QUERY : Does the Richard Grenell incident foretell the weakness of Mitt Romney ?
This November, citizens will elect a Commander in Chief … essentially, the choices are between one that has been battle-tested (President Obama has used drones in six countries – Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Libya – as well as exercising our military might rescuing Americans held hostage by Pirates in Somali and killing Osama bin Laden) and a policy doctrine (Sustaining U.S. Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defense) … or someone whose toughest military decision may have been to call out the Massachusetts National Guard to help with security at Logan International Airport after Great Britain disrupted a plan to blow up airplanes in 2006.
Potential Commander-in-Chief Mitt Romney has stated “If the answer for leading the country is someone who has a lot of foreign policy experience, we can just go down to the State Department and pick up any one of the tens of thousands of people who spent all their life in foreign policy. That’s not what a nation needs in a president.”
Thus, rather than look at the Mitt Romney website section featuring his views on the military, instead it is most interesting who are the members of his Foreign Policy and National Security Advisor Team.
Paula J. Dobriansky
Minnesotans may recognize former Senator Norm Coleman and former Second District Representative Vin Weber on the list, otherwise Romney team seems to be similar to the Bush-43 team … that began with an illogical focus on Russia only to realize too late the real threat of al-Qa’ida and its affiliates. The Romney team has experience … with 70% having worked for President Bush:
Paula Dobrainsky was Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs;
Eliot Cohen, counselor to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice;
Robert Joseph, the National Security Council official associated with the infamous “sixteen words” in Bush’s 2003 State of the Union speech that claimed Iraq had tried to purchase enriched uranium from Niger;
Eric Edelman former Under Secretary of Defense:
Dan Senor, former spokesman for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq;
Meghan O’Sullivan, who served as Bush’s deputy national security adviser on Iraq and Afghanistan and was a strong advocate of the US troop “surge” to quell sectarian violence;
Former CIA chief Michael Hayden, who oversaw Bush’s controversial warrantless wiretapping of US citizens;
Former Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff;
just to name a few.
Heck, even those not formally employed in the Bush Administration, are influential, such that Boston Globe has noted that “Robert Kagan gives the Bush administration’s foreign policy its most sophisticated defense.”
Reviewing the bios on the Romney announcement, Dan Senor is identified as a Co-Author, “Start-Up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle” … hmmm … but it does not state how many of his advisors have dual citizenship :
Michael Chertoff – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Eliot Cohen – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Eric Edelman – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Evan Feigenbaum – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Aaron Friedberg – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
John Lehman – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Kent Lucken – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Robert Kagan – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Kristen Silverberg – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
Dov Zakheim – (Israeli Dual Citizen)
As many Minnesotans will recall the recent headlines over Michele Bachmann (R-MN-06) and her dual citizenship with Switzerland while being a Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, there could be questions concerning overseas financial dealings or citizenship benefits from a foreign country … or just the questions of allegiance.
More so, whether there would be extensive focus on protecting Israel ?
Much like the Bush Administration being focused on Russia, is the Romney team over focused on one area of foreign policy ?
Which brings up the Richard Grenell incident.
For those that forgot the Richard Grenell incident, Grenell, who served four U.S. ambassadors under President George W. Bush, was named Romney’s foreign policy spokesperson and then quit after just two weeks on the job — as various groups pressured for his resignation because he was openly gay.
Thus, if Mitt Romney does not have the courage to stand up for his spokesman, will he wilt under the Neo-Con pressure of his Foreign Policy Advisors ?
With nearly 7,000 American servicemen and women having lost their lives in Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, will Mitt Romney Presidency engage us in even more wars … such that Memorial Day 2013 will be mark a renewed chapter in the Neo-Con agenda ?
Conversely, President Obama outlines his worldview in his Sustaining U.S. Global Leadership: Priorities for 21st Century Defense policy paper clearly (here are some of the highlights )
Our nation is at a moment of transition.
As Commander in Chief, I am determined that we meet the challenges of this moment responsibly and that we emerge even stronger in a manner that preserves American global leadership, maintains our military superiority and keeps faith with our troops, military families and veterans.
In a changing world that demands our leadership, the United States of America will remain the greatest force for freedom and security that the world has ever known.
Even when U.S. forces are committed to a large-scale operation in one region, they will be capable of denying the objectives of — or imposing unacceptable costs on — an opportunistic aggressor in a second region.
We will field nuclear forces that can under any circumstances confront an adversary with the prospect of unacceptable damage.
We will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific region.
Over the long term, China’s emergence as a regional power will the potential to affect the U.S. economy and our security in a variety of ways … the United States will continue to make the necessary investments to ensure that we maintain our regional access and the ability to operate freely.
The United States is also investing in a long-term strategic partnership with India to support its ability to serve as a regional economic anchor and provider of security in the broader Indian Ocean region.
Clearly, President Obama vision is that of a Commander In Chief … recognizing all potential enemies … and showing the strength to make the difficult choices and the consequences of those choices.