As the uncertainty of Trump’s administration has sent anxiety to global elites. Trump’s phone call to the Taiwanese President seeking to get leverage on the strained China-Taiwan relationship, left many in Asia to fear for the peace it had enjoyed. As an American, we have benefitted greatly from global peace and security, so how can we not feel concerned?
If we all take a step back and think about how the last eight years of U.S. involvement globally was affected under Barack Obama: has the world really become safer?
Obama’s reductions of military presence in Iraq and Afghanistan has weakened them, resulting in the rise of ISIS (in Iraq) and the resurgence of Taliban (in Afghanistan). Obama’s passiviness in the Syrian civil has thrown the Arab world into a complex proxy war.
From a series of world events, we can see that sometimes greater peace may only be achieved through strength. An example: President Jimmy Carter’s timidness caused the capture of the U.S. embassy in Iran and the 444 day hostage crisis that followed.
Reagan increased U.S. military spending by 35 percent and took a tough stance against the Soviets. In which case, Reagan unarguably won the cold war against USSR without starting a physical war.
As ambitions and strength of the U.S. enemy grew, so should the U.S. With less than a month to President-elect Trump’s inauguration, many liberal doom-sayers have told people about the possibility of the world ending in a nuclear world with China or Russia.
On the matter of defense, a useful piece of advice would be to emulate former Republican President Reagan in terms of his foreign policy approach.
In his time, many feared that the ring-wing rhetorics of Reagan might lead to war with the soviets. But notably, Reagan ran for office from the right but he governed from the center. He took an firm stance towards Russia when it came to war but at the same time, created the conditions for the Soviets to step down towards a more stable Russia as we saw in the 90’s; Winning the cold war without firing a single shot.
The enemies against world peace and stability must learn to live in fear again, as to deter them from their rash actions.
With a rising arms race in our ever-changing world, the return of a “tough” U.S. president after eight years of a restrained foreign policy may be the solution.