Rani Khalek reminds us about something that many of us already knew and that is that Hillary Clinton is a neoconservative war hawk. Further evidence of that is that pretty much the entire neoconservatives and Republican foreign policy are gung-ho about her, seeing her as even more likely than the Obama to threaten to use of force against other nations, even though the Obama administration has hardly been restrained in its willingness.
“I would say all Republican foreign policy professionals are anti-Trump,” leading neoconservative Robert Kagan told a group gathered around him, groupie-style, at a “foreign policy professionals for Hillary” fundraiser I attended last week. “I would say that a majority of people in my circle will vote for Hillary.”
As the co-founder of the neoconservative think tank Project for the New American Century, Kagan played a leading role in pushing for America’s unilateral invasion of Iraq, and insisted for years afterwards that it had turned out great.
The event raised $25,000 for Clinton. Two rising stars in the Democratic foreign policy establishment, Amanda Sloat and Julianne Smith, also spoke.
The way they described Clinton’s foreign policy vision suggested that if elected president in November, she will escalate tensions with Russia, double down on military belligerence in the Middle East and generally ignore the American public’s growing hostility to intervention.
When Robbie Martin, a filmmaker who recently produced a three-part documentary on the neoconservative movement, asked how Clinton plans to deal with Ukraine, Kagan responded enthusiastically.
“I know Hillary cares more about Ukraine than the current president does,” Kagan replied. “[Obama] said to me [that he wouldn’t arm Ukraine because] he doesn’t want a nuclear war with Russia,” he added, rolling his eyes dismissively. “I don’t think Obama cares about Putin anymore at all. I think he’s hopeless.”
Kagan is married to Victoria Nuland, the Obama administration’s hardline assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian Affairs. Nuland, who would likely serve in a senior position in a Clinton,administration, supports shipping weapons to Ukraine despite major opposition from European countries and concerns about the neo-Nazi elements those weapons would empower.
Another thing neoconservatives and liberal hawks have in common is confidence that the foreign policy establishment is right, and the growing populist hostility to military intervention is naïve and uninformed.
Kagan complained that Americans are “so focused on the things that have gone wrong in recent years, they miss the sort of basic underlying, unusual quality of the international order that we’ve been living in.
They have nothing but contempt for anyone who does not support their warlike goals. After all, it is not they who pay the price or whose loved ones are killed and maimed by these wars.
If Clinton is elected, we are going to have our work cut out for us in trying to stop her from getting the country involved in new wars or the escalation of the current ones.