John Kerry Suggests New Direction

U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry’s remarks favoring U.S. interventionism in a commencement address at Yale University stand in stark contrast with the Obama administration’s gun-shy responses to strife in Syria and Ukraine — as well as his own historic opposition to U.S. actions overseas.

Instead, Kerry, alarmed by what is happening in the world, appears to be trying to carve out his own stance of America’s role in global affairs independent of his boss in the Oval Office, security and political analysts say.

Speaking from the same stage where he gave a fiery anti-Vietnam, anti-intervention speech upon graduating from Yale in 1966, Kerry told graduates yesterday that America has swung too far toward isolationism.

“We cannot allow a hangover from the excessive interventionism of the last decade to lead now to an excess of isolationism in this decade,” said Kerry, who initially voted for the Iraq War but later campaigned against it. “I can tell you for certain, most of the rest of the world doesn’t lie awake at night worrying about America’s presence. They worry what would happen in 
our absence.”

GOP political consultant Ford O’Connell said Kerry’s remarks represent a counterpoint to Obama’s “idealistic” foreign policy philosophy, which he said counts on greater restraint and international cooperation to tamp down hostilities.

“For once in his life, John Kerry’s being a realist. He understands the world is a difficult place,” O’Connell said. “He knows he doesn’t want America to be the world’s policeman, but he knows if America doesn’t have a foothold in international affairs, America’s going to wind up on the losing end. He recognizes that Obama’s held sway over the current generation such that it becomes a problem, into isolationism.”

Read more from Jack Encarnacao at The Boston Herald

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