Design for disaster: Zalmay Khalilzad's foreign-policy ideas

Friday, March 18, 2011; 9:24 PM

Zalmay Khalilzad's March 16 op-ed, "Freedom's call," was astonishing for outlining a program to involve the United States in the turmoil of virtually every state in North Africa and the Middle East.

As a former ambassador, Mr. Khalilzad should know - from firsthand experience in Iraq and Afghanistan - how easy it is to get into such situations and how difficult it is to get out. But there seems to be no limit in his prescription for our involvement. He called not only for not only support for the recent revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt but also for active military involvement in Libya; for a campaign of pressure against Morocco, Algeria, Yemen and the United Arab Emirates; and for fomenting revolution in Syria and Iran.

This is beyond an ambitious policy. It is a prescription for dragging the United States into the internal affairs of nearly every Muslim nation in the region. And, the policy requires the United States to support groups whose agendas are not at all clear and to oppose regimes that might well endure and require our continued diplomatic and economic engagement.

Alan Neuschatz, Bethesda

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