Entangling Alliances and Women’s Suffrage
Having the right to vote is significant only to the extent it means you can vote for some meaningful office or issue. Saudi Arabian women can now vote in municipal elections. This is progress for a kingdom in which men, particularly men of the royal family, hold virtually all political and commercial power, but it is far from revolutionary.
Saudi women do have one advantage over citizens of the so-called Western democracies. They at least know their national rulers care little for their happiness and well-being. This is not the case in the United States. Our authorities hide behind a façade of concern for the public while mostly pursuing their own self-interest.
This self-interest of American politicians often coincides with that of the Saudi royals. The Saudis have energy resources while the U.S. has military power. The two ruling classes have traded in both directions for decades. The American lives and treasure lost in the Middle East were transaction costs.
Saudi Arabia’s routine disregard for basic human rights forces American politicians to disguise their support for the regime. Those opposed to the Iranian nuclear agreement, for instance, often claim they want to defend Israel. Maybe they do, but their policy goal coincides with Saudi Arabia’s goal. They can defend the Saudis while claiming their only goal is to defend Israel.
In fact, American politicians should defend America, not Israel or Saudi Arabia. Those who assume George Washington’s and Thomas Jefferson’s roles should take the Framers’ advice and avoid foreign alliances.
Obligating ourselves to defend other countries is a recent development. These alliances are the foundation for today’s leviathan state. Removing them is a necessary step in restoring freedom.