The ‘Trump Doctrine’: Ambassador Richard Grenell’s Nixon Library Address

July 27, 2019 Updated: July 27, 2019

Commentary

Is “America First” based on any race, or color, or creed? Does it advance the interests of any one group of Americans at the expense of another? Is it based on class or status? Is it isolationist or fascistic?

U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell speaks to the contrary about these derogatory aspersions.

Elitists flaunt a self-proclaimed moral superiority against “America First.” They don’t have clarity on how America First benefits not only the United States but also all nations that share our values and goals.

Grenell recently spoke at The Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum in California about what he terms the “Trump Doctrine.” The occasion was to mark the Nixon Doctrine’s 50th anniversary. Grenell believes that the “Trump Doctrine puts the security and prosperity of the American people before everything else,” but not to the exclusion of other important goals of foreign policy or national defense.

President Donald Trump does this without pretext or apology, and works to match U.S. goals with what’s attainable in the world in which we live. Trump sees the world as it is, not as leftists or elitists think it ought to be.

Grenell quoted Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, saying, “‘America First’ does not mean that America succeeds ‘at the expense of others.’ It means we succeed ‘to the benefit of our people, and by extension, the nations that share our values and our strategic goals.'”

Grenell said that “America First” doesn’t mean “America Alone.” He maintains that by pursuing our interests, we build consensus among countries that reflect similar ideals and objectives. We ask our political friends and allies to share the burden of international security, and to play active roles in defending our shared values. We need active global allies, which will result in the United States continuing to play the role of global superpower effectively.

Proof that this policy works, the ambassador said, is the “Trump administration’s ability to defeat ISIS without a large use of boots on the ground, without triggering a conflict with Russia, and without causing a new wave of terror”—all while salvaging public support in Libya, Syria, and Iraq.

The Trump Doctrine, Grenell explained, is the belief that government must focus on the “equality and dignity of every American … not by pretending to promote the interests of all humanity.”

The doctrine isn’t rhetoric that surpasses resources or a desire to remake the world, which leads to pointless and costly wars. It doesn’t “send America’s sons and daughters into harm’s way without a plan,” or lead to disastrous trade deals and dangerous nuclear agreements. It’s the best means of ensuring the security and prosperity for Americans, while cooperating with those who share our values and out-competing our adversaries.

Grenell spoke about the president’s removal of limits placed on U.S. power by institutions that don’t share or advance our interests, and the need to maintain the strength of the U.S. armed forces; of our dynamic financial system; and of the revolution in our energy production. He spoke about the president’s willingness to cut deals where U.S. and global security will benefit. He spoke how Trump uses the stick of economic pressure while offering the carrot of negotiations without preconditions—as in China, Iran, and North Korea.

Grenell closed his remarks with a quote from John Quincy Adams—the first to hold the office of U.S. ambassador to Germany—who said that America “goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy,” but “is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all.”

Darlene Casella is a former English teacher, stockbroker, and president/owner of a small corporation. She is politically active and lives in California.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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