On the left the idea that Israel is an apartheid government is not uncommon. John Kerry, in so characterizing our ally in the Middle East several days ago, was simply re-establishing his bona fides with his base. The Palestinians were quick to agree with Kerry, which should tell us something.
The idea that these points of view are something new with Kerry are belied by his record.
“I’m an Internationalist,” he told a writer in an interview with the Harvard Crimson in 2004, adding:
I’d like to see our troops dispersed through the world only at the directive of the United Nations.
Allowing for the maturation of age and experience the question is, has Kerry moved beyond his early far left belief system? He has failed to generate a rational deal in Syria; the deal that was struck has fallen apart as Bashir al-Assad knew it would gaining time and space. Kerry continues to pursue a Palestinian/Israeli peace deal when both sides have delivered the clear message that it is impossible in the current context. Kerry has failed to execute a deal with Iran, as the deal was no sooner executed than the Iranian political elite went public with ‘clarifications’ essentially saying that the deal represented no change in Iranian behaviors, policies, or goals. Iran has, once again, demonstrated that the West is easily duped and buys yet more time as they prepare to cross the red line.
Venezuela and Ukraine are burning, the EU is having difficulty keeping itself together, NATO is on life support, Iran is on the path to a nuclear weapon, Israel is being hung out to dry, Vladimi Putin is exercising ever increasing power over former Soviet Republics and Europe. Despite all this, what has our Secretary’s attention? Climate change. Depending on the poll you look at, Americans put global warming low on their personal agenda of things to be concerned with. In one poll it ranked 19 out of 20 in priorities. Yet, Kerry perseveres, much like a man with too little on his plate or too much time on his hands.
Kerry has long executed one of two options: (1) Be on the wrong side of threat assessment and the tools necessary to confront those threats; (2) take multiple contradictory positions. No wonder the President wanted him at State. He’s a kindred spirit absent an obvious center.
Iraq is the best example. On July 29, 2002, then-Sen. Kerry said, ”I agree completely with this [Bush] administration’s goal of a regime change in Iraq.” On Oct. 10 of the same year, he doubled down on that view, declaring on the Senate floor:
I believe the record of Saddam Hussein’s ruthless breach of international values and standards of behavior is cause enough for the world community to hold him accountable by use of force if necessary.
Fast forward one more month, and his position had evolved considerably. Again on the floor of the Senate, he announced, :A failure of diplomacy of a massive order has occurred and left the country on the brink of war.”
By his own statements it is clear that Kerry does not see terror, Russia, China, unrest in Central and South America and radical Islam as existing in the same universe as the threat from climate change. His youthful statements to the Harvard Crimson in 1970 became his policy throughout the 1990s as he consistently voted to freeze or slash Defense spending. He argued for severe manpower reductions. Among the many programs that then-Sen. Kerry opposed were the B2 Bomber, tactical fighter wings, missile defense systems, the F16, the M1 Abrams Tank, Patriot Missiles, Apache Helicopters, Tomahawk cruise Missiles and the Aegis Air Defense Cruiser; all current mainstays of our military capabilities.
Had John Kerry had his way in the 1990s, the ability of America to project power would have been out of the question in a post-9/11 world. We would not have had the manpower or equipment necessary to project such an image.
On Venezuela, the Ukraine, and Africa, Kerry doesn’t have much to say. What about Chinese incursions in the South China Sea? Silence. Christians under siege in the Islamic World? Nary a comment. But fear not! He’s on the offensive against the real threat that faces us.