In his response to the anti-US violence in the Muslim world, and in comments on the Mideast and China, Mitt Romney sounds like a neocon. But some analysts say his policies would be more centrist.
Mitt Romney has preferred to keep to economic issues in his presidential campaign, but when he has turned to foreign policy he’s revealed the influence of the muscular, with-us-or-against-us neoconservative thinking that waxed strong in the George W. Bush administration.
That was true last week when Governor Romney excoriated President Obama for what he said was a weak and apologetic response to anti-American violence in the Middle East. It came through again Tuesday in the video that surfaced with Romney telling donors in Florida that the Palestinians “have no interest whatsoever” in peace.
“We’re seeing in Romney’s pronouncements the strain of the Vulcans, the extremist form of vulcanism together with the evangelical position on Israel,” says Geoffrey Kemp, a foreign policy expert at Washington’s Center for the National Interest, a realist think tank. “It’s very, very unlike the Republican foreign policy we knew before George W. Bush.”
The Vulcans refers to the foreign-policy team that candidate Bush assembled and that continued to advise him in his presidency after the 9/11 attacks and that in particular prodded him to wage a war of choice in Iraq that was supposed to result in a reformed and pro-American Middle East.
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