Thursday, March 16, 2006

Tiger Hawk: George P. Shultz and the origins of the Bush Doctrine

Tiger Hawk goes to hear George Shultz and finds another atonishing speech Shutz gave back in 1984,
Shultz's message was at once both optimistic -- "the world has never been in a situation of greater promise than now" -- and concerned -- "the terrorists must not be allowed to abort this opportunity." The challenge, he said, is to develop a sustainable American strategy against Islamic terrorism that will carry us through a very long war.

Shultz's speech Wednesday afternoon, of which I will write more in a subsequent post, led me to the astonishing realization that he understood threat of terrorism, and particularly Islamic terrorism, long before virtually anybody else in the foreign policy establishment of either party. On October 25, 1984, more than 21 years ago, he gave a speech1 in New York City that today appears startlingly prescient, and can fairly be said to be the foundational document of current American policy. Shultz spoke then of the nature of terrorism, the moral confusion of the West in the confronting of it, and the requirement that it be preempted by military force, if necessary. Considering what has transpired in the years since then, Shultz's argument is arresting. Excerpts follow below, with bold emphasis added and my commentary in italics.
Go over and read it. The parts on moral confusion and duration especially important for us today.

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