NeoCon Wet Dreams live in RomneyPosted: October 8, 2012 Filed under: 2012 elections, Foreign Affairs, Libya | Tags: American Century Imperialism, Belligerence, Mitt Romney, NeoCons 33 Comments
The one thing I don’t ever want to see again in my life time is a fiasco like the Iraq invasion. The same gang that brought us that costly and horrible misfortune is advising Mitt Romney. Romney waded in to the foreign policy arena today with a speech to Virginia Military Institute. He inkled a lot of the Cheney/Rummy/Wolfie/Bolton threats in a speech that you really need to read. Can we really afford more of this mass invasion of the Middle East in the name of oil and empty dreams of US imperialism?
Romney channeled their evil intent. Make no mistake about it. First, he’s riding a wave of lies about what happened in Benghazi. Second, he’s rattling sabers again.
The GOP candidate added that “the blame for the murder of our people in Libya, and the attacks on our embassies in so many other countries, lies solely with those who carried them out—no one else. But it is the responsibility of our President to use America’s great power to shape history—not to lead from behind, leaving our destiny at the mercy of events.”
He also laid out a broad foreign policy vision that called for the U.S. to “lead the course of human events” with “more American leadership.”
In other words, it was a boilerplate speech with nods to the neoconservative wing of the Republican Party, a wing that leads his foreign policy team as well. But asWired’s Spencer Ackerman notes , “the policies Romney outlines in his speech differ, at most, superficially from Obama’s.” Obama’s record on foreign policy is an aggressive one, with escalated drone strikes that have killed scores of civilians in Pakistan and Yemen and the continuation of the war in Afghanistan. Romney didn’t offer anything specific that was more aggressive than Obama, though his rhetoric was ratcheted up.
Romney indicates that all we need is a bit more military presence in the Middle East. At least we know where those $2 trillion dollars that none of the military folks want will actually go. Get ready to send your grandchildren to Iran.
When Romney says “the 21st century can and must be an American century” and that is the U.S.’s responsibility to steer the world towards “the path of freedom, peace, and prosperity,” that’s code for the maintenance of U.S. hegemony. Romney still believes that the U.S. should be able to shape the world as we see fit–the rest of the world who refuses to go along with it be damned. These ideas are particularly galling given that Romney was partly addressing the Arab Spring–a series of revolts that were decidedly against U.S. support for repressive dictatorships.
Romney also believes that in the case of Iran, “American support”–read meddling– for the opposition in that country would be helpful. But that ignores the fact that the Green movement in Iran did not want U.S. support and intervention.
The Republican candidate also lamented the fact that “America’s ability to influence events for the better in Iraq has been undermined by the abrupt withdrawal of our entire troop presence.”
Lastly, he hinted that U.S. involvement in Afghanistan could continue for years to come if he was president. “The route to more war – and to potential attacks here at home – is a politically timed retreat that abandons the Afghan people to the same extremists who ravaged their country and used it to launch the attacks of 9/11,” the candidate said. “I will evaluate conditions on the ground and weigh the best advice of our military commanders.”
Neocons in the US and Israel are dying to invade Iran. We’ve already implemented tough embargoes of the country. Evidently, this will never be enough for the likes of Romney and his neocon advisers. Romney offers to send more Navy into the region. He offers to further arm Israel and to extend free trade agreements to any one under the sole circumstance of not being aligned with ‘enemies’ . Hopefully, this is the Romney we will see at the next presidential debate. However, given the flip flops and lies of the last debate on the economy, I would assume that he may walk back his eagerness to display Neocon belligerence. Do we really want a few more wars and conflicts in that region. Haven’t the lessons of the Dubya presidency taught us enough already?
UPDATE: Okay, well this firms it up completely.
Romney’s New Freedom Agenda Draws Praise From Bushworld
“Terrific,” says Rumsfeld. “A kinder, gentler neocon.
Would you let any one you love vote for some one that just was praised by Donald Rumsfeld?
But it was Romney’s speech, and its echoes of the Freedom Agenda, that drew rave reviews from some of the leading avatars and supporters of the clear and combative foreign policy of Bush’s first term.
“Terrific, comprehensive speech by Gov. Romney,” Bush’s first term Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, tweeted “He knows America’s role in the world should be as a leader not as a spectator.”
Romney’s speech offers a new Republican articulation of the Bush doctrine of moral clarity, wielded — as Romney said — “wisely, with solemnity and without false pride” to “make the world better—not perfect, but better.”
“What’s not to like?” asked Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol, a leading foreign policy hawk and backer of Bush’s war in Iraq, who called the speech “kinder, gentler neocon.”
Kristol’s fellow travelers on the neoconservative right were ebullient.
“Kristol could have written it himself,” said Michael Goldfarb, an aide to Senator John McCain’s 2008 campaign who now chairs the conservative Center for American Freedom. “Strong on defense, strong on foreign involvement and aid, strong (and courageous) on Afghanistan and Iraq.
“For all the talk about fissures in the party — the [Project for a New American Century] guys are the ones who will be toasting the Republican candidate tonight,” he said, referring to a group that pushed in the 1990s for, among other things, an invasion of Iraq.
A range of leading Bush Administration foreign policy figures also embraced the speech.
“Mitt Romney understands that the best way to preserve international peace and security is for America to lead from the front,” said former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton, a figure who never entirely shared the neoconservative worldview. “President Obama believes that American strength is provocative, that we are too much in the world, and that a U.S. recessional is necessary and appropriate. This is exactly opposite of what we need. It is not our strength that is provocative, but our weakness, which our adversaries worldwide interpret to mean it is safe to challenge us. We need to reverse this dangerous American decline, and return to Ronald Reagan’s philosophy of ‘peace through strength.’ It has worked throughout our history, and it will work again under President Romney.”
Jamie Fly, who served in the Pentagon and National Security Council in the second Bush term and now heads the Foreign Policy Initiative, praised Romney for making clear that “the answer is not to lead from but to be every clear.
Fly said he heard “hints” of Bush’s Freedom Agenda rhetoric in Romney’s speech, “but any time the governor ventures that sort of territory, it is tempered by recent events.”