New York Times Examines How Hillary Became A Hawk
It has not come as a surprise to many that Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton has been striving to associate herself with President Barack Obama, who remains a political force within their party, particularly among the critical constituency of African-American voters.
But on the subject of foreign policy, Clinton has drawn distinctions and shown some distance with the current Commander-in-Chief. In a race dominated by the isolationist populism of her primary competitor Bernie Sanders and GOP candidate Donald Trump, she remains the last “hawk” in the race.
New York Times reporter Adam Landler takes a deep dive into the development of Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton’s views on global and international affairs.
“Unlike other recent presidents — Obama, George W. Bush or her husband, Bill Clinton — Hillary Clinton would assume the office with a long record on national security. There are many ways to examine that record, but one of the most revealing is to explore her decades-long cultivation of the military — not just civilian leaders like Gates, but also its high-ranking commanders, the men with the medals. Her affinity for the armed forces is rooted in a lifelong belief that the calculated use of military power is vital to defending national interests, that American intervention does more good than harm and that the writ of the United States properly reaches, as Bush once put it, into ‘any dark corner of the world,’” he writes.
A New Phase In US Global Leadership
President Barack Obama’s foreign policy doctrine is likely to be defined by the actions he did not take, rather than the ones he did. From the war in Syria to taking on the increasingly aggressive regimes in China and Russia, Obama has chosen to stand on the sidelines watching as US influence has waned. Whether his administration is succeeded by the isolationist tendencies of Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz or the more interventionist doctrine of Hillary Clinton remains a critical component in shaping US foreign policy in the next decades.
But it certainly appears, as matters stand today, that America will be less of a player in driving international affairs than it was two decades ago, argues Robert Kaplan in National Interest.
“This partial retreat of American power has international and domestic causes. On the international front, vast urbanization, population growth and natural-resource scarcities have eroded the power of central authority everywhere. The rise of individual consciousness thanks to the communications revolution has only accelerated the trend. The United States just cannot influence other states’ decisions the way it used to. Meanwhile, the maturation of both violent millenarian movements and regional hegemons are direct threats to U.S. power projection,” asserts Kaplan.
“The United States, in other words, is signaling that it will less and less be providing world order. This is not the work of one president. It is the beginning of a new phase in American foreign policy, following the hyperactivity of World War II and the Cold War—and their long aftershocks in the Balkans and the Middle East. Social and economic turmoil at home and intractable complexity and upheaval abroad are driving Washington toward retrenchment,” he continues.