End the Republican Freedom Project

The republican “Democracy Project” was on full display in Tuesday night’s debate.

The establishment candidates, from Bush to Kasich and Christie, all espoused virtually identical views on the Middle East and particularly the handling of Bashir al-Assad in Syria.

But now, you count newly crowned establishment wunderkind Marco Rubio as having the same policy preference. It appears the moderates have all but given up on Jeb and are beginning to line up behind Marco. I’d like to say that Rubio has just recently succumbed to the dark side, but I think he’s been there for years.

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At first, I thought he was towing the establishment line on just immigration, but his foreign policy, at least in regard to the Middle East, has an establishment taste to it.  

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Save for Israel, there has never been a single democracy in that region’s several thousand year history. Middle Eastern nations have always been a monarchy, a theocracy, or a dictatorship – nothing even resembling a democracy, let alone a representative republic.

As an aside, can we ask our political class to stop throwing around the term “democracy,” as if it is synonymous with American governance? It isn’t, and we need to remind them of this – assuming they even know.

Yet, the establishment wing of the party still believes in nation building – demonstrated by someone like Kasich standing on the debate stage and dimly exclaiming: “I don’t understand this thing about Assad. He has to go. Assad is aligned with Iran and Russia. The one thing we want to prevent is we want to prevent Iran being able to extend a Shia crescent all across the Middle East. Assad has got to go.”

And Rubio has thrown in full tilt with the establishment. He espouses the same view as does Jeb, Christie, Kasich, or George W. Bush – the fantasy of spreading democracy through the Middle East – cause it’s worked so well thus far.

Rubio is correct as he describes radical Islam as an existential threat, but he states, “As president, I will support the spread of economic and political freedom…”

Well, I think it’s time we just face facts and admit that Islam is incompatible with Western-style democracy or republicanism – “economic and political freedom.”

Today’s Islamists have a “regressive outlook on life that is grounded in a mostly mythologized past.” They had been dormant, lying in wait for the opportunity to assert themselves. That opportunity came in 1967, with the resounding defeat of Arab nations at the hands of tiny Israel. “That defeat sounded the death knell of Arab nationalism and the resurgence of political Islam, which projected itself as the alternative to the more secular ideologies…”

“There is no evidence whatever that Islam in its various political forms is compatible with modern democracy. For most Islamists, democracy means only majoritarian rule, and the rule of Sharia law, which codifies gender inequality and discrimination against non-Muslims.” The Current two major Middle Eastern factions are either “on a ceaseless quest to resurrect the old Ottoman Caliphate,” or “yearn for a return to the puritanical days of Prophet Muhammad and his companions.”

Either way, in this current climate, there is no chance of spreading “economic and political freedom” in the Middle East. We cannot continue merely toppling one, only to have it replaced with something far worse. That region has never known true freedom of any kind, and it is naïve to think the next president will be any more successful at spreading freedom.

We will never rid this world of all Islamists. The only way to combat them is to kill enough of them that the ones that remain will revert back to dormancy for another few decades. Think of it as beating a cancer into remission. 

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