From hawkishness to appeasement, the GOP has zigged, zagged, and zigged. Only one thing has remained constant: its partisan exploitation of the military and the flag. Republicans don’t believe in standing up to enemies abroad. They believe in impugning the patriotism of Democrats.
The 2016 Republican platform pledged “to support the Kurdish people,” continue “our partnership” with the Iraqi people, and press for change in North Korea, “the Kim family’s slave state.” It promised “assistance to the armed forces of Ukraine” and sanctions on Russia “until Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are fully restored.” Trump has proved that all these statements were lies. He has excused Russian aggression, extorted Ukraine, threatened Iraq, betrayed the Kurds, and glorified Kim Jong-un. You’d think that Republicans, having defended these betrayals and capitulations, might hesitate to lecture others about weakness or anti-Americanism. But you’d be wrong.
In June 2018, Trump held a summit with Kim, dismissed questions about North Korea’s human rights abuses, and declared, “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea.” U.S. intelligence debunked Trump’s assurances. But on Fox News, Republican Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia said Trump’s fake deal was working, and he denounced Democrats for refusing to give the president credit. “This is a pattern for the Democrats,” said Collins. “We’re seeing results.”
Now that Trump has taken the opposite position in Iran—denying that it complied with its 2015 denuclearization agreement and killing its top general—Collins says Democrats are sucking up to America’s enemies.