Once Upon a Time

Politics ended at our shores.

There was an understanding that National Security and Foreign Affairs were matters of National Interest of such magnitude that domestic politics treated them sparingly.  The understanding was that politics on the domestic scene should leave room for the Executive to effectively set such policies subject to the advice and consent of the Senate, and that both parties would refrain from poisoning the well.

That was then.

Sure, Democrats Are Hawkish, But Only if They Call the Shots

Ross Douthat and Jeffrey Goldberg are far too kind to today’s Democratic party.

Douthat:
“Imagine, for a moment, that these were George W. Bush’s policies at
work. A quest for regime change in Libya, conducted without even a pro
forma request for Congressional approval. A campaign of
remote-controlled airstrikes, in which collateral damage is inevitable,
carried out inside a country where we are not officially at war. A
policy of targeted assassination against an American citizen who has
been neither charged nor convicted in any U.S. court. Imagine the
outrage, the protests, the furious op-eds about right-wing tyranny and
neoconservative overreach. Imagine all that, and then look at the
reality. For most Democrats, what was considered creeping fascism under
Bush is just good old-fashioned common sense when the president has a
“D” beside his name.”

Goldberg:
“These last eight days, as well as the last 10 years, suggest to me
that there is only one American foreign policy; this default foreign
policy is interventionist, moralistic, and militarily robust. Everything
else is commentary.”

A less charitable interpretation is that in a dangerous world, there is
a clear set of policies that is required to protect the country, but
only one party is honest about it.

At the risk of stepping on another Wizbang author’s toes, the trend clearly started with the Vietnam war, the “peace movement” of that era, and the War Powers Resolution.  It was via the War Powers Resolution that a Democratic Congress refused to support President Gerald Ford’s call to support the Republic of Vietnam’s invocation of our joint defense treaty to help them defend against a conventional invasion (the second) by North Vietnam (The Peoples Republic of Vietnam). 

The distinction is important.

The VC (Viet Cong) ceased to be a factor following the defeat of the Tet Offensive.  Even North Vietnam’s chief General (Vo Nguyen Giap) recorded that the Tet Offensive had come too soon, and as a consequence had been decisively defeated (militarily) by the forces of the Republic of Vietnam and the United States. 

The insurgency was crushed during Tet.  The VC were obliterated.

Not content to accept a hard won victory, the Democrats (who controlled both houses of Congress) passed the War Powers Resolution which President Nixon vetoed and the Congress subsequently passed via Congressional Override (2/3rds of both houses voting to override).

Thus was broken a 190 year tradition.

When Democrats are not in the White House, they will scream bloody murder – in some cases, quite literally
– and do everything they can to stop those policies, denouncing them
loudly and pledging to repeal them. They will argue that the same or
better results can be achieved by a more dovish set of policies, either
out of cynicism (they have no intent to really change the policies once
elected) or naivete (for example arguing for a  “global test” for U.S.
action, believing foreign leaders really do care deeply about the safety
and security of Americans). If it is the former, they do everything
possible to undermine public support for difficult policies that they,
deep down, know are necessary.

Witness the 0bama adminstration’s adventure in Libya.

Having failed to bother to secure an AUMF from Congress (though assiduously courting NATO on the matter), the 0bama Administration launched military action against Libya.  The sixty day limit on such action is now at hand, and the current Democratic Administration shows no signs of seeking the authorization that the law they passed over a Presidential veto requires.

Clearly the Democrats have reduced National Security and Foreign Policy to merely another political brickbat with which their domestic enemies may be smote, damn the consequences to the Republic.

Despicable. 

]]>< ![CDATA[Commenters:  Graves law and JT’s topical rules are in effect.

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