A Time for Introspection

by | Jan 25, 2022


With the crisis over Ukraine getting bigger by the day, this would be a good time for the American people to engage in some serious introspection, especially given the recent withdrawal of US forces from their forever deadly and destructive war in Afghanistan. 

One option, of course, is to continue business as usual. That’s what is clearly going on today. Congress continues to dole out hundreds of millions of dollars to the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA, the three principal components of the national-security establishment. The Pentagon and the CIA continue to maintain their foreign empire of foreign military bases in different parts of the world, along with their massive empire of domestic military bases. In the meantime, the Pentagon and the CIA have succeeded in reviving their old Cold War racket against China and Russia and continuing their never-ending Cold War racket against North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela, with North Vietnam no doubt being kept on standby status.

The other option is to put a stop to all this dangerous and destructive mayhem, which necessarily involves changing the United States in two fundamental respects:

First, restore America’s founding foreign policy of non-interventionism. This would entail abandoning all US foreign military bases, including the Pentagon’s and CIA’s torture and prison center at Guantanamo, Cuba, and bringing all US forces home and discharging them into the private sector. In other words, no more foreign empire of military bases, state-sponsored assassinations, kidnappings, coups, wars of aggression, alliances with dictatorial regimes, foreign aid, and regime-change operations. 

Second, restore America’s founding governmental system of a limited-government republic, which necessarily would mean a dismantling of the national-security state form of governmental structure that came into existence after World War II. That means the US government would have a relatively small, basic military force and no more Pentagon, CIA, NSA, and massive military-industrial-congressional complex. 

Today, Americans have a tremendous opportunity to restore these two fundamental founding principles to our country. There is no possibility of any nation-state invading and conquering the United States in the near term. No nation-state, including Russia and China, have the money, armaments, troops, supply lines, ability, or even the interest of crossing the oceans and successfully invading and occupying our nation. This gives us a window of opportunity to restore these two founding principles to our land.

Obviously, the restoration of these two founding principles would not be in the interests of the Pentagon, the CIA, and the NSA, along with their massive army of “defense” contractors and subcontractors who have long fed at the public trough. It is in their interest that America continue to be besieged by an endless array of foreign-policy crises and an ever-growing list of scary foreign-policy monsters. In that way, they can continue to convince the American people to continue business as usual in foreign affairs. 

That’s what the current crises with China and Russia are all about. It’s what the Cold War was all about. It’s what the current revival of the Cold War is all about. It’s what the 9/11 attacks were all about. It’s what the war on terrorism is all about. It’s what the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq were all about. It’s what the deadly sanctions against Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, and others are all about. It’s what the trade war against China is all about. As long as the Pentagon and the CIA can continue stirring up crises and chaos around the world, along with an growing and shifting array of official enemies (or opponents, rivals, or adversaries), such as communists, terrorists, Muslims, Iran, Syria, ISIS, China, Russia, Venezuela, and Cuba, they can frighten Americans into continuing business as usual.

Meanwhile, with each new crisis, Americans lose more of their rights and liberties to the national-security establishment. That’s what the USA PATRIOT Act, the NSA’s massive secret surveillance schemes, the power of engaging in state-sponsored torture, assassinations, indefinite detention, and denial of due process of law (including of American citizens), and other violations of civil liberties are all about. 

Fortunately, there is a way out of this statist morass, if Americans want it. The way out is by restoring America’s founding principles of non-interventionism and a limited-government republic. 

That’s the big issue that Americans should be thinking about, reflecting, discussing, and debating right now—not just how to resolve the latest crisis in Ukraine but, more important, how to get our nation back on the road toward liberty, peace, prosperity, and harmony with the people of the world.

Reprinted with permission from Future of Freedom Foundation.


  • Jacob G. Hornberger

    Jacob George Hornberger is an American attorney, author, and politician who was a Libertarian candidate for president in 2000 and 2020. He is the founder and president of the Future of Freedom Foundation.