Rand Paul Shakes Up Party with Foreign Policy Speech

Speaking at the Center for the National Interest, Senator Rand Paul gave a game-changing speech on foreign policy.

According to Vox, Paul gave, for the first time, a comprehensive picture of how he thinks about foreign policy.

He revealed four basic principles of his foreign policy:

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First, “war is necessary when America is attacked or threatened, when vital American interests are attacked and threatened, and when we have exhausted all other measures short of war.” But not otherwise.

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Second, “Congress, the people’s representative, must authorize the decision to intervene.” No more war without express authorization.

Third, “peace and security require a commitment to diplomacy and leadership.” That means expanding trade ties and diplomatic links around the world.

Fourth, “we are only as strong as our economy.” For Paul, the national debt and slow growth are national security crises.

Paul wants America to scale down its foreign wars. But he endorses the original mission in Afghanistan but doesn’t approve of Obama’s escalation.

“But Paul also, much more quietly, agrees with major parts of the Obama agenda. In a move that’s bound to infuriate Republican neoconservatives, he’s calling for negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program. He tacitly endorsed Obama’s sanction-and-negotiate approach to the Ukraine crisis. And he called for a peaceful, cooperative relationship with China,” reported Vox.

Paul’s contempt for Obama also revealed his contempt for his own party:

“The real target of Paul’s speech were the neoconservatives: the wing of the GOP that believes that American foreign policy should be about the aggressive use of American force and influence, be it against terrorist groups or Russia. Paul’s unsubtle argument is that this view, dominant in the GOP, is a departure from what a conservative foreign policy ought to be,” reported Vox.

Watch the entire speech and his case for “conservative realism.”



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