So Paul, Carson, and Trump are all hyping the liberal, progressive, isolationist, pro-tyrant view of foreign policy. I am just disgusted with the view of the U.S. as a nation that is just out for our own short term interests and has no concern for the well being for the world or expansion of liberty and capitalism. The Founders would be disgusted as well.
But let’s give this group the benefit of the doubt, and look at what they have to say.
First off they talk about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as if they’re just one thing. As if each war was just a single event and not broken down into (1) the choice to go (2) initial military operations (3) the rebuilding process (4) the longer term military operations and the later surge (4) the Obama draw down and (5) Obama leaving Iraq are all the same thing–that is one of them was a mistake then they were all a mistake…when in reality 1 and 2 were the right thing and 3,4, and 5 were handled improperly. A correct view of both wars would be that it was right to go, and initially the military did a great job, but then politicians ruined both nations by not properly securing either nation, by not building the proper infrastructure, by not staying long enough, not ensuring the government of both nations were strong enough, and not leaving a significant enough force in either nation.
Okay fine, just the fact that this groups wants to only view it as one thing and not a mix of correct and incorrect choices should disqualify them right off, but let’s play in their ballpark.
In this isolationist view any leader would have made the same mistakes and it would be just as bad (far-fetched to say the least, but for the sake of argument let’s give them the benefit of the doubt). As such they argue that Saddam was a great deterrent and counter balance to Iran, if we had just left him in place then the Middle East would be such a better place right now. No, really Rand and Trump have actually made this argument, and Carson can’t even articulate anything this intelligent as his plan was to join hands and sing Kumbaya and everything would be great.
So what would have happened if Bush had been the coward these three say they would have been.*
Let’s start with Afghanistan. While Afghanistan right now is not great, it would have been even worse if we had done nothing. Why? Because Al-Qaeda/the Taliban would have eventually worked to end the Northern Alliance and had complete control of Afghanistan and then would have turned their sights to their Islamofascist allies in Pakistan (remember the moderates took control only because of fear of US invasion) so by now you would probably have a Taliban like government in Pakistan in control of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons (it’s hard to tell how Pakistan’s nuclear ally China or nuclear power enemy India would react in this situation…but I’m sure it would not be pleasant). Not to mention they would have probably tried to also export their particular brand of Islamic fascism to neighbors Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. Why just have one of the ‘stans’ be an unstable Islamic hellhole exporting terrorism, when you can have all of them doing it.
And in Iraq as the UN was already dragging its feet on the Saddam’s chemical weapons programs if we weren’t going to take him out then the sanctions would likely have been removed (let’s be honest do you see Trump, Rand, or Carson having the guts to keep the sanctions or no fly zone in place?). So goodbye Kurds, as even the New York Times admits that Saddam had WMD. Oh, and I’m sure that Saddam had only happy and fun plans for those 500 tons of yellow cake uranium he had already procured under the sanctions. And that was while he was still funding terrorism in Israel…I’m really sure he would have not gone full bore genocidal maniac if it was clear that the U.S. was not going to deal with evil. Kuwait, say hello to your new ruler.
Oh and those sanctions on Iran that Obama is like an idiot getting rid of, they started in 2006. If you don’t have the spine to deal with Afghanistan and Iraq, like we would have ever put those in. And as they won’t be busy funding insurgencies in Afghanistan and Iraq they can put all of their money into attacking Israel and building nuclear weapons.
So let’s see by now the Taliban would have nuclear weapons through Pakistan and Iran would also have them, and Saddam would be on his way to having them.
Oh and you remember that WMD weapons program Khadaffi turned over after we invaded Iraq, I doubt he would be turning that over.
You can rest assure that the Arab Spring would never had had a chance to fall into Islamofasict insanity…because it’s early anti-tyrant steps would have been chemical weaponed into non-existence.
I give Israel 50/50 odds of even still existing.
And all the while Al-Qaeda, not opposed, would have moved from bombing embassies, to bombing US ships, to taking out major land marks, would feel even more empowered and we would have had even more attacks on US soil. And if they listened to the money backers they will probably do their best to take out any of that emerging shale oil research and technology…probably followed by a 1970’s style oil embargo. Oh and of course thousands more dead. Probably tens of thousands as every terrorist organization the world over from Hamas to Basque separatists will see there are no consequences to terrorism.
And you could argue that other Middle Eastern nations would form coalitions against these aggressive powers…at best that means a nuclear Saudia Arabia, possibly a nuclear UAE, Egypt and Lebanon. There won’t be a nation in the Middle East without nukes. I feel so much safer with this option. And without the US to lead them you just have to turn on the news to see if Europe would have filled any gap in leadership.
And do you think Putin would have even bothered with the stage show of stepping down only to come back if he knew that the US was a bunch of weak willed isolationists who you can punch in the gut and they won’t respond? No, he would have stayed in power and all of Ukraine (and probably most of the Baltic states) would now be under Russian control…and Poland would be having flashbacks of the 1930’s.
Yes, the rebuilding of Iraq and Afghanistan have been unmitigated disasters. But not because we invaded, because we didn’t do other things to make them stable. Rand Paul likes to lie and say our intervention created ISIS (when really it was doing what he wanted and getting out as fast as we could that created them)…but if we actually did what he says we should have done we’d have 3 more nuclear states instead of 2 without a working nuke, we would have chemical weapons being used as a regular basis, we would have Russia (and probably China) bringing far more people under their tyranny. It would be a much worse world.
Granted this is a bit of worst case scenario…but it’s certainly possible. And if my choices are the near certainty of the situation which is worse because of inaction…or choosing to actually DOING NATION BUILDING CORRECTLY, oh tough choice.
*In reality Carson would have sung Kumbaya, Trump would have nuked several nations, probably none of which had anything to do with 9/11 or even terrorism, and Rand would likely have blamed the Jews and started rounding them up.