In what may seem an odd role-reversal, in this election the Democrat is the war hawk and the Republican is the peace candidate. Donald Trump has laid out his vision for a non-interventionist foreign policy, while Hillary Clinton believes in “humanitarian intervention”, i.e., making war for peace. Trump has rightly called George W. Bush’s Iraq war a disaster, while Clinton still defends the intervention in Libya that destroyed the Libyan state.
In fact, this represents a return to historic patterns. There is an old saying, forgotten in recent decades, that goes, “Vote for a Republican and you get a depression, vote for a Democrat and you get a war.” America’s worst president ever, the Democrat Woodrow Wilson, won re-election in 1916 with the slogan, “He kept us out of war,” then took us into World War I within a month of his second inauguration. He thereby gave the world the Versailles Diktat, Hitler, Stalin, and World War II.
After that war began in September, 1939, Franklin D. Roosevelt, another Democrat, was desperate to get the U.S. involved. Whether he facilitated the Pearl Harbor attack is uncertain, but he welcomed it, along with Hitler’s subsequent stupid declaration of war on the United States.
Democrat Harry Truman gave us the Korean War; Republican Dwight Eisenhower ended it. The sainted JFK gave us the Vietnam War, Democrat Lyndon Johnson kept it going, and Republican Richard Nixon ended it. Ronal Reagan undertook a few minor military actions in places such as Lebanon and Grenada, but was careful not to threaten Russia as Communism there fell. Republicans did not become the war party until the incompetent Bush dynasty came to power and brought the neo-cons with them under W.
It is no surprise that the leading neo-con and war criminal (one charge against the German generals at Nuremberg was “planning aggressive war”) Paul Wolfowitz recently endorsed Hillary Clinton for President. The neo-cons are nothing if not flexible where party and ideology are concerned. Whoever will give them an opportunity to pursue their Trotskyite “world revolution” is their friend, and that is not Donald Trump. Trump grasps the reality that American power has its limits. Hillary lives in a dream world where we can dictate to everyone else.
So disconnected are the neo-cons from reality that their latest plot is to push the U.S. into war with Russia. Some of them have publicly called for such a war. The same geniuses who though we would be welcomed with flowers in Iraq now think we can defeat Russia in a war in her own backyard, in central and eastern Europe. To put such a war in perspective, in World War II the eastern front took about 300 German divisions and 5o0 Russian. At the most, we could send a force of…two divisions? Putin could just call the police and have them arrested.
And have the neo-cons and the Democrats forgotten why both the United States and the Soviet Union were careful not to engage each other’s armed forces directly throughout the decades of the Cold War? Nuclear weapons made doing so too dangerous. Whichever country found itself losing conventionally would face a tremendous temptation to escalate to the nuclear level. Russia still has most of the Soviet Union’s arsenal. She can reduce the U.S. to a pile of ashes in half an hour, at the expense of suffering the same fate herself. Russia made a choice almost as suicidal in 1914. Can Paul Wolfowitz guarantee she will not do so again?
Donald Trump, to his credit, has said he will work to improve our relations with Russia. He knows we have a common interest in defeating Islamic 4GW organizations that threaten both countries. Hopefully, he will go on from there to work for the alliance of all states we need to face the rise of non-state entities that can fight and defeat states.
Hillary remains trapped in an outdated paradigm where we must see other states as our enemies. Nothing could be of more benefit to ISIS, al Qaeda, and the rest of the Fourth Generation. She, and the idiot neo-cons she will probably invite back to the White House, are 4GW’s best friends. Her vaunted foreign policy expertise is just one more lie.
So give the peace sign if you want as you enter the voting booth to cast a ballot for Donald Trump. As was true through most of the 20th century, the Republican is the peace candidate. And only damn fools and neo-cons want war.