Beyond Labels

A 360° Discussion of Foreign, National and Local Policy Issues

September 8 Topic: Isolationism

I repeated Richard Jacoby’s post describing this week’s topic.  Art

Richard Jacoby
SEPTEMBER 4, 2014 AT 4:35 PM
Isolationism – Beyond labels topic for Monday September 8, 2014.
At the end of the last meeting with Art Newkirk and others I believe we settled on the topic of “Isolationism” for the next topic.
The word “Isolationist” is perhaps a political sentiment more than a strategy and swings widely with political attitudes and current events. Prior to WWII the American sentiment was 80 – 90% against any European involvement, even aid to England, which reversed to more than 90% in favor after Pearl Harbor. Since then, although the U.S. has taken a very activist position in the world, the isolationist sentiment has oscillated with events, most recently to pro intervention after 9-11 and more isolation with the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan and Iraq – at least until current disconcerting developments in the Middle East and other areas.
The question is what should be the role of the U.S. in shaping world events and what are the appropriate means? When is “Isolationism” a viable foreign policy strategy?
I am short on references but here is an editorial from that cold war Machiavellian, Henry Kissinger:

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