History shows that weakness and cowardly behavior are not as wise a path in international affairs as resolve and firmness. It is a lesson that should not need to be pondered long or tested periodically. But, alas, here we go again, thanks to some of the ‘leaders’ in the Republican Party.
Playing to the foolish inward-looking elements of his party, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy sent a loud and dangerous signal to the nation that should the GOP win the majority status, he and his fellow party colleagues will likely oppose more aid to stop Russian aggression against the sovereign nation of Ukraine. This move would be a dreadful stain on our country and a damaging blow to international alliances such as NATO. It would also run counter to the moral high ground and bipartisan regard Congress proved with their unity in authorizing billions of dollars in both U.S. military and humanitarian assistance to help Ukraine and stop Russian President Putin.
It was simply bewildering to witness some of the comments made by very conservative members of the Republican Party regarding the fate of Ukraine as the tensions mounted in Eastern Europe. The flippant and woefully short-sighted comments from the likes of Tucker Carlson on FOX News show what the Trump base was watching and listening to well before Russian troops amassed in huge numbers to charge into Ukraine.
“I think we should probably take the side of Russia, if we have to choose between Russia and Ukraine.”
It was downright pathetic when those comments continued after Russia invaded its neighbor. We sadly need to recall the type of comments that found their way to headlines from the likes of former Republican Congressman Madison Hawthorn.
“Remember that Zelenskyy is a thug. Remember that the Ukrainian government is incredibly corrupt and it is incredibly evil and has been pushing woke ideologies.”
Perhaps most shocking of all, as it underscores how unprepared and uninformed one of the GOP senate nominees is about international policy comes this stunning statement from J. D. Vance.
“I gotta be honest with you, I don’t really care what happens to Ukraine one way or the other.”
Siding with Putin and against Ukraine was always disgusting and will find scorn from those who write history and analyze what character lapses led to such outrageous positions to be held and articulated. It is not uncommon, sadly, for some of the modern elements of the GOP, and especially within the Trump base, to lean into and at times openly embrace authoritarianism while kicking at democracy.
From a purely political aspect, it is most telling how removed the current GOP is from that place it once called a home base. Ronald Reagan and those in his administration who knew the power of democracy along with the stench of communism would hurl upon those in the Republican Party who now are weak-kneed at stopping Russian aggression against a sovereign nation.
Reagan knew that power plays among nations do not come cheaply. His massive arms buildup and military stands did cause, in part, the demise of the Soviet Union as their economy could not truly respond in kind. I am certain as an American, and not a politico as I write this post, that Reagan would have championed and strongly advocated the authorization, thus far, of upward of $60 billion in aid to Ukraine from our nation.
The international consequences of Russia prevailing in this war of aggression must not be in any way marginalized. The barbaric actions of Russian troops clearly demonstrate that there is no international agreement that Putin can be counted on to respect. That conduct must not be allowed to stand, be accepted, or be normalized. China is watching. Putin has made clear that destroying Ukraine is, for him, as has been widely reported for months an existential, goal. Again, China is watching.
History proves unless force is met with equal determination a soulless tyrant will not cease pushing forward. We need only note that Putin’s war and success in Crimea did not quell the appetite within the Kremlin.
I cannot understand how some people in the nation might see inflation and high energy prices in the offing as a reason to withdraw from our obligations as a superpower. If left up to Fox News viewers much of the federal government would wither on the vine. But we know from reading history that when lethargy is allowed to take hold, and isolationist policies are pursued there is never an ending that brings anyone pleasure. Other than for the aggressor.