Thursday, March 20, 2008

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Because the Nixon Center likes to make mischief

My light sparring with Danielle Pletka apparently intrigued a lot of people in Washington. As a result, I have a short piece at the National Interest online about the foreign policy divide withi the GOP between realists and neoconservatives:

This year's presidential campaign has highlighted the divide in Democratic foreign-policy circles between hawks and doves. My run-in with Pletka, however, reveals a split within the GOP as well, between realists and neoconservatives. It was not always so. When George W. Bush ran for president in 2000, he evinced a largely realist policy platform. His chief foreign-policy spokesperson, Condoleezza Rice, wrote a realpolitik essay in Foreign Affairs entitled “Promoting the National Interest.”

Bush governed differently than he campaigned, however. The September 11 terrorist attacks led to a rethink of foreign-policy priorities. Neoconservative ideas—particularly democracy promotion—were placed at the heart of the Bush administration's grand strategy. By early 2008, Pletka's statement might very well be true. John McCain's foreign-policy team has not been terribly friendly towards GOP realists—which says something about the Republican Party's foreign-policy transformation.

Read the whole thing -- it's not long.

posted by Dan on 03.20.08 at 12:58 PM


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