Friday, March 21, 2008

Foreign-policy blend

Daniel Drezner is making sense:
Republicans have traditionally believed in competition as the best way to the best ideas to emerge. For the marketplace of ideas to thrive in foreign policy, GOP activists must avoid labeling some ideas as verboten. Realism served as a savvy foreign-policy guide for the administrations of Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. The ideals of human rights and democracy promotion cannot and should not be jettisoned from U.S. foreign policy—but realist cautions about "ideological overstretch" are ignored at their peril.
What's needed, I think, is a blend of neoconservatism and realism (or I should say, a blend of what's now called neoconservatism, and realism). The first without the second is reckless and unrealistic; the second without the first is cynical, overly cautious and ultimately self-defeating.

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