Though I disagree with Lind on many questions relating to U.S. political economy, he makes an interesting case for reorienting U.S. foreign policy away from deep engagement in the Middle East:
Among other things, an Asia First strategy would allow the U.S. to preserve its security while reducing the Pentagon budget in the interest of long-term solvency. Having renounced further labor-intensive wars of counterinsurgency and nation-building in the Greater Middle East, the U.S. could downsize the Army, in favor of a military based chiefly on elite special forces, naval and air forces and unmanned drones. Some of the savings could be channeled into homeland security defenses — for example, protecting infrastructure and telecommunications against the mysterious cyber attacks that have been directed at the U.S. and Europe from China. Other savings could be devoted to rebuilding America’s dual military-civilian manufacturing base, which has been ravaged by offshoring and the collaboration of U.S.-based multinationals with Chinese, Japanese and German industrial policies. Any future great-power conflict is likely to take the form of a cold war, in which the ultimate victors will be those whose domestic industrial economies are the strongest and whose banking systems are subordinate to their national interests.
Worth a look.