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Donald Trump delivers promise for less interventions in foreign policy

Donald Trump delivers promise for less interventions in foreign policy
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The military reductions in Iraq and Afghanistan, along with the nomination of new ambassadors committed to reining in our interventions in foreign policy, are the latest critical reminders that President TrumpDonald John TrumpJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE is delivering his promises to Americans who have so often voted for peace and instead ended up with war. This month, 2,200 United States service members will leave Iraq. Meanwhile, after falling to only 8,600 forces this summer, the level in Afghanistan will be cut to 4,500 by this fall.

This action on the ground is matched by decisions for ambassadors. Trump has nominated foreign policy expert and Naval Reserve officer William Ruger to the position of ambassador to Afghanistan. Ruger is a leading conservative voice for ending United States involvement in the war in that country, which he fought in years ago.

His nomination followed that of retired Army colonel Douglas Macgregor to serve as ambassador to Germany, where the president has also recently announced a reduction in our forces. Macgregor also holds a doctorate in international relations from the University of Virginia, and he has authored several books on military science and history. He has been outspoken with his calls for the United States to reduce its international commitments and instead concentrate on defending the homeland.

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Both picks were placed forward by White House staffer John McEntee to assist the president in remaking our foreign policy to achieve our aims abroad without needless military adventurism. They will accelerate the shift away from the outdated foreign policy mentality that sent some of our finest young Americans off to be killed and maimed in wars with no attainable deadlines or clear conditions for victory.

In every presidential election from 1992 to 2012, with a possible exception of the second term victory of George Bush, the winning candidate was the one who promised to cut back interventions. Every time, voters received the opposite of what they wanted, with more interventions, more soldiers in danger, and more wars with no end in sight. That streak came to an end when Trump delivered his promise on this key issue.

In 2016, Trump shocked Republicans and demolished the sacred foreign policy of the establishment. Before a debate audience in South Carolina packed with veterans and service members, he forcefully stated what no other Republican dared utter, that the war in Iraq was a mistake based on a lie. Some dismissed this as unserious bullying of Jeb Bush, while others said it would turn away military families from Trump.

They were wrong. No one understood the truth of what Trump said more than the people who for more than a decade had given their all in foreign battlefields, stayed up at night while their loved ones were deployed to treacherous combat zones, and had friends and family who never came home alive. Trump won the South Carolina primary in a landslide on his way to the party nomination and then the White House.

There is a difference between Trump and Bush, who promised to reduce “nation building” and contrasted his vision with the more hawkish tone of Al Gore, or Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaObama to campaign for Biden in Florida Jaime Harrison on Lindsey Graham postponing debate: 'He's on the verge of getting that one-way ticket back home' Quinnipiac poll reports Biden leading Trump by 8 points in Pennsylvania MORE, who had promised to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and take the United States off of a “permanent war” doctrine. The difference is that Trump did what he said he would.

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After 9/11, Bush plunged the country into conflicts around the world and embraced the idea of “nation building” that he had once derided. Obama eventually drew down our military presence in Iraq after three years, only to escalate the war in Afghanistan and commit the United States to new interventions across Libya, Syria, and other areas.

Trump has followed though on the “peace through strength” philosophy that our former presidents promised. Despite tearing down the Islamic State and checking the spread of Iranian influence in the Middle East, he is the first president since Ronald Reagan not to start more interventions abroad. Often locking horns with the foreign policy establishment, he has kept our forces out of danger whenever possible.

With his recent nominations and military reductions, Trump is paving a new direction in foreign policy that is both popular and yielding effective results. While it earned him a Nobel Peace Prize nomination, the historic deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates is only the latest step toward a far more peaceful and prosperous world.

This is not a retreat from world affairs, but rather a recognition that we are stronger, and our interests are more secure, when we do not let ourselves get mired in endless wars. That is an idea that many politicians, including Joe Biden, claimed to espouse and then failed to act on. Trump is the only leader in a generation who has followed through.

Madison Gesiotto is an attorney who serves with the advisory board of the Donald Trump campaign. You can follow her on Twitter @MadisonGesiotto.