Neocons make diplomacy impossible
by Ian Huyett
Senator Rand Paul detailed his views on diplomacy Tuesday in a speech before the Center for the National Interest. Drawing on the political thought of George Kennan, Robert Gates and even Colin Powell, Paul argued for a foreign policy grounded in realism. The US, he said, should employ trade and diplomacy whenever possible while scaling back overseas police action.
Paul contrasted his views with neoconservatism, a school of thought that he said “beats its chest and seeks to spread worldwide enlightenment.” Paul’s remarks demonstrate that he is a serious political thinker in touch with the conservative intellectual tradition.
The Senator criticized neoconservatives for having forsaken this tradition, arguing that they really promote “not a neoconservatism but a neoisolationism in which diplomacy is distrusted and war is, if not the first option, the preferred option.”
“Neoconservatives brag of their desire for engagement, but increasingly preach a doctrine that is hostile to diplomatic engagement,” said Paul. “To this crowd, everyone who doesn’t agree with them is the next Chamberlain. To this crowd, anyone who doesn’t clamor first for the military option is somehow an isolationist. The irony is that the crowd that claims they want to engage often opposes diplomatic engagement.”
Neoconservatives, he added, dwell “inside an echo chamber that isolates itself from negotiation.”
Paul, who is now widely considered a presidential hopeful, has raised $1.7 million to his Rand Paul 2016 account. His political action committee has raised another $500,000. Paul’s fundraising is bad news for the NSA, whose spying program is the subject of a class action lawsuit that Paul is currently leading against President Obama.
Paul recently taunted the NSA when he mooned them on Snapchat.