The Campaign Spot

I Wish Every Presidential Candidate’s Advisor Had A Blog

One of Rudy’s new foreign policy advisors, Martin Kramer, is a blogger.

Not just a blogger, obviously; he’s also the Wexler-Fromer Fellow at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Olin Institute Senior Fellow at Harvard University, and Adelson Institute Senior Fellow at the Shalem Center in Jerusalem.
Hmm. By selecting Kramer, Rudy might be sending a signal or two on where he differs with the Bush administration on foreign policy matters, and in particular promoting democracy. I found this quote from a speech at a democracy conference interesting:

We musn’t be blind to these facts: these [non-democratic Arab] regimes cooperate with the world in combatting terrorism and containing an aggressive Iran, they have peace treaties with Israel or float peace initiatives, they don’t threaten or intervene in the internal affairs of other countries, and they don’t seek weapons of mass destruction. None of them has gone to war in the last thirty-plus years.
And who are the net exporters of insecurity? These are states that have multi-polar or pluralistic systems: Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon and what some call Palestine. These systems aren’t democracies, but in terms of formal practices like elections, they’ve actually gone the longer distance. Yet they don’t provide security for their peoples, and they export insecurity, in the form of terrorism, refugees, radical Islam, and nuclear threats. What’s discouraging is that this isn’t true in only some of the cases, or only half of them. It’s true, for now, in all if them.
Now it was also my teacher Bernard Lewis who said this: “Democracy is a strong medicine, which you have to give to the patient in small, gradually increasing doses. If you give too much too quickly, you kill the patient.” This doesn’t contradict his earlier statement, so much as it complements it. If they’re not made free, they’ll destroy us; but if they’re made free too quickly, they might destroy themselves, and take us with them.

He goes on, “So how do we know whether the democracy dosage is too much, too fast? Security is the test.” It’s a meaty, serious critique of the Bush administration’s faith in democracy promotion. I hope the issue comes up in a future debate.

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