A Progressive Foreign Policy Should Revolve Around Climate Change

For all the momentum that left-of-center candidates have gained this election cycle, a compelling foreign policy remains as elusive for progressives now as it was for Bernie Sanders in 2016.

This is largely by design: skeptical of interventionism abroad, the American left has historically prioritized issues meant to resonate more with voters at home. As political theorist Michael Walzer noted in an essay describing the paltry internationalism of American progressives, “the default position of the left” is that “the best foreign policy is a good domestic policy.”

Precisely because of this wariness of exercising hegemony abroad, the left’s foreign policy has been characterized by reaction ― against the invasion of Iraq, against the ravages of free trade, against the withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement. But protests do not a politics make.

Abjuring global leadership has mostly amounted to an abdication of institution building. While the right has for decades injected neoconservatism into the mainstream by converting think tank staffers into State Department bureaucrats, no such pipeline exists on the left. The result is a Democratic Party happy to bloat the Pentagon with excessive budgets, while shrugging at the biggest challenge the globe has ever faced: the climate crisis.

Meanwhile, the recent rise of ethno-fascism in countries around the world will only worsen as hurricanes and droughts trigger more mass migrations. The United States could soon find itself negotiating with ecological authoritarians, those tyrants who exploit rampant fear and chaos in the aftermath of fossil fuel disasters to shore up political power. Brazil’s new president Jair Bolsonaro is perhaps the most urgent example, and it is far from inconceivable that he will weaponize his threat to sell off the Amazon, one of the world’s biggest carbon sinks, for concessions from the globe.

Absent immediate and expansive action from the international community, these strongmen...

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Source : https://au.news.yahoo.com/progressive-foreign-policy-revolve-around-221633784.html

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