"The Lion and the Sheep: Why they hate Trump."

The Lion and the Sheep: Why they hate Trump.
By Justin Raimondo | AntiWar.com |February 29, 2016

On June 14, 1918, a nineteen year old Italian soldier by the name of Bernardo Vicario was ordered by his commander, Carl Rigoli, to carry out a curious task. Outnumbered and outgunned, the Italian forces would soon be hit with a furious bombardment that would mean the death of most of them. Rigoli clearly knew this, which is why he told young Bernardo to write an inscription on the ruined wall of a home in the village of Fagare, where they were holed up:

Better to live one day as a lion than a hundred years as a sheep.”

Rigoli perished in the battle: Bernardo lived to tell the tale. And almost a hundred years later, a researcher looking for ways to smear GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump stumbled across a reference to it and attributed it to Benito Mussolini, the Italian dictator.

A reporter for Gawker, the notorious gossip site that’s been sued for libel more times than I care to discover, had set up a parody Twitter account named “Il Duce,” and the reporter, one Ashley Feinberg, tweeted the not-said-by-Mussolini quote at Trump, who promptly retweeted it. Shortly afterward, Trump was confronted by reporter Chuck Todd, who wanted to know why he was retweeting something said by Mussolini. Trump wouldn’t back down: “It’s a great quote,” he said, quite correctly. That refusal, and the content of the quote itself, underscores and explains why he is winning and why the hysterical smear campaign directed at him and his campaign is failing big-time.

But why – why do they hate him with such ferocity? The accusations of “racism” and the way he speaks without regard for upper class niceties doesn’t explain the intensity of the hatred coming from the journalistic wolf pack and the Washington crowd. After all, shortly after Trump raised the issue of whether we should allow Muslims into the United States, the House of Representatives passed a bill – supported by libertarians like Rand Paul as well as mainline Republicans and Democrats – making it all but impossible for immigrants from Muslim countries to resettle here. It also requires all foreigners who have visited Iraq, Syria or Iran, or who hold dual citizenship from those countries, to apply for a visa before visiting here… Yet we heard very little about that.

So where is all this vitriol coming from? David Stockman, former chief of the Office of Management and Budget under Ronald Reagan, nails it:

To be sure, there is much that is ugly, superficial and stupid about Donald Trump’s campaign platform, if you can call it that, or loose cannon oratory to be more exact. More on that below, but at the heart of his appeal are two propositions which strike terror in the hearts of the Imperial City’s GOP operatives.

To wit, he is loudly self-funding his own campaign and bombastically insisting that America is getting a bad deal everywhere in the world.

The first of these propositions explicitly tells the legions of K-Street lobbies to take a hike, thereby posing a mortal threat to the fund raising rackets which are the GOPs lifeblood. And while the “bad deal” abroad is superficially about NAFTA and our $500 billion trade deficit with China, it is really an attack on the American Imperium.

The American people are sick and tired of the Lindsey Graham/John McCain/George Bush/neocon wars of intervention and occupation; and they resent the massive fiscal burdens of our outmoded but still far-flung alliances, forward bases and apparatus of security assistance and economic aid. They especially have no patience for the continued huge cost of our commitments to cold war relics like NATO, the stationing of troops in South Korea and the defense treaty with the incorrigible Japanese, who still blatantly rig their trade rules against American exports.

In short, The Donald is tapping a nationalist/isolationist impulse that runs deep among a weary and economically precarious main street public. He is clever enough to articulate it in the bombast of what sounds like a crude trade protectionism. Yet if Pat Buchanan were to re-write his speech, it would be more erudite and explicit about the folly of the American Imperium, but the message would be the same.

All this was on display during the Houston GOP debate, and yet its significance was lost amid all the histrionics. To begin with, look at this exchange between former AIPAC employee Wolf Blitzer, the moderator, and Trump:

BLITZER: You said this about the ongoing conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians – I’m quoting you now: ‘Let me be sort of a neutral guy. I don’t want to say whose fault it is, I don’t think it helps.

TRUMP: Right.

BLITZER: Here’s the question. How do you remain neutral when the U.S. considers Israel to be America’s closest ally in the Middle East?

TRUMP: Well, first of all, I don’t think they do under President Obama because I think he’s treated Israel horribly, all right? I think he’s treated Israel horribly. I was the grand marshall down 5th Avenue a number of years ago for the Israeli Day Parade, I have very close ties to Israel. I’ve received the Tree of Life Award and many of the greatest awards given by Israel.

As president, however, there’s nothing that I would rather do to bring peace to Israel and its neighbors generally. And I think it serves no purpose to say that you have a good guy and a bad guy.

Now, I may not be successful in doing it. It’s probably the toughest negotiation anywhere in the world of any kind. OK? But it doesn’t help if I start saying, “I am very pro-Israel, very pro, more than anybody on this stage.” But it doesn’t do any good to start demeaning the neighbors, because I would love to do something with regard to negotiating peace, finally, for Israel and for their neighbors.

And I can’t do that as well – as a negotiator, I cannot do that as well if I’m taking … sides.

That is nothing short of remarkable, especially if one recalls the Mitt Romney-Barack Obama debate in which both competed with the other in proclaiming their absolute fealty to Israel and their refusal to even recognize that there are two sides to the issue. Marco Rubio was outraged by this unprecedented display of common sense, and launched into one of his robo-responses, repeating word-for-word some editorial he’d probably read in Commentary or the Weekly Standard. And in the course of it he said something remarkably stupid: “The Palestinians are not a real estate deal, Donald.”

Now one assumes he meant the Israeli-Palestinian conflict isn’t about a real estate deal, but the reality is that’s precisely what it is – a real estate deal gone bad. It’s all about land. And it will take fair-minded negotiating and – yes – deal-making to solve that festering problem. Rubio cannot acknowledge this because his donors won’t let him. As a creature of Imperial Washington – where Israel is always right and the Palestinians are always wrong – Rubio can’t allow himself to say or even think that.

Another example of why Trump has roused the ire of the political class: in refuting Rubio’s misleading accusation that he did not change his position in August 2011 and come out publicly against the Libyan intervention and starting another war in Syria – both of which he has denounced in no uncertain terms – Trump said this:

If these politicians went to the beach and didn’t do a thing, and we had Saddam Hussein and if we had Gadhafi in charge, instead of having terrorism all over the place, we’d be – at least they killed terrorists, all right?

And I’m not saying they were good because they were bad, they were really bad, but we don’t know what we’re getting. You look at Libya right now, ISIS, as we speak, is taking over their oil. As we speak, it’s a total mess.

“We would have been better off if the politicians took a day off instead of going into war.”

I bolded the above because it succinctly sums up not only the Trumpian foreign policy but also Trump’s critique of the past twenty years. And to make things even scarier for the War Party, he wants us to pull back from policing the world to attend to business that must be attended to:

We can no longer defend all of these countries, Japan, Germany, South Korea. You order televisions, you order almost anything, you’re getting it from these countries. Whether it’s a Mercedes-Benz, or whether it’s an air conditioning unit. They’re coming out of these countries. They are making a fortune. Saudi Arabia, we are defending Saudi Arabia. Before Before the oil went down, now they’re making less, but they’re making plenty. They were making $1 billion dollars a day.

We defend all of these countries for peanuts. You talk about budgets. We have to start getting reimbursed for taking care of the military services for all of these countries.

Trump has called for pulling US troops out of Europe, where they’ve been sitting since the end of World War II: these countries are rich, he argues, and have to start defending themselves. He also questions what they have to be afraid of in Putin’s Russia, declaring he could get along with the Russian leader, with the implicit assumption being they could too.

Indeed, Trump challenges every major new American incursion into regions where it doesn’t belong: Syria, where he wonders why we’re subsidizing “rebels” and “we don’t’ know who they are”; Ukraine, which he disdains as simply a backwater where we have no interests; and Libya, where he points to the chaos caused by Hillary’s war and where we’re getting ready to revisit.

Trump represents a deadly challenge to the high command of the War Party – the neoconservatives who lied us into war in Iraq – and were called out for it by him. These people are the main driving force that is ideologically committed to maintaining Washington’s imperial pretensions even as we plunge further into bankruptcy. They are behind the vicious smear campaign that equates Trump with Mussolini, Hitler, David Duke, and the Devil himself. They see that they are losing control of the GOP – their pathway to power – and they are reacting like the cornered rats they are.

If Trump gets the Republican nomination the neocons are through as a viable political force on the Right. That’s why National Review devoted a whole issue of their magazine to the theme “Against Trump.” That’s why the neocons’ allies in the media are going after him hammer and tongs. That’s why neocons like Robert Kagan are openly declaring they will support Hillary Clinton, while others – including the formerly libertarian network of organizations funded by Charles and David Koch – are financing a “Stop Trump” campaign. There is even talk of the (impractical) idea of running a third party candidate in order to take votes away from Trump.

The rats are converging, squealing up a storm of abuse, and resorting to the most obvious smear tactics in order to keep their bread-and-butter on the table. Yet this, too, will backfire, just as all the other attempts to stop Trump have flopped – because people have had enough. They are beyond angry – indeed, they’re happy! Overjoyed by the sight of the political class on the run – and determined to make them run even faster.

I hear Trump wears a bullet-proof vest, and has done so for years. If I were him I’d guard my head – and watch my back.

This is not to say I personally give one iota of political support to Trump – and Antiwar.com doesn’t endorse candidates for any office, period. David Stockman’s piece, linked above, describes some of the pitfalls of Trumpismo, which I fully endorse. Yet that is not my purpose here.

My job is to analyze current events: instead of reiterating what everyone else is saying, albeit in different words, my purpose is to get behind the headlines and go beyond the groupthink so that my readers can not only understand what is happening in the world – but also develop some insight into how to go about changing it. If Trump secures the nomination, the way is paved for transforming the GOP from the party of perpetual war to the party that honors the long-forgotten “isolationist” Sen. Robert A. Taft, who used to be celebrated as "Mr. Republican." And if Trump actually wins the White House, the military-industrial complex is finished, along with the globalists who dominate foreign policy circles in Washington. While Trump is no libertarian, the effect of this sea-change in the foreign policy realm will be to objectively cut the dominance of federal power in our lives, first of all by saving us from bankruptcy and freeing up resources for the private sector, and secondly by reducing the blowback that has empowered terrorists.

Don’t be fooled: GOP bigwigs aren’t afraid Trump will lose to Hillary. They’re afraid he’ll win.

Trump, for all his crudity and contradictions, represents a populist uprising against the Empire and those who profit from our imperialist foreign policy. That’s why the political class hates him – and has vowed to destroy him.

I started out telling you the story of the lion and the sheep, and I end with the good news that the sheep – inspired by the lion – are finally turning on the sheepherders. SOURCE


Trump’s 19th Century Foreign Policy.
His views aren’t as confused as they seem. In fact, they’re remarkably consistent—and they have a long history.
By Thomas Wright | Politico Magazine | January 20, 2016.

One of the most common misconceptions about Donald Trump is that he is opportunistic and makes up his views as he goes along. But a careful reading of some of Trump’s statements over three decades shows that he has a remarkably coherent and consistent worldview, one that is unlikely to change much if he’s elected president. It is also a worldview that makes a great leap backward in history, embracing antiquated notions of power that haven’t been prevalent since prior to World War II.

It is easy to poke fun at many of Trump’s foreign-policy notions—the promises to “take” Iraq’s oil, to extract a kind of imperial “tribute” from U.S. military allies like South Korea, his eagerness to emulate the Great Wall of China along the border with Mexico, and his embrace of old-style strongmen like Vladimir Putin. But many of these views would have found favor in pre-World War II—and even, in some cases, 19th century—America.

In sum, Trump believes that America gets a raw deal from the liberal international order it helped to create and has led since World War II. He has three key arguments that he returns to time and again over the past 30 years. He is deeply unhappy with America’s military alliances and feels the United States is overcommitted around the world. He feels that America is disadvantaged by the global economy. And he is sympathetic to authoritarian strongmen. Trump seeks nothing less than ending the U.S.-led liberal order and freeing America from its international commitments.

Trump has been airing such views on U.S. foreign policy for some time. He even spent $100,000 on a full-page ad in the New York Times in 1987 that had a message remarkably similar to what he is saying today.

With his background and personality, Trump is so obviously sui generis that it is tempting to say his views are alien to the American foreign policy tradition. They aren’t; it is just that this strain of thinking has been dormant for some time. There are particular echoes of Sen. Robert Taft, who unsuccessfully ran for the Republican nomination in 1940, 1948 and 1952, and was widely seen as the leader of the conservative wing of the Republican Party. Taft was a staunch isolationist and mercantilist who opposed U.S. aid for Britain before 1941. After the war, he opposed President Harry Truman’s efforts to expand trade. Despite being an anti-communist, he opposed containment of the Soviet Union, believing that the United States had few interests in Western Europe. He opposed the creation of NATO as overly provocative. Taft’s speeches are the last time a major American politician has offered a substantive and comprehensive critique of America’s alliances.

Trump’s populism, divisiveness and friendliness toward dictators is also reminiscent of Charles Lindbergh, once an American hero, who led the isolationist America First movement. In some areas, Trump’s views go back even further, to 19th-century high-tariff protectionism and every-country-for-itself mercantilism. He even invokes ancient Chinese history, telling Bill O’Reilly last August that his idea for a wall across the U.S.-Mexican border is feasible because “you know, the Great Wall of China, built a long time ago, is 13,000 miles. I mean, you're talking about big stuff.”

***

Trump’s starting point and defining emotion on foreign policy is anger—not at America’s enemies, but at its friends. In a lengthy interview with Playboy magazine in 1990, Trump was asked what would a President Trump’s foreign policy be like. He answered: “He would believe very strongly in extreme military strength. He wouldn’t trust anyone. He wouldn’t trust the Russians; he wouldn’t trust our allies; he’d have a huge military arsenal, perfect it, understand it. Part of the problem is that we’re defending some of the wealthiest countries in the world for nothing. ... We’re being laughed at around the world, defending Japan.”

He then elaborated on his skepticism of allies. “We Americans are laughed at around the world for losing a hundred and fifty billion dollars year after year, for defending wealthy nations for nothing, nations that would be wiped off the face of the earth in about 15 minutes if it weren’t for us. Our ‘allies’ are making billions screwing us.”

Trump has long believed the United States is being taken advantage of by its allies. He would prefer that the United States not have to defend other nations, but, if it does, he wants to get paid as much as possible for it. No nation has come in for quite as much criticism from Trump as Japan. “It’s time for us to end our vast deficits by making Japan and others who can afford it pay,” Trump said in an open letter to the American people in 1987. “Our world protection is worth hundreds of billions of dollars to these countries and their stake in their protection is far greater than ours.”

In the intervening years, he found new targets but he never let go of his antagonism toward the Japanese. On the campaign trail recently, he took the unusual step of promising to renegotiate the 1960 U.S.-Japan Treaty. “If somebody attacks Japan,” he said, “we have to immediately go and start World War III, OK? If we get attacked, Japan doesn’t have to help us. Somehow, that doesn’t sound so fair. Does that sound good?

He has also criticized other allies. In 2013, he said, “How long will we go on defending South Korea from North Korea without payment? When will they start to pay us?” He has made the point again on the campaign trail. In an interview with NBC, he said, “We have 28,000 soldiers on the line in South Korea between the madman and them. We get practically nothing compared to the cost of this.”

Trump doesn’t let Europe off the hook, either. Several years ago, he wrote, “Pulling back from Europe would save this country millions of dollars annually. The cost of stationing NATO troops in Europe is enormous. And these are clearly funds that can be put to better use.” On the campaign trail, he complained that Germany is not carrying more of the burden of NATO and asked why the United States should lead on European security.

The truth is very different. America’s allies do pay for a proportion of U.S. bases. But they do not pay the full cost. This is largely because those alliances also work to America’s benefit by providing it with prepositioned forces and regional stability. It would actually cost more to station troops in the United States and have to deploy them overseas in a crisis. But this rings hollow for Trump because he is not convinced that the United States should be doing it at all.

So when Trump constantly utters what may be his favorite refrain on the stump—“Our country doesn’t win anymore”—he is referring to a view he’s held for decades. He wants to get paid as much as possible for all the things the United States does to secure the international system (never mind that this same system laid the groundwork for the greatest burst of prosperity in human history, with the United States as the main beneficiary). This includes, but is not limited to, alliances. As the world’s only superpower, one of America’s most important functions has been to ensure open access to what are called the global commons—the oceans, air and space. The U.S. Navy guarantees the openness of sea lanes for civilian trade, for example.

But according to Trump, the United States should not do this for free. How much does he want? Well, in 1988, he told Oprah Winfrey that Kuwait should pay the United States 25 percent of their oil profits because the United States “makes it possible for them to sell it.” If he were president, he said, “the United States would make a hell of a lot of money from those nations that have been taking advantage of us.” In his 1987 letter, he wrote, “Tax these wealthy nations, not America.” What he has in mind is not just other nations increasing their defense spending a modest amount or sharing more of the burden. It is excessive tribute in exchange for protection. There’s a name for that.

The sense that America is being ripped off by its international relationships also shapes his view on trade, which is probably the aspect of his foreign policy that has received the most attention. Trump says he is in favor of trade, but he has come out against every trade deal in living memory. He calls NAFTA a disaster and is a strident critic of the forthcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership. He wants to slap tariffs on other countries—again harking back to 19th-century protectionism—and negotiate bilateral deals. Most economists believe this would create a downward spiral in the global economy, but Trump does not seem to care.

***

Of course, managing allies and partners is just one part of a foreign policy. The other is dealing with rivals and enemies. Trump has certainly cast himself as a ferocious critic of the Islamic State and Iran, but he has a curious view of two countries—Russia and China—that are not enemies but are perhaps better described as a rival and a competitor, respectively.

For most makers of foreign policy, the challenge posed by Russia and China is to U.S. allies and the U.S.-led order, not to the U.S. homeland. But since Trump does not care as much about the allies, it is not surprising that he takes a more lenient view. There is another factor that endears authoritarian leaders to him—his respect for “strong” and “tough” leaders.

In 1990, he told Playboy that the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, did not have a firm enough hand. Asked whether that meant he favored China’s crackdown on students, he said, “When the students poured into Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government almost blew it. Then they were vicious, they were horrible, but they put it down with strength. That shows you the power of strength. Our country is right now perceived as weak ... as being spit on by the rest of the world.

In 2015, Americans would find out that he had not changed his mind.

In December, Putin was asked for his views on Trump. The Russian leader replied that Trump is “really brilliant and talented person, without any doubt. It’s not our job to judge his qualities, that’s a job for American voters, but he’s the absolute leader in the presidential race. ... He says he wants to move on to a new, more substantial relationship, a deeper relationship with Russia, how can we not welcome that? Of course we welcome that.”

For most American politicians, an endorsement by a foreign leader, especially one who is hostile to the United States, is something that could spell political disaster. So when Trump appeared on “Morning Joe” the next day, the news media were expecting him to try to limit the damage, perhaps with a stark denunciation of Putin. Instead the exchange on “Morning Joe” went as follows:

Trump: When people call you “brilliant” it’s always good, especially when the person heads up Russia.

Joe Scarborough: Well, I mean, also is a person who kills journalists, political opponents and ...

Willie Geist: Invades countries.

Scarborough: ... and invades countries, obviously that would be a concern, would it not?

Trump: He’s running his country, and at least he’s a leader, unlike what we have in this country.

Scarborough: But, again: He kills journalists that don’t agree with him.

Trump: Well, I think that our country does plenty of killing, too, Joe.

It was a revealing exchange that did not end there. In the weeks that followed, Trump would openly say that he thought he would get along “just fine” with Russia. Putin could be a strong ally in the war against ISIL. For Putin, Trump would be a dream come true: an American president who possesses views commensurate with Putin’s own antiquated notion of great-power politics. Putin would no longer have to deal with a president committed to wide-open global trade, NATO and democracy close to his borders—the formula that won the Cold War. Trump and Putin also have a similar interpretation of recent history. In 1990, Trump believed Gorbachev had ruined Russia and destroyed its economy, which is exactly what Putin meant when he referred to the collapse of the Soviet Union as a tragedy. It’s not hard to imagine these two men sitting down to cut a deal, perhaps something like Putin offering to help Trump on ISIL and Iran in exchange for giving Putin a freer hand in Europe.

Trump has said less about Chinese president Xi Jinping except to call him very smart. It is clear, though, that to him the main problem with China is not its aggressive actions in the South China Sea, its attempts to blunt U.S. power projection capabilities or its repression at home. Instead, Trump has made the alleged Chinese economic threat a core part of his stump speech. He accused China of devaluing its currency and even went so far as to say it created the issue of climate change to gain an advantage over U.S. manufacturing. He promised to slap tariffs on Chinese goods, although he is vague about how much (he told the New York Times it could be as high as 45 percent but subsequently rolled that back).

U.S.-China relations are about more than economics, of course. Given Trump’s worldview, it is easy to see how a deal might be struck. China would offer President Trump an extraordinarily preferential economic deal and in exchange he would leave China alone to do as it wished in the South China Sea and East China Sea. After all, it would help American workers, at least in the short term. America’s allies would be upset, but a President Trump might even see that as a bonus.

***

Thus, beneath the bluster, the ego and the showmanship is the long-considered worldview of a man who has had problems with U.S. foreign policy for decades. Trump has thought long and hard about America’s global role and he knows what he wants to do. There is virtually no chance that he would “tack back to the center” and embrace a conservative internationalist foreign policy. If he did get elected president, he would do his utmost to liquidate the U.S.-led liberal order by ending America’s alliances, closing the open global economy, and cutting deals with Russia and China.

He would find this hard to do, not least because the entire U.S. foreign policy establishment would be opposed to him and he needs people to staff his National Security Council, State Department and Defense Department. But there is real power in the presidency, especially if there is clear guidance about the chief executive’s wishes. In any event, the mere fact that the American people would have elected somebody with a mandate to destroy the U.S.-led order might be sufficient to damage it beyond repair.

After his election, other countries will immediately hedge against the risk of abandonment. There will be massive uncertainty around America’s commitments. Would Trump defend the Baltics? Would he defend the Senkaku Islands? Or Saudi Arabia? Some nations will give in to China, Russia and Iran. Others, like Japan, will push back, perhaps by acquiring nuclear weapons. Trump may well see such uncertainty as a positive. Putting everything in play would give him great leverage. But by undoing the work of Truman and his secretary of state, Dean Acheson, it would be the end of the American era.

Some might think this is overstated. After all, there have been other presidents who broke with America’s allies and renegotiated previous commitments. In his first term, Richard Nixon was unwilling for the United States to bear the cost of upholding the Bretton Woods economic system, so he decided to unilaterally change the rules and make others pay, instead. In 1971, faced with inflation and stagnation, he canceled the convertibility of the dollar to gold without consulting his allies. This brought a dramatic end to Bretton Woods. Nixon and his secretary of state, Henry Kissinger, were also famously comfortable with strongmen and authoritarian regimes.

But Trump is no Nixon. Nixon had an acute sense of America’s unique role in the international order, even if he pursued it differently than his predecessors. He strengthened America’s alliances and maintained its commitments. Detente with the Soviet Union and the opening with China were part of a sophisticated strategy to create geopolitical space to gain an advantage over the Soviets. Trump, by contrast, has offered no vision of a U.S.-led order except that he wants to end it.

To understand Trump, in the end, we have to go back to Taft and Lindbergh. The difference is that, unlike Trump, Taft was not outside the mainstream of his time. Many people believed America was safe and that it did not matter who ran Europe. Also, unlike Trump, Taft was boring and struggled to break through the noise in several nomination battles. The more bombastic and controversial figure was Lindbergh, the man who became a household name as the first person to fly across the Atlantic. Lindbergh led a national movement that was divisive, xenophobic and sympathetic to Nazi Germany.

The Republican primary of 2016 is shaping up to be the most important party primary since 1940. Lindbergh did not run, of course. But Taft was in with a strong chance. Only the fact that the field was badly divided created an unexpected opening for Wendell Willkie, an internationalist, to emerge as the nominee at the convention. Some of Roosevelt’s advisers were so relieved at Willkie’s nomination that they advised their boss he no longer had to run for an unprecedented—and controversial—third term.

The reason we must revisit 1940 is that Republicans have struggled to find a new north star after Iraq. Except for Rand Paul—whose own brand of libertarian isolationism, unlike Trump’s, didn’t sit well with voters—the establishment candidates were not sure whether they still supported Bush 43’s strategy or opposed it. Most tried to muddle through with a critique of President Barack Obama. Marco Rubio stuck to the ambitious Bush 43 approach but found a declining market. Some, like Ted Cruz, tried to deal with the shift in sentiment by cozying up to pro-American dictators and abandoning support for democracy promotion. Cruz even used the isolationist term America First to describe his foreign policy. But Cruz seems to have thought little and said even less about America’s global role outside the Middle East. Ironically for someone with the reputation of being exceptionally smart, he lacks Trump’s detail and substance.

It is in this vacuum that the long-dormant Taftian foreign policy has made an unexpected comeback in the hands of Trump. What happens next is anybody’s guess. It is hard to see how the Republican foreign policy establishment, which is steeped in American primacy and a U.S.-led international order, endorses an isolationist strain of thinking that has long been presumed dead. A split seems more likely than reconciliation.

In any event, if Hillary Clinton secures the Democratic nomination, as expected, and Trump maintains his huge lead over the GOP field, a Clinton-Trump race would present two starkly different views about America’s global role. For the first time since World War II, Americans will be asked to give their view on the most fundamental question of U.S. foreign policy: Do they want a U.S.-led liberal order or not? Internationalists will have to explain all over again why the United States flourishes and benefits from a healthy international system. Taft and Lindbergh lost before, but it would be a mistake to underestimate the messenger this time. SOURCE

Thomas Wright is a fellow and director of the Project on International Order and Strategy at The Brookings Institution. 
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"Patria est communis omnium parens" - Our native land is the common parent of us all. Keep it beautiful, make it even more so.

Blessed is all of creation
Blessed be my beautiful people
Blessed be the day of our awakening
Blessed is my country
Blessed are her patient hills.

Mweh ka allay!
Guanaguanare
 


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