Wednesday, January 17, 2007

# Posted 4:34 PM by Taylor Owen  

IKE VS. NIXON; IS BUCKLEY THE FIRST TO CHOOSE?: Kevin Drum, relaying a WaPo op-ed by Harold Meyerson, asks whether post-Iraq conservatives will turn towards Eisenhower or Nixon. A good question I think, and one that may provide a glimpse of a forthcoming foreign policy alliance.

Meyerson uses the analogy to compare conservative options for Iraq. He puts Eisenhower’s non-politicised ending of the Korean war against Nixon’s fierce and highly political stance on Vietnam long after he knew the war was lost. Fine, makes sense. Can we take this a bit further though?

Eisenhower conservatives would likely find allies in liberal internationalists looking for greater UN/Int Org collaboration. Particularly on Iraq, the two could possibly work towards a real shift to UN control of peacekeeping and reconstruction. This would start with the admission that Iraq cannot be 'won' by the US military, but that the stakes are too high for the international community to sit on the sidelines and smirk. The language could then be shifted away from GWAT, surges and counterinsurgency, to that of civil war, peacebuilding, and post conflict reconstruction - the language and expertise of the UN. In lieu of military expenditures, the US could start a Marshall plan-esk reconstruction fund. While Nixonian conservatives would see transfers of power as heretical, it is possible that such a mixed internationalist alliance could form a foreign policy majority. It also provides a nice alternative to the neocon/isolationist split that some have argued may emerge on the right.

In any case, it might be that the first conservative has played their hand on this divide (ht-Paul Wells). Maybe I’m misreading something, but Buckley Jr., writing at the NRO none the less, is nodding to the new Secretary General to take a lead in the future of Iraq.

A geographical division of Iraq is inevitable. The major players are obvious. It isn't plain how America, as an outside party, could play an effective role, let alone one that was decisive, in that national redefinition. And America would do well to encourage non-American agents to act as brokers — people with names like Ban Ki-moon.
Now, it may be that he believes that Ban Ki-moon’s positions will be notably different than Annan’s. (I doubt it though, as for all his flaws, Annan’s arguments on Iraq were quite moderate and largely representative of the institution, its mandate and its responsibilities. His successor would very likely have taken similar stances.) On the other hand, Buckley could believe that the US, for better or worse, is not an honest broker in Iraq. Too many civilians have died, and too many mistakes been made. Intention is irrelevant. The dye has been cast. I agree with Buckley, it's time for the UN.
(4) opinions -- Add your opinion

Time for the UN. Who kept Saddam in power for so long. The guy may have fallen from within if it wasn't for the abbrogation of respopnsibility of those UN officials monitoring the Oil for Food program.

I would suggest to you that the UN's aura of respectibility lays in the eyes of the media and internationalists, not with the Iraqi people.

People like Buckley are looking for any excuse to extricate the US, regardless of the long term effects on the region or the US.
Davod has it right. The UN is corrupt, anti-American, anti-Semitic, and anti-capitalist. What it is is good at is defending the interests of dictators like Saddam Hussein and ripping off the American taxpayer.

Who can take seriously the organization that gave us Srebenica, Rwanda, Oil for Food, and now Dafur?

All the UN is good for is making the French and a bunch of Third World popinjays feel important.
Once again, the commentators make my point for me...
What *is* your point Taylor? That US foreign policy should be farmed out to foreign politicians who actively seek to harm our interests whenever and wherever they can? How can you defend a crook like Kofi Annan? If anything Annan should be on trial for complicity in war crimes.

Taylor, do you believe that the US and Israel are the main source of the world's problems? The people whom you want to run our foreign policy do.
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