Wednesday, April 24, 2019

A progressive foreign policy platform has never been easier

I read this piece and while I agree with most of its points, I disagree with its overall framing. The era of Trump makes it a lot easier for progressives to come up with an alternative foreign policy, not harder. The left is divided on all kinds of foreign policy issues, from Israel/Palestine, to when (if ever) military force is appropriate, to the desirability of foreign trade bills, etc. But with Trump trashing the old norms and shitting all over foreign policy priorities that were previously pretty bipartisan, the left has a great opportunity to give a long list of proposals for foreign affairs that completely avoids the divisions within the progressive movement. Here are a few examples that I can give right off the top of my head:
1. A renewed commitment to our allies in the Democratic world (i.e. Europe, Japan, South Korea)
2. An end to blind acceptance of human rights abusing dictators.
3. A recognition that the Saudi Arabian government is terrible.
4. Confronting Russia about its interference in U.S. elections.
5. A renewed commitment that the U.S. will honor agreement with foreign countries.
6. An immediate end to all of Trump's bullshit tariffs.
7. A commitment to deals with foreign countries to combat or ameliorate global climate change.
8. An end to the Muslim ban.
9. An increase in the annual quota for admission of refugees to make up for the lost Trump years.
I don't think any of those would be very controversial among progressives. Provided they set the bar low enough, this is the first time I can imagine progressives united under a fairly long list of foreign policy objectives.