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July 13, 2017     The Clarendon Enterprise
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July 13, 2017

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The Clarendon Enterprise July 13, 2017 By A. Trevor Thrall, Cato Institute Advocates for robust American global leader- ship are having a bad decade. Donald Trump's elec- tion was clearly a wake-up call to the foreign policy establishment in Washington. In contrast to decades of bipartisan consensus that the United States was the "indispensable nation," Trump appears to be monu- mentally indifferent to America's role in the world. His tense relations with long-standing allies and his decisions to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Part- nership and the Paris climate treaty have moved critics like former national security adviser Susan Rice to argue that Trump is "undoing American leadership on the international stage?' Fears about Trump, however, simply echo con- cerns voiced throughout the Obama administration. Critics point to Obama's withdrawal from Iraq, his failure to intervene in the Syrian civil war, and his failure to check Russia over Crimea and Ukraine as evidence of unhealthy retrenchment resulting in "the desperation of our allies and the glee of our enemies." The United States, and the world, would be better off if America led less often and more thoughtfully. The real issue, however, is not America's failure to lead; it is the failure of American leadership. Since the end of the Cold War the United States has flexed its muscles repeatedly. The problem is that this has too often produced resentment, conflict and instabil- ity, precisely the opposite of what its proponents have promised. The fundamental reason for this failure is that American officials have too much faith in their power to dictate outcomes around the world, espe- cially through the use of military force. The past 15 years provide ample evidence of the perils of leadership. After the 9/11 attacks, the Bush administration launched a war on terrorism based on a strategy combining military intervention, regime change and nation building. The goal was to kill ter- rorists in the short run, destroy their organizations in the medium run, and over the long run to reshape the politics of nations to prevent terrorism from sprouting up in the first place. The Obama administration mostly followed suit, scaling back in Iraq but pursuing regime change in Libya, surging in Afghanistan and expanding the drone war against terrorists in seven countries. Today the Trump administration has begun to escalate the fight against the Islamic State and aI-Qaeda, empowering the Pentagon and the military to determine troop levels and make swifter battlefield decisions. The problem in the Middle East hasn't been the lack of leadership; the problem has been the failure to recognize that the American strategy has been a failure. Political leaders exaggerated the terrorist threat to the United States and then applied the wrong tools to the problem. Military intervention turned out to be great for getting rid of governments, but completely ineffectual at defeating terrorist organizations. Since 2001 the number of terrorist groups and jihadist fighters has skyrocketed, al-Qaeda franchises continue to operate, and the invasion of Iraq inadver- tently caused the chaos that helped the Islamic State take root. Everywhere the United States has intervened -- whether by drone or by invasion -- since 2001, in fact, is less stable and more violent today than it was before. Nor has the nation-building game gone any better. The United States has spent billions of dollars on nation-building efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan rebuild- ing infrastructure, training the police and military troops, and providing internal defense against terror- ists. The hard truth, however, is that neither country is a functioning democracy, neither is stable, and neither would last long without outside support. Meanwhile, the failure of the war on terror has come with astronomical costs, both for the United States and for the Middle East. The United States has already spent trillions of dollars and seen 7,000 Ameri- cans killed in the fighting, while according to NGOs somewhere between 1.3 million and 2 million Iraqis, Afghans and Pakistanis have died. This doesn't count those in Libya, Yemen, Syria or elsewhere whose deaths are a result of U.S. intervention and its conse- quences. Sadly, despite this recent history, there is little sign that Washington is ready to recognize the limits of American leadership. Though the Trump adminis- tration may frustrate the foreign policy establishment on certain issues, it is clear that American reliance on military intervention in the Middle East is here to stay. American leadership can indeed be a powerful influence for good, but the United States is neither all-powerful nor faultless, The United States, and the world, would be better off if America led less often and more thoughtfully. A. Trevor Thrall is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute's defense and foreign policy department and associate professor at George Mason University's Schar School of Policy and Government. a avors in in I remain a fan of the Trinity Rail- if I took time ~'!i ~,~ way Express, provider of commuter rail to purchase service between Fort Worth and Dallas. a ticket from (I deserved a recent TRE tongue-lashing the machine, that resulted from my poor judgment. I'd miss the Further, I failed to follow my own train. My mind lectern-dispensed admonitions across the raced, thinking the idle years about the importance of knowing of the impend- when to run.) ing discomfort american ,,if you're running to catch a train, of spendingby don newbury don't. There'U be another one soon,, a miserable I've advised. "But, if you are running to hour outdoors avoid getting hit by a train, run like the where the heat wind?' was already pushing toward 90 degrees. Oh, there are plenty of "what if's?' Further, I might be alone the entire time, If an airport parking space had been and what if my heart acted up? I felt in tougher to find, or if pick-up by two my pocket for the small nitroglycerin buses hadn't been so timely, this column bottle my cardiologist warned me never topic would never have been mounted .... to leave home without. What to do? .... Striving to allow plenty of time, Dare I run to catch a train? Of I left home at 8:30 a.m., planning to course, thought I. I have ridden the deposit daughter Jeanie's car near the TRE many dozens of times, and, for the baggage claim area for her family's record, have always paid, sometimes return from a cruise. Eureka! I found a double when machines malfunctioned. choice space. Along came the bus, and I reasoned that the attendant I'd I hopped on. How wonderful things seek out would understand my plight, are, thought I, as pleasantries were and perhaps sell me a ticket on board. exchanged with the courteous driver. I Or, maybe he/she could watch me buy was the only rider to the south remote a ticket upon reaching Fort Worth, three lot for that run. This also was true for the stops and a quarter-hour away. next bus, which delivered me to the TRE Upon seeing the TRE guy, I has- Center Port station in record time. tened to him. He was not busy; I was the "Hurry, you can make it," the driver only rider on the car; my interruption yelled. Sure enough, the 9:30 train to may have delayed his reaching to the Fort Worth was about to pull out, lights next car .... blinking and doors about to close. ***** I had to act quickly, knowing that No doubt, thought I, he'd appreci- ate my observance of all the other rules. I was clothed in both shirt and pants, and had on lace-up shoes (with socks). I was clean-shaven, and, as per a woman driving the airport bus, my "silver hair glistened in the sunlight?' My appearance didn't impress. "You have to have a ticket to ride," he said, firmly. "This is true for presidents, priests, preachers and police. I could issue a $500 fine" he added. That I am a couple of months short of 80 years of age and a heart patient for 18 years didn't shorten his lecture. He emphasized he would NOT be so lenient in the future. I believed him, and should have doubted his interest in witnessing my purchase of a ticket in Fort Worth .... In retrospect, the young man - probably 55 years my junior - was doing his job. At least he didn't write the citation, nor did he throw me off at one of the two stops before reaching Fort Worth. Upon arrival, I purchased the $1.25 senior ticket with two one-dollar bills. I left the three quarters to tip the booth lady. Her jaw dropped somewhat, then it fell "floorward" when I tore up the ticket. Maybe the TRE should sell undated tickets, say for $10 or thereabout, for one-time use when there's no time to buy a ticket. I'd buy one .... Dr. Newbury is a speaker In the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, Inquiries/comments to: QQq reman Some people told me I ought to interview Jack Moreman of Clarendon. They said he was a character and did lots of stuff, including making compost from feediot manure. So I called him on a rainy morning and asked himto come to the motel where I was staying. "Might as well," he said. "I can't get any work done in this rain?' When he walked into the motel wearing a yellow slicker, he spoke to everybody and called the people behind the registration counter by name. My room was on the second floor, and I asked him if he needed an elevator, and he said, "I'd rather walk?' So we climbed the stairs. Jack was born at Hedley, a small place just east of Clarendon. ,I was born at home. We didn't have any hospitals in Hedley." His family was in the hardware business. "My granddad had a hardware store in the old town of Rowe, which is no more. Back then, ~:~:i hardware stores sold funeral sup- plies. "I was in the store at Hedtey one time and I was proba- bly doing things stories I shouldn't be of texas doing and my by tumbleweed smith granddad said 'Jack if you don't sit down and behave yourself I'm gonna lock you up in the casket room.' That just terrified me. I behaved from then on." After graduating from Texas Tech with an agricultural degree, he managed ranches and farms, including the famous JA Ranch. He spent a few years at TCU teaching in the ranch management pro- gram, then set up a similar program at Clarendon College and headed it for 20 years. He started a feedlot in Hereford and ended up ownmg a company that they were interfering with TV recep- tion." Somewhere along the way, Jack ended up in charge of the Texas Tech horse that the Masked Rider rides around the stadium during football games. The horse's name was Tech Beauty. "We were going to play A&M and I got word that some of those Aggies were planning to break into the horse barn and paint Beauty maroon. I knew that was not going to happen while I was in charge of that horse. When the Aggies hit town I went to the horse barn, put a padlock on Beauty's stall and parked my pickup in front of it. I had my shotgun with me and it was fully loaded. Sure enough, the night before the game some people entered the barn. I knew they didn't belong there. I fired off a couple of rounds just to scare them. I didn't want to hurt anybody. Sure enough, they skedaddled out of there without doing The railroad missed Rowe and people turns feedlot waste into compost, serving anything to the horse. That paint would moved to Hedley. So granddad put in farmers in seven counties, have caused serious damage to the horse. a hardware store there. He also owned 'When I had that feedlot in Her- Years later somebody did manage to ,, a hardware store in Estelline and one in eford somebody said something needed paint a Tech horse and the horse died. ...... Lelia Lake." to be done with the piles of manure, that Tri~ CL~mNDON ~, 14~h Yc~r, ~ 3, Yd. XXVII, No. 211 The Cl=~mkm ~ (USPS 947040, I$SN 1088-9698) is published each Thursday by Roller A. Estiack at 105 S. Keamey Street, Clarendon, Texas 79226-1110. Periodicals postage paid at Clarendon, Texas 79226-1110. Copyright 2017. All dghts reserved. This paper's first duty is to print; all the news that is fit to print, honestly and fairly ~ all, unbiased by any consideration even its own editorial opinion. 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Submission of a letter does not guar- antee publication. Letters may be edltad for grammar, style, or length. All letters must be signed and must include an address and teephone nui~'ber (6r verffcbtlon.=/1"o " improve your chances of publication, type and double space your letter, sUck to one main topic, and keep it bdef. No letters will be accepted from candidates for local politi- cal offices. Letters submitted to this newspa- per become the property of The and cannot be returned. The Texas Panhandle's First Newspaper Tn~ CL~.~ON NEws, established June 1, 1878 with which have merged: The Clare~km 'lMml~, February 1889; The Clarendon JomMI, No~ember 1891; The Banner-Stockmen, October 1893; Agitator, February 1899; The Clarendon Thuu, May 1908; The Denley County Leader, March 12, 1929; The Clarendne Pm~, May 18, 1972; and Ol~m~on Enterprise, March 14, 1996. 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