Tags: Donald Trump | Orlando Terror Attack | War on Terrorism | defense | foreign | jihad | massacre

Orlando Massacre Calls for Foreign Policy Review

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Wednesday, 15 Jun 2016 01:36 PM Current | Bio | Archive

I started writing this article before the tragic jihad massacre in Orlando. May God rest the souls of the deceased, and comfort their grieving families and friends.

Shortly after the Orlando jihad massacre, Donald Trump posted an official statement, explaining that, “our nation was attacked by a radical Islamic terrorist. It was the worst terrorist attack on our soil since 9/11, and the second of its kind in 6 months. My deepest sympathy and support goes out to the victims, the wounded, and their families.”

In light of this most horrendous jihad attack on American soil since Sept. 11, 2001, it is appropriate to clarify Donald Trump’s recent push for more accountability in our international defense pacts such as NATO, especially as two of our NATO allies recently suffered similar jihad attacks: France in November 2015; and Belgium in March 2016.

Sun Tzu wrote in “The Art of War” during the 5th century B.C.: “One who knows the enemy and knows himself will not be endangered in a hundred engagements. One who does not know the enemy but knows himself will sometimes be victorious, sometimes meet with defeat. One who knows neither the enemy nor himself will invariably be defeated in every engagement.”

It is therefore appropriate, and arguably necessary for victory over the global jihad movement, to review the core values of NATO, the principles that bind us together in our NATO alliance: “democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law.” Reviewing these core values, as codified in the 1949 Washington Treaty, helps us know ourselves better.

What Donald Trump said after the Orlando jihad massacre helps us know our enemies better. What Donald Trump has said about accountability in international defense pacts, including NATO, is not just a good idea; it also helps us know ourselves better by highlighting a Constitutional duty.

Even as we continue to grieve for the American lives lost in the Orlando jihad massacre, it is a good thing to consider the many blessings we still enjoy, including those “Blessings of Liberty” that our U.S. Constitution was designed to “secure . . . to ourselves and our Posterity.”

Article 1, Section 9, of the Constitution provides that, “a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time.”

In his April 27, 2016, foreign policy speech, Trump announced, among other things: “My foreign policy will always put the interests of the American people, and American security, above all else. That will be the foundation of every decision that I will make. Our allies must contribute toward the financial, political and human costs of our tremendous security burden. But many of them are simply not doing so. They look at the United States as weak and forgiving and feel no obligation to honor their agreements with us.”

To make his position on NATO crystal clear, Donald Trump explained his common sense and constitutionally-sound approach to NATO funding accountability, which others have grossly misinterpreted as a lack of commitment to NATO and/or some form of isolationism:
  • “In NATO, for instance, only 4 of 28 other member countries, besides America, are spending the minimum required 2 percent of GDP on defense.”
  • “We have spent trillions of dollars over time – on planes, missiles, ships, equipment – building up our military to provide a strong defense for Europe and Asia. The countries we are defending must pay for the cost of this defense – and, if not, the U.S. must be prepared to let these countries defend themselves.”
  • “The whole world will be safer if our allies do their part to support our common defense and security.”
Whenever we talk about our allies, including our NATO allies, Japan, and South Korea, paying more for the cost of defense expenditures, we should keep in mind that our Constitution requires transparency and accountability to “We the people” for all public expenditures.

If we pay more than our agreed-upon share for the defense of our allies because some of those allies fail to honor their commitments, the American people need to know. We the people need to know not only how much money our government is spending on defense, but how smartly our government is spending our money on defense.

Knowing ourselves and knowing our enemies helps avoid waste and ensure victory.

To quote Donald Trump, “In this time of mounting debt, not one dollar can be wasted.” To quote our Constitution, that masterful legal framework designed “to secure the blessings of liberty” (Preamble), “a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."

May God continue to bless America during these grieving and otherwise trying times.

Joseph E. Schmitz served as inspector general of the Dept. of Defense from 2002-2005 and is a Partner in the law firm of Schmitz & Socarras LLP. Read more reports from Joseph E. Schmitz — Click Here Now.



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JosephESchmitz
We the people need to know not only how much money our government is spending on defense, but how smartly our government is spending our money on defense. Knowing ourselves and knowing our enemies helps avoid waste and ensure victory.
defense, foreign, jihad, massacre, policy, treaty
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Wednesday, 15 Jun 2016 01:36 PM
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