A Realist Symposium: Partisans Reviewed

Responding to Dimitri K. Simes’s assertion that we aren’t having a real debate over foreign policy, Derek Chollet argues the Democrats are providing genuine alternatives; Grover G. Norquist looks at the structural reasons inhibiting both parties f

Issue: Sept-Oct 2007

A Real Alternative
Derek Chollet

GIVEN THE tremendous challenges facing the United States, we would be wise to heed Dimitri Simes's call for our leaders and citizens to engage in a vigorous debate about the course and content of American foreign policy. He's also right that this discussion needs to be less about tactics than the overriding purpose and character of policy. Yet his claim that we've never had such a spirited discourse-that both Democrats and Republicans "have displayed little inclination . . . to question the fundamental assumptions of American foreign policy since the Soviet collapse" in 1991-leads one to wonder: Where has he been?

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