Barr points to a larger acceptance of alliances than meets my personal ideal, but I agree with the sentiments expressed here.
August 11, 2008 4:26 pm EST
Atlanta, GA -- “George Washington long ago warned America against ‘entangling alliances,’ and he was right,” says Bob Barr, the Libertarian Party candidate for president. “Russia and Georgia risk falling into a full-scale war in which the U.S. can and hopefully will avoid any involvement. But had Georgia been a member of NATO we would now be risking a full-scale confrontation with nuclear-armed Russia,” Barr observes.
“Obviously, America should encourage both countries to back down and resolve their differences peacefully,” explains Barr. But “the status of South Ossetia, as well as Abkhazia, another Russian-supported separatist zone within Georgia, matters a lot more to Russia, on which the two territories border, than to the U.S. Moreover, Washington itself set a precedent for Russia when it intervened in Kosovo a decade ago, attacking Serbia to win independence for the separatist ethnic-Albanian majority,” notes Barr.
“The purpose of alliances is to defend America,” says Barr. “We should not create or expand alliances where the U.S. does not have vital interests. If the Europeans want to defend distant countries like Georgia, they can do so—after all, the European Union has a larger population and bigger GDP than America, without any of Washington’s other global military commitments. It is time for Europe to accept responsibility for its own security.”
“Any war is tragic, but not every war requires American intervention,” explains Barr. “We can do our best to mediate between Russia and Georgia, but we should avoid any military involvement. It is time to put the defense of America back into America’s defense policy.”