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Sunday, December 09, 2007

Huckabee on foreign policy

When I posted my thoughts on Mike Huckabee on Friday, a couple of my Christian readers assured me that he wasn't as naive as I feared he was and that Huckabee wasn't going to decide that the 'Palestinians' should be given another chance. I hope you guys will come back and tell me how to explain this post over at Powerline:

Consider this piece in the Des Moines Register, in which Huckabee proposes to restore our standing in the world "by showing the kind of respect that other nations would want and deserve." Huckabee explained that "you treat others the way you'd like to be treated; to me the fundamental issue that has to be re-established in our dealings with other countries."

So there you have it; treat Iran, Syria, and North Korea with the same respect with which we want to be treated and experience the joys of international fellowship and good will. I don't recall even President Carter being that naive.

Next, consider what Huckabee told Fox News on December 4 about why he favors closing the detention center at Guantanamo Bay:

For a long time I felt Guantanamo should be kept open. And I have been to GITMO. I have seen up close and personal, having visited there, the treatment of our detainees. And even to this day, I think the detainees are being treated humanely and responsibly. But I have also come to understand that from a perspective of the way the world looks at us, GITMO has become a symbol of what a lot of people are angry about, and whatever value it has, it’s being lost by the ill-will that it has generated. So rather than continuing something that is doing us more harm than good, there’re other places to keep these detainees. I want to make clear. Closing Guantanamo is not letting these detainees loose. It’s simply putting them in a different location and not allowing this symbol, which has become a part of Guantanamo, to further damage the prestige of the United States.
I can imagine President Carter letting world opinion dictate our policies, but I can't imagine Carter believing that merely shuffling detainees to another location where they will receive the same treatment (remember that Huckabee has no quarrel with the treatment at Gitmo) would have any meaningful influence on world opinion.

If that's the kind of thinking that a night at Holiday Inn Express produces, I think I'll stick with Super 8 Motel.

There's more too so read it all. Somehow, I think that Huckabee may have stolen to the front of the pack because he was shielded from media scrutiny, and now that he's at the front, he's not going to last there very long.


At 3:21 AM, Blogger Lois Koenig said...

I am at a point where I do not know which Republican to vote for.

I think that even with all his mishegas, I am probably going to vote for Rudy.

He has a clue re terrorism and also foreign policy. He does not suffer fools lightly.

Huckabee is beginning to scare me.

At 4:52 AM, Blogger Daniel434 said...

Well that certainly is a foolish way to approach foreign policy and I cannot defend him. I do believe if he were to take office he certainly would change his approach. You have to remember the question that was asked, they specifically asked him how we can restore our standing in the world, which I understand his response to a degree. Nevertheless, I still believe that was very foolish of him in such broad terms. Even my Baptist pastor has far more common sense than to say something like that.

Regarding Gitmo, I can understand his wanting to close it. There is some debate in this country over Gitmo. I don't want to go into detail, but personally I'm in favor of keeping Gitmo.

What Huckabee is not showing us is his hard-line stance on terror and terror supporting nations. He is showing us his Christian-love attitude and I think it works in many cases, but not foreign policy.

Newt, you bastard, why didn't you run... /sigh

I have no idea who I will vote for in 2008, but I will say this: regarding Israel alone, I believe Huckabee would be a great friend to the Jewish Nation-state.

Keep up the Good Work, Carl. I appreciate you work but unfortunately not able to hit your tip bar atm, maybe soon. :)

At 6:48 AM, Blogger Daniel said...

I'll vote for whomever says in the next debate that Condi's policies are screwing Israel, she's ating like a dem, and that an executive order in jan,09-or hopefully earlier will reverse them

At 11:38 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I'm an evangelical supporter of Huckabee (because of the LaHaye endorsement and what it implies re: Huck's position on Israel and the jihadist threat), and I see no incompatability at all between these statements of Huckabee and a strong defense of Israeli land rights. In fact, I agree with Huckabee's statements here and practice it in my personal life in my relations with Muslims--Muslims who admittedly do *not* believe Israel has a right to exist. Our relationships and mutual understanding have been building, neither my Muslim "friends" (to the extent that's possible) nor I expecting the other to convert religions or political ideologies, but just to "relate" to improve understanding so that we can communicate with appreciation of the other's perspective. It's very trust-building. I do not lie to them, they know I hate Islam but love them, and they do not practice taqiyya with me. If you have a problem with Huckabee's "golden rule" statement, then you have a problem with Moses (Lev 19:18), and therefore God. This same God whose word in the poorly-named "New Testament" speaks of love thy enemies also speaks of the government being ordained as His minister of wrath against evildoers. It's all about context. As the Tanakh teaches, God's principles are taught line-upon-line, precept-upon-precept and to be accurately understood must therefore be apprehended in context--both immediate context and in the general context of scripture. We cannot cherry-pick out the turn-the-other-cheek verses (which in context is about personal insult, not a punch, much less a war) that are thrown out so much by liberal biblical illiterates and then assume that means Huckabee, being a Christian, is going to be a softee on the global scene with jihadists. No, foreign policy is dealt with elsewhere--and when it comes to Israel, at great length!

As for the Guantanamo part, it's rather clear Huck has wisely evaluated the cost-benefit of the situation from the point of view of what's in *our* best interest, and wisely suggests continuing the same treatment, but in a different location because not of agreeing with the broader community, but because of *perception*--saying, "whatever value it has, it's being lost by the ill'will that it has generated." It's something akin to the situation where a public or elected official (or anyone really) who has liberty to do something chooses instead not to do the behavior, not because the behavior is wrong, but because it gives a wrong impression that's harmful for one or more parties for one reason or the other (ex, "appearance of impropriety," causing someone else to stumble, causing someone to misunderstand the other, etc). This is not a matter of submitting to the dictates of others as the article suggests, but being a good listener and observer, and responding prudently--i.e., good judgment. If Huck doesn't stay "at the front of the pack," it may well be because non-Christians are uninformed about our faith and are reading into his words and deeds certain assumptions about what their idea of Christianity is. Should you wish a more complete response, you may email me and I can give you a website to my church's sermon audios that go verse-by-verse in exegesis and then you can hear for yourself how an evangelical of the kind in general agreement w/LaHaye understands the biblical worldview.

At 3:41 PM, Blogger DragonLady said...

Mike Huckabee is Bill Clinton with some morals. Note that I say "some" morals, and nothing about that comparison is meant as a compliment. I'm a native Arkansan, and I can see through the "Southern Charm" BS that both Clinton and Huckabee share. Neither are to be trusted.


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