One of the major political themes that will emerge in next year’s US elections is “no more nation-building.” The electorate as a whole and Republican constituencies in particular have no interest in any further US military “interventions” in foreign lands.
As well, American voters would like to wind down our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan as quickly as possible. Crudely put, the neo-conservative foreign policy agenda is as dead as a doornail.
Republicans have been weirdly slow to grasp this shift in public opinion. So they’ve been going on TV and urging President Obama to impose a “no-fly” zone over Libya. Democrats, including Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA), have also urged the President to intervene militarily.
It’s never going to happen. Roughly two-thirds of Americans oppose US military intervention in Libya, according to private and public polls. And as the situation in Libya and across the Middle East and North Africa gets messier, that number is likely to go up, not down.
A President who takes the first steps toward war with two-thirds of his countrymen opposed is a president on his way to re-election defeat. President Obama has no interest in that, at all.
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