Realist Republican Relics
Dan Drezner reflects on a “rogue states” conference he attended in California and reports that,
The most amusing moment for me was when AEI’s Danielle Pletka accused me of being on the far left — because I suggested some realpolitik approaches to foreign policy (like prioritizing counterproliferation over democracy promotion). When informed of my party status later, Pletka replied, “well, he’s not like any Republican I know!” Apparently, Brent Scowcroft, George H.W. Bush, George Schultz, and Henry Kissinger are now barred from entering AEI.
Nick Gvosdev is bemused as well but sympathizes somewhat with Pletka’s confusion, noting that he and Drezner share this foreign policy outlook with the likes of Amitai Etzioni.
Given that neoconservatism combines the worst elements of Woodrow Wilson’s and Jimmy Carter’s foreign policies, it continues to befuddle me that it has the word “conservative” as a root, let alone that it has seemingly co-opted the Republican Party. That’s all the more true given that its standard bearer was a man who got himself elected on a strict “no nation-building” pledge; oddly, his father lost the presidency largely over having violated his promise of “no new taxes.”