“I grew up in the Reagan era, where these issues were front and center. I grew up under the shadow of the Cold War,” Rubio replies. “The most influential event of my youth was the fall of the Soviet Union, which was unimaginable ten years before. In the early 1980s, I was young, but I vividly remember how the whole world was defined by the conflict.”
Rubio recalls how the U.S. was unabashedly involved in a variety of regions. “We were engaged in Nicaragua, we were engaged in El Salvador, and against Cubans in Grenada. We were engaged all over, even in Poland, when they were standing up to the Russians.”
Remember, Rubio says, “many of the same people who are now asking us to mind our own business, to accept this new order in the world where America is not influential, are the same people who were telling us more than 20 years ago to stop talking about the Soviets, that we had to deal with them as equals, that we cannot be the cops of the world.”
“Well,” Rubio grins, “Ronald Reagan didn’t listen to them.”
Neither will Rubio.
— Robert Costa is a political reporter for National Review.