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Washington Times: Leadership styles offer greatest contrast between Romney, Obama foreign policy briefs

Published: October 10, 2012

THE best way to sum up Mitt Romney's approach to foreign policy is: Build peace through strength rather than generate contempt through apology. Romney laid out this vision for American national security at the Virginia Military Institute on Monday. President Barack Obama's camp predictably dismissed this point of view as “outside of the mainstream and often to the right of even George W. Bush.”

This is from the administration which has made targeted killings the centerpiece of its counterterrorism strategy. This is from the administration that has attempted — poorly — to make a legal case for assassinating U.S. citizens abroad. The Obama campaign can't even claim to be consistent, having admitted many of Romney's positions are identical to its own. As Ronald Reagan said to a previous generation of liberals, “Fellows, you can't have it both ways. (I) can't be a wild-eyed kook and a square.”

After Romney's speech, CNN commentator and Obama supporter Fareed Zakaria argued the only major policy difference between the two candidates is that Romney allegedly wants to arm the Syrian rebels. Zakaria overlooked almost all the key differences. Romney would stop the raid on the military budget that threatens U.S. military pre-eminence. He'd build up American missile defense regardless of Obama's backroom promises to Russian leaders to degrade it. He'd take credible steps to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. He'd offer robust support to Iran's dissident movement and back reformers in the Middle East rather than cheer Islamist extremists. He'd adopt regional strategies that show an understanding of the root causes of the enduring terrorist threat. He'd stand by America's allies, whether in Europe, Asia, Africa or the Middle East. In particular, he'd reaffirm the lack of daylight between the United States and Israel on matters of national security. Romney can also be counted on to actually visit the Jewish State, something Obama has failed to do.

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