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Issue III | June 2010

Redefining the National Interest

YALIBERTY.ORG/FPH ForeignPolicyHandbook.com Why Google Made the Right Decision Daniel Suraci

RAND PAUL

Is “Free Trade” Really Free Trade? Nelson Chase

Craig Dixon & Jeremy Davis

NSC 68 Jihan Huq

Greece and the Federal Reserve Elliot Engstrom

Weapons Of Mass Nonsense Brian Beyer

YOUNG AMERICANS for LIBERTY


The Young Americans for Liberty’s

Foreign Policy Handbook

June 2010


FEATURED | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

Rand Paul’s Foreign Policy Craig Dixon & Jeremy Davis “Paul's refusal to commit one way or another to war with Iran is more pragmatic and realistic than a libertarian who would outright refuse to take action against Iran, were they to ever actually attack the United States.” “However, Rand does stress that when the time must come where war seems imminent, then Congress must fulfill its constitutional duty and provide a proper declaration of war.”

P. 15

Why Google Made the Right Decision Daniel Suraci

Greece and the Federal Reserve Elliot Engstrom

P. 11

P. 13

Is “Free Trade” Really Free Trade? Nelson Chase

InterestOfTheState.com Home of the Foreign Policy Handbook | Redefining the “National Interest” One Issue at a Time

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Executive Director Jeff Frazee

Contents 3

Weapons of Mass Nonsense

By Brian Beyer 4

Currency Supremacy: Pick Your Poison

Editor in Chief Roy Antoun

By Brendon DeMeo 6

Is “Free Trade� Really Free Trade?

By Nelson Chase 7

Contributors

Need a Solution to North Korea?

By Wesley Messamore 8

Wesley Messamore Nelson Chase

Prevent Preventive War

By Daniel Suraci 10

Jihan Huq

NSC 68

Brian Beyer

By Jihan Huq 11

13

Jeremy Davis

Greece and the Federal Reserve

By Elliot Engstrom

Daniel Suraci

Why Google Made the Right Decision

Brendon DeMeo

By Daniel Suraci 15

Craig Dixon

Rand Paul

Elliot Engstrom

By Craig Dixon & Jeremy Davis 19

Marissa Yturralde-Giannotta

Wargaming: Afghanistan

By Marissa Yturralde-Giannotta 21

How Did You Not See This Coming

By Roy Antoun YAL MISSION STATEMENT The mission of Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) is to train, educate, and mobilize youth activists committed to "winning on principle." Our goal is to cast the leaders of tomorrow and reclaim the policies, candidates, and direction of our government. YAL STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES We are the Young Americans for Liberty (YAL). As Americans we recognize the God-given natural rights of life, liberty, and property set forth by our Founding Fathers. Our country was created to protect the freedoms of the individual and directed by we the people. We recognize that freedom deserves responsibility and therefore we hold ourselves to a high moral character and conduct. Integrity emphasizes our stance towards action. Principle defines our outlook towards government. Peace and prosperity drives our ambitions towards our countrymen. We inherit a corrupt, coercive world that has lost respect for voluntary action. Our government has failed and dragged our country into moral decay. The political class dominates the agenda with a violent, callous, controlling Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Letter From the Editor Dear Reader, Americans sometimes operate like squirrels. They have attention spans that, at best, are three seconds long but enhance slightly according to issues that concern them and them only. When the House passed the “historical” healthcare overhaul, the American media fed us two responses. It was either wonderful or a horrible, socialist, maniacal move on behalf of the Barack Obama “regime.” And being the self-centered political operators they are, Americans immediately hopped on the “this is wonderful for me” bandwagon, or the “I’m going to have to pay taxes out of my ears” bandwagon. In either case, Americans were hopping on a bandwagon not even fully understanding at least half the legislation. Heck, even the legislators couldn’t understand half the legislation. And then came Rand Paul’s randslide victory in the Kentucky Republican Primary on March 18th. And all of a sudden, just 24 hours later, the hot topic of media headlines became “Rand Paul opposes Civil Rights legislation.” What this has to do with the grander scheme of things is beyond me, but all libertarian-minded individuals throughout the United States suddenly became racist bigots who want to destroy Barack Obama and all Civil Rights-related legislation. So we, as a society, have successfully moved from healthcare to… Civil Rights in literally less than three weeks. Ignoring the actual philosophical legality of individual property rights in the U.S., both the Left and the Right missed the whole point. Primarily, no one is entitled anything in society; you own the fruits of your labor. Secondly, who cares? As Robert Gibbs stated soon after the leftist propaganda hit television screens, this talk “shouldn’t have a place in our political dialogue in 2010.” And he’s right. Why? Because we all seem to forget that the military industrial complex grows and we’re fighting two overseas wars. Ever notice how Iraq and Afghanistan became dead news after November 4th, 2008? It isn’t because the wars are ending, quite the contrary actually. They’ve escalated. It isn’t because the wars have become necessary, prudent, or sound. It’s because everything we are fed through our television screens gear us where cultural elites want us to be. The so-called “Liberal media” seemed to have run out of ammunition and started throwing pebbles at the Tea Party and Liberty Movement. They couldn’t get us on healthcare; they never read the bill. They couldn’t get us on the PATRIOT Act; Obama signed it back into legislation. They couldn’t even get us on taxes; even they’re sick of paying them. And now they can’t get us on the wars; they’ve expanded and are still being waged. So they resorted to red herrings as their last-ditch effort to keep incumbents in office. And while they (the Left and Right) play their petty games with our economy, healthcare, and 50-year-old legislation, a couple hundred thousand troops remain stationed in the Middle East at tax payer expense to find one, singular man that we all forgot about, Osama Bin Laden.

Roy M. Antoun

“Of the Youth, by the Youth, for the Youth” The objective of the Foreign Policy Handbook is to rationally discuss the faults in American foreign policy and offer practical, liberty-minded solutions. Over the past century, our elected leaders have collectively corrupted U.S. foreign relations into a hotbed of backfiring interventionism. It is the job of the youth to mobilize and inform, because it is we who will be paying the price in blood and gold. While views expressed in the articles do not represent all the members of YAL, they do express the views of the respective authors. Young Americans for Liberty does not support or oppose any candidate for office.

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Photo courtesy of XSeer.com

has been one of the most pressing foreign policy issues from the mid twentieth century to present. In 2003, Iran offered a secret proposal to the United States that would have had Iran “accept peace with Israel and cut off material assistance to Palestinian armed groups and pressure them to halt terrorist attacks within Israel's 1967 borders.” Unfortunately, the deal was promptly rejected by the Bush administration significantly hindering any meaningful diplomacy or peace efforts in the future. Many of the current foreign policy woes would have been much easier to handle had the agreement been accepted. Such arrogance and dismissal of diplomacy On May 14th, as a monumental nuclear deal did not end with the Bush presidency. Rather, it was was being brokered between Iran, Turkey, and Brafurthered under America‟s “Peace President,” zil, Russian President Dmitry MedBrian Beyer Barack Obama. As mentioned earlier, the recent vedev gave these odds for success, agreement between Iran, Turkey, and Brazil imme"Okay. As my friend the Brazilian president is an diately created a firestorm in the United States. optimist, I shall also be an optimist. I give 30 perRather than accepting the terms that the US had ofcent." The deal would require that 1,200 kg of Iran‟s fered almost verbatim in October, calls for sanctions stock of uranium (enriched at 3.5%) be shipped off became louder and louder. to Turkey in exchange for 120 kg of uranium enIranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is riched to 20%. With slim odds, the Western world extremely unhappy with this hostility. Fighting back was hopeful that the deal would fail. Much to their against the unwarranted criticisms, he warned, “If chagrin, however, the deal was sealed. they [world powers] reject the agreement and start As soon as the agreement was announced, it playing new games, then they should know that the was met with harsh criticism from many western doors for negotiations and underpowers, and most loudly from the United States. President Obama “Such arrogance and dismissal of standings will be closed.” What this effectively means is that if commented, “Iran [needs] to up- diplomacy did not end with the this treaty is not taken seriously, hold its international obligations Bush presidency. Rather, it was there will be no other peaceful or face increased sanctions and furthered under America’s ‘Peace avenues that the US and its allies pressure, including UN sancPresident,’ Barack Obama. “ could pursue. tions." While criticism of Iran is This leaves the Obama admininothing new, there was another stration with several options: 1.) continue to pursue hypocritical twist: the plan that Iran signed was economy crippling sanctions; 2.) preemptively nearly identical to the one proposed by the United strike Iran if matters become too „grave;‟ or 3.) take States in October. Such action by the US begs a serithe deal as it is. As recent rhetoric has demonous question: is America really interested in diplostrated, option 3 is completely off of the table, and macy? option 1 is being aggressively pursued. The most Based on past and forthcoming actions, the disconcerting of the three, option 2, is becoming answer is a resounding no. Middle Eastern peace more likely by the day.

Weapons of Mass Nonsense

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 While Joint Chief of Staff Chairman Admiral Michael Mullen considers a military strike on Iran the “last option,” actions by the US government appear to be to the contrary. In January, the United States signed a contract with a California shipping company to transport 10 ammunition containers full of bunker buster type bombs to a naval base on Diego Garcia, a British Indian Ocean Territory. The base was used to launch attacks during the Iraq Wars in 1991 and 2003, a telling sign of what it will be used for in the future. In addition, the US and Israel are inextricably linked. From 1976 to 2004, Israel was the number one recipient of military aid from America. It lost its title to Iraq, but only due to the war. Most alarmingly, the US engaged in a war game with Israel under the scenario that Iran acquired a nuclear bomb, signaling the possibility that a war with Iran is on the horizon. Because of the familial like ties between the two countries, it is almost certain that the US will defend Israel‟s actions, either through force or rhetoric, no matter what. However, options 1 and 2 are based on the faulty assumption that Iran is developing a nuclear weapon. This could not be further from the truth. In a report issued to Congress by the Director of National Intelligence, there is no sign that a nuclear bomb is being developed: “We continue to asses Iran is keeping open the option to develop nuclear weapons though we do not know whether Tehran eventually will decide to produce nuclear weapons.” Here, it is made crystal clear that Iran is considering a nuclear bomb as an option, but has not definitively decided to do so. The United States and its allies are headed down a dangerous course. With no proof of a nuclear weapons program whatsoever, calls for sanctions and eventual war with Iran are becoming louder than prudence would dictate. The dubious causes for the war in Iraq are presciently parallel to those causes driving a future war with Iran: weapons of mass destruction, autocratic regimes in need Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

of change, and government links with Al Qaeda. America, with a treasury in a quagmire of red, a fragile economy, and an exhausted military, cannot afford to wage another war or isolate another Middle Eastern country. The results would be disastrous.

Currency Supremacy: Pick your Poison The U.S. dollar. Once considered the sturdiest of all the worlds currencies, it has fallen from grace. The euro. The challenger to the dollar that has been more valuable, for Brendon DeMeo years. Which currency will prevail in the end? Which should we put our trust in, and save in? The answer is neither. Lately the euro has experienced troubles, as we have seen by the Greek debt crisis. The euro is steadily declining in value. What‟s also telling is that the dollar cannot seem to tie the euro in value, despite the Euro‟s freefall. As any Austrian economist knows, an economy run by a central bank, and a currency with no real backing, is ultimately doomed to failure, or at least a lot of serious problems. The U.S. and the Eurozone are both plagued by a central bank, and both have currencies that have no real backing. The only real reason to save in dollars or euro‟s is for the sake

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 of liquidity. Unlike assets such as gold, property, and valuables, money can be easily spent. With those facts in mind, why would anyone, who has enough cash on hand and in the bank to satisfy their personal liquidity requirements, save in cash? Surely we must reach a threshold, where it is obviously better to save in assets. Both the U.S. and the nations of the Eurozone are welfare states (some are welfare-warfare states, such as the U.S.). As Ludwig von Mises made clear in his book Socialism, and as F.A. Hayek made clear in his book The Road to Serfdom, socialism, or a welfare state of any sort, will ultimately crumble under the weight of insolvency. We can see that happening in America now with the Medicare and Social Security crises. So, if we believe men like Mises or Hayek, it becomes absurd to put faith in the currency of a welfare state. Going back to the Greek debt crisis, we know the cause was their overblown welfare state., which demanded unsustainable levels of spending. We see the toll the welfare state mentality has taken on the minds of the Greek people, many of which rioted due to the austerity measures Greece was forced to take. Many Europeans think they are getting good services for their astronomically high taxes, but as we see with Greece, their programs are ultimately unaffordable. Many economists consider a weakened euro a good thing for export nations like Greece, but that doesn‟t change the fact that the currency itself is untrustworthy. And if the EU decides to inflate the euro in order to help export nations, it makes the currency rather dangerous to save in, much like the pre-euro Greek drachma was. All welfare states are merely economic timebombs waiting to explode. From the German Weimar Republic, to modern day Greece, we have abundant evidence of this. No one can wisely rely on a welfare-state currency. Now, in the Bible, Jesus talked about building ones house upon the rock or upon the sand. Obviously He was not talking about economics, but, a similar metaphor can be applied Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

to the dollar and the euro. If one saves too much dollars or euro‟s or relies upon either currency, they are “building their house on the sand.” If one saves in assets, such as gold, they are more likely “building on the rock.” If one builds their house on the sand, the day will come where it comes crashing down - they will suffer financially. This is not to say that we should not take any risks or refuse to invest, but we should be very wary of relying on fiat currency, printed in nations with spendthrift governments. So, as time marches on, rest assured that neither currency will ultimately “win.” Even if the dollar overtakes the euro, we still have “Helicopter Ben” Bernanke as our Federal Reserve chairman. Even if the euro bounces back a bit, the European Union and the nations that are involved are run by a good deal of spendthrift politicians. It is apparent, given the current economic climate and the debt levels, that we should not trust either currency. In the words of the great American writer Ernest Hemmingway, “The 1st panacea of a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the 2nd is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; a permanent ruin.” Don‟t put your faith in a mismanaged nation, or its mismanaged currency.

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 foreign states. It is clearly set forth in the Constitution under the Commerce Clause, which says, “The Congress shall have Power... To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations.” Of course big government supporters don‟t wish to look at the Constitution anymore. By giving the President and the Executive branch the power to enter trade agreements, such as NAFTA, Constitutional checks and balances are being upset and the overarching expanding Presidential power continues to grow. This is a dangerous precedent being set. (The same can be said of the unconstitutional transfer of power to the executive branch to declare war). This begs the question, has trade with the The short answer is no. The North American Mexico and Canada increased because of NAFTA? Free Trade Agreement is promoting free trade beYes it has. Since 1994 trade with Mexico and Canada tween the United States and our local neighbors has increased dramatically. What has suffered only. Is it truly promoting true though is our trade with other nations. Since Mexico free trade without conditions, as Nelson Chase and Canada are now preferred trading partners our the word free would indicate? No, NAFTA is not. trade with other nations has suffered. What is even NAFTA has had many promising aspects to it but it more alarming is that we are now using Trade Policy has also transferred powers given to the Congress by as a weapon of our interventionist foreign policy. the Constitution to the Executive The United States tells friendly branch. Here is the real problem “… a truly constitutionally nations not to trade with certain with NAFTA. The President of the based government would leave nations (see Cuba, Iran, North United States entered into trade NAFTA thus ending preferred Korea as great examples) and if agreements with Mexico and Can- trade partnerships with Canthey do they are effectively acting ada. This is unconstitutional. Un- ada and Mexico. It would stop against the United States. Ander NAFTA these two nations are using trade policy as a foreign other class of preferred trading is preferred trading partners with policy tool and create an even created from this. This new prethe United States. This effectively playing field for all nations.” ferred class is your either with us creates two classes of trading or we don‟t trade with you and neither will our alpartners: NAFTA and everyone else. Also, the Fedlies. This is truly not free trade. eral government is using our trade policy as a forSo what should the United States do? I argue eign policy weapon. What is the answer to this probthat a truly constitutionally based government lem? The answer is to leave NAFTA and create true would leave NAFTA thus ending preferred trade Free Trade. What is Free Trade? Free Trade is just partnerships with Canada and Mexico. It would stop that; free trade between nations for the betterment using trade policy as a foreign policy tool and create of the nations without preferred status, exemptions an even playing field for all nations. The Congress or clauses. would take back its Constitutional duty of promotThe Congress‟s role, according to the Constiing trade with foreign nations. For in true Free tution, is to regulate trade between our nation and Trade the United States can bolster our economy by

Is “Free Trade” Really Free Trade?

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 making our goods more accessible worldwide. At the same time, we can peacefully exchange our ideas of liberty worldwide without coercing nations.

bornly as commentators and analysts like to avoid that question, the key to solving our world‟s problems lies in understanding their causes. Why is North Korea so aggressive and combative? What can we do to solve the problem at its root, so that instead of simply responding to North Korean military action with firepower of our own, we can take steps towards a less aggressive North Korea? The answer is obvious: the problem is North Korea‟s economic isolation. History has demonstrated resoundingly that economic barriers are preludes to military aggression between nations while the flow of commerce over borders strengthens their ties. The Atlas Economic Research Foundation put it well in its petition for free trade to the G20 Conference (http://atlasnetwork.org/ tradepetition/): A great deal of rigorous empirical research supports the proposition that trade promotes peace. Perhaps the most tragic example of what happens when that insight is ignored is World War II. International trade collapsed by 70 percent between 1929 and 1932, in no small part because of America‟s 1930 SmootHawley tariff and the retaliatory tariffs of other nations. Economist Martin Wolf notes that „this collapse in trade was a huge spur to the search for autarky and Lebensraum, most of all for Germany and Japan.‟ The most ghastly and deadly wars in human history soon followed. By reducing war, trade saves lives.

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Need a Solution to North Korea? After North Korea‟s recent torpedo attack on a South Korean naval ship, tensions are rising, and the Korean Peninsula looks Wesley Messamore ripe for war. And as MSNBC reports: “the White House said Seoul can continue to count on the full backing of the United States and said U.S. military commanders had been told to work with their South Korean counterparts „to ensure readiness and to deter future aggression.‟” The question is why? As often and as stub-

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Accepting this as true, there can be no wonder why North Korea threatens and attacks its neighbors- it‟s quite possibly the most economically isolated country on earth. The way to solve this problem is to pursue a deliberate policy of opening trade as much as possible between North Korea and the rest of the world.

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Critics will quickly point out that this is no easy solution, and I grant that it isn‟t easy, but it is necessary, and it‟s the only way to bring North Korea in the global community on peaceful and friendly terms. While Kim Jong Il and North Korea‟s communist government may not cooperate as fully as we‟d like, the onus is still on us to try- and we haven‟t been trying hard enough. The Obama Administration should be fiercely determined to open up North Korea to more foreign trade. It should make an- at worst truly admirable, but at best highly successful- attempt to accomplish this seemingly impossible feat by shamelessly pandering to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il‟s (oddly) voracious appetite for the fruits of Western culturewith promises of more to come through opened trade. There is a solution to North Korean aggression- a truly long-term solution that will improve the lives of North Koreans and bring them into peaceful intercourse with the rest of the world- that solution is trade.

Prevent Preventive War Preventive war (sometimes called the "Bush Doctrine") is the premise that a country should defend itself when a threat is Daniel Suraci 'inevitable' but not imminent. Preventive war should not be confused with preemptive war. Preemptive War (or preemptive strike), which is generally allowed in international law, occurs when a threat is imminent, i.e. a neighboring countries is lining up tanks on the border and the threat will happen soon. Preventive war on the other hand is when there is an 'inevitable' threat (meaning at any point in the future). Without U.N. approval, preventive war is illegal under modern International Law, and there are good policies reasons for this: preventive war is in fact aggression. More importantly though, preventive war was illegal entirely under customary international law. This was simply called aggression, or imperialism, and was not tolerated or justified by a group of bureaucrats. The primary problem, as shown by the Second Iraq War, is deciding when there is an actual threat. Are bad words between leaders evidence of an inevitable threat? Are some out of context spy photos? Even with evidence of an eventual threat, one should never forget the old adage, "The first casualty when war comes is truth."

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 There is rarely a threat that has not been invented for which America has gone to war in the 20th century. Whether communism or fabricated stories of atrocities, Americans have been led to believe many lies, exaggerations on our fabled enemies, and have been read only sugar coating on our allies. While Hitler was demonized, Stalin was victimized. While we concerned ourselves for our British allies and rightfully condemned fascists as racist, the British hunted aborigines in Australia for sport (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/ worldnews/1578552/Britain-should-apologise-toAborigines.html). The allies are angels and the enemies are devils is the first lesson of war propaganda. The first Iraq war was sold to the American people through a completely falsified story involving the murder of babies: "'Of all the accusations made against [Saddam Hussein],' MacArthur observed, 'none had more impact on American public opinion than the one about Iraqi soldiers removing 312 babies from their incubators and leaving them to die on the cold hospital floors of Kuwait City'" (Stauber & Rampton, Toxic Sludge is Good for You). Unfortunately, this story was entirely composed, in order to get the American people to go to war. After the war, no evidence or other witnesses of the event could be found. When the burden of proof is as low as this to decide to go to war, there is no stopping a country from declaring war. And the winner of this war decides who is right and justified. Like aggression, preventive war leads to the "winner writing the history", thus showing a brutish outdated belief that might is right. Nor should we forget the motivation of individuals who desire to go to war. Whether Presidents trying to hide scandals from us, bankers looking to make massive loans, the military-industrial complex making profits or the Keynesian economist who (wrongly) believes war will stimulate the economy. A perfect example of self-motivation is the "Monica missiles" which Bill Clinton fired into Serbia, Iraq, Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

Afghanistan and Sudan. It certainty seemed that whenever news would come out about Clinton's scandal, somehow there was a new target to blow up. This concern is very much the reason that the President cannot declare war, but can only command the forces after Congress has. War benefits few at the expense of many. Preventive war give those few a lesser hurdle to climb, and for that matter, more targets.

It is easy to get lost in the ideas of nations at war and forget the people of which these nations are composed. The American common law tradition, and customary International Law recognize a right to defend one's self only when the threat is imminent (immediate). If there is no recognized right for people to have preventive self-defense (for all the policies reasons stated above), then how could Americans as a collective suddenly have this right? Last, there are always considerations of the costs of war: primarily civil liberties, lives, economic production. Not only does war harm the country being attacked in these ways, but also the country who is the aggressor. This has been the case in America since the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798 leading to the Espionage Act of 1917, the Sedition Act of 1918, and today, the Patriot Act. For example, the 1918 Act prohibits "disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language" about the United States Government. Furthermore, war diverts productive use of resources to sectors of the economy whose primary purpose is to destroy resources. For these reasons, war should always be considered the last resort, not the first one. The doctrine of preventive war is not dangerous only to the people being attacked, but to the aggressing country's liberty and economic soundness as well. America would do well to forever end the practice of preventive war, and for Americans to be skeptical of enemies that politicians create.

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Photo courtesy of NATO

NSC 68 Today, most people have not heard of the NSC 68. Many (including myself) were oblivious to the historical documents and how Jihan Huq the NSC 68 was a blueprint for Military Keynesianism, the National Security State and how some of the policies of the Cold War has influence upon our current foreign policy To start off, the NSC 68 is an actual classified document and was authorized by President Truman in September of 1950. The document consists of several strategies for defeating the former USSR financially, militarily and of course strategically. The main objectives of the NSC 68 were of the following: 1) The United States must become a much more powerful economic and military power. 2) The United States must be the lead on building a functional 3) and economic system in the free world. U.S policies and actions must “foster” systematic change in the Soviet Union. These objectives are what merely shaped much of the United State's Cold War foreign policy and thus also opened doors for the National Security State. During the same Truman years, defense spending skyrocketed (initially for the Korean War). Ultimately, the aggressive foreign policy lead to the expansion of the federal government. With the National Security Act, the creation of the CIA, Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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the creation of the National Security Council, NSA, and also merged the Department of War and the Department of the Navy under the National Military Establishment (which eventually became the Department of Defense) followed. Even with all this military and intelligence expansion, the creators of the NSC 68 (George Kennan to name one) were more than aware that the USSR was not a military match against the United States. A great contemporary example of the National Security State is the Bush Administration's violation of the Surveillance Act or FISA, passed by Congress in 1978. The PATRIOT ACT is also another example of how FISA is being misused if not used at all-excluding the violation of other civil liberties. After the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union, the objectives of the NSC 68 are still similar to current actions of our foreign policy. Almost after a decade of the Cold War, there has been a few prominent influential officials who wrote “Rebuilding America's Defenses” -a document that is a part of the Project for New American Century (PNAC). PNAC‟s document required America's role in the world to be much more militant and opportunistic on transferring the Middle East and elsewhere. The main idea behind the PNAC was later adopted by the Bush Administration. Another similar NSC 68 approach is the containing of terrorism in the War on Terror. One primary example is the invasion of Iraq in 2003. According to then President George Bush, Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11, he was evil dictator and had weapons of mass destruction-therefore we toppled the Baathist government and overthrew Saddam. “The free society is limited in its choice of means to achieve its ends. Compulsion is the negation of freedom, except when it is used to enforce the rights common to all.” This strategy echoes the prevalent policy of overthrowing governments by the United States during the Cold War. Whenever it felt a foreign government was at the risk or influence of the Soviet Union/ Communism, the United States would quickly suproy.antoun@yaliberty.org | P.O. Box 2751 Arlington, VA 22202


Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Photo courtesy of REUTERS

port and fund an opposition party to overthrow the government (Cuba, El Salvador, Chile, etc). The NSC 68 also advocated for nation-building. The objectives are what follow: 1) assistance to Western Europe and recovery; 2) assistance to other countries because of their special needs arising after the war, or the cold war and our special interests; 3) assistance to the development of the undeveloped areas (loans and credit to various countries); 4) military assistance to NATO 5) restriction of East-West trade 6) purchase and stockpiling of strategic materials; 7) efforts to reestablish an international economy based on multilateral trade, declining trade barriers, and convertible currencies.

Greece and the Federal Reserve Financial crises can be very difficult events to understand. Even for those who have spent a great deal of time studying such areas Elliot Engstrom as finance and economics, comprehension of these disasters can be elusive. However, analyzing shared elements in the recent American and Greek financial crises can help give even the economic layman insight into their common causes. One word can be used to sum up the basic concept behind both of these crises – overextension. Both the American and Greek governments attempted to take on a much heavier economic load than either could handle. While, in both cases, this has been painted by some as a noble, humanitarian effort to help those in need, methods such as inflationary monetary policy tantamount to theft and the disguising of massive budgetary deficits (in both cases with the help of Goldman Sachs) would not justify the means employed even had these efforts been successful, and certainly should be taken to task considering the disastrous ramifications of these actions. In both cases, many are citing unrestrained spending as the source of the problem. For example, CNN wrote of the Greek crisis that “years of unrestrained spending, cheap lending and failure to implement financial reforms…whisked away a curtain of partly

Thus, the numbers 2, 3 and 4 can be completely related to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, financial/aid assistance to other countries and of course our undying support for NATO to stabilize the destructive chaos in Afghanistan.

In conclusion, the NSC 68 not only gave birth to the National Security State and our Cold War policies, it also paved the way for our current, fallacious foreign policy. If this document is read carefully, we can all find that although the Cold War maybe over, the strategies are still the same. Thus, we can merely conclude that our foreign policy does need major revisions/changes. The only way we can truly fix this current mess is if we take a look back at history and learn from our mistakes. Cold War lead to the inevitable expansion of our government and our involvement around the world; it is not only imperative to reexamine the past but to avoid implementing the flaws of our past. Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 fiddled statistics to reveal debt levels and deficits that exceeded limits set by the Eurozone.” Without suggesting that CNN was attempting to be deceptive in this explanation, as the points made certainly are important, it must be noted that things like unrestrained spending, cheap lending, and fiddled statistics are merely symptoms of the deeper disease. Instead of asking the government to spend less, tighten lending laws, and implement financial reform, one should instead ask the deeper question – how does the government even have the power to cause such problems in the first place, and why are the results of such government power so often much more hurtful than helpful? This deeper problem whose symptoms we are now dealing with is central banking. The Federal Reserve System and its Greek counterpart, the Bank of Greece, each had a heavy hand in their respective nations‟ financial collapses. This is due to these banks‟ attempts at economic manipulation – the Federal Reserve directly sets interest rates, while the Greek system uses more indirect methods to do nearly the same thing. Note that it is due to their attempts at economic manipulation, as attempting to set economic law is about as useful as attempting to set gravity. Consider this metaphor of setting gravity. A man claims to be able to set the force of gravity on the earth. He tells a stunt biker that he can set gravity to be half as much as normal. So, the biker attempts to jump a distance that is much longer than he normally would attempt. Upon jumping, the biker finds that, obviously, the first man never was able to set the nature of gravity at all, and he falls to the ground long before reaching his destination. This is exactly what happened due to the actions of central banks in the cases of both the United

States and Greece. Interest rates and other natural economic restrictions were said to be more flexible than they truly were. Thus, individuals who based their actions on this information ended up engaging in activities that were far more risky than usual. However, once they had “jumped,” so to speak, they found that, in fact, economic law was as strict as ever, and they “fell.”

However, if the answer is so obvious, why are we not hearing more about it? Each of these financial crises is extremely complicated, and the above described scene is, it must be admitted, an oversimplification. This is not to say that it is not accurate, but rather that this nature of the crises‟ root cause is not immediately apparent to all upon examining the situation. For example, a person who has been educated their entire life in an economic school that praises central banking, deficit spending, and government action in general would certainly seek to find another cause for the crisis, perhaps by blaming business owners for making risky investments or stating that government controls were not strict enough. However, a person who has studied and understands the damage done by central banking and government economic controls will be quick to realize what has occurred. People with such knowledge are becoming more and more common in both the United States and around the world. “Even today, with an economic crisis raging, the response by our government and the Federal Reserve has been characteristic,” Ron Paul writes in his recent book, End the Fed. “Interest rates are driven to zero and trillions of dollars are pushed into the economy with no evidence that any problems will be solved. The authorities remain oblivious to the fact that they are only making our problems worse in the long run.”

http://www.brooklynyr.com Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 While he may be one of the most popular adversaries of central banking, it is not just Ron Paul, or even Austrian economists, who are calling out government for its role in these financial crises. In an e-mail to supporters, Democratic congressman Dennis Kucinich cited “the 1913 Federal Reserve Act, the banks‟ fractional reserve system and our debt-based economic system” as major factors in the American crisis. Such complex and important issues as economic crises need all the attention we can give them, and it is impossible here to provide the indepth analysis that these situations merit. It also must be noted that while both the United States and Greece have to an extent both engaged in central banking to their detriments, each country does have a different system. Still, the general principles hold, always returning us to that first word – overextension. As long as nations attempt to manipulate the laws of economics to engage in far grander pursuits than they can sustain, we can expect to see such economic crises as have been seen in the United States and Greece in the future.

moral problems with censorship. In January 2010, Google claimed that the Chinese government hacked into human rights activists' Google email (Gmail) accounts. By March of 2010, Google stopped running the censored Chinese version of

“Like in all big government economics, business in China is subject to the capricious whims of the legislators, dictators, or regulators. Many companies that come into China take years to become profitable, and this is usually only after heavy lobbying.”

their search engine and the Chinese government subsequently banned all searches through Google. Did Google do the right thing by pulling out of China? The answer is yes. Not only did Google sacrifice their principles, but the cost of doing business in China is expensive and unpredictable. Like in all big government economics, business in China is subject to the capricious whims of the legislators, dictators, or regulators. Many companies that come into China take years to become profitable, and this is usually only after heavy lobbying. "P&G took three years to become profitable . . . . L‟Oreal took nine. KFC [took] ten years . . . ." (http:// www.economist.com/business-finance/ displaystory.cfm?story_id=15814746). Despite the massive market available due to China's population, many companies are in the red for years (if they ever become profitable) as they mangle their business model to meet Chinese regulatory standards. Needless to say, a company must be well established before even attempting to break into a heavily regulated market, which will lower innovation and prop up monopolies and oligopolies. Despite Google being established for years in the US, they did not even want to bother with China until 2005, while

Why Google Made the Right Decision Google began providing internet search engine services to China only recently, in 2005. When Google began the service, they Daniel Suraci agreed to obey China's censorship regulations, despite controversy and "Google Guy's"

Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 the company had taken off in America as early as 1998. The cost of doing business and regulations in China prevented one of the most successful companies in the world from providing service to their citizens for years. And of course, these same regulations as applied capriciously are what made the Chinese citizens lose this service as well. Constantly having to update their censored materials, perpetual politicking to stay in favor with the government significantly drove up costs for Google. Let alone the moral cost on the team, who values the availability of information greatly. Finally in 2010, having to appease a tyrannical regime, made Google ask "why bother?" There are great lessons to be learned from the Google debacle. First, regulations will prevent companies from providing services. Second, regulations will drive out services or put companies out of business. As American lawmakers condemn the Chinese government for their censorship, they seem to ignore they are (and have been) creating the same problem in America. In the past few months, Congress has passed over 2,500 pages of new laws in only two bills (Financial Reform and Healthcare). Each word of these bills takes productivity away from the private market. Every rule that needs to be followed increases costs for a business, first to learn about the rule and then to comply. These costs are in fact simply another tax on American business. And to top it all off, at any given moment, a massive overhaul could happen at the whim of the legislature, despite any reliance from the private sector. Lawmakers in every country refuse to acknowledge the principle of unseen effects of creating costs to a company. Each additional cost can force the company to fire an employee, to not hire an employee, to lower capital investment thus creating unemployment, lowering innovation and investment, and keeping the prices of goods artificially high (Hazlitt, Economics in One Lesson). Furthermore, as the American consumer Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

base loses the easy credit and dollar reserve status which had kept our market so desirable for companies, when will other countries' companies ask "why bother?" with the American consumer. This costbenefit analysis is necessary to maintain a company. A company will not perform their operation in a country where following the law makes the business fall under their desired profit margin. This is the path of regulation. Politicians regulate the life out of businesses and the market, and then create so called "job bills" to try to breathe life back into them with freshly printed money. The lesson to be learned from Google leaving China is not that the Chinese government is totalitarian, but that big government drives out businesses and goods that make life better for its citizens.

Shock And Paul (Next Page)

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore/ Flickr

Rand Paul, The Practical Solution to a Philosophical Foreign Policy of nation-building. However, many purists express great concern over Paul's positions on some other foreign policy issues. In an interview with Bill O'Reilly, Paul stated clearly that he was not willing to "take anything off the table" with regards to military action against Iran, and has expressed that "Iran having a nuclear weapon is a threat to the stability of the Middle East." Moreover, Paul expressed opinions on military tribunals that some might find disturbing, on his campaign website Paul has stated that the United States should, "try the terrorists captured on the battlefield in military tribunals at GITMO.” Obviously, it can also be deduced that Paul is not opposed to keeping Guantanamo Bay open. Many constitutionalists take issue with his positions on GITMO, sighting violations to the Sixth Amendment. So is Rand Paul a 'neocon' afterall? No.

Shock and Paul: Rand the Neocon? "The son is not the father," a phrase echoing throughout factions of the liberty movement, followed by accusations of neoconCraig Dixon servatism... directed at none other than Kentucky's Republican senatorial candidate, Dr. Rand Paul. Justin Raimondo of Anti-War.com has exclaimed that he "wouldn‟t give Rand Paul the time of day.” Why is there such hostility toward the son of the liberty movement's modern-day leader? Paul has stated that he would have opposed the invasion of Iraq, required a declaration of war for both Iraq and Afghanistan, and would have voted against the passage of the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act. Paul has expressed opposition to a long-term presence in the Middle East and is against the doctrine Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 Neoconservatism is a political ideology usually associated with the idea of 'spreading democracy' by military means. By most definitions, it is the embrace of Wilsonian doctrine and NationBuilding, or advocating of strong intervention into the affairs of other sovereign states. It has been posited, and arguably so, that Bush and Obama have both been nonconservative in their foreign policy... but what in Paul's collection of statements alludes to a belief in neoconservatism? Libertarianism doesnâ€&#x;t necessarily entail an opposition to all forms of war ever; the Pauls subscribe to non-interventionism. Non-interventionism is not isolationism, something that both neoconservatives, and some in the liberty movement, fail to grasp. Non-interventionism holds that America should not become involved in the internal politics of other states. Non-interventionism values sovereignty and self-determination. Under the doctrine of Non-interventionism, wars of defense are seen as permissible. Is it really so disconcerting that Paul is unwilling to say one way or the other how he would act upon a hypothetical? Paul wasn't advocating a need to glass them tomorrow. Paul's refusal to commit one way or another to war with Iran is more pragmatic and realistic than a libertarian who would outright refuse to take action against Iran, were they to ever actually attack the United States. It is always possible that a need to defend the United States by use of military force might arise. By the time that Japan had attacked Pearl Harbor and Hitler was declaring war on the United States one week later, would it really have been wise to refuse to fight back? There's also the factor of political posturing. Is Rand Paul's undeniably ambiguous stance on Iran also political posturing? You bet your hind-end it is; he is in a political race, at the end of the day the person with the most votes wins. He must walk a fine line between appealing to the anti-war crowd and the national defense crowd... those are not two Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

easy crowds to bring into the same camp. By remaining a strong supporter of national defense, but condemning the interventionist actions of Bush and Obama, he just may be able to succeed in that difficult task. Before purists hit the red-button on Paul, they should consider that Paul is someone that well understands 'Blowback' and understands the severe consequences of declaring war. He's stated on policy videos that he wouldn't do so lightly: "One of the most important votes, if not the most important vote, is declaring war; this is not something I would treat frivolously... I have three boys. I would never vote to send any of our kids to war unless there seemed to be no other recourse... in the end you have to ask yourself, do you kill more terrorists than you create?" Some purists will still want to condemn Rand Paul simply for this sort of posturing, but what is the alternative? The liberty movement can continue to stand on street corners with signs, fighting with trolls on YouTube, and posting rants on Facebook statuses... or it can begin to bring real change to Washington. The two-party system that libertarians face is a rigged game, with the establishment media, and the incumbents all aligned against them. The sirGalahad approach isn't going to cut it, being right on the issues is not enough. You have to have enough appeal to win more votes than your opponent. If Adam Kokesh's crushing defeat in New Mexico's third district is any indication, today's right right-wing movement is not wholly ready for such a potent message to be drummed into their hands. In the modern political landscape, a landscape in which neoconservatism has been a driving force in the GOP, the liberty movement's message is a radical one; it's easier to slowly administer libertarian ideas to the populace, than to try and go in

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 with blunt force. The reality is that Rand Paul's positions vary little from those of Kokesh, but in the public eye, one must be very careful what they say and how they say it (a lesson Paul has been having a crash course in already). Kokesh was a vocal anti-war activist prior to his congressional run, and that history did have an effect on his campaign. Paul has been less vocal about his disagreements with current foreign policy, and has not made them the center of his campaign; this was the politically intelligent thing to do. Little can be found on Jack Conway's foreign policy positions (Rand Paul's Democrat opponent). One thing is almost certain, Conway, as a member of the establishment will likely follow the Democrats lock-in-step... meaning the anti-war crowd isn't going to find any friend in Jack Conway. Jack Conway would likely be more of the same, a warfare-welfare cheerleader. For ideological purists, Rand Paul admittedly still leaves a lot to be desired... libertarians and constitutionalists dislike his views on Gitmo and military tribunals. The majority of the liberty movement will disagree with Paul on this position, but nothing about Paul's position on this issue reflects neoconservatism, as it is properly defined. It could be argued he is more traditionally conservative, and less libertarian than his father when it comes to issues of national defense... but for those seeking to move government closer to libertarian ideals, Rand Paul remains a step forward, not backward. For pragmatists, it is understood that Paul is someone who could become a resounding voice in the Senate against the tragic policies that have unraveled liberty in the United States; endless undeclared wars, the drug war, private central banking, federal mandates, oppressive taxation, and the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act are all things Paul has taken a stand against. The liberty movement can either get a new voice in the Senate that has some positions they Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

take issue with, or they can get Jack Conway. Until libertarians see Rand Paul rubbing elbows with the New Citizenship Project or singing "Bomb-bombbomb, bomb-bomb Iran," it would be to their benefit to be a little less leery, and a little more supportive.

A Stricter Foreign Policy Now that Kentucky republicans have decided to give upstart politician Rand Paul a chance to capture a Senate Jeremy Davis seat in the bluegrass state, Paul‟s personal views are being looked at with a greater degree of scrutiny. While many of Rand‟s views are not all that out of sync with the majority of those within the liberty movement, his stance on foreign policy is the one stand out exception to his otherwise mostly agreeable platform. Certain areas of Rand‟s stance on foreign policy do appear as somewhat more hardnosed and aggressive than his fathers‟ softer, more humble approach. Nevertheless, should he secure himself a senate seat this November, his role as a U.S. Senator would grant him the means to have direct involvement in the shaping of how American foreign policy is carried out. And so in this article, we will look at a few of Paul‟s more contentious points of view that have made some in the liberty movement slightly uneasy about Paul himself. Iran is perhaps the greatest neo-con dream target of the day. The imperialists in our govern-

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 ment would love nothing more than to get its deus who denounce the authoritarian abuses of the structive hands wrapped around that country Military Commissions Act and its contributions to through further military adventurism. So in turn, we the neglect of human rights and the dangerous are treated to a barrage of fear stoked propaganda precedents set within its jurisdiction. about the immediate threat posed by an Iran that Aside from Rand‟s less than idealistic outlook may or may not be near achieving its quest for nuon Iran, GITMO, and military tribunals, he would clear weapons. Granted Rand may not promote such also grant a significant leniency in allowing the hawkish and militaristic views of a full fledged neopresident to act in a more unilateral manner to recon, his stance on Iran has raised eyebrows neverpeal immediate threats. However, Rand does stress theless. that when the time must come where war seems imRand has previously stated that a nuclear minent, then Congress must fulfill its constitutional armed Iran represents a serious threat to the stabilduty and provide a proper declaration of war. An ity of the Middle East and believes official declaration of war that the United States should do “Although Rand does stray away would force Congress and the everything possible to prevent ever so slightly from many of those president to set out the specifwithin the liberty movement who Iran from attaining nukes. In ics of war such as who is being favor a stricter non-interventionist terms of dealing with a nuclear foreign policy, he still refrains from targeted, what defines success, armed Iran in a possible military subscribing to the total neoand a timetable for withdrawal. situation, he believes that taking conservative philosophy that In fact, had he been in the Sennuclear weapons off the table is plagues our country today. “ ate at the time, Paul has stated reckless as is pronouncing your that he would have voted for military strategies to your enemies. Unfortunately war with Afghanistan but not Iraq and would have this is one area in which I part ways with Paul. I do use his position in Congress to hold up the debate not believe that nuclear weapons should ever be an until a formal declaration of war was issued. option left on the table as they are far too destrucWhile I do agree with his terms of declaring tive in regards to civilian life and in the number of war to prevent indefinite military adventures, I beinnocent casualties. I believe it to be truly reckless lieve there needs to be an extremely well thought to even consider using them under any circumout and carefully laid out plan in considering the stances. specifics of the nature of a military conflict. It could Almost generating equal controversy has be argued that a formal declaration of war against been Rand‟s support for trying terrorists in military Afghanistan would not be entirely justified since it tribunals and keeping the U.S. detention center at was a rouge, stateless band of terrorists who atGuantanamo Bay up and running. Rand has pubtacked us in 9/11, not the Afghani state itself. Howlicly criticized the Obama Administration for its anever, I do not deny that Paul‟s intentions mirror nounced intent to shut down the military prison and those of enforcing stricter responsibility on the part thus move suspected terrorist onto U.S. soil to be of those who decide to invoke a declaration of war tried in U.S. civilian courts. Paul himself has stated as his official campaign website explains that “Rand that “foreign terrorists do not deserve the protechas clearly stated that once war is underway, how tions of our Constitution” and that “these thugs we wage war is up to our generals and the President. should stand before military tribunals and be kept It is Congress‟ job to decide whether or not the off American soil.” threat requires war. It is our commander-in-chief‟s This view seems to be at odds with those of and military‟s job to win it.” Although I remain leery Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 in the vesting of too much authority and leniency in how the president conducts war. Although Rand does stray away ever so slightly from many of those within the liberty movement who favor a stricter non-interventionist foreign policy, he still refrains from subscribing to the total neo-conservative philosophy that plagues our country today. Rand does not share in the neoconservative love for the continuation of a worldwide American empire, with hundreds of unnecessary military bases stationed around the globe. He also denounces nation building, wasteful military spending and the propping up of the military industrial complex, as well as the neo-con status quo of using American military forces as an all purpose worldwide American police force. If he steps into the role as a Kentucky Senator, Rand would oppose allowing our military to be used under the command of certain international institutions like the United Nations and would target the massive waste of dollars in our mismanaged foreign aid programs and reform the military budget into a more responsible and sustainable one. At this point, we can only truly speculate as to how Rand Paul will actually handle the situations described here once he enters the Senate chambers. Questions and doubts will continue to be developed until the moment he casts his first vote; a vote that will be under careful observation with certain hopes that he makes the right decisions when the time calls for it.

Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

Wargaming: Afghanistan Chinese foreign officials are quick to point out that their objective in American foreign policy is to “distract them with little regions Marissa Yturralde-Giannotta like the Middle East.” The Chinese know something Washingtonian officials can‟t seem to understand: sensible foreign policy. Operation Enduring Freedom (more like Operation Enduring Obligation) has now lasted a long eight years and not going to end any time soon. As the United States plans to deploy an additional 20,000 troops into Southern Afghanistan, the Taliban‟s stronghold, will there ever be a plan B for Afghanistan? Maybe those Chinese have a point. Since the Obama Administration planned to “end” the war in Iraq, Afghanistan is now in the limelight of current American foreign policy. However, as one war “ends” in Iraq, another one surges across the border into South-Central Asia. Afghanistan has now become a nation-building obligation from its original priority of finding Bin Laden. It has now turned into a campaign against all insurgency groups and has mistakenly displaced America‟s priorities. In other words, Afghanistan has now become a huge task and has now taken the “too big to fail” mentality in the international arena. By the end of the troop surge, almost 100,000 troops will be sent to Afghanistan to fight insurgency groups that never attacked us (the Taliban did not attack us on 9/11 contrary to popular belief), fail to meet its

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 counter-insurgency tactics in a specific region, and ultimately create more of a security apparatus in neighboring countries such as nuclear Pakistan. Sound familiar? The truth is that Afghanistan is simply not manageable with the kind of plan the Obama Administration is putting forward. For starters, our economic situation cannot sustain the path we are moving towards in regards to either Afghanistan or Iraq. If Iraq drained our economy, then Afghanistan will demolish it. To date, the United States government has spent $190 billion in Afghanistan. When comparing to Iraq, this might seem like chump change; however, the 2007 CBO reports that Afghanistan will cost a total of $1.7 trillion by 2017 if troop levels are 75,000. Today, our troop level surpasses that. The additional troop surge General McChrystal has requested will cost the United States (more like China) an additional $36 billion and $6.7 billion a year with the troop levels at 102,000. At that rate we can buy the entire country. Afghanistan‟s GDP is $65 billion. The United States can literally own that entire region. Isn‟t that mind blowing? Secondly, counter-insurgency in the region doesn‟t work for political and combative reasons. Afghanistan is not Iraq. Prior to our invasion of Iraq, the country had basic government infrastructure, unlike Afghanistan. Afghanistan‟s government has always been weak in the eyes of its people, an already fractious populace. Different ethnic tribes in the country are seen more legitimate than the Karzai government. Iraq never had this problem. Although, it was seen as oppressive and brutal (for that we cannot justify) Saddam Hussein left no room for power vacuums to occur and terrorist organizations to flourish. Afghanistan has this problem. From the United States prompting Al-Qaeda in the 80s to our invasion today, Afghanistan is one big failed state with a lot of room for fractious organizations with different objectives to formulate. These groups such as the Pashtuns see the United Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

States as occupiers and this, as you may know, can lead to blowback. Thirdly, the United States must be careful in its calculation. The South-Central Asian region possesses one threat: Pakistan. Terrorist organizations such as Al-Qaeda are moving into nuclear Pakistan. Westphalian mentality of borders poses no threat to terrorists as moving in between countries is highly accessible. Destabilizing Pakistan will undoubtedly have repercussions especially because it holds nuclear weapons. Our military presence must not push into Pakistan in trying to deal with terrorism. It will exacerbate a problem we are trying to liquidate and create further damage in our national security interests. So what war gaming tactics can the United States plan? Well putting this briefly, it‟s easy to say nonintervention and immediate pull out for many libertarians. And while our end goal for the future should be non-intervention, our current problem still looms: the presence of Al-Qaeda. The United States should return to its original priority in trying to capture those who were responsible for the acts committed on 9/11 and nothing else. As stated above, Afghanistan is too big of a problem to tackle with ongoing historical, cultural, and political problems in its roots. Nation building would require an enormous amount of funds the United States does not have and would violate cultural sovereignty. Instead, the United States should focus its priorities on offshore units such as drones, intelligence, and Special Forces units who can effectively pose a threat to Al-Qaeda while lowering costs and lives. These units can also get the job done in a timelier manner, saving America a few bucks we owe to the Chinese. Now, if just Obama would be that anti-war candidate again.

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 unruly ship without, you know, killing more than ten people... Yes, because killing ten people was the first thing on the Israeli to-do list. I feel that this encapsulates what many believe to be the “right” way of thinking in regards to Israel. However, what Drezner and many other pundits failed to recognize was that, as Israeli commandos were being roped down into the vessel, dangling from a helicopter, Palestinians and Turks on board were preparing for the inspection with metal rods, knives, small arms, stun grenades, and fire bombs. Videos released soon after clearly show that Israeli commandos reacted only after they were welcomed aboard the ship with open arms. Except in this case, open arms included weapons in hand whereas Israeli commandos were initially armed with paintball guns. For Israel (not for me- for the Israeli state), Palestine poses a legitimate threat to Israeli security and way of life, considering that these two actors border one another and have, historically and repetitively, attacked one another in a series of provocative engagements coming from both sides. But for a nation like Israel to just allow anything to enter Gaza without Israeli supervision would be like allowing al Qaeda to move in and out of Mexico freely, without any supervision. And although this analogy is simplified, this is the way Israelis perceive the scenario. In fact, this is the way any state would perceive a threatening situation that involves their threatening neighbor. For pundits to admit that those on board the vessel did not act in “Christ-like” ways and then condemn the Israeli commandos for retaliating against those attacking them is quite naive. In a situation where you are dangling off a helicopter rope while being shot at, it‟s hard to imagine how anyone would react differently. Two commandos left with bullet wounds and others were beaten and thrown off the deck. It's natural human instinct and under those circumstances, you're not thinking of

How Did You Not See This Coming? On Monday, May 31, 2010 Israeli commandos stormed a Palestinian flotilla for inspection but were instead greeted by a mob of Roy Antoun angry Turks and Palestinians who, upon arrival, repetitively beat Israeli commandos trying to perform an inspection of the vessel. The commandos reacted and the scene ended with 9 dead protestors. There is one focus to this analysis. The outrage that the world showed toward Israel was utterly naïve; states will always choose to defend themselves however they please and this should come to no one‟s surprise. In lieu of the latest news coming from Israel, Daniel Drezner of Foreign Policy Magazine (clearly our rival magazine) used colloquial profanity in an online article to describe Israel's behavior on board a vessel just outside the Gaza Strip (clearly he was angry). Mr. Drezner wrote, How badly has Israel f**ked up in its response to a flotilla intending to deliver aid to Hamas-controlled Gaza? Pretty f**king badly. Sure, you can argue that the people on the ships weren't exactly Christ-like in their embrace of nonviolence. That said, it should be possible to gain control of an Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 the "political repercussions" that may ensue; you just want to get the guy beating your face in away from you.

gets to claim what are or aren‟t international waters? World governments? Superpowers? The whole idea of having international waters is biased; it is shaped according to some arbitrary carve of what a few people deem as “navigable seas.” It is fantastic that nations believe in some form of adherence to law in the international arena; however, what use is international law or waters when there is no one enforcing this rule? Do we really want to police the world or let international organizations police countries? Again, I think not. The whole concept of collective action – that several states would cooperate with one another at the expense of their security or liberty – is flawed, as I covered in Issue II of FPH.

Now we come to two other obstacles in this debate.

Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

Photo courtesy of Gardian/ UK

While I admire the notion of property rights given by many on this issue, I have to ask, doesn‟t Israel have a right to defend its property as well? Israel has, in several occasions, found arms being smuggled into Gaza via the coast and that is why the blockade has existed since 2007. Those arms are eventually used to send rockets onto Israeli territory. In an ugly world of dog-eat-dog, states normatively react this way when their very neighbor is the threat. So, if Israel chooses to defend itself close to its shores, as it did in the May 31st situation, I believe this to be more prudent than, say, sending troops half way across the world to “defend freedom.” However, what I find more troubling is the way many in the West apply their legal rights to those in distant lands. Our concept of “property rights” is different from those in Israel, for example, and the way to defend property is conceived different as well. After all, it was President Bush‟s concept of rights embedded in “liberty and freedom” that led to spreading that liberty and freedom abroad. The United States should play no role in defining what Israel‟s borders or property should look like; that is their business and no one else‟s. And unlike the United States, Israel was actually seeking to secure itself just a few miles from its shores and not in some faraway land. Not to say that Israel‟s blockade is prudent, but who are Americans, the United Nations, NATO, or even Turkey to say what type of blockade Israel should or should not have? Should the West intervene once again in Israel‟s affairs? I think not. The second problem we run into is the issue of international waters. States have been violating “international waters” for centuries. However, who

The United Nations is scrambling, the media is blowing things out of proportion (for both sides of the debate), and Turkey feels insulted. Whatever Turkey is doing interfering in Israel's affairs is beyond Realist understanding; however, given the events, Turkey should have minded its own business, aid or not. The naive understanding that international institutions have on Middle East politics and polities only creates more trouble and entices more to reactionary violence. Lest we forget that the state of Israel was created by the West but so was the entirety of the Middle East after the fall of the Ottoman Empire in the antebellums off WWI & II. The West has essentially crafted all of today's Mideast problems. The last thing we need is the West "condemning" one side or even funding the other. The United Nations needs to understand that

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roy.antoun@yaliberty.org | P.O. Box 2751 Arlington, VA 22202


Commentary | Young Americans for Liberty | The Foreign Policy Handbook | Issue III | June 2010 feeling sorry for a people or state truly gets everyone nowhere. Simply condemning does nothing, but intervening does too much. Perhaps the U.N. is just as useless as everyone thought it is. And although foreign affairs academics such as Hans Morganthau admit that states have always and will always intervene in the affairs of others, that gives no excuse (either to Turkey, the U.N., or the U.S.) to intervene in Israeli or Palestinian affairs, especially when intervention within itself almost always leads to a high casualty rate or loss of money for all parties. Why do we feel obliged to spoon feed this region with munitions and false diplomacy? We can argue over the morality of Israel‟s ac-

tions all we want but is it truly the United States‟ prerogative to do that? Shouldn‟t we all have seen this coming? I yearn for an age where the Middle East will see peace. But that peace will come when America learns to mind its own business and Palestinians learn that sailing a flotilla into an Israeli blockade means you will get inspected (five other vessels in the flotilla went through inspection with no problem). While I never like to take sides in an issue like Israel and Palestine, I have to ask the world, "How did you not see this coming?"

Suggested Reading

Young Americans for Liberty | http://www.yaliberty.org | June 2010

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By the FPH Team

roy.antoun@yaliberty.org | P.O. Box 2751 Arlington, VA 22202


“Anyone who has ever looked into the glazed eyes of a soldier dying on the battlefield will think hard before starting a war.� - Otto von Bismarck


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