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Presidential candidates’ foreign policy is not so foreign | Con-Current Events

With nine months left until the presidential election, how much will foreign policy affect the results?

It’s the first week of March, and we have two front runners for our November ballot: President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump. 

Annika Morris | Senior Graphic Artist

Trump’s last opponent, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, dropped out of the race on March 6 after winning hundreds of delegates out of Super Tuesday.

On the other side of the ballot, Biden is unsurprisingly slamming out Democratic delegates as the incumbent. But of course, as always with politics, this statement comes with a footnote. 

Biden’s handling of the current Israeli-Palestinian conflict has netted him copious amounts of criticism. This criticism extended to the Michigan primaries, where an organized boycott against Biden’s actions by the large Muslim and Arab-American population prevented two delegates from going to Biden. 13.2% of Michigan voters — over 100,000 people — joined in, voting for “Uncommitted” instead of Biden.

Come November, policy will of course be a key part in our deciding factors, assuming Trump doesn’t declare bankruptcy or face federal charges before then. 

Domestic issues such as immigration and the economy are significant — and Biden has a strong start. Between inflation rates, student loan forgiveness and unemployment, the national economy has made an impressive recovery out of the COVID-19 pandemic, beating out hundreds of other countries.

But undeniably, foreign policy will be just as pivotal. 

With the Russo-Ukrainian War and the Israel-Hamas War waging on, it’s uncertain where the conflicts and our country will stand at the end of the year. Our candidates, however, have had very different approaches to these wars. 

The Biden administration accredits themselves for rallying global support for Ukraine as an act of defiance to Putin’s Russia but did not have as similar of a stance with Palestine due to American-Israeli allyship.

Republicans, including Trump, have taken an even more extreme stance — fighting to give no aid in any form to Ukraine — with Trump even encouraging attacks on NATO countries. And while both parties identify Hamas as a major contributor to the war in the Middle East, Republicans are more forgiving to Israel’s militant tactics.

Ahead of Super Tuesday, Trump encouraged Israel to “finish the problem,” possibly insinuating for Israel to further aggression. This comes as no surprise, where beyond just having unwavering support for Israel, Trump has also explicitly demonstrated his Islamophobia.

The punch line of this story? Naturally, it’s to ask how any of this may have to do with us.

Well, this one’s definitely a bit easier to answer. The 2024 presidential election will affect everything from how we’re able to control our bodies to saving lives across the globe. And it’s a direct result of our participation.

Who we end up electing as our president will directly affect the outcome of international turmoils. Will it be a Republican — a party that our tax money is better spent domestically instead of in Ukraine, but simultaneously encourages support for Israel’s shellings? Or will it be Biden, who has recently been negotiating a possible ceasefire resolution between the warring states?

One of Biden’s biggest problems for his upcoming election is his treatment of the Israel-Palestine conflict. We’ve seen Biden slowly waning in defense of Israel, recently sending the first aid airdrop to the Gaza strip, with decreasing patience for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

Under a moral view of foreign policy, it’s undeniable that a vote for Biden is a vote for more lives saved, short- or long-term, in Eastern Europe or the Middle East.

These conflicts might be halfway around the planet, but what we do in November directly influences them. Let’s register to vote. Because as Biden said a year ago, “We are the United States of America and there is nothing, nothing beyond our capacity if we do it together.”

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One Comment

  1. Well said!