Skip to comments.Palin outlines doctrine for use of force, picks new foreign policy adviser
Posted on 05/03/2011 3:33:41 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Politics being a funny beast, we tend to readily accept the idea of a retired state governor, sometime pundit, and non-candidate for president having a foreign policy adviser. Ben Smith of Politico reports that Palin this weekend unloaded what he calls the neocon advisers who have been with her since the 2008 campaign (when she was assigned them by the McCain organization), in favor of Hoover fellow and political author Peter Schweizer, who wrote two seminal volumes on Reagans handling of the Cold War (Victory and Reagans War), and writes at Breitbarts Big Peace. (H/t: Israpundit)
This is informative news and on the whole, good news. As Israpundit observes, Palin outlined a doctrine for the use of force in her speech to military families in Denver Monday evening (2 May). He quotes the following passage:
A lesson here then for effective use of force, as opposed to sending our troops on missions that are ill-defined. And it can be argued that our involvement elsewhere, say, in Libya, is an example of a lack of clarity.
See, these are deadly serious questions that we must ask ourselves when we contemplate sending Americans into harms way. Our men and women in uniform deserve a clear understanding of U.S. positions on such a crucial decision.
I believe our criteria before we send our young men and women, Americas finest, into harms way, I believe that our criteria should be spelled out clearly when it comes to the use of our military force. I can tell you what I believe that criteria should be. I can tell you what it should be in five points:
First, we should only commit our forces when clear and vital American interests are at stake, period.
Second, if we have to fight, we fight to win. To do that we use overwhelming force. We only send our troops into war with the objective to defeat the enemy as quickly as possible. We do not send our military and stretch out the mission with an open-ended and ill-defined mission. Nation-building, a nice idea in theory, but its not the main purpose of our armed forces. We use our military to win wars.
And third, we must have clearly defined goals and objectives before sending our troops into harms way. If you cant explain the mission to the American people clearly, concisely, then our sons and daughters should not be sent to battle. Period.
Fourth, American soldiers must never be put under foreign command. We will fight side by side by our allies, but American soldiers must remain under the care and command of the American officers.
And fifth, sending our armed forces should be the last resort. We dont go looking for dragons to slay. However, we will encourage the forces of freedom around the world who are sincerely fighting for the empowerment of the individual.
When it makes sense, when its appropriate, well provide them with support and help them win their own freedom. Were not indifferent to the cause of human rights or the desire for freedom. Were always on the side of both. But we cant fight every war. We cant undo every injustice around the world.
But with strength, and clarity in those five points, well make for a safer, more prosperous, more peaceful world. Because as the U.S. leads by example, as we support freedom across the globe, were gonna prove that free and healthy countries, they dont wage war on other free and healthy countries.
The stronger we are, the stronger and more peaceful the world will be under our example.
Many volumes could be written on the distinctions between the prevailing ideas on the use of force overseas, but this passage of Palins speech, combined with her taking on Peter Schweizer as an adviser, argues for a more Reaganesque than progressive-activist view. I dont find the neocon label particularly useful; Reagan was advised by neocons from the original group dubbed with that label in the 1970s, and so were both Bushes, but this did not make for perfect consonance in their approach to using force overseas. Neocon had a particular meaning when it was first coined to describe people of a generally liberal background, especially on social and domestic issues, who held hawkish positions on the Cold War. That meaning has long since gone by the wayside.
To call something neocon now is not to put it in the context of any consistent thread in policy. Bush 41, for example, used force for regime-change in Panama in 1989, but didnt use it to regime-change Saddam in 1991. He restricted himself to evicting Saddams forces from Kuwait. He also dispatched military force to supervise the delivery of aid to Somalis, with no intention of resolving the chaotic political situation there this last enterprise an open-ended use of force on the progressive-activist model.
Reagan used force to regime-change Grenada, ironically in the middle of dealing with the bombing of the Marine barracks in Beirut, which was a consequence of improperly scoping the purpose and requirements of force in a particular situation. Again, the latter (the Marine barracks debacle) is more characteristic of the progressive-activist model which is what is currently developing in Libya.
Bush 43 used overwhelming force for regime-change in Iraq, and induced regime-change in Afghanistan with less than overwhelming force, but both were cases of politically justifying absolute regime-change and pursuing it without temporizing. Unifying Afghanistan under new rule has proven to be the insoluble problem in the aftermath, although the regime-change of Iraq has been much more heavily criticized throughout.
Which of these episodes were the result of neocon policies? There are plenty of people today who call the Libya intervention neocon, because it is expeditionary and related only indirectly to US security. Samantha Power and Susan Rice wouldnt thank those pundits for calling their humanitarian intervention a neocon operation.
Schweizer is a fan of Reagans approach, which had no compunction about trying to undermine oppressive governments, but did so by supporting freedom movements where they were indigenous, and arming the insurgents under Soviet occupation in Afghanistan. The commitment of US force was a matter of coming to blows very rarely under Reagan: besides invading Grenada, Reagan conducted a reprisal against Libya in 1986 after the Berlin nightclub bombing, and another one against Iran in 1988 for mining the Persian Gulf and inflicting mine damage on USS Samuel B Roberts (FFG-58). The US armed forces had a high and very active profile during the Reagan years, but the actual use of force was considered necessary very seldom.
I tend to share Israpundits view that Schweizers advice will involve the sparing and summary use of force in a shooting role. If you havent read his books on the Reagan approach a comprehensive one that emphasized political and economic campaigns against the Soviet Union I can highly recommend them. Meanwhile, compare Palins five points to the Weinberger Doctrine, a rubric that played a major role in US decisions about the use of force in Desert Storm.
As is typical of her, Palin is talking in the terms on which we need to be carrying on the public discussion of national security, our national interests, and interventions overseas. There has been a very long and extensive national dialogue on these topics over the last 100 years; we have never settled most questions as if there were a single answer. Palin alone among potential GOP candidates is harking back to the philosophical discussions launched by presidents and candidates like Reagan, Goldwater, Adlai Stevenson (agree with him or not, he launched a substantive debate that colored Democratic positions for the next 40 years), Wilson, and Theodore Roosevelt.
I believe people intuit the need for this debate, as overseas interventions seem to be stalemated in Afghanistan and Libya, and the world begins to behave as if there is no US power. Palin apparently recognizes the need to talk about fundamentals and love her or hate her, I dont see anyone else out there doing it.
And I will vote for this pretty moron....just like I voted for that hollywood actor who knew nothing about politics...I think his name was Ronald Reagan.
What pray tell were the "vital American interests" when she was calling for a Libyan no fly zone?
I also don't see a peep in their about securing either a declaration of war, or authorization from Congress.
Does she think that No Fly Zone didn't need Congressional approval?
Sounds good to me.
Count me in!
For the initial concerns, check past news stories from a great number of western countries. However, she wasn't alone in this call for extremely limited action, which was then grossly exceeded by the Obama administration, and against which she then protested.
I also don't see a peep in their about securing either a declaration of war, or authorization from Congress.
Well then I guess she's talking about the powers inherent in the presidency to use armed forces short of a declaration of war, right? You are aware such powers not only exist, but are crucial for a president to use properly in order to prevent the need for congressionally approved, open war - right?
Does she think that No Fly Zone didn't need Congressional approval?
Do you think it does? Why?
You're right - she was right there with Samntha Powers and Hilary Clinton, two other great American conservative thinkers - oh, wait.
"Well then I guess ..."
I stopped reading at "I guess". It's not a very complete "doctrine" if it leaves people to guess, now is it?
"You are aware such powers not only exist, but are crucial for a president to use properly in order to prevent the need for congressionally approved, open war - right? "
What I am aware of is the War Powers Resolution of 1973. I didn't hear Palin calling for a resolution for Libya, did you. How exactly is a no-fly zone over Libya - ""a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces."
I'm all ears.
"Do you think it does? Why?"
You bet I do, especially when it doesn't meet the criteria outlined in the War Powers Resolution.
Good that she is getting rid of Johnny McInsanes RINO sell outs.
Do you believe the War Powers Resolution is Constitutional?
You forgot to preface that with "In my opinion". It's pretty clear that it's still good law.
"Every President since it was passed has treated it as such. "
Yes, that's the problem and that's how we end up entangling ourselves in places we have absolutely no business being - Kosovo, Somalia, LIBYA etc, etc.
Clinton has made it pretty clear that if wasn't for the abortion that was Operation Gothic Serpant, he would have unilaterally intervened in Rawanda. Wouldn't that have been swell?
So, if we have presidents that ignore US law for long enough, those laws become dead letters, or something?
Maybe Posse Comitatus is unconstitutional too? Should presidents just ignore that as well?
We need to get back to some basics. If there's not enough popular support to get a congressional authorization to involve ourselves in some military engagement in a faraway land, then we shouldn't do it. We have got to STOP indulging a President's personal whim to play world police.
Her 15 minutes of fame have expired, and she’s only in this for the money. I know because CNN, MSNBC, and NYT told me so, several times a day for two years. What I don’t understand is why she would waste her money on a foreign policy adviser; only a candidate would bother, and every democrat with access to a microphone assures us repeatedly that she can’t win and for our own good we should choose a moderate.
See above - I believe that it is just as constitutional as the Posse Comitatus Act. If Congress can limit what the president can do as commander-in-chief domestically it can also limit what he does internationally, right?
The Resolution gives to the president pretty broad latitude for employing force without congressional authorization. What it doesn't do, is give him a blank check where clearly defined American interests aren't at stake. I think all things considered, that's a pretty could compromise and an effective check on executive power.
LOL. You’re like a friggin’ rottweiler who won’t let go of a turkey leg!
It’s best to avoid and yard where he’s fenced in! /s
Ya know, I won’t vote for her in the primaries; if she’s on the ticket for the general, I can pull the lever for her pretty easy though (c’mon, her vs. “a democrat”? no question). What I don’t like is her shift into “polishing” her image for general consumption. Ever sine the “retard” debacle several months back and her talking about the “r-word” at some press conference; blech...More and more she is having to re-adjust her positions as she compromises more and more on WHO SHE IS. I loved the un-polished Sarah Palin much better. Not sure what I am witnessing exactly at this point. A run to the center or new RINO in the making.
I call it the way I see it.
But, I'll be fair about it. And, to be fair, I'll admit that every other possible candidate I've heard discuss this, got it dead wrong - except for (Lord forbid) Ron Paul.
In fact, most haven't even commented about it, so I'll give more credit to Palin for at least having a position.
I could never vote for Ron Paul for many reasons, but the biggest reason is he takes things too far, never wanting to get involved anywhere militarily. But, we need to have a return to our "classical liberalism" roots, and shake ourselves free of this neocon mishigas.
Please! where has she shifted or readjusted her positions? don’t give me what OldD*ickHand or PDSer said or what a LSM source said. Give me specific please? thanks
Outside the world of black helicopters and sinister plots involving fluoridation, the War Powers Act is a punch line, not the basis of a serious argument.
I thought a month or so ago Palin was advocating a no-fly zone in Libya. In fact I think it was the Washington Times or NY Post that called it the “Palin Doctrine”. How do these words square with that? Seems to me Palin is coming around to Michele Bachmann’s position.
That phrase doesn't mean what you think it does.
Even you can't be that dense, sport.
Yes some future Congress could, in theory, try to revive it. France could restore the Bourbon monarchy and Russia could bring back the Romanovs, but it isn't going to happen. Unless you want to be a laughingstock on a par with French and Russian monarchists, it's time to give up this weird obsession with the War Powers Act. To be blunt, you have no idea what you are talking about.
You should have stopped right there. Everything that comes after, is wrong.
In this country, acts of Congress are presumptively constitutional. The Supreme Court doesn't have to validate any law the Legislature passes. Put another way, laws enacted by Congress are constitutional until the Supreme Court says that they aren't. But, you knew that already, right?
Whether or not the Court would hear a challenge to the War Power Resolution, or dismiss it as a nonjusticiable political question, until the Supreme Court says it's not constitutional, it is constitutional.
"It is a dead letter."
There you go again, using phrases you don't understand.
"To be blunt, you have no idea what you are talking about."
Whatever I do or do not know, it's pretty clear that we've established you don't have the frist clue about American jurisprudence.
Lastly, if the War Power Act didn't mean anything, as you suggest, why then did George HW Bush get an authorization for force in 1991, and why did his son get one 10-years later?
The question of the War Powers Act is not a legal one, it is a philosophical one. I do NOT want another White House occupant who believes the US Armed Forces is their own private diplomatic tool. Considering most founders didn't even want a standing army, it's unlikely to believe almost any of them would agree to the carte blanche presidents have exercised in their application of global military force.
If you two don’t like women in positions of power, be it for religious reasons or something else, why don’t you just come out and say it? I know I’d respect you more for it than this ankle-biting that you do on so many Palin threads.
If I don't like women in position of power? What?
If Michelle Bachmann is on the ballot by the time the primary gets to FL, there's a decent chance that's who I'm voting for since Barbour has decided not to run.
Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:
Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.
She finally tossed the Soros-employed Washington lobbyist. Hurrah.
Since a House member has almost no chance of being nominated or elected, that’s a safe stance to take and shields you from what I just said. Funny, that’s what pissant used to say. Remind me what happened to him.
If you don't like my position on the painfully unqualified Sarah Palin, that's your problem, not mine.
After the Battle of New Orleans, Andrew Jackson was charged with violating the constitution. For he declared martial law, impressed every able body man in New Orleans, armed, and ordered them to get their butts down on the levee and fight. He was tried, convicted and had to pay a sizable fine. Later IIRC, he said he would do same again, for in time of war, the constitution was not a suicide pact.
City Council, Mayor, Energy Commission Chairwoman, Governor, NYT best-selling author, highly-paid speaker, News analyst, had her own TV show, listened to by hundreds of millions of people, almost killed ObamaCare single-handedly and changed the House of Represenatives from Democrat to Republican, as well as getting other candidates elected at all different levels. Yeah, I see your point... LOL
Uh, just saw Michele Bachmann on Fox say almost verbatim some of the things Palin espoused when she proffered her
foreign policy doctrine last night in CO.
The War Powers Resolution is unconstitutional.
The Constitution states the powers of the president and congress when it comes to commanding, declaring and funding wars.
The War Powers Resolution of course can't change powers as defined in the Constitution.
This position is pretty close to Reagan’s.
Well said. And precisely the same point Palin made in her 5 point "Doctrinal" outlay. She has very recently replaced her foreign policy advisers. I am glad she did.
If this shift is responsible for her shift in policy constraint, I say "Well done." All presidents have advisers, as none can be stand-alone experts on every minutiae-strewn subject on the planet, nor is it either realistic or fair for us to expect them to be.
If her new advisor has affected her position, that, too is a good sign. A president who is incapable of changing their position is often a president who refuses to listen to sound advice, or who is more concerned with "Admitting they were wrong" than they are with "Getting it right."
Palin, in her choice of Schweizer (sp?), and in her 5 Point "Doctrine," certainly seems to be getting it right. And that's a very good thing, too, as she will be our next president. Anyone who disagrees with either of these two last statements is simply unaware of the breadth and depth of her brilliance, and her base.
The Supreme Court doesn't have the franchise on reading the Constitution. Each branch of government is responsible for exercising its own power constitutionally. No branch can wait for another’s permission before doing its constitutional duty.
You obviously know nothing about the constitutional system and nothing about the law. Here's a brief primer. The President has to decide for himself what his constitutional duties are. If the President concludes that his duty conflicts with the War Powers Act he is bound by his oath to ignore the War Powers Act. Congress can impeach him or it can use the power of the purse to bring him into line. When the President flouts the War Powers Act and Congress doesn't respond that is a constitutional precedent every bit as authoritative as any Supreme Court opinion. It means the law is invalid. A series of such precedents settles the matter beyond the possibility of rational dispute and we have a series of such precedents.
Of course Presidents get authorization for the use of force. They would be foolish to undertake any serious military action without consolidating political support for it. They are very careful, however, never to suggest that they are required to seek authorization under the law. They frequently consult with Congress “in accord with” but not “pursuant to” the War Powers Act. That is precisely because they are unwilling to set any precedent that might contradict the history which establishes so clearly that the War Powers Act is unconstitutional.
You are way, way out of your depth here. Read more, write less.
I think Palin may have been reaing up on John Quincy Adams in the last few months, Her imagery here is quite similar to his famous Independence Day Oration in 1821. Palin says “America is not looking for dragons to slay”,while Adams historic line is “America goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy.” There are other similar passages . Like Adams or not, he provided the first truly coherent vision of America and its relation with the world. Palin could have done far worse in finding inspiration for hers.
Oh, I don't know - law school maybe. But hey, don't take my word for it, listen to what Sam Alito said about presumptively constitutional of acts of congress in his Supreme Court confirmation testimony.
"Acts of Congress are presumptively constitutional and I dont think that saying that is just words.
I think that means something. Members of Congress take an oath to support the Constitution and I think that the presumption of constitutionality means a lot. And I think that judgments that are reached by the legislative branch in the form of findings of fact, for example, are entitled to great respect because of the structure of our government, the fact that the basic policy decisions are supposed to be made by the legislative branch and carried out by the executive branch, and also for the practical reason or the functional reason that Congress is in a better position to evaluate conditions in our country and conditions in our society and to make findings and to determine whats appropriate to deal with the social and economic problems that we face. So I would certainly approach the question of determining whether an act of Congress is constitutional with a heavy presumption in favor of the constitutionality of what Congress has done. Now, ultimately, Marbury v. Madison decided the question that when a case or controversy comes before the Supreme Court, and the constitutionality of an act of Congress is challenged, it is the duty of the court to decide the question. Unless we were going to go back to 1819, then thats the practice that the federal courts have to follow. But they should always do that with an appreciation of their limited role and the role that the legislature is supposed to play. "emphasis added
...The 1992 Cable Act, like all Acts of Congress, is presumptively constitutional. As such, it "should remain in effect pending a final decision on the merits by this Court...."
"You are way, way out of your depth here. Read more, write less."
Whatever my depth may or may not be, and whatever I read or don't read, you've pretty clearly established that whatever you write, although thoroughly entertaining (but not in the good way) should be ignored for merit - violently.
He is one of our scout dads. Great guy.
Pawlenty, Daniels, Christie even Huckabee and Bachmann. The "why" is simple - none of them are afraid of the media, to include the hostile media. Palin, OTOH, never goes anywhere to speak to anyone that isn't named Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity or her favorite, Greta Van Sustern. If you're afraid of a journalist, you're not qualified to run the country.
Marco Rubio hasn't been in the Senate for more than 6-months, and yet, he walked into Meet the Press on Sunday morning and OWNED David Gregory. He was clear, concise and compelling. Palin, on her best day, doesn't reach any of those measures.
When Palin appears on a program that isn't a Fox property, and does half as well as the freshman senator from FL, maybe she'll merit some consideration, but until then - no thanks.
Sarah Palin couldn't even get her own candidate elected in her HOME state - her HOME state - and yet you think she's responsible for the shift in the House.
That's just delusional. Delusional.
It has been noted that her contract with Fox prevents her from interviewing with other networks.
There has never, in American history, been a more media-assassinated, ad-hominem laced character-assaulted individual than Sarah Palin. The she might, in turn, limit the opportunity that those media organs have to repeat their proven pattern of dissembling and assault upon her is not just her right, it is her due.
If that flimsily constructed, fallacious straw man of yours is alone that which you feel better-qualifies anyone else, then you have decisively made my point:
Not only in there no other candidate more qualified than Sarah Palin, there is no other candidate nearly as qualified as Governor Sarah Palin. She has endured with grace, class, a steel spine and truly leviathan strength the most viscious assaults on her person, her record, her positions and even her children, yet she shines through it all with an unshakeable resolve that one could only hope would be a crown worn by every person ever elected to lead this nation.
Your inability to appreciate these uniquely qualifying assets which she alone possesses does indeed disqualify one individual from a deserving place in this discussion, but that individual is not Governor Palin. Sir.
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