James Webb on Foreign Policy
Democratic Sr Senator
A: Well, they are a very opaque regime, and as a result, you have to be prepared for unpredictable actions from them. We are the guarantor of stability in all of the Asian Rim. We have been since the end of World War II. in the long term, this is an opportunity for us to get a confidence-building with China. This is an area where China has some influence, and perhaps can help us resolve a situation. The questions I would have with respect to this administration's policy have been the actions of China in the Senkaku Islands and then all the way down along the Rim, in the Spratlys, where they are very clearly expanding their military presence. And I think we could do a lot more.
WEBB: I would be hesitant with what I see right now, what we do not want to do at this point is to send a signal to the region that we are accepting the notion that eventually Iran would be acquiring nuclear weapons. There are other ways we can improve relations with Iran, confidence building gestures as we did with the Soviet Union over many years.
WEBB: I would probably say China is a long-term strategic threat, if you look at the expansion that they have conducted over the last 15 years. I've been talking about in the South China Sea and building blue water navy. I take General Dunford's point about the turbulence with respect to Russia, but I think our friends and allies in Europe have done a pretty good job of helping us address that.
Q: As president, would you send weapons to the Ukrainians for example?
WEBB: I would be open to looking at that.
JIM WEBB: Well, it doesn't. And actually, I think it's fair to say right now that we are at a crossroads as a nation in terms of how we view ourselves, how we say these things to ourselves. And the way that these issues are going to be resolved in the next couple of years will affect us for a very long time. We have not had a clear articulation of what American foreign policy is, basically since the end of the Cold War. So when you're looking at places like Iraq and Syria, you're seeing policies that can't be clearly articulated.
Q: You're basically saying President Obama doesn't have a foreign policy.
WEBB: I'm saying that in terms of a clear doctrine, we have been lacking that for a very long time. And it particularly impacts the Middle East.
WEBB: I think what you were seeing in Egypt was: make sure you've got a clear grasp on where you're going before you leave where you are. This was accentuated in Libya. I spoke very strongly against the notion that a president could unilaterally conduct military operations in an area where we had no treaties at work, we had no Americans under attack or at risk. And you take a look at the end result of Libya, are an enormous number of weapons that are unaccountable, which are probably in Syria, and can you get to the Tripoli airport today? And who's talking about that? Now if you take a look at Syria, and these other parts of Iraq, we now have a situation where we're asking these freedom fighters, or whatever you want to call them, who were going after Assad, to help us go after ISIS.
Proponent's argument to vote Yes:Rep. HOWARD BERMAN (D, CA-28): Integrating India into a global nonproliferation regime is a positive step. Before anyone gets too sanctimonious about India's nuclear weapons program, we should acknowledge that the five recognized nuclear weapons states have not done nearly enough to fulfill their commitments under the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, including making serious reductions in their own arsenals, nor in the case of the US in ratifying the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty.
Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. BARBARA LEE (D, CA-9): In withholding my approval, I seek not to penalize the people of India but, rather, to affirm the principle of nuclear nonproliferation. Jettisoning adherence to the international nuclear nonproliferation framework that has served the world so well for more than 30 years, as approval of the agreement before us would do, is just simply unwise. It is also reckless.
Approval of this agreement undermines our efforts to dissuade countries like Iran and North Korea from developing nuclear weapons. By approving this agreement, all we are doing is creating incentives for other countries to withdraw from the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty.
The Arab American Institute has compiled a Scorecard to catalogue the voting record of the 112th Congress on issues of importance to the Arab American community. Though not comprehensive, we have attempted to provide a snapshot of legislation concerning many of the primary issues concerning Arab Americans. For the Senate, we have included 10 items: two bills on the Arab Spring, three on Palestine, one on Lebanon, one regarding civil liberties, and two for immigration reform.
Prohibits the President from regulating or prohibiting travel to or from Cuba by U.S. citizens or legal residents or any of the transactions ordinarily incident to such travel, except in time of war or armed hostilities between the United States and Cuba, or of imminent danger to the public health or the physical safety of U.S. travelers.
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