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Foreign Policy Op-Ed: Peace Through Strength

October 15, 2013 in Politics & Elections

Peace through strength. It’s a philosophy that guided the United States to victory in the Cold War and a policy that protected us from the calamity of nuclear war. But in the heated debate over Syria, our commitment to this approach has wavered — and it’s time we reasserted its prominence.
Some say that America’s credibility was threatened when President Barack Obama drew a red line on the use of chemical weapons and then allowed the Syrians to cross it without repercussions. We couldn’t disagree more — that would be a profound misreading of Obama’s response to the Syrian civil war. Our nation’s democratic principles give priority to the voice of individual liberties and freedoms. We will defend them with all of our nation’s might. We will not allow any nation or group to terrorize the free world — now or ever.
But foreign policy can often be a jumble of contradictions. Global enemies of the last decade can be our allies in today’s conflicts. Our friends could be our enemies tomorrow. As a result, we need to evaluate each foreign policy situation on its own merits and be open to new ideas — new approaches to resolve old conflicts.
The world is changing quickly. Americans are now targets in Kenya. The great civilizations of the last millennium are descending into chaos. Christians are being attacked in Syria and Pakistan. Jews are being attacked in European cities, and Israelis now don gas masks in preparation of the regionalization of the Syrian conflict.
As the same time, we’ve also seen rapid diplomatic developments in the war in Syria that show the power of blending our military might with aggressive diplomacy. We should seek to repeat this elsewhere — and it should start with Iran.
As Western nations sit down with Iran this week in Geneva, we should vigorously support efforts to negotiate a diplomatic solution that ensures Iran has no nuclear weapon capability and that it does not share its technology with other nations. We should also maintain — and even strengthen — the sanctions that have helped to bring Iran back to the negotiation table. And yes, we should keep all options on the table to ensure that Iran is not just stalling for time, but truly being transparent about its technology and its intentions.
The world should be on notice: the United States will act with overwhelming force if it is attacked — or …read more

Source: RAND PAUL

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