National Security Advisor John Bolton issued a statement from the White House on Friday denouncing Venezuelan dictator for bringing Russian military personnel into the country earlier this week.
Bolton warned that “Maduro will only use this military support to further repress the people of Venezuela; perpetuate the economic crisis that has destroyed Venezuela’s economy; and endanger regional stability. And he added the following paragraph:
We strongly caution actors external to the Western Hemisphere against deploying military assets to Venezuela, or elsewhere in the Hemisphere, with the intent of establishing or expanding military operations. We will consider such provocative actions as a direct threat to international peace and security in the region. We will continue to defend and protect the interests of the United States, and those of our partners in the Western Hemisphere, which are rooted in a shared respect for liberty, security, and the rule of law.
Bolton’s statement is an unmistakable assertion of the Monroe Doctrine — the 196-year-old policy of the United States that it would not tolerate the intervention of outside powers in the affairs of the Western Hemisphere.
In 2013, President Barack Obama’s second secretary of state, John Kerry, told the Organization for American States that “The era of the Monroe Doctrine is over.” In doing so, Kerry butchered the Doctrine, falsely claiming it was “a United States declaration about how and when it will intervene in the affairs of other American states.”
In fact, the Monroe Doctrine helped protect the newly independent states of the Americas from European colonial powers.
Bolton’s warning to Russia is a declaration that the Monroe Doctrine, far from being “over,” remains a fundamental principle of U.S. foreign policy. It is also a strong stand against Russia — stronger than any offered by the previous administration, which sought to downgrade the United States as a world power.
When President Donald Trump’s critics accuse him of abdicating American leadership, they are typically referring to issues important to the left, like climate change. In terms of the blood-and-iron of traditional foreign policy, President Trump is restoring traditional American policy. Bolton’s reassertion of the Monroe Doctrine is the latest, and perhaps most significant, example
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.