Sunday, January 27, 2008

#1 A foreign policy of love..

"Peace, commerce, and honest friendship
with all nations - entangling alliances
with none - Thomas Jefferson

It is my firm belief that America should take the moral high ground and craft a foreign policy that shapes the world by example rather than with explosives. It is looking like we are going to go into the 21st century the same way we did for the 20th century. We are doing what Wilson described as "making the world safe for democracy." Honestly, I have to agree with Wilson on his assertion. What I disagree with is how America approaches threats to democracy throughout the world. It seems we are determined to subdue nations by force of arms to make them safe in lieu of trading with them and living up to the standards we set. When nations see the great Democracy of the world forcing others to live a certain way, I believe they get mixed signals.

The first step we should carry out to become the shining example of democracy that we used to be is to bring our troops home from overseas. We have troops stationed in close to 130 of the worlds 192 countries. First of all, this sets a bad example for all other nations. If America is allowed to police other nations, then there is no reason why another country cannot police disputes between nations. This sets a scary precedent where two countries may have a feud, and it sparks a war between multiple countries. That situation reminds me quite a bit of a conflict you may know of as World War One.
Additionally, having troops stationed in a country has, and will continue to cause friction between America and the "host" nation's citizens. Now as a disclaimer, I would like to point out that I do not blame America for the attacks that happened on 9/11. However, I do believe that our foreign policy factored in significantly to the desire to cause harm to Americans. Osama Bin Laden took great offense to our presence in Saudi Arabia. I do not believe that this will occur in all nations, but certainly a few nations out of those 130 resent us for being stationed in their country.

It is also my desire that we should encourage honest trade with all nations, while still protecting the interests of the enterprises of our fellow Americans. There is no earthly force more powerful than the economy. No army can overcome the economy, and no dictator can own it. If we became the leaders in trade throughout the world, and the world's economy was tightly tied to our economy...we could share our goodness through peace and trade. America could once again regain its spot as the leader in industry and science. Nations would be inclined to work toward a society like ours, because they see our prosperity and freedom.

Living up to the standard we set for ourselves is the only way to promote democracy. Forcing someone to be free is not freedom. They are simply living under the tyranny of another regime, thats all. It is time America started living up to its heritage.