Last week, US and NATO officials met with Russian officials about the country’s threat to Ukraine. There should be no negotiation. Russia has good reason to doubt that America will execute an offensive strategy.
It is a perennially uncomfortable topic for Democrats that the United States must pursue aggressively to counter Russian and Chinese expansion and the destabilizing impact of Islamic terrorism used surgically by those powers to sow instability.
For Republicans in Washington, the so-called foreign policy hawks have either been driven out of town or driven out of the conversation by President Donald Trump and other so-called “eternal wars” whistleblowers. Their absence from the national discussion has been devastating to global perceptions of America’s strength.
Not only has the Russian democracy experiment failed, but since the beginning of the Obama administration, our desire to maintain the independence of the former Soviet states has also been largely a failure. Russian President Vladimir Putin has focused on proxy wars and “fifth column” attacks for two decades. This is paying off as one former Soviet republic after another is now controlled by the iron man who once called the collapse of the Soviet Union one of the “great tragedies of the 20th century.” “.
In the Beltway, control from the left has meant paralysis. As he did with Iran, President Biden again telegraphs to the world that we have not come to play hardball with anyone, let alone Russia and China.
Mr. Biden’s interests appear limited to promoting billions of dollars in welfare expansions, delivering speeches disparaging American democracy and making accusations of racism against his own people. Her party is more focused on climate change, critical race theory and advancing her war on gender than fending off our opponents.
The mainstream media is also complicit in the erosion of American power. In an effort to help the left advance its national agenda and culture war, they blur the lines between democracy and communism, freedom and despotism.
The strong leadership role of the United States on the world stage cannot be considered a rusty holdover from the 20th century. It must last. The Europeans do not lead. They plunged the globe into two of the deadliest conflicts in human history over the past century.
Europe’s frayed alliances have made it dependent on Russian energy, impervious to Chinese aggression and unable to show its collective strength without an American commitment to back it up.
If Russia has no intention of invading Ukraine, as they indicated this week, then there is no reason for the United States not to deploy a limited number of military advisers and of advanced defensive weapons in Ukraine. If Putin is not interested in Russian imperialism, then NATO, with the strong support of the United States, should begin the process of Ukraine joining.
Until Russia reverses its current position, further sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline should receive bipartisan support in Congress.
Russia is building bases and alliances in Somalia, Sudan and Nigeria. Chinese weapons are flowing to Houthi terrorists in Yemen through Iranian ports. After failing to deliver on its Doha commitments, the United States handed control of a strategically located Afghanistan, now on the verge of collapse, to the Taliban and a hodgepodge of Islamic terror groups.
The US withdrawal from Iraq paved the way for Russian and Iranian influence. China is concluding agreements with several countries in Central and South America. Logic dictates that North Korea’s new hypersonic missile, if it is truly operational, would be made with Chinese components. China is building new nuclear missile fields and expanding its navy at an alarming rate.
The US military and foreign policy hawks must rebuild their nests, and fast. Being more warmonger today is not about running headlong into military conflict. This is not a “shoot first, ask questions later” philosophy. We have more tools at our disposal than ever to aggressively shape the global balance of power. This does not only mean long-term military commitments.
The left is more than happy to be consumed by expanding abortion rights, fighting climate change, funding ineffective anti-poverty programs and other notions of utopian public policy than acknowledging the devastating impact on our economy and our security by emboldened authoritarians.
Biden-style negotiations with terrorists, communists and dictators will not work. Ronald Reagan’s “we win, they lose” attitude must make a comeback. Official Washington must once again welcome the hawks into the policy-making conversation, lest the doves fly the free world out of the sky.
• Tom Basile is an author, former Bush administration official and host of “America Right Now” and “Wake Up America Weekend” on Newsmax Television.