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The Right Stuff: Should America serve as the world’s cop?

By Earl Heal : published November 27, 2022

The conflict in Ukraine has again illuminated the historic American debate favoring isolation or military action when diplomacy fails, and war potential arises.

A strong isolationist group has opposed entering each major American war – the Revolutionary War against England, the Civil War over slavery, World War I and World War II. History confirms America’s entry in each produced admirable solutions although our delayed entry into both world wars significantly increased suffering and financial loss for all participants. With world peace restored after World War II, America implemented the Marshall Plan to hasten rebuilding the decimated European nations. The free world looked to America for leadership, so the United Nations accepted America as the defacto world cop. When the USSR – the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics – appeared anxious for conflict soon after World War II, American and European leaders strengthened allied support through organization of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and America promptly developed a strong deterrence named Fortress America. Hundreds of B-47 jet bombers were built for a one-way mission to bomb Russia.

In the 1960s Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara developed a new concept named Mutual Assured Destruction. The belief was that maintaining an equal force with the enemy would cancel their fear of invasion and they would terminate their aggression. This only extended the Cold War indefinitely. Fortunately, President Ronald Reagan in 1981 proclaimed MAD as suicidal and promoted a winning concept, “We win, You Lose.” Russia’s economy could not match America’s and the USSR collapsed.[ more]

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