Elizabeth Warren’s Foreign Policy Should Scare You
Massachusetts senator and progressive firebrand Elizabeth Warren has thrown her hat in the ring for 2020. As such, she recently published an outline of her foreign policy in “Foreign Affairs” titled “A Foreign Policy for All.”
It’s not pretty, folks.
We’ve seen this before: strategic patience and America in retreat. We can’t let Warren’s outdated and alarming ideas go unchallenged. At a time when the world is on edge, America can’t afford to take a backseat in foreign affairs.
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Warren came out the gates swinging on the foreign policy front. Authoritarianism is on the rise. Revisionists like Russia, China and Iran seek to challenge U.S. hegemony in their respective regions. Democracies across the world face internal unrest.
Yet Warren fails to understand that her ideas are what caused this mess in the first place. The senator’s “Foreign Policy for All” is little more than a freshly polished version of President Obama’s disastrous “leading from behind” approach to foreign affairs.
The playbook is nearly identical.
To start, Warren yearns for a return to the Iranian Nuclear Deal. Yes, the agreement crafted by Ben Rhodes and John Kerry that we were told would stop Iran from ever obtaining a nuclear weapon. In that same alternate reality, the regime in Tehran was supposed to moderate and liberalize.
Clearly, none of that has happened. The deal included sunset clauses which would have allowed Iran to develop nuclear weapons in due time. And after unfreezing more than $100 billion in assets, Tehran went on a radical shopping spree buying up influence with a number of radical Islamist groups.
Chaos and violence would follow. Iran is now estimated to have over 20,000 fighters in Syria in a conflict that has claimed over 500,000 lives and displaced millions. Tehran has continued to funnel cash to Hezbollah, which now has an extensive presence in Syria and over 150,000 rockets pointed at Israel.
Iran is also backing the Houthis in Yemen, whose motto translates to: “God Is Great, Death to America, Death to Israel, Curse on the Jews, Victory to Islam!”
Warren claims to want to pursue a foreign policy that doesn’t bog America down in the Middle East. It’s unclear how empowering Ayatollah Khamenei and his Islamist allies accomplishes that objective.
In addition to Iran, appeasing Russian President Vladimir Putin is on the docket for Warren. She takes a jab at President Trump for his intention to remove the United States from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) with Russia.
Warren argues that President Trump is intent on “spurring a new arms race” with Moscow by nixing the agreement. But Warren is confused: Putin already initiated such a race by choosing to test weapons banned in the agreement.
In fact, Moscow hasn’t abided by the INF Treaty for years according to a 2014 report prepared by the State Department. Russia’s SSC-8s cruise missiles tests are a clear violation of the INF Treaty. As Rich Lowry stated in National Review, “Trump blew the whistle” on Russian cheating.
And yet, Warren would rather have America unliterally abide by such an arrangement. President Trump has made clear that ‘America first’ means not comprising America’s security at the benefit of others. In particular, an adversary like Moscow.
Not to mention that nixing such a treaty would allow America to better combat China in the Pacific. Beijing, who is currently not a signatory to the INF Treaty, has free rein to develop and deploy whatever arsenal they please.
Having the ability to develop and deploy non-complaint INF Treaty cruise missiles would enhance U.S. security in Asia. Specifically, America could pursue the development of land-based Tomahawk or JASSM-ERs, adding strategic diversity to our military power in the region.
Despite the facts, nothing in Warren’s “Foreign Policy for All” should come as a surprise. Progressives have consistently questioned the value of American global leadership and the benefits it provides to both the United States and our allies.
Leading from behind has been tested and failed. President Trump is diligently working to restore a chaotic world he inherited from the policies of his predecessor. Let’s not forget that as we look ahead.
Ernest Hemingway described going bankrupt as “gradually, then suddenly.” The concept of American hegemony is the same. And a world without America as its leader is a very scary one indeed.
-- Alex Titus, Policy Advisor for America First Policies