Patterico's Pontifications


NY Sun: Clinton, Obama endorse Bush Doctrine

Filed under: 2008 Election,War — DRJ @ 9:07 am

[Guest post by DRJ]

Yesterday’s NY Sun editorial points out that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have, in substance, endorsed the Bush Doctrine:

The big news out of the most recent Democratic presidential debate was that two of the leading Democratic candidates, Senator Clinton and Senator Obama, endorsed the Bush Doctrine that is at the core of our current president’s foreign policy. We haven’t seen it reported anywhere else, but it’s a big story.

Here’s what Mrs. Clinton said: “There’s absolutely a connection between a democratic regime and heightened security for the United States.” Here’s what Mr. Obama said: “The more we see repression, the more there are no outlets for how people can express themselves and their aspirations, the worse off we’re going to be, and the more anti-American sentiment there’s going to be in the Middle East.”

Or, as President Bush has put it in enunciating what has come to be known as the Bush Doctrine: “For decades, free nations tolerated oppression in the Middle East for the sake of stability. In practice, this approach brought little stability and much oppression, so I have changed this policy.”
Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama spoke their share of silliness during the debate, and they lost no opportunity to criticize the president. But the comments they made about the connection between freedom, democracy, and American national security are a reminder though it may be fashionable to talk about how divided America is, there is a broad consensus on certain key principles, a consensus that extends from Mr. Bush on the right to Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton on the left.

It’s good when Americans are united on important issues. I think this is one of those issues.


16 Responses to “NY Sun: Clinton, Obama endorse Bush Doctrine”

  1. it’s one thing to recognize that a foreign democracy is less dangerous than any other model, quite another to assume the right to invade any country in the world that we don’t like and install a regime change.

    assistant devil's advocate (09a37f)

  2. the notion that after 3000 americans were murdered on 9/11 that any president was going to leave a regime in place that we were at war with since 1991 and that had demonstrated it’s use of WMD to kill people is simple minded

    james conrad (7cd809)

  3. I thought that’s what we did in Kosovo? Except we handed it over to the UN, and they haven’t quite had enough fun there yet.

    Al (b624ac)

  4. At least the UN hasn’t turned Kosovo into a brothel.

    LarryD (feb78b)

  5. ADA, misrepresenting the administration’s position does not help your argument. Assuming you had one.

    LarryD, actually I believe that there was a sex trade scandal involving UN peacekeeping troops in Kosovo, I’ll have to go search and refresh my memory.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  6. SPQR, you are of correct in your reply to LarryD. The mighty UN has been busy with all sorts of horrid acts in their various “peace keeping” operations, including Kosovo. I suppose that LarryD was told only US soldiers ever committed these sorts of crimes.

    JVW (477e5a)

  7. No, JVW, I suspect that LarryD is well aware of the UN peacekeeping operation’s sad history but just forgot about incidents of running protection rackets for brothels and human trafficking in Kosovo.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  8. “For decades, free nations tolerated oppression in the Middle East for the sake of stability. In practice, this approach brought little stability and much oppression, so I have changed this policy.”

    But he didn’t. Not in Saudi Arabia, not in Egypt. We’ve sent people to Syria to be tortured. We support Musharraf in Pakistan. And for Israel he’s that left wing rag The Economist</a.

    blah (fb88b3)

  9. Americans are united only in the belief that it is important to pay lip service to democracy promotion and human rights. Not even Bush takes the Bush doctrine seriously.

    Moops (444e9b)

  10. No no no, Moops. You mean “The U.N. is united only in the belief. . .” not “Americans are. . . .” Just wanted to correct your mistake.

    JVW (477e5a)

  11. Endorsing is a bit strong of a word. How about- going along with what they have been handed by the previous administration so that they can get elected?….hmmmm utilizing is maybe a better word… or better, utilizing the jist of the “Bush Doctrine”. I bet they disagree on methods too…well, maybe,…I guess that depends on who is buttering their bread.

    EdWood (c2268a)

  12. Brilliant article and I couldn’t agree more. God bless Bush.

    Christoph (92b8f7)

  13. I wonder how these two charlatans will vote on the next military/war funding bill. Its one thing to mouth slogans and another to stand up and be counted. Osama and the Hildabeast simply are not people I’d want watching my back or depending upon as a foreign leader as the leader of a nation pledged to assist in the event of aggression.

    Thomas Jackson (bf83e0)

  14. The reason that most people haven’t noticed the adherence of Obama and Clinton to this Bush Doctrine is because it’s not the Bush Doctrine people think of. In fact, it’s been standard pundrity since at least the Clinton presidency, and if someone dug they could probably find it formulated in some quote by Clinton (Billy Jeff Clinton, that is). In fact, they could probably find it enunciated by Bush, Sr. and Reagan, if they went far enough back. GWBush has not special claim to it, and the candidates were simply stating what is the common wisdom among the pundits.

    The Bush Doctrine that most people think of as the Bush Doctrine is the doctrine of pre-emptive defense announced during the lead up to the Iraq War: the idea that we can and will strike pre-emptively at any country whom we think is a valid threat to the security of the American people. (ADA referred to it, but distorted it in his description). When Obama and Clinton adhere to that doctrine, that will be news.

    kishnevi (b10352)

  15. “the idea that we can and will strike pre-emptively at any country whom we think is a valid threat”.

    It’s a bit odd to call that the “Bush Doctrine” since it has been the position of almost everyone in history who had a strong-enough military position. The only exceptions are the cowards, the paid traitors, a tiny number of pacifists, and, in recent times, those who despised their own country and didn’t think it was worth defending.

    Doc Rampage (ebfd7a)

  16. In case there was any doubt that Bush himself doesn’t actually buy the Bush doctrine, here’s Bush on Musharraf:

    He’s been a loyal ally in fighting terrorists. He’s also advanced democracy in Pakistan.

    Moops (444e9b)

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