Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Conservative Internationalism and the Trump Administration?

Conservative Internationalism and the Trump Administration?

Abstract

This article outlines the principles of a new conservative internationalism for the Trump era, and discusses how well the administration’s actions and words fit this paradigm. In order for Republicans and conservatives to reclaim their reputation as the party of strong national defense and competent foreign policy, current and future policymakers need to blend some traditional principles of conservative internationalist foreign policy with new adaptations required by challenging international security developments on the one hand, and changes in the domestic political views of right-leaning American voters on the other. A year into the Trump administration, there are some signs that the administration is indeed attempting to adjust slightly rather than replace the traditional principles of conservative Republican foreign policy, and therefore the “America First” grand strategy framework might become much more traditional in its actual policy decisions than in some of its rhetoric.

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