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The American Conservative: Restraint and Peace

The American Conservative has been an indispensable outlet for the ideas and arguments of dissident and traditional conservatives for more than thirteen years, and it continues to offer a vitally important and necessary alternative to movement conservatism and its tendency to subordinate conservative principles of wisdom, prudence, and restraint to the needs of partisan loyalty and ideological obsessions. Since its founding, the magazine and its website have been the principled voice of conservative opposition to the many follies of the Bush and Obama eras, and they have also been the reliable defender of local communities, constitutional government, a broad distribution of power and wealth, and the causes of liberty and peace. That defense is needed now as much as it has ever been.

Over the last twenty-one months, TAC has been a consistent critic of the ill-conceived military intervention in Iraq and Syria, and we have been leading opponents of calls to escalate that war in recent months. We have also been calling attention to U.S. support for the appalling Saudi-led war on Yemen since it began last March, and we are one of the only American publications to pay close attention to U.S. support for this conflict and the devastating effects of the war there. Thanks to the generous support of our readers, we hosted a successful conference promoting a foreign policy of realism and restraint last November, and this spring we held another well-received panel on the foreign policy implications of the 2016 election.

We continue to warn against the folly of wars of choice and the dangers of enabling reckless client states, but we have also been arguing for the importance of diplomatic engagement with Iran and Cuba. TAC is a valuable resource for all Americans that want to rediscover a foreign policy conservatism that is dedicated to securing the national interest without being wedded to perpetual war. We offer a thoughtful conservative answer to both the excesses of demagogues and the fanaticism of ideologues. We have been promoting the cause of reforming and improving the foreign policy debate in the Republican Party and in the country as a whole since our inception. Our arguments are more necessary than ever as the U.S. will be fighting the new war in Iraq and Syria for years to come.

As the next general election approaches, the need for a conservative message of peace and restraint is clear. Both parties continue to be dominated by their most hawkish factions, and there is today virtually no debate within either party over whether our government should continue to wage open-ended wars. This year’s election results so far show that there are large constituencies in both parties that are open to and interested in a much less meddlesome and interventionist foreign policy, but they continue to be grossly underrepresented in Washington and in our foreign policy debates. TAC offers a critically important voice for all Americans that want a foreign policy governed by respect for the Constitution, an understanding of the limits of American power, and the responsible and just use of that power abroad.

In order to keep doing this important work, The American Conservative needs the continued support of its readers, without whom we would be able to do nothing. All donations to the magazine are tax-deductible, and anything that you are able to give would be greatly appreciated. If you are able to donate something, please donate here.

If you would like to make a donation by check, you can make your check payable to American Ideas Institute (the foundation that publishes The American Conservative) and mail to: the American Ideas Institute, 910 17th Street, NW, #312, Washington, DC 20006-2626.

about the author

Daniel Larison is a senior editor at TAC, where he also keeps a solo blog. He has been published in the New York Times Book Review, Dallas Morning News, World Politics Review, Politico Magazine, Orthodox Life, Front Porch Republic, The American Scene, and Culture11, and was a columnist for The Week. He holds a PhD in history from the University of Chicago, and resides in Lancaster, PA. Follow him on Twitter.

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