies and departments such as: the FBI created a “new National Security Branch;” Defense established a new Northern Command; Treasury “adopted an aggressive new approach to disrupting terrorist financing;” a “new National Counterterrorism Center was created based in part on a 9/11 Commission recommendation; and, the intelligence community was reorganized into the National Directorate of Intelligence.

Although Soviet communism collapsed in 1991, international communism persists, and, since September 11, 2001, the global rise of Islamic terrorism poses a dire more insidious ideological threat to America’s future. The conservative manifesto known as the Sharon Statement affirmed on September 11, 1960, at a time when the forces of international communism presented “the greatest single threat” to our liberties, that “the United States should stress victory over, rather than coexistence with this menace.” This precept applies today following the surprise attacks by Islamist jihadists on two of America’s crucial and most prominent power centers – financial and military – against New York’s Twin Towers and the Pentagon in Washington.

Consequently, we are now confronted by another ideology, both foreign and domestic, that threatens the very foundation of our Judeo-Christian values forming the basis for Western civilization. Clearly, the direst of these foreign threats emanates from the Middle East, from both the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Islamic Republic of Iran. While the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which has funded terrorism and harbored the mastermind of the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, as well as the attack on the USS Cole, (while refueling in Aden, Yemen on October 12, 2000), the Islamic Republic of Iran “perceives itself as a national hegemonic power in the region.” The Islamic Republic of Iran has been at war with the United States since its inception in 1979 and has waged asymmetric warfare against America throughout the Middle East. Iran’s proxy war began with the student attack and seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran in 1979; it continued with Hizbullah’s 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marine Corps barracks in Lebanon; Hizbullah’s 1996 bombing of Khobar Towers housing U.S. Air Force personnel in Saudi Arabia; and, the arming of the Taliban in Afghanistan and Quds Force supported Shiite militias in Iraq, who have been responsible for the targeting and killing of American soldiers since 9/11. Iran, along with its progenitor Hizbullah, designated as a foreign terrorist organization by the U.S. Department of State, poses a serious threat to our national security within the Western Hemisphere, including both Latin America and inside the United States itself. Fifteen of the 19 9/11 hijackers, all of whom had infiltrated the United States, came from Saudi Arabia. Al Qaeda was allied with Iran, where at least eight of the 19 hijackers are known to have used Iranian territory prior to September 11.

Further, a domestic threat has insinuated itself into American society taking various forms, including that of Fort Hood terrorist U.S. Army Major Nidal Hasan, a self-described “SoA” or Soldier of Allah, and of the Saudi supported and financed Cairo-based Muslim Brotherhood – a Sunni fundamentalist organization – itself the progenitor of its Palestinian branch Hamas, with strategic ties to Tehran and another State Department designated terrorist organization. The Washington-based Center for Security Policy has accurately described this preeminent threat as the “legal-political-military doctrine known within Islam as ‘shariah'” – now calling for ‘civilization jihad’ against America. In the Executive Summary of Shariah: The Threat to America they warn, “The net result of these combined forces is that the United States has been infiltrated and deeply influenced by an enemy within that is openly determined to replace the U.S. Constitution with shariah.” Additional essential reading regarding this threat to America is two other books, both written by Dore Gold, Hatred’s Kingdom and The Rise of Nuclear Iran. As affirmed by the Sharon Statement in 1960, “the United States should stress victory over” this enemy rather than coexistence, accommodation or submission with such a menace, which, in this case, has been described as international communism with a god, seeking a global Islamist state or caliphate.

Our Founders came to understand Islam as American merchant ships plying the Mediterranean Sea encountered the Barbary Pirates of North Africa sponsored by the Arab rulers of Morocco, Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli. The Barbary Pirates were known to have dominated the region since the Crusades. No longer protected by the British Navy, American shipping became vulnerable. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, both ambassadors to France and England, respectively, in March of 1786, met with the ambassador from Tripoli in London. Inquiring as to the reason for the unprovoked attacks, they were told that the Americans, as non-Muslims were, according to the Quran, considered infidels, and therefore the pirates had the right to plunder American shipping and demand tribute. This was documented in their subsequent report to Congress.

Upon becoming president in 1801, Jefferson adopted the doctrine of “Millions for defense, but not one cent for tribute.” By 1805, a fledgling U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marines had achieved the first American victory on foreign soil at the “shores of Tripoli” in defense of American shipping, marking the end of the first Barbary war. Jefferson’s earlier reading of the Quran enabled him to understand his enemy, while John Quincy Adams in a series of essays on the Quran, the nature and teachings of Islam, informed Americans on the clash of civilizations.

Realism and Idealism

The formulation of American foreign policy goals should be based on fundamental principles, rather than convenient responses to crisis situations. As under President Ronald Reagan, U.S. foreign policy should strike a balance between realism and idealism that is “grounded in both power and principle.” From sea-to-shining-sea portends both the responsibility to defend America’s shores, land borders and homeland, as well as to extend our reach across the seas and strive to maintain naval dominance over the world’s oceans and littorals in cooperation with our allies, but well outside the purview of the United Nations.

A coherent American foreign policy for the 21st Century must reject the post-Second World War paradigm of organizational multilateralism and transnationalism in favor of cooperating with other countries within the framework of coalitions to resolve specific problems, implementing solutions consistent with American interests, yet, contrary to the notion that American sovereignty is an anachronism. The dominant legacy bequeathed by the postwar policy Establishment tilts toward realpolitik and eschews ideology. American foreign policy must instead seek a strategic doctrine of flexibility and balance between realism and idealism, while avoiding entangling alliances. International law, or any form of foreign law, must never take precedence over the Constitution unless it should undermine American sovereignty and independence. At the end of the day, those policies of half-measures and accommodation, of pragmatism and moderation, of containment and consensus developed by the American Establishment failed and, in fact, prolonged the misery of millions living in Soviet dominated Eastern Europe and hundreds of millions in Asia and Communist China. A consistent American foreign policy will seek to maintain the flexibility that has enabled the U.S. to preserve its national sovereignty, while rejecting isolationist impulses, and serving as a model for nations sharing our commitment to the inclusive principles of representative government, market economics and individual liberty. Nonetheless, globalization and the war on Islamic terrorism will become the epic struggles for America’s soul in the twenty-first century.

More than an historic anecdote and drawn from the 1787 Federal Convention Diary of Maryland delegate, James McHenry, it often has been recounted that Mrs. Powell of Philadelphia asked Dr. Benjamin Franklin upon leaving the convention hall, “Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” – “A Republic,” replied the Doctor, “if you can keep it.”

GOALS

The primary and overriding goal of American foreign policy must be to, first and foremost, safeguard and maintain our national sovereignty and independence. This objective should be pursued by employing the following guidelines:

  1. The paradox, foreign policy begins at home, should lead Congress to protect America’s interests before seeking to endow their own future personal interests, by banning foreign lobbying.

  2. Congress should reinstate the House Committee on Internal Security.

  3. Foreign diplomats posted in the United States, whose governments are designated State Sponsors of Terrorism, should be barred from entering the halls of Congress to meet with Members of Congress, their office or committee staff and otherwise freely lobby against the interests of the United States of America, on behalf of their governments.

  4. The State Department should designate Saudi Arabia a state sponsor of terrorism and the Muslim Brotherhood a foreign terrorist organization, given their mutual history and links to other foreign terrorist organizations, including but not limited to Hamas.

  5. Congress should adopt a policy of “reciprocity” with other nations, whereby the same limitations imposed on American diplomats abroad, in the respective host countries, should be imposed on such country’s diplomats posted at embassies, consulates and missions in the United States.

  6. Eschew multilateral entanglements and globalist projects under the aegis of the UN and other international bodies. The U.S. should not have to request permission to act in defense of its national interests from organizations in which our adversaries and despots exercise a veto. Nor should American troops serve under a UN, or any other flag other than the Stars and Stripes. We should not hesitate to defund this costly global behemoth or even to outright leave the organization – a relic bequeathed by the postwar policy Establishment.

  7. Develop and take full advantage of abundant “American” natural resources. Energy independence reinforces our political independence, weakening the position of regimes utilizing natural resource exports as political leverage against us.

  8. Employ what John Lenczowski referred to as “full spectrum diplomacy.” We should prudently avoid the extremes of appeasement and military intervention, utilizing instead all the tools of statecraft.

  9. Maintain our economic strength and competitive edge, which constitutes the basis of our national power. This underscores the importance of policies conducive to economic growth. It is important to remember that our enemies benefit from an indebted and overstretched America.

  10. Reduce the size of America’s foreign policy component by eliminating all foreign assistance, with the exception of military aid. In place of foreign aid, the U.S. should stress trade and investment abroad, while urging foreign governments to eschew extractive institutions and to develop more inclusive political and economic institutions in order to cultivate their own economic growth and prosperity.

  11. Develop a realistic assessment of foreign threats, including, but not limited to: communist China, post-Soviet Russia, Islamist Iran, communist North Korea, Castro’s Cuba and Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela.

  12. Modernizing our ageing nuclear stockpile and building a viable system of missile defense to keep our country and its allies safe. Simultaneously, we should work to curb nuclear proliferation, particularly to rogue, anti-American regimes.

  13. Re-establishing the goal of building and maintaining a 600 ship Navy.

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