08252019What's Hot:

Trump: Responsibly Restrained on Foreign Policy.

Like Tony Blair in Iraq and Nicolas Sarkozy in Libya, Barack Obama has shown no contrition for his overt and dangerous grooming of Iran. Now Trump is having to clean up the mess in the knowledge it could get worse if he approaches it heavy-handed.

Trump has displayed the hallmarks of a foreign policy borne from the warnings uttered by America’s founders.

Restraint is the key word.

President Trump has displayed the hallmarks of a foreign policy borne from the warnings uttered by America’s founders.

It frustrates hawks, and may even seem “weak” to those searching for weakness, especially after an attack on U.S. assets. But it is in-keeping with the heuristic of engaging in foreign entanglements only when it is expressly in the U.S. national interest to do so.

This is manifestly the case with Iran.

Of course there is a national interest. Anyone who needs to be reminded of Iranian machinations in the region — of both trading and geopolitical import — or their alliances and sponsorship of disruptive practices to the detriment of American interests should bone up.

But in his awkward manner, Trump is now talking about proportionality regarding a retaliatory attack on Iran. 

His critics’ (“OMG DRUMPF WILL START WW3” circa 2016) heads are spinning.

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When America’s founders intervened in foreign affairs, it was proportionate to the national interest and aimed at defending against “European machinations” being exported to the United States.

Trump’s foreign policy seems so alien to the talking heads on CNN and even Fox News.

This is the diametric opposite of the foreign policies set and expressed by at least the three U.S. Presidents before Trump. 

It wasn’t just with hindsight that one could foresee Iraq and Libya leading to what they did. Critics at the time warned about creating post-Saddam and a post-Gaddafi vacuums. Thankfully, the Egyptian people saw to it that the same didn’t happen with their country, ousting the late Mohammed Morsi with extreme and necessary prejudice at the first opportunity.

Western interventions and hunts for regime change have scarcely been about the U.S. national interest, nor did they even pretend to be. That’s why Trump’s foreign policy seems so alien to the talking heads on CNN and even Fox News.

The phrases “democracy promotion” and “humanitarian intervention” alluded to necessarily imperialistic impulses. Yet the left hasn’t uttered any apology for Obama, who campaigned as a dove and governed as one of the most aggressive president’s America has seen. Both at home, and abroad.

Nor has the establishment right atoned for Bush.

Both camps – from the Cheneys to Ben Rhodes – must be rebuked and rebuffed when it comes to contemporaneous geopolitical matters, and that includes on Iran.

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A failure of contrition on the pallets of cash to Tehran, or on the destabilization of the Middle East and North Africa result in the migrant crisis wrecking Europe, are the only signs we need as to why these people should be relegated to writing their “what if…” memoirs.

A nation’s military is not a first resort in international conflicts. It is the last.

None of this is to say that military action is never on the table, or should even be taken off the table right now. 

None of this is to say Iran is not an opponent and significant threat (thanks again, Obama). 

But the world should be thankful there is a president in the Oval Office who is a little less belligerent on foreign policy than his predecessors. I prefer the itchy Twitter finger to the itchy trigger finger.

A nation’s military is not a first resort in international conflicts. It is the last. 

We haven’t yet reached the point of exhausting other mechanisms by which to hold the Iranian regime to account. 

In fact, it is precisely because the policy of sanctions is working that the failing Mullahs are trying to draw America back into the region militarily. 

It is, frankly, Tehran’s last hope before Khameini and Rouhani have their own Morsi moment. 

Raheem Kassam is the Global Editor in Chief of Human Events

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Source: Human Events

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