“It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world.” – President George Washington, 1796
As I write today, I grieve over the loss of yet another American who has died in public service. No, this one was not a soldier, but he was an appointed ambassador. I grieve for all people who have been affected by this and the other terrible tragedies which have resulted from our foolish foreign policy. It is time that we learn that blowback is a serious concern that our nation must consider before getting involved with other nations. As I look at today’s world, the areas that are under fire most are areas in which the U.S. has had a heavy influence on — particularly the Middle East and parts of northeastern Africa.
The list below shows some of our actions over the past 60 years, and the ultimate consequences that we have paid for them:
1. The U.S. installs bases in Saudi Arabia. Contempt is bred among the people of the area, which leads to Osama Bin Laden’s attacks on the U.S.S. Cole and World Trade Centers.
2. The U.S. interferes with Mubarak’s reign in Egypt, which led to military rule and dominance by the Muslim Brotherhood.
3. The U.S. helps dethrone Gaddafi in Libya, which leads to an extremist uprising and the murder of a U.S. Ambassador.
4. The U.S. helps in Iraq in conflict with Iran. Iraq then turns against the U.S., resulting in two wars.
5. The U.S. installs Shah in Iran, which ultimately leads to his overthrow and a resulting extremist Islamic theocracy.
6. The U.S. supports Afghani tribes against the Soviet Union. Those tribes ultimately become enemies of the U.S., using many of our own weapons against us.
7. The U.S. becomes allies with Pakistan in the War on Terror. Pakistan lies to our faces and protects Bin Laden.
Keep in mind that these are strictly conflicts in the Middle East. We also have examples elsewhere, such as Vietnam, Korea, Philippines and Cuba. It is time we leave the Middle East for good. Peace comes through trade, not intimidation. The answer is not to intervene and is not to befriend the enemy of our enemy. That will always get us into trouble. It’s time to end all of these wars. While I certainly do not condone attacks on American citizens, it is time we wake up and realize why these people continue to do what they do to us. They don’t hate America; they hate that we interfere with their affairs. We must keep the words of Washington and Jefferson in mind before acting. Entangling alliances are not the answer to our problems, and nation building isn’t either. Let’s take care of the home front before we start bossing the rest of the world.
I leave you with the words of Thomas Jefferson: “Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations — entangling alliances with none.”
Jack Greene, LaFayette