China is eying Taiwan, believing it ripe for the taking. Russia is expanding its territorial ambitions and aggressively jockeying for position in Libya, Syria, and around the globe. Iran might become a nuclear power any day now. Conflicts in Yemen and Somalia might turn into even worse humanitarian disasters and expand into regional conflicts. North Korea is threatening to strike at the least provocation. The socialist government in Venezuela, weakened but still dangerous, might turn to increasingly desperate measures to preserve itself. For reasons that escape all understanding, we are placating a brutal communist dictatorship in Cuba rather than supporting those yearning for their freedom.
Oh, let’s not forget that the Taliban terrorists are now consolidating their control of Afghanistan in the wake of the Biden administration’s brain-dead withdrawal of U.S. forces. They will celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks on America by dancing to their victory in the streets of the capital city of Kabul and saluting their own flag over the former United States Embassy. A more stark global humiliation of America—and a more stunning repudiation of the sacrifices of America’s armed forces during two decades of warfare—would be hard to imagine.
The United States still, of course, has an incredibly powerful military that can act as both deterrent and defender in reaction to any move against our country or its allies. The big question now facing us is whether Joe Biden and his foreign policy team have the stomach for military conflict—or will we instead see a series of futile, one-off strikes, punctuated by strongly worded press releases and finger wagging, that demonstrate a lack of fight, fortitude, and forethought?
Every new administration is tested, but few American Presidents and their foreign policy team have been plagued by so many early missteps, which have led to more questions than answers.
Whether you loved him or hated him, President Trump’s pugnacious and demonstrative demeanor clearly indicated he would send U.S. forces to strike when necessary—and he did. In addition, he and his foreign policy team used a deft combination of economic sanctions, foreign aid, arms sales, and high profile diplomacy to both keep his opponents off balance and advance his agenda.
Despite implacable Democratic opposition to both his priorities and his persona, the net result was no new wars and a dramatic reduction of tensions in previous hotspots such as the Middle East. In addition, his budget priorities drove a dramatic improvement in both military equipment and readiness, which certainly gave pause to any foe that might have foolishly sought to pick a fight.
The question is whether President Biden—or President Harris if he is unable complete his term—will be able to say they kept America safe when 2024 rolls around.
The early signs are not at all encouraging. China, Russia, and North Korea have already taken a more adversarial stance, and the Biden team’s budget and foreign policy priorities seem skewed more to placating international diplomatic and environmental bodies than drawing a firm line with America’s enemies. If our nation’s next war is fought with policy papers and carbon fuel tax credits, victory will certainly be ours, but it is unlikely that this will be the case. Bombs and bullets are—and will continue to be—the difference makers when it is time to put boots on the ground in combat.
Indecisive and irresolute leadership always invites attack; moreover, disregarding the needs of our military and wrecking the ranks of officers and enlisted personnel with pointless Woke witch hunts sends a signal of weakness that invites every international bully to test our mettle. An attack on America or our allies might, of course, prompt a swift reversal of current policies, but any move to a more aggressive military posture is certain to run into opposition from the powerful and unapologetic Leftists in Biden’s own Democratic Party.
Those who desire peace overly much because it conflicts with their desire to hand out free money to their favored constituencies are typically unconcerned with wars until blood has already been shed. In addition, they will be unmoved by those pleading for the weapons and training needed to defend America and protect the members of our military from unnecessary harm because it will drain cash from their pet domestic programs, which might explain why we have raced out of Afghanistan and left a dangerous void behind.
There is yet another leadership problem facing our nation today. Liberal Democrats, who are convinced that violent criminals will stop robbing, raping, and killing if you eliminate the police, are unlikely to comprehend the necessity of adequately funding and supporting the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines in a complex, competitive, and dangerous world. These supposed leaders, who cannot believe that force is sometimes necessary to keep the peace on our nation’s streets, helped pave the way for the arson, looting, and shootings that have plagued America’s beleaguered cities over the past year; their misguided beliefs are going to do little to protect America when a crisis comes that requires the use of our military. The result will be many halfhearted measures that sound good in a press conference but accomplish little—other than demonstrating our fecklessness to our bewildered allies.
Gentle and measured words that sound good in a faculty lounge or at a wine tasting party tend to do little to to deter those toting AK-47’s and slaughtering civilians. Brutes back down only when met with brute force, and the meandering and mindless moves of Biden’s overmatched foreign policy appointees do much to engender fears and doubts—in everyone, that is, except those who want to harm our country and our people. It is hard to escape the suspicion that the Bidenistas will always be stuck yammering at some distant negotiating table while enemy troops are occupying yet another foreign country—just as they are in Afghanistan at this very moment.
A great power requires great leadership to remain great—and we do not have this today. Weak leadership—no matter how well meaning it might be—is a prescription for both decline and disaster.
The next three and a half years might turn out to be the toughest the United States has faced since the dark days immediately after Pearl Harbor, so we must all be prepared to push back against the liberal elites now putting our country in danger with their foolish disregard for both the lessons of history and the obvious strategic challenges ahead.