One of Kerry’s key campaign promises is to obtain increased foreign support for our efforts in Iraq. The first reaction of most Republicans is to assume that this is just another example of over-promising. After all, we remember that before the war President Bush tried for months to enlist the French and Germans and made a number of concessions towards that end. Since the war he has actually made inroads in obtaining greater support from our “allies.” What reason is there to think Kerry can do better?
Plenty, actually. In my view, French and German opposition to our course of action in Iraq was not based primarily on a policy disagreement; rather it was an attempt to curb U.S. “hyperpower.” Sure, the French also had an economic motive for preserving Saddam’s regime, but I believe this was secondary, and it is no longer relevant in any event. Accordingly, it is quite plausible to think that France would make token contributions to our effort in Iraq in exchange for concessions that curb our power, especially concessions that subordinate our country to international bodies in which France plays a leading role. Obvious examples include submitting to the Kyoto accords and to the International Criminal Court. Since these are things that Kerry wants to do anyway, they aren’t even concessions in his mind. Some sort of deal along these lines is such a natural that I wouldn’t be surprised if its already in the works.
A Kerry presidency likely would diminish our national sovereignty in ways that would be very difficult to reverse.
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