Tuesday, October 24, 2006
This is a work in progress. Your comments, particularly well reasoned and fact-backed comments are needed to shape the final version. This is Revision 1, Oct 24 2006.
Note: my use of absolutes is for hyperbole. I know there are no absolutes in human behavior. A summary of my proposal as it stands now:
1. A US foreign policy that is open and clearly understood by the American people and the people of the world.
Foreign policy is no longer established nor controlled by the State Departments of nations. 99% of what comes out of Foggy Bottom falls on deaf ears, worse other diplomats. Only one person can set foreign policy, the national leader, and only when speaking visually to world where everyone can hear his tone and look him in the eye. Recognize that visual media is now world wide. For the first time everyone is watching so speak directly to the people of the word. Bypass their leaders. Speak daily and pound home your most important points. As the leader of the only super power you will get all the air time you need. Be aware that when you are silent other foreign leaders and the mass media speak to your audience and they set the agenda. Do not let harmful statements by other world leaders go unchallenged. Your words trump all others. Be the super power leader. Our way of living and literally our lives depends on your words and actions. Does anyone know China is attacking our satellites with lasers? Should it change our relationship with the Chinese government? Bush has known for a year. If he has said anything to the Chinese, does anyone know what that is? It is not working.
2. Never bluff in foreign policy. We are the world’s only super power. We hold a hand of four aces. It is those nations with a pair of 8’s that need to bluff.
America is being directly threatened by weapons of mass destruction. The people in the nations seeking our demise need to know what our response will be. National leaders may be willing to accept huge casualties, but the people of the world who will die will not accept death quietly. Threaten massive retaliation to all. Do not be bound by finding the guilty culprit. Inform all the mischief makers that they are all responsible for controlling their wacos. One nuked American city and they are all gone.
3. Use military force as a last resort, but then use it decisively. Overwhelm our opponent. If there is any doubt about the outcome either bring more force or not use it at all.
4. Never leave troops behind after a battle.
Bring them home immediately. Militaries kill and smash, they do not keep the peace. The American military does it better than any other. Do not leave them as targets for guerrilla warfare. In Iraq A few millions of bad guy dollars are tying up 80B of good guy dollars. Guerrilla warfare is very effective and can be done on the cheap, especially when you have source of highly motivated recruits and safe havens.
5. Do not label nations as either friends or enemies.
Take our whole foreign policy down to the next level. Measure the actions and behavior of the world as either helpful or harmful to our national interests and foreign policy objectives. Act on specific behaviors and actions, not whole nations. Stop calling Russia a friend. The whole world knows that is crap. Russian arms deals and nuclear technology transfers are the biggest threat to world peace. Call them on it. Demand that they stop. You do not have to call them enemies, but you do have to inform the world of their behavior and where you stand. Silence is viewed as acquiescence not strength. Always praise good actions, but never let harmful actions go unchallenged. Strive to eliminate all miscalculations. All wars are begun by leaders who think they can win. Wars are rational calculations. The only irrational leader today may be Kim Il. Knowing you will punish them if they start something will give pause to a rational leader. If it does not, always follow through.
6. Recognize that cultures cannot be changed from without, only from within.
Stop trying to coerce people to change their culture with foreign aid or democratization. In fact eliminate all foreign aid, almost none of it goes to the intended purpose. Arafat died a multimillionaire at US expense and our government knew it. We were trying to buy behavior change. We failed.