Thursday, September 4, 2008

Biden: Foreign Policy Master - Not!!!

The incomparable Thomas Sowell has an article on this, found here.
A plain fact should be noted: No governor ever had foreign-policy experience before becoming president — not Ronald Reagan, not Franklin D. Roosevelt, nor any other governor.

Senator Joe Biden’s years of service on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is even further removed from foreign-policy experience. He has had a front-row seat as an observer of foreign policy. But Senator Biden has never had any real experience of making foreign policy and taking the consequences of the results.

The difference between being a spectator and being a participant, with responsibility for the consequences of what you say and do, is fundamental.

The fact that Senator Joe Biden has for years listened to all sorts of people testify on all sorts of foreign-policy issues tells us nothing about how well he understood the issues.

As for Senator Obama, his various pronouncements on foreign policy have been as immature as they have been presumptuous.

He talked publicly about taking military action against Pakistan, one of our few Islamic allies and a nation with nuclear weapons.

Barack Obama’s first response to the Russian invasion of Georgia was to urge “all sides” to negotiate a cease-fire and take their issues to the United Nations. That is standard liberal talk, which even Obama had second thoughts about, after Senator John McCain gave a more grown-up response.

I've already documented some of Dem VP pick Joe Biden's completely terrible foreign policy ideas,
here and here.
And much is going to be made of his vast "experience" in the coming weeks. So let's look at the Senator's record.

He's astoundingly wrong on the most important issues in foreign policy. Some highlights:
  • Wanted to pull out of Iraq at a time that would mean sure and violent defeat
  • Said the surge would fail and Petraeus was too optimistic
  • Wanted to give Iran (creator and sustainer of major terrorist organizations) $200 million - days after 9/11 occurred
  • Helped ensure defeat in Vietnam by cutting off funds
  • Opposed all efforts to help our allies fight off Soviet communism
  • Fierce opponent of missile defense

Chairman of the Dems, Howard Dean, has said that foreign policy is all about subtlety and nuance, and John Kerry echoed these sentiments.

As it turns out, having the correct philosophy and world view is much more important. And that must be coupled with courage and conviction. How can one account for that fact that one of Biden's first reactions to 9/11 was to give Iran $200 million, with no strings attached? Think of that - islamic terrorists killed thousands on our soil in harrowing attacks, and Biden's first response is that it must be our fault, so let's give a state sponsor of terrorism $200 million. Does he think they'd put the money into creating The Center for Understanding Those Great Americans We Love? I suppose $200 mil could buy a lot of enriched uranium, which the Iranians are no doubt seeking.

Ronald Reagan said his strategy for the Cold War was "We win, they lose." No other politician at that time would dare say that. It wasn't nuanced or subtle enough. And look at today - as Gov. Palin pointed out, Barack Obama has never spoken of victory in Iraq or Afghanistan. That is a very telling insight into Obama's philosphy and convictions - he doesn't believe American ideals are worth fighting or dying for, even when critical interests are at stake.

Today, Peter Wehner writes a piece in the WSJ: Biden Was Wrong On the Cold War

Salient quotes:

Decade after decade and on important issue after important issue, Mr. Biden's judgment has been deeply flawed.

Mr. Biden also advocated defense cuts so massive that both Edmund Muskie and Walter Mondale, both leading liberal Democrats at the time, opposed them.

Throughout his career, Mr. Biden has consistently opposed modernization of our strategic nuclear forces. He was a fierce opponent of Reagan's Strategic Defense Initiative.

Mr. Biden opposed President Bush's troop surge in Iraq, calling it a "tragic mistake." It turned out to be quite the opposite. Without the surge, the Iraq war would have been lost, giving jihadists their most important victory ever.

On many of the most important and controversial issues of the last four decades, Mr. Biden has built a record based on bad assumptions, misguided analyses and flawed judgments. If he had his way, America would be significantly weaker, allies under siege would routinely be cut loose, and the enemies of the U.S. would be stronger.

More critical insights here at The Pantheon Journal.

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