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Foreign policy takes an election season holiday

The deceased al Queda leader
The deceased al Queda leader

As the Republican Convention is concluded this evening and Mitt Romney is now officially the GOP candidate for President of the United States, the Republicans have successfully negotiated the terms of debate for this campaign for the presidency. What they have done is the political equivalent of what golfers have been known to call eliminating one side of the course; or when tennis players stay away from an opponent’s strong forehand, or when basketball players successfully force an opponent to their weak hand; or when a baseball pitcher stays away from a batter’s sweet spot.

This campaign may be waged entirely on the domestic policy front; as there certainly figures to be very little mention of foreign policy during this presidential election cycle.

The irony is that President George W. Bush actually sought and won reelection on the premise that his decisions kept America safe after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

On the other hand, as President Barack Obama seeks a second term in office, certain members of the military elite and all of his political opponents suddenly now consider it to be in bad form for him to remind the American people of the decisions he has made as President to aggressively pursue and bring to justice the perpetrators of the terrorism visited upon the American people during the first year of his predecessor’s administration.

It is also ironic that alleged leaks from anonymous but apparently highly placed sources—nothing new in Washington, D.C.—now serve to intimidate the Obama campaign from touting President Obama’s aggresiveness in combating al Queda.

The death of Osama bin Laden, the leader of al Queda and the nemesis of the previous administration, is not something that this incumbent can dare even mention.

Thus it is that foreign policy has apparently taken a holiday this campaign season.


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