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Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Friday, April 07, 2017

Obama Nearly Killed The Monroe Doctrine And Trump Should Revive It

Dr. Bill Smith, ARRA News Service Editor: I have noted previously in the ARRA News Service about visiting with college age young adults from Venezuela who had been sent by their parents to the U.S. with no intention that they should ever return to Venezuela which was economically imploding. Rep. Hill states in the below article: "In 2009, when former President Obama extended his hand to Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, despite deteriorating human rights and democratic conditions, as well as the government's lack of cooperation on antidrug and counterterrorism efforts, he was attempting to create some form of a truce. But, this misguided attempt ultimately ended in the administration's realization of the failure that accompanies doing business with a despot. Eight years later, Venezuela is a bankrupt regime with its citizens fleeing its borders."

by French Hill: For two centuries, since President James Monroe's caution to the European powers, America has offered the Western Hemisphere a beacon of hope and reminder of independence. President Monroe's enduring Monroe Doctrine has served for successive presidents as the building block of our foreign policy, insisting upon resistance to hostile, intrusive actions in the Western Hemisphere, thus preserving order and democracy in our half of the globe.

Nearly two centuries after its introduction, the Monroe Doctrine was at the heart of democratic governance during the Cold War. President Ronald Reagan's confrontation of the Communists in Central America and Grenada, as well as his Caribbean Basin Initiative, were unilateral demonstrations of America's support for the Hemisphere and a response to rising Communist influence. Ultimately, Reagan's policies ushered in one of the great waves of democracy in Latin America during the 1980's.

In the subsequent post-Cold War era, America turned her attention to boosting economic opportunities in the hemisphere, starting with President Bill Clinton successfully hosting the first Summit of the Americas in 27 years, which was also the first located in the United States. This was the culmination of a multi-year effort to tear down barriers to American exports to the region from Mexico to Argentina. The actions by both Reagan and Clinton enhanced American prestige in the region.

Prior to the attacks of September 11, 2001, President George W. Bush had begun efforts focusing on Latin America, with Mexico as the destination of his first foreign visit as president. Despite having many global priorities, President Bush enhanced economic growth and security in the Western Hemisphere by opening up Colombia to greater U.S. exports and contributing to Colombian President Alvaro Uribe's historic defeat of the FARC and diminishment of narcoterrorism.

Like his predecessor, President Barack Obama faced geopolitical challenges, such as wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, a reemerging Russian aggression, and Chinese provocation in Southeast Asia. But, unlike those before him, he failed to lead in our hemisphere, and where he did engage, his efforts were ill-conceived.

As his attention was drawn from our neighborhood to those elsewhere, Obama saw to the diminishment of the robust Monroe Doctrine, culminating in then-Secretary of State John Kerry's 2013 declaration that the Monroe Doctrine was dead. Reflection on the Obama Administration's hand-holding of Bolivian, Venezuelan and, of course, Cuban dictators offers no better evidence.

The Obama Administration seldom engaged with governments of the Western Hemisphere to offer guidance and assistance as they struggled to isolate and address their internal challenges. Instead, the Obama Administration offered policies like the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which only encouraged tens of thousands of people to flee their home countries and seek asylum in the United States, rather than supporting these same nations' efforts to strengthen their social, economic and security landscapes, which would've incentivized their citizens to stay.

In 2009, when Obama extended his hand to Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, despite deteriorating human rights and democratic conditions, as well as the government's lack of cooperation on antidrug and counterterrorism efforts, he was attempting to create some form of a truce. But, this misguided attempt ultimately ended in the administration's realization of the failure that accompanies doing business with a despot. Eight years later, Venezuela is a bankrupt regime with its citizens fleeing its borders.

Obama's 2014 reset of relations with Cuba was praised and heralded by the left (and even by some on the right), but upon further consideration, other than exotic vacations for the wealthy, what have these past two years delivered? Churches in Cuba are being bulldozed, and the human rights violations continue to mount. The longer Obama's policies continue in Cuba, the more we fill the regime's coffers, pushing Cuba further into dictatorial rule. The fact remains that Cuba is a one-party dictatorship and family dynasty, and the Obama Administration's softening of America's stance towards this oppressive regime did not empower the citizens, thereby encouraging democracy; it empowered only its evil dictators.

Under Obama's watchful eye, the United States of America systematically turned her back on the oppressed in our own backyard, indulging the whims of dictators, terrorists, and criminals while ceding to despots and would-be-kings the moral high ground we are obligated to defend. The outcome of the Obama Administration's failed forays is our enemies' expansion into the gaps created by the absence of a partner like the United States to help defend and protect democracy and independence. Such is the case in the Western Hemisphere, where meaningful engagement evaporated virtually from the first day of the Obama Administration.

Our new Secretary of State Rex Tillerson faces many challenges across the globe. Secretary Tillerson and President Donald Trump should assess the hemisphere and design an engagement plan that promotes economic growth, defeats authoritarianism with free and fair elections, and conquers international drug cartels and global terrorists. The Monroe Doctrine remains an American foreign policy principle. Use it.
U.S. Representative French Hill represents Arkansas' 2nd District. His article was provided by his office and previously ran in Dallas News;

Tags: Representative, French Hill, Arkansas, President Obama, Nearly Killed, The Monroe Doctrine, President Trump, Should Revive It, Venzuala  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 9:40 AM - Post Link


Blogger Jeffrey Locke said...

Use what Obummer never would and never did. A defeatist attitude of blaming America for causing unrest both here and abroad. His legacy MUST BE REVERSED!!! Enforce the Monroe Doctrine once again!!!


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