- Bill Richardson with A New Realism: A Realistic and Principled Foreign Policy
- Mike Huckabee with America's Priorities in the War on Terror: Islamists, Iraq, Iran, and Pakistan
Gov Richardon's piece is broad and defining, even wonkish, but not unexpected. Richardson's campaign and debate performance has left me utterly unimpressed, but the governor is nonetheless incredibly qualified and, unlike most post-Cold War politicians, actually views foreign policy under a somewhat-consistent lens. I do not know why, if true, he is no longer angling for the VP nod, given that Secretary of State, his best-suited gig, is likely going to Ambassador Holbrooke in a Clinton administration.
Gov Huckabee's writing is a lot like his speaking: One moment he is sensible, the next moment he jumps off the deep end—completely clueless and confused, to the point where you have to ask how his staff lets him go outside so unprepared, and then you remember he does not really have a staff.
According to Gov Huckabee, the current administration is guilty of an "arrogant bunker mentality" and is "vulnerable to the animosity of others:"
Much like a top high school student, if it is modest about its abilities and achievements, if it is generous in helping others, it is loved. But if it attempts to dominate others, it is despised.
As an exemplar policy:
My administration will recognize that the United States' main fight today does not pit us against the world but pits the world against the terrorists. At the same time, my administration will never surrender any of our sovereignty, which is why I was the first presidential candidate to oppose ratification of the Law of the Sea Treaty, which would endanger both our national security and our economic interests.
Those anecdotes are ridiculous and naïve, not folksy and charming, and I have no idea why he attacks something as irrelevant as UNCLOS in his essay's second paragraph—a great start to ridding the US of that bunker mentality, too.
Governor Huckabee, do you have confidence in the government of Iraq, the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, that he's going to do what needs to be done?
The governor responded:
I think there's some real doubt about that, Wolf. But I want to remind all of us on this stage and the people in the audience that there's a reason that this is such a struggle. And I think we miss it over here in the West.
Today's the birthday of Ronald Reagan. We all would believe that Ronald Reagan is the one who ended the Cold War and Ronald Reagan is the one who helped bring about the collapse of the Soviet Union.
But there's a group of people who don't believe that, and that's the Taliban. They believe they brought about the demise of the Soviet Union because of the way they fought in Afghanistan.
And what I want to just mention is that it is not the size of the dog in the fight, it is the size of the fight in the dog. And we underestimate—grossly underestimate how fierce this dog is and how determined they are to destroy every last one of us.
Anyhow, after reading this article and watching the debates, it should come as no surprise that conservative elites are literally freaking out over the prospect of a Huckabee presidency.