The leaks—who cares?
Why do I find myself unmoved by, unworried by, and uninterested in the unprecedented leak of 250,000 State Department cables to a left-wing group which has now given them to prominent left-wing newspapers for publication?
I think it’s because of a sense I have that the world in general, and U.S. foreign policy in particular, is already so topsy turvy that the leaks can hardly matter. Let me put it this way. Suppose we were still living in a time when the U.S. government pursued American and Western interests in a more or less rational, responsible way. In that case, the leaks—revealing, as all private communications between nations would do, views of leaders different from those expressed publicly as well as U.S. officials’ critical evaluations of foreign leaders—would be damaging to our interests and to our relations with other countries. But the actuality is that the current U.S. government does not pursue American and Western interests. It pursues mostly anti-American and anti-Western interests, based on a mélange of anti-reality, liberal beliefs and assumptions, such as the belief that America has too much power in the world and needs to be brought down so as to create more equality among nations; such as the belief that Iran can be dissuaded from developing nuclear weapons by negotiations and economic boycotts; such as the belief that the way to lessen the threat of Islamic extremism is to accommodate Muslim interests and stroke Muslim sensibilities; such as the belief that the Israel-Palestinian “peace” process is achievable and is the hinge on which the fate of the world hangs; such as the belief that democratizing and nation-building Iraq and Afghanistan is achievable and the key to creating a moderate Islam; such as the belief that the EU project is of great benefit to mankind. Given these and other bizarre, unreal, and unwholesome beliefs and goals that U.S. policy makers now adhere to, the exposure of our leaders’ secret communications with foreign leaders will bring out, not truths that will undercut our rationally self-interested policies and our position in the world, but truths that will undercut our surrealistically liberal attempts to undercut our own position in the world and to do utopian and destructive things like reach a “two-state solution” in the Mideast and build “democracy” in Iraq.
Please do not misunderstand me. I do not support the leakers. They are leftist troublemakers seeking to harm the United States; and besides, anyone with the name Julian Assange has got to be a creep. Further, if the leaks are illegal, which they ought to be, then the government should prosecute the leakers.
No. The truth is simply that I don’t care. And the reason I don’t care is that American foreign policy is already so unreal that I don’t see how America’s genuine interests can be undermined in any serious way by the exposure of confidential foreign policy communications which contradict our public positions and those of our allies and negotiating partners.
For years I have called the columnist Spengler a clueless pseudo-intellectual. But today I will change my tune and say of him, Great minds think alike, because his take on the leaks is virtually identical to my own.
Perhaps the overarching revelation contained within these leaks is that Obama’s much vaunted “reset” of U.S. foreign policy is nothing less than incompetence mixed with ideology. The failure of the Obama administration to secure the already negotiated free trade agreement with South Korea is instructive in that regard. Because trade unions decided that more goodies for them should be included, Obama apparently took it upon himself to re-negotiate a done deal. Naturally the South Koreans balked at this, and Obama returned from Seoul with nothing, instead of the deal already worked out by Bush.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at November 29, 2010 07:57 AM | Send