The Economist offers a ridiculously generous assessment of Romney’s foreign policy:
He is showing greater respect than Mr Obama for traditional allies, and has more time for NATO.
I have no idea what this means, and I suspect that the people writing this editorial don’t, either. In what way is he showing “traditional allies” greater respect than Obama? By using them as props to promote his criticism of an Obama record that he fabricated? By ignoring what most people in those countries actually think? This editorial simply takes Romney’s baseless assertions about U.S. relations with these states and endorses them as if they were fact. Their analysis is exceptionally poor.
The NATO reference is particularly amusing, since NATO never appears in the Romney campaign foreign policy white paper. The op-ed that went out under Romney’s name in connection with the NATO summit earlier this year was little more than a collection of absurd and incoherent statements. Romney’s obsession with the 2009 missile defense cancellation continues to blind him to NATO’s endorsement of a shared missile defense plan, which also discredits one of his main objections to U.S. Russia policy.
It would be more accurate to say that Romney has had very little time for NATO. He has shown virtually no interest in the alliance, and he used the NATO summit as an occasion to repeat boilerplate complaints about reductions in military spending. Reviewing Romney’s foreign policy statements will turn up very few references to major U.S. allies in Europe or Asia. Indeed, he has nothing to say about Europe or most European allies. His attention has been disproportionately focused on countries in the Near East and on antagonizing Russia and China. Far from showing greater respect to “traditional allies,” Romney has crafted his foreign policy as if most of them didn’t exist.