Interesting article for those of you interested in foreign policy theory

Francis Fukuyama brings us a well thought out article on US foreign policy over the past few years. He makes many lucid insights but I found this one to be the most interesting:

The president's Jacksonian base, which provides the bulk of the troops serving and dying in Iraq, has no natural affinity for such a policy but would not abandon the commander in chief in the middle of a war, particularly if there is clear hope of success.

This war coalition is fragile, however, and vulnerable to mishap. If Jacksonians begin to perceive the war as unwinnable or a failure, there will be little future support for an expansive foreign policy that focuses on promoting democracy.

I Tend to agree with Fukuyama here with two caveats; time and politics. As time passes, people have the tendency to view the past through rose colored glasses. Think about it, some of your best stories come from times when you were completely miserable. This same revisionism happens in the foreign policy world as well. Politics, our ever present 800lb gorilla. What Fukuyama fails to mention is that the war was not originally sold as "promoting democracy" it was sold on fear. Fear works, period. Expect to see it used the next time a political group needs to sell something that they know they could never get if they were upfront with their reasoning.


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