The president’s policies reflect his appointments: ideologues who should have retired after previous foreign policy debacles.

By Katrina vanden Heuvel, Responsible Statecraft

President Joe Biden recently appointed Victoria Nuland, Dick Cheney’s point person on Iraq, acting deputy secretary of State, the department’s number two official. He named Elliott Abrams, convicted perjurer and grim apologist for Central American torturers under Ronald Reagan, to his Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy.

biden at pentagon

Meanwhile, Bill Kristol, perfervid lobbyist for the Iraq War, cadged $2 million to pay for TV ads urging Republicans to stay the course in Ukraine. War may or may not be the health of the state, but surely it is a tonic for neo-conservative armchair warriors.

In the White House, while Biden has touted a new “foreign policy for the middle class,” his policies have largely been a reversion to the ruinous policies of the foreign policy establishment and its belief in America’s benevolent hegemony.

Once more America is described as the indispensable nation. Once more officials preach about a “rules-based order” that they invoke and violate at will. Once more we’re summoned to a global struggle between democracy and authoritarianism. We’re waging a proxy war with Russia in Ukraine while simultaneously gearing up for a Cold War with China, imposing economic sanctions on 26 countries, maintaining over 750 bases in 80 countries, and dispatching forces to over 100 countries and across the seven seas.

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