The Buzz

The facts, faces and hum of local politics with Steve Kraske and Dave Helling

Ronald Reagan an isolationist?

09/05/2013 10:13 AM

09/05/2013 10:24 AM

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul

has taken the lead among conservatives and libertarians opposed to U.S. intervention in Syria, several news organizations say.

National Review Online says the GOP senator is taking his cues from Ronald Reagan


Another official (Sen. Rand) Paul has sought for counsel is Richard Burt, a former ambassador to Germany and State Department adviser for Reagan.

‘The senator’s instincts, in terms of defining the national interest, are exactly right,’ he says. ‘He and I have spoken about how Syria doesn’t meet the threshold that Reagan would set for military action. What he’s doing isn’t knee-jerk isolationism but a return to Reagan’s sense of prudence.’ ”


Reagan ordered an

invasion of Grenada, in the Carribean, without congressional approval. He ordered airstrikes in Libya. He sent clandestine support to anti-communist fighters in Central America. (Sometimes the help wasn’t clandestine.) He helped supply Afghan rebels

following the Soviet invasion there.


attacked oil platforms

in the Persian Gulf.

He sent Marines to Lebanon during a civil war — and more than 200 of them

were killed in a terror strike


Reagan wasn’t the first president to flex the nation’s military muscle, and won’t be the last.

Bill Clinton

was also fond of using the presidential trigger.

Fox News has a handy list

of Reagan’s work, and the presidents since.

Rand Paul may be right on Syria. If so, Ronald Reagan isn’t the best argument he can make.


Join the Discussion

The Kansas City Star is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service