The Corner

Straw-in-the-Mouth Foreign Policy?

I don’t know much about Mike Huckabee, but found his aw-shucks Foreign Affairs essay strange to say the least (e.g., cf. “The Bush administration’s arrogant bunker mentality has been counterproductive at home and abroad.” )

But what he offers inter alia is the rehashed plan of invading the nuclear, nominal ally Pakistan (“I prefer to cut to the chase by going after al Qaeda’s safe havens in Pakistan.” ) while reaching out to Iran, the de facto non-nuclear enemy, by offering normal diplomatic relations–of course, only after strengthening sanctions and declaring the Revolutionary Guards terrorists. He laments losing the good will once shown by Iran in its 2001 shared goal of defeating the Taliban-almost like lamenting the needless estrangement of the Soviet Union in 1946 after we once had been so close in working to defeat Hitler.

Nowhere is there any suggestion that a new President Huckabee might find the world not all that bad–at least without the Taliban and Saddam, and with consensual governments in their places, without a WMD program in Libya (and according to our brilliant intelligence agencies, one in Iran or North Korea either), with staunch U.S. allies like Sarkozy in France and Merkel in Germany.

Don’t know what to make of the Brer Rabbit and Brer Fox evocations and the general prose style of the piece (e.g., “We played Brer Fox to his Brer Rabbit. We threw him into the perfect briar patch”)–other than these references and other similar metaphors and similes sound like some beltway policy wonk in DC playing at Will Rogers, or throwing in here and there perceived Arkansas-isms as proof of down-home authenticity.


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