February 2, 2013

Can a Realist Be a Republican?

Daniel McCarthy, American Conservative

AP Photo

To the extent that realists like Hagel and Colin Powell voted for or promoted many of the GOP’s foreign-policy mistakes I agree with Ross. They were and are part of the problem. But the solution I sometimes hear from conservative thinkers who aren’t committed to any particular foreign policy is paradoxical. They advise working within the GOP and conservative movement: avoid upsetting anyone, and if you’re nice enough, eventually everyone will listen to you. This is exactly what has led realists—think of Powell selling the Iraq War at the UN, or Hagel’s own vote for the war—into policy failure and rhetorical inconsistency.

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TAGGED: Realism, GOP