Making Sense by Michael Reagan
Haven't we've learned yet that appeasement doesn't work?
I'm not talking about when the weak-kneed leaders of Britain and France went to Munich in 1938 and essentially gave Czechoslovakia to Hitler to buy a brief period of peace before Europe and the rest of the world went to war.
I'm talking about our more recent dealings with Russian, Iran and North Korea.
We're in the trouble we're in with North Korea today because of our continual policy of appeasing the thugs who rule that oppressed and starving Communist paradise.
Most people don't remember, but we started appeasing North Korea's dictators in the 1990s when Jimmy Carter was out office and still felt he needed to play global peacemaker.
Carter went to North Korea behind the back of the sitting president, Bill Clinton, and sat down to negotiate a deal to stop them from building nuclear weapons.
He promised North Korea leaders two nuclear reactors and $5 billion in aid if they'd agree to the no-nukes deal and Clinton, not wanting to embarrass a former Democrat president, approved the deal.
Of course it took North Korea about 24 hours to break their promises.
They've been working on their nukes ever since, and our presidents have been appeasing them ever since - when they're not busy appeasing Iran's religious thugs or Russia's virtual dictator, Vladimir Putin.
Remember Iran and its nuclear program? Remember how President Obama and everyone on the left fell over each trying to appease the ayatollahs?
How's that been working out?
Obama basically told the Iranians "We don't want you to have nuclear weapons today, but it'll be OK for you to have them 20 years from now - when I'm out of office and it'll be some other sucker's problem."
Now we have Iran and North Korea helping each other perfect their nuclear weapons programs.
And let's not forget how well our policy of appeasement worked with Russia.
In 2009 President Obama pleased Putin by scrapping the Bush administration's proposed missile defense system in Poland. In 2014, the Russia army invaded Ukraine and Russia was becoming the regime in Syria's best friend and military benefactor.
Now we're at a boiling point with North Korea and it makes for a very, very, very scary world.
You hope and pray we have the right people in office to make the right decisions and not go off the rails.
People are always praising my father for winning the Cold War without firing a shot or blowing up the world.
But he was able to defeat the Evil Empire with diplomacy because when he was dealing the Soviets the word "appeasement" was never in his vocabulary.
His way of describing his negotiating policy vis-a-vis the USSR and its nuclear arsenal was - "We win, they lose."
I'm fearful, as many people are, by what might happen if we learn that the North Koreans truly have developed miniaturized nuclear weapons that could ride on their primitive ICBMs.
But I'm also concerned that we'll just appease them again and we'll find ourselves in this same scary spot next week or next year.
What we need to do is follow my father's example and get "appeasement" out of our vocabulary.
While we practice smart diplomacy, we need to start putting anti-missile defense systems in areas the Russians or Chinese don't like, like in South Korea - and too bad if it makes them nervous or mad.
As for President Trump, he needs to get off building a border wall and start building a homeland missile defense system that will protect us from the rogue powers our appeasers have turned into world powers.
Copyright ©2017 Michael Reagan. Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and the author of "The New Reagan Revolution" (St. Martin's Press). He is the founder of the email service reagan.com and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Visit his websites at www.reagan.com and www.michaelereagan.com. Send comments to [email protected] Follow @reaganworld on Twitter.
Mike's column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. For info on using columns contact Sales at [email protected]