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Biden’s Foreign-Policy Blast From the Past
US Deputy Secretary of State Anthony Blinken attends a press conference about the 2016 annual report on international religious freedom at the US Department of State August 10, 2016 in Washington, DC.
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

Biden’s Foreign-Policy Blast From the Past

Walter Russell Mead

Optimism is a rare commodity in this difficult year, but I came away from a conversation with Antony Blinken, Joe Biden’s senior foreign-policy adviser, believing the former vice president’s campaign is confident that the old-time Democratic policy playbook will bring success abroad and at home.

This sort of optimism, the belief that working hard and sticking to your principles will bring results, is a defining characteristics of the American spirit. Pessimists don’t change countries and cultures in hope of building a better life. And a nation of pessimists produces few world-class innovators and entrepreneurs.

In foreign affairs the case for optimism is limited. A nation of pessimists wouldn’t have come up with the Marshall Plan—but neither would it have overthrown Moammar Gadhafi, certain a more peaceful Libya would emerge.

Read the full article in Wall Street Journal

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