With words closely echoing his father’s foreign policy concerns, Rand Paul has said that the GOP penchant for making war has actually created the current ISIS crisis:
In an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Paul was asked about the criticism he’s received from GOP hawks like South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham and Arizona Sen. John McCain, who have argued that America’s failure to arm moderate rebel groups in the Syrian civil war created space for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) to grow.
“I would say it’s exactly the opposite,” Paul said. “ISIS exists and grew stronger because of the hawks in our party who gave arms indiscriminately, and most of those arms were snatched up by ISIS. These hawks also wanted to bomb [Syrian dictator Bashar] Assad, which would have made ISIS’s job even easier.”
Ron Paul had very similar things to say, and he was brutalized for those opinions in the public forum, especially on the campaign trail. Just why the idea of non-interventionism is so unpopular, or so hard for people to understand, is beyond me. Everyone and their mother knows that we actually helped get Saddam Hussein into power a few years before we were “forced” to clear him out of the way so ISIS could take over. Everyone knows we armed the Taliban in Afghanistan before they became enemy No. 1. The list actually goes on and on. Arming and aiding the enemies of our enemies in an indefinite cycle has never really been in the interest of anyone but the military-industrial complex.
In fact, how many times have our intrusive hawkish policies ever actually resulted in unmitigated gain for the United States? I’ll give you a hint—you can count them on the fingers of a clenched fist.
Yet, here we are. Doing it again and again. And Rand Paul and his father are mislabeled as “isolationists.” I’ll probably have to say this over and over again, but refusing to intervene with your military is not isolationism. There are other ways than war to interact with other countries. At least, there used to be. But if you punch a guy in the face enough times, it’s funny how, over time, he stops being as willing to talk things over with you.