Huckabee and the world

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on December 21, 2007

I finally got around to reading presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee's essay in Foreign Affairs a couple days back, and I must confess that there's enough miss in his hit-and-miss outline that he sounds more like Barack Obama than Ronald Reagan.

In a New York Times profile last week, Huckabee said that his thinking on foreign policy was informed by Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. That's like saying that your policy views on economics are informed by Adam Smith and Karl Marx.

Honestly, as others have noted, Huckabee sounds a heck of a lot more like Jimmy Carter than he does like any Republican since Barry Goldwater. Huckabee's throwaway line denouncing the "Bush administration's arrogant bunker mentality" isn't designed to win him Republican votes. (Maybe it gets him some independents, but his socially conservative views are going to prevent his foreign policy from winning any Democratic converts.)

In fact, Huckabee's "bunker mentality" line will probably earn him GOP ire. Most Republicans don't believe that the failure to get Jacques Chirac to approve our invasion of Iraq is evidence of unilateralism or isolationism.

Huckabee's take on Pakistan and Iran is also troubling. Like Obama, Huckabee seems all in favor of invading an ally armed with nuclear weapons (Pakistan), but wants to pander to an enemy that is seeking nuclear weapons.

Huckabee advocates more carrots for an Iranian regime that has shown little desire to respond to carrots offered by Europe for the past several years. Apparently, Huckabee, wanting it more, can do better -- I doubt it. Huckabee also apparently forgets that whole Iranian hostage crisis and "Death to America" mantra of which that country is so proud, and blames the absence of a diplomatic relationship on the U.S.

I never thought I'd hear a serious Republican join the blame America first chorus, but Huckabee is now its most prominent member.

Huckabee is not qualified to be president -- and I doubt that choosing John Bolton as Secretary of State and Duncan Hunter as Secretary of Defense could save him from a Jimmy Carteresque foreign policy disaster.

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December 2007



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