Gov. Mitt Romney today cut through some of the haziness that had enveloped his foreign policy plans, touting his ACTUAL SPECIFIC PLANS to replace the emptiness of earlier, gauzy platitudes.
It’s the latest example of a new Romney strategy that has given a sense of direction to his campaign and probably helped bump up his poll numbers. On domestic policy too, particularly in last Wednesday’s debate, Romney has also more clearly spotlighted the steps he would take as president.
Yes, it’s all truly groundbreaking. The Romney campaign has decided to respect voters enough to actually give them a choice, and not just smack President Obama around.
Romney is finally succeeding in setting himself apart from Obama and giving voters a sense of something to look forward to with a Romney presidency.
Romney, who spoke at the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia, ranged across of host of issues and had a Romney Plan for most of them. Here’s a sample:
Iran: Tighten sanctions, perhaps institute some new ones, and show we mean business on the military option by reviving the clarity of our commitment to Israel and returning aircraft carrier task forces to the Eastern Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf.
Syria: Increase the flow of arms to the rebels.
Afghanistan: Here, Romney’s words have to be read very carefully. It appears he would junk Obama’s policy of a definitive exit of American troops by the end of 2014. Instead, he would “pursue” a “transition” of the job to Afghan forces by the end of 2014, not ruling out the maintenance of an American presence. And instead of a nonnegotiable exit, Romney would “evaluate conditions on the ground and weigh the best advice of our military commanders.”
Defense: Reverse cuts made by Obama and rebuild the Navy.
Egypt: Put clear conditions on aid rather than allowing an open-ended commitment.
Middle East Peace: Revive negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.
Moreover, Romney would unabashedly move to restore U.S. international leadership, saying our allies crave it and the world needs it. He sent a very clear signal that though unilateralism of George W. Bush might not be revived, the days of deference to international organizations and the ideologies and goals of others would be over.
The battle lines are clear. And the foreign policy debate Romney and Obama will stage Oct. 16 in Hempstead, New York will be FUN, not a blather of generalities.