Dick Cheney, former Vice President, and daughter Liz have stepped up their criticism of President Barack Obama’s foreign policy — as part of an announcement creating a new group, the Alliance for a Strong America.
The Cheneys’ press release announces: “the formation and launch of The Alliance for a Strong America, a 501(c)4 grassroots organization that will advocate for a restoration of American strength and power. The group will be led by former Vice President Cheney, who will serve as Chairman and Liz Cheney, who will be the group’s President. The committee is supported by citizens who are dedicated to the hard but necessary task of preserving freedom and restoring American strength and power in the wake of the Obama administration’s national security failures.”
And from the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubini:
Foreign policy experts, former officials and military personnel who travel invariably have precisely the same reaction. “Where is America?” is the refrain they hear.
But the problem is not simply the Obama administration, nor the Democratic Party as a whole. On the GOP side, the public debate has become unserious, slogan-oriented and fixated with small and large scandals at the expense of other topics. When Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) tells conservatives that the National Security Agency is “listening” to their calls, or right-wing media outlets inveigh against military action in Syria to enforce a red line, or candidates with zero experience in foreign policy run for office, the GOP has a problem.
Ronald Reagan ran for office and then instituted an about-face on foreign policy after talking, writing and debating foreign policy for decades and making his campaign, in large part, about U.S. national security.
It would be helpful to have some experienced voices both to promote the debate and to shift the priorities of both parties. It’s time to stop slashing defense to pay for runaway spending. It’s time to have a realistic discussion about what foreign aid does and why and when we use it as a tool of statecraft. And it is equally important to make clear that the alternative to Obama is not, as critics say, “continuous war.”
Perhaps the left and right have forgotten, but until Obama, presidents of both parties were committed to keeping Europe whole and free, and did so without wars. (They also did so over the objections of left-wing nuclear freeze types like Obama and now Vice President Joe Biden.)
And since the president will not, it is up to conservatives to make the case for intelligence collection and for keeping the option to interrogate and detain enemy combatants.