The United States' strategic interests and founding values reinforce one another. When America's values underpin its strategy and tactics, its national security policies create a more open, prosperous, and stable world. For 4D PAC, America's values form its name:
The United States should support the aspirations of all peoples to freely express themselves at all times. Rarely, if ever, can democracy be exported at the barrel of a gun as the Bush administration's disastrous policies in Iraq have shown. However, that does not mean the United States should shy away from working with politicians, journalists, and bureaucrats of all backgrounds -- so long as they do not espouse violence -- to build democratic institutions worldwide. The transition to democracy can be messy and long, but the United States should persevere to remain engaged with all who seek our assistance.
America's diplomatic alliances with NATO member countries, as well as Australia, Israel, New Zealand, Japan, and South Korea form the bedrock of our actions on the world stage. When faced with pressing matters of national security, America should work in concert with its closest allies to present a united front to those we disagree with. And when faced with questions of war and peace, diplomatic efforts must be exhausted before considering military action.
Since the end of World War II, American developmental assistance has been crucial in lifting billions of people out of poverty the world over. Robust developmental assistance continues to do so, and creates a "triple win" for America: in reducing poverty, America creates a more prosperous, more stable world; over the long term, it creates new markets for American goods and services; and it supports American founding values by providing better opportunities for all.
There are times when diplomatic efforts fail, when America must act in its legitimate self-defense, and when America can prevent conflict by having the world's unquestionably strongest, most advanced, and best-funded military and intelligence services. They are our country's last line of defense, our insurance policy to guarantee our own prosperity and freedoms. However, our defense budget is not sacrosanct, and should make a reasonable contribution to deficit reduction as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan recede. Reductions in defense spending must be carefully considered, and targeted to address the sources of long-term drivers of costs.
Check back in the coming weeks and months for updates on the policies and issues that we hope to shape through the 4D worldview.