Tuesday, September 28, 2021

The Glaring Lack of Toughness in Biden’s America: Administration Has Proven It Can't Survive the Challenges of the Modern World

Illustration by The Washington Times
The horrific scenes of the botched withdrawal from Afghanistan are now burned into the American conscience. Extremists are parading the streets in American tanks and cutting down civilians with American rifles. U.S. citizens clamored outside the gates of the airport for evacuation unsuccessfully. Terrified Afghan citizens clung to planes departing the country then fell to their deaths. American servicemen and women returned home in caskets. The Taliban hung a body from an American helicopter in flight.
These scenes are not the product of a particular American military failure but a poor decision from the top compounded with an inability to take responsibility for it. Thus, one poor decision became an obstinate need to push forward with a withdrawal plan bungled from the start. The president has yet to admit, in public, that anything could have gone better.
Sometimes, the toughest thing to do in leadership is to admit that you were wrong.
What happened in Afghanistan will have enormous consequences for U.S. foreign policy. We sent the wrong signal to our enemies, and even worse, to our allies. Taliban fighters photographed with abandoned American weaponry will become the poster child of victory to other radical non-state actors deciding whether to persist in their violence against the world order.
Toughness is projected from the top. Americans don’t often enamor with their leaders, and rightly so. But the general attitude about our country exhibited by the White House will set an important tone among the American people, and in turn, the world.
Border countries to Afghanistan, like Pakistan, enjoyed “American ally” status and even continued to enjoy American foreign aid while they simultaneously harbored Taliban and ISIS-K cells waiting for America to leave the region. No one was tough enough to call Pakistan to the mat—and they’re our ally. How, then, can we go toe to toe with China or Iran?
Former President Donald Trump had to get enormously tough on NATO allies just to get them to meet their previous defense commitments. Global entities exhibiting alarming mission creep are constantly chipping away at national sovereignty. A tough America will be necessary to draw the line against an expansionist UN, Bruges, and Davos.
That same toughness missing in our foreign policy is glaringly absent on domestic issues.
America faces an impending financial crisis that will likely end in one of three outcomes: massive inflation, an enormously increased tax burden on American citizens, or a sovereign debt crisis. It’s not impossible that all three will occur. Interest payments on our $29 trillion in debt will cost 50-80 percent of all tax revenues from the American people in fewer than twenty years. We find ourselves in this enormous hole because Washington is at the mercy of short-term political victories with no one willing to acknowledge the trend. Our combined $6 trillion COVID-19 response is indicative of the new, instinctive normal in Congress: spending our way out of every problem we face as a society.
Read the rest from Bryan Griffin HERE

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