No matter how the question is put, Kerry's answers on Iraq always boil down to a single recipe: Shrink the US role in Iraq and defer to the United Nations instead. That's it. That is the sum and substance of his thinking about Iraq. He doesn't relate it to the war on terrorism, to the future of liberty in the Middle East, to America's national interests. He repeatedly declares Bush a failure for not kowtowing to the UN and vows that in a Kerry administration, the UN will be given the commanding role it deserves.Hugh Hewitt is also not impressed by Kerry's Grovel Doctrine.
Kerry has been talking this way for months. In his speech on Iraq at the Brookings Institution last fall, for example, he mentioned the UN no fewer than 25 times. ("We need a new Security Council resolution to give the United Nations real authority in the rebuilding of Iraq. . . . This shift of authority from the United States to the United Nations is indispensable.") By contrast, he mentioned terrorism just seven times. He mentioned freedom, democracy, and the Middle East not at all.
More than the records deception and more than Social Security foot-in-mouth, however, the most damaging of Kerry's statements was this statement: "Within weeks of being inaugurated, I will return to the U.N. and I will literally, formally rejoin the community of nations and turn over a proud new chapter in America's relationship with the world, which will do a
number of things."
One thing such a move would be sure to do is embarrass and outrage the American public. "Literally, formally rejoin the community of nations?" What can that mean except that Kerry believes that: (1) The United States and its many allies have been acted unlawfully in liberating Iraq from Saddam; (2) the French, Russians, and Chinese should have a veto over American foreign policy; (3) an apology is in order for exposing the massive corruption of the oil-for-food program; and (4) we should be sorry for having disarmed Libya of its nuclear ambitions and mustard gas.
In fact all President Bush did was demand that the United Nations honor its own commitments, and then enforce U.N. Resolution 1441. John Kerry would seem to believe that post-9/11 America is not safe for the rest of the world and needs taming--or reintegration into the "community of nations." James Lileks wrote that Kerry clearly intends a Jolson-on-bended-knee appearance before the General Assembly, an apology to dwarf all of Clinton's apologies of the past. That indignity and more, I think. Kyoto, the Law of the Sea treaty, the International Criminal Court--you name the U.N. auspice, and Kerry will be there for it, in a "literal, formal" way.
KERRY HAS three things going for him. First, the press, like Tim Russert, isn't listening very closely to the absurdities like "literally, formally rejoining the community of nations." Second, his speaking style is so overwhelmingly self-important and so stultifying oppressive that most folks hit the off-switch when his lips begin to move, thus tuning out comments that would outrage them if they registered on the ears. And third, the "Bush Lied!" crazies wouldn't care if Kerry simply declared the dissolution of American sovereignty and a merger with Canada.