Thursday, September 19, 2013

Government Based Upon Natural Law - (Part 6) - Military Policy

“The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, and to have with them as little political connection as possible.” 

George Washington

“Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations but entangling alliances with none.” 

Thomas Jefferson

We should have cordial relations with all countries who act peacefully.  No peaceful country ought to be afraid that the United States will ever attempt to conquer it or forcibly take away its natural resources.

To countries or groups that have ill intentions toward us, our firm message should be: It would be a grave mistake to attack us, because you will end up suffering more than we will.  “Speak softly and carry a big stick” was not bad advice from Teddy Roosevelt.

We ought not to preach to other countries about how they should behave, or what their economic or political systems should be.  This has frequently led to them resenting us, rather than appreciating our good intentions.  The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund attempt to do this, and we should have nothing to do with them.

Rather, we should be humble and set a good example for other countries to follow.  What this means politically is that our government should protect our right to be free to live our lives as we deem best, as long as we don’t interfere with the right of others to do the same.

And what this means individually is that each of us ought to love our Creator and love others, by treating others as children of our Creator, and by using our talents to help make the world a better place. 

US Military Policy 


The purpose of the United States military should be to defend the USA if it is attacked, and to prevent an attack if a country or group has said that it intends to attack us.  This also includes eliminating in some fashion those who have already attacked us.

A possible addition to this is that if a close ally of ours is attacked, and if they request our assistance, and if we are able to help, we should carefully consider whether to use our military to aid the ally. 

Having the Best Military in the World 

Of course, the best outcome of having the best military in the world is that no rational country would attack us or even threaten to attack us. And indeed, since we developed nuclear weapons, not a single country has attacked us.

The quality of our troops, their training, and the quality of our leadership are the reasons why we have the best military.  And along with this is that we have thousands of nuclear weapons. (We used to have over 30,000 but it seems like having 1,000 would be enough of a deterrent, and much less expensive to maintain).

Some people have a desire to have a 'nuclear free' world, meaning that all nuclear weapons should be dismantled.  This is a terrible idea.  Our enemies would be ecstatic if we got rid of our nuclear weapons.  And, of course, there is no way to be sure that all other countries do not have or will not develop nuclear weapons.  Furthermore, our nuclear weapons are the greatest deterrent to those who would consider attacking us. As mentioned above, not a single country has attacked us since we developed nuclear weapons.

And because the United States is not imperialistic and does not steal natural resources from other countries, I suspect that if you privately asked most people around the world which country should have the best military, they would choose the USA. 

We should not be the Policeman of the World 

One implication of the purpose of the military given above is that we should not be the policemen of the world.  People and countries have fought each other since the beginning of recorded history, and it is not the business or purpose of the United States to intervene in such fights, unless, of course, we are attacked or threatened with an attack.  The last war that we should have fought was World War II.  Our wars in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan have been misguided, although they were likely well intentioned.

Another implication of this is that we should not have our military stationed in any other countries, unless we are at war.  Currently, we have troops stationed in over 100 countries.  How many countries have troops stationed in the United States? None. This has created enmity and dependency, as well costing taxpayers a great deal of money.  It may help to create temporary stability in a given region, but is this truly our business? 

The Department of Defense has stated that we even need fewer military bases in the USA, but Congress has been loathe to remove bases in the states that they represent, for fear of losing jobs. 

How Different Would our Military be given the above Purpose of the Military 

If we eliminated foreign bases, wouldn't our ability to defend ourselves be degraded?  I think the opposite would be the case.  Countries would no longer be telling us to mind our own business, and terrorists would not be telling us to get out of their countries, and would have fewer reasons to attack us.

Here's a brief summary of what I believe would be the best way to protect our country:

1) Remove our troops from all foreign countries (over time).

2) We would not even need a standing army, because we are not going to get involved with policing the world, or overturning governments.

3) We could use the National Guard in this country to strictly guard our borders and ports.  Their main purpose would be to see that no WMDs, especially nuclear bombs are smuggled into this country.  And the secondary purpose would be to see that those who come into our country are legally allowed to be here.

4) As far as threats from other countries, we can use our intelligence agencies (which can of course operate overseas), our intelligence-gathering space satellites, and our Aircraft Carrier Groups, which operate in international waters, and that dominate the oceans.  No sneak attacks from other countries are at all likely to occur.

5) As far as threats from terrorist groups or other such groups who wish to harm us, again our intelligence agencies are the main line of defense, along with the border and port controls.  If an overseas threat is found, we would send in our Special Operations groups to eliminate those threats. 

Note that if all countries had this same military philosophy, there would be no war! 


Following these military policies will, in the long run, bring the world close to peace, because we would not be interfering with other countries, and we would be setting a good example for other countries to follow.

A very nice side benefit is that this could almost cut in half the military budget, and make us safer at the same time.

One other way to reduce the likelihood of war will be discussed in a future post.  It deals with free trade.
Tim Farage is a Senior Lecturer in the Computer Science Department at The University of Texas at Dallas. You are welcome to comment upon this blog entry and/or to contact him at


Anonymous said...

Good post. I fundamentally agree with you that the last war for us should have been WWII. However, I'm not sure about Korea/Vietnam in that if you have an aggressive superpower (Stalin/Hitler) sitting back can provide them opportunity to build up their forces. Are you saying we should behave like Kirk in the Star Trek episode "A Private Little War" for those little countries? What if the aggressor sends actual troops?

Tim Farage said...

It is a tough question. I’m leaning toward not using our military in such situations (like Vietnam). Part of this is because it’s hard to imagine another Stalin or Hitler popping up, given all the nuclear weapons that are around. But if another country declared war on, say, England, and it was something they couldn’t handle, I’m sure they’d ask for help, and I wouldn’t be against giving it.

Anonymous said...

You're basically an isolationist. I mostly agree, but yet I am still not sure. I think we made an error in not destroying Hitler when he invaded Poland.

Tim Farage said...

I do think we should have gotten into WW II after Hitler invaded Poland.

However it's unlikely we'll have another world war because of nuclear weapons. So I don't see any major player attacking another major player. However if some country attacked Great Britain I'm sure we would help them out. But the chances of that happening are slim.

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