Thursday, November 06, 2008

An open letter to President-elect Obama

Dear President-elect,

Allow me to begin this letter by congratulating you on your victory Tuesday. If you read this space regularly, you would know that you did not earn my vote (the explanation will come later), but obviously that did nothing to slow you down. More to the point, I don't automatically assume (let alone hope) that candidates I oppose will fail when they serve the office they have one.

Finally, and most importantly, on the issues that matter to me, my fellow Epoch Times columnists, and those who read these pages, you have the opportunity to act in both America's best interests and your own (no shame in the latter - you do have re-election to consider after all). Here are some areas where you can become the first 21st Century anti-Communist President - and make the world a much safer place.

Trade and Product Safety
How it helps America and the free world: The melamine scandal has at last revealed just how much the cadres are willing to risk the health of the entire world - especially their own international customers - keep the flow of bribes coming. It is clear that they have no interest in joining the world community as a model nation, but rather to subvert the current world order in favor of one where the CCP is the leading world power. This regime must be held accountable.

How it helps you: You were the most openly protectionist party nominee in at least twenty years; you are probably worried about the backlash in international markets due to this, but your "base" is looking for an end to the free-trade/globalization policies of the last two decades. However, even many avid free-traders (such as yours truly and David Frum) include an exception for the Communist regime. Taking trade action against Beijing will appeal to your protectionist supporters without badly inflaming everyone else. In fact, you may find support for it from unexpected areas.

Taiwan (a.k.a. the Republic of China)
How it helps America and the free world: You will the President who could face a Communist military invasion of the island democracy in 2012. I say "could" because with enough of a show of strength, you could delay or event prevent the regime from taking this action.

How it helps you: To the American people, you were the anti-Bush, the man who represented the clearest break from the outgoing Administration. In this case, that break would be dramatically emphasized by standing with Taiwan (the Bush Administration made it clear it preferred keeping Beijing happy). Furthermore, a strong, principled stance for freedom here can be a nice foil to your plans to withdraw from Iraq within 16 months.

North Korea
How it helps America and the free world: The Communist regime has gotten away with using its Korean colony to distract Washington for far too long. Not only has it led to dangerous concessions to Kim Jong-il, but it has also enabled Beijing to avoid all responsibility for propping up the regime in the first place. It is time to make clear that the CCP can not have it both ways, and that for any antics by North Korea, Beijing will be held responsible.

How it helps you: Again, this is one where the Bush Administration dropped the ball. By picking it up and moving in another direction, you can show that you are not George W. Bush, while at the same time re-orienting American foreign policy in East Asia.

How it helps America and the free world: I had hoped that a democratic Pakistan would be less dependent on Beijing and more willing to help America defeat al Qaeda and the Taliban. It didn't happen. Whatever the Pakistani people may think, Pakistan's elite clearly sees India as a greater threat than the terrorists in its own midst. They have become an enabler.

How it helps you: I don't need to tell you how much your tough stand on Pakistan helped neutralized the national security issue. Were it not for the history Democratic Presidents have of talking tough and acting week, I would have given this more consideration. Follow through on your tough rhetoric and India will be a much closer ally, while Beijing will finally have to play some defense in the Second Cold War. More to the point, it would dramatically reveal that as President, you intend to keep your word.

The overall "War on Terror"
How it helps America and the free world: Communist China is the largest benefactor of the terrorist enemies we face. So far, they have suffered no consequence for it. This must stop. The War on Terror is now part of the Second Cold War. Unless America recognizes this, neither war can be won.

How it helps you: This will be the biggest political problem you will face, because you will be caught between defending America's interest abroad and protecting your political coalition at home from left-wing critics. This would transform American foreign policy in a way that would make the left happy (more on that later), while keeping our enemies on their toes. In fact, the CCP would have to deal with a new, clear-eyed Administration that will not allow them to furtively provide aid and comfort to terrorists.

Winning the Second Cold War
How it helps America and the free world: See all above.

How it helps you: You have the largest Democratic coalition in forty years. Managing it won't be easy; the left will be very unhappy whenever you look to appease the centrist piece. On this issue, however, left and right stand as one against the center. Thus, a genuine anti-Communist policy will not only score big with the "base," but it will also maintain or perhaps even add to the list of "Obamacons" who provide you bipartisan cover.

For the past year, you have run as the candidate of change - not just rudimentary tweaking, but complete transformation. On this issue, you truly can transform not only America, but the world as a whole. You can give hope to Chinese dissidents, starving Koreans, and freedom-lovers across the globe. You can make America and anti-Communist country again. You can show the world that we have a resolve to defeat tyranny wherever we find it, however long it takes. Finally, you can do all of this while making your strongest supporters and some of your most determined opponents happy. It could make the temporary political majority you have built permanent and larger.

Who knows? You might even get my vote next time.

No comments: