Livestreamed Conference by the Quincy Institute/American Conservative May 23: Rand Paul, JD Vance, Vivek Ramaswamy on Realism and Restraint Amid Global Conflict

Challenging the notion that war is the health of the state

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Join us in person or livestreamed on May 23 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in Room 902 of the Hart Senate Office Building, located at 120 Constitution Avenue NE in Washington, DC. Lunch and refreshments will be served.

REGISTER TODAY to attend the conference or to join remotely. Space is limited.

In the winter of 2021, the newly minted Secretary of State Antony Blinken declared that the Biden administration was setting about to establish a “foreign policy for the middle class.” This, of course, had echoes of Trump messaging that Washington’s overseas adventures and expansive military footprint was no longer putting “America first.” Borrowing more New Deal language, the Biden team appeared to be signaling that it too wanted to put American needs and interests back at the center of its policies governing war and peace.

Blinken insisted that “we’ve set the foreign policy priorities for the Biden administration by asking a few simple questions: What will our foreign policy mean for American workers and their families? What do we need to do around the world to make us stronger here at home? And what do we need to do at home to make us stronger in the world?”

“If we do our jobs right, you’ll be able to check our work – to see the links between what we’re doing around the world and the goals and values [I’ve laid out].”

We’re ready to “check their work,” nearly four solid years into Biden’s term of office. In that time the Russians have invaded Ukraine and the U.S. has spent billions of dollars in a war that many experts believe could have been avoided. Washington has continued to inflame tensions with Beijing as the military industrial complex ramps up for a war that no one seems to want to fight but is happy to prepare for. And now in Israel, America risks everything — including the remnants of any international moral authority it has left — to unconditionally support the Israelis as they commit what can only be called collective punishment against Palestinian civilians for the crimes of Hamas on Oct. 7.

My organization, the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, is joining up with the American Conservative on May 23 to host a conference on Capitol Hill that will bring together speakers that will challenge the very premise that a “foreign policy for the middle class” was ever pursued.

Our in-person line-up includes Senators J.D. Vance and Rand Paul, both who have bucked the orthodoxies of their own Republican party to challenge the current military policies; former presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy who was the only Republican in the recent primary debates to question the military industrial complex and neoconservative predominance in our foreign policy establishment, and two dynamic panels bringing the best commentators and thinkers on the left and right, including Rep. Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), TAC’s Helen Andrews, Breaking Points’ Sagaar Enjeti, Asia Times’ David Goldman, and Jacobin’s Branko Marcetic. My colleagues George Beebe (QI’s Director of Grand Strategy) and Curt Mills (TAC’s Executive Director) will moderate.

Please consider joining us in person for this event (and livestream), which will include lunch and refreshments. RSVP here now, as space is limited.

In its own 2020 assessment of what a foreign policy for the middle class should look like, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace said “the prime directive of everyone in the foreign policy community—not just those responsible for international economics and trade—should include developing and advancing a wide range of policies abroad that contribute to economic and societal renewal at home.” It’s time for a clear-eyed look at whether that even remotely applies to what is happening in America today.