Victor Davis Hanson Private Papers

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What to ask John Kerry

by Victor Davis Hanson

New York Times

The New York Times asked a few leading commentators to pose questions to President Bush and Senator Kerry at the first debate on September 30th, 2004.

How might you explain the apparent abrupt change in policy of Libya; the unexpected removal of Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan’s atomic bomb; and the about-face in Saudi Arabia – and what precise plans do you have to induce similar such positive changes in attitude in Iran, Lebanon and Syria?

In January, you promised to be a president who “reduces the overall need for deployment of American forces in the globe – and I mean North Korea, Germany and the rest of the world.” More recently, however, you have chastised President Bush for saying that he will do precisely that, suggesting that his “hastily announced plan raises more doubts about our intentions and our commitments than it provides real answers.” As president, would you send those departing American troops back into Germany and on the Korean Peninsula to restore previous levels? And if not, why?

President Bush was the first American president to isolate Yasir Arafat. Do you agree with the president’s radical step of ostracizing Mr. Arafat? If so, would you also ensure that he is no longer a party to the Middle East peace negotiations?

©2004 Victor Davis Hanson

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About Victor Davis Hanson

Victor Davis Hanson is the Martin and Illie Anderson Senior Fellow in Residence in Classics and Military History at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, a professor of Classics Emeritus at California State University, Fresno, and a nationally syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services. He is also the Wayne & Marcia Buske Distinguished Fellow in History, Hillsdale College, where he teaches each fall semester courses in military history and classical culture.

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