The Instigator
Con (against)
5 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
0 Points

U.S. Military Interventionism

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/15/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 726 times Debate No: 70119
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)




From it's conception to it's ongoing practice, preventive warfare has become one of the most prominent parts of U.S. policy discussion and debate. Intellectuals, news hosts, and politicians alike find it a grotesque and evil strategy and see the consequence of allowing such mindset to corrupt the men and women of our government. Even the average U.S. citizen stand adamantly against this policy along side some of our most intellectual minds. One of the most recent, and most known examples of this policy being acted on is the National Security Strategy of 2002. The strategy acted heavily on the idea of preventive warfare in the sense of Iraq having "nothing more than the intent and ability to develop [WMD]," as written in Noam Chomsky's Hegemony or Survival. He continues, "Virtually any country has the potential and ability to produce WMD, and intent is in the eye of the beholder. Hence the refined version of the grand strategy effectively grants Washington the right of arbitrary aggression."{1} This presents the seriously falling standards in the cause for U.S. aggression, and puts into light the U.S. as an aggressor. Preventive warfare, being the base of interventionist foreign policy, is important to understand as an imperial strategy " an unconstitutional, unwanted strategy. U.S. intervention, overall, is unwanted, unwarranted, unhelpful, and destructive to both the nation being invaded, and the U.S. Itself.
This destruction ranges wide throughout the world, from the U.S. economy and conditions at home, to the humanitarian aspect as we invade peoples homes, kill them and their family and friends. Interventionism has given birth to an immorality that even ISIS has used to gain recruitment. In the words of Ron Paul, "What if we finally decide that " contracting [torture] out to a third world nation is just as evil?"{2} This should be the starting point of rationality, and understanding that this statement had been said in a speech calling for non-interventionism, in a nation where we've seen interventionism escalate at an expeditious rate to acts of torture, the inevitable conclusion that an interventionist, imperialistic in nature, foreign policy births evils. Evils as extreme as torture, to the inevitable consequence of 4,802 civilian casualties, and the deaths of more than 5000 of our men and women in uniform. Torture and unwarranted killings are not the actions of a just government.
The U.S. has already made these actions, however, despite these inevitabilities having been pointed out by history. And so we are forced to see the consequences of these actions (such as a failing infrastructure and a failing economy) as pertaining specifically to the U.S. 55% of our discretionary spending goes to the military.{3} Only 5% goes toward healthcare, and a mere 6% toward education; miniscule in comparison. This money could go toward your health care, making sure a loved one is able to survive being sick, making sure you aren't in agony when you break your arm, making sure we can simply afford our health care. That more than half of this money goes to the military is not a choice, but a need under an interventionist foreign policy.
How do we try to make up for this destruction of an entire chunk of our free market " of our economy? Despite our efforts to destroy our only saving grace, spending $7.6 billion on counter-narcotics in Afghanistan, the booming opium industry has only grown. Why is this good for us? Before the U.S. got involved, Al Qaeda operatives would force farmers to grow opium, then those operatives would come along and sell that opium (turned heroin) on the black market. Now comes along the U.S. and we offer protection to the Opium farmers; the farmers continue to grow and sell their product; now the U.S. takes a little bit of the Opium and puts it into our pharmaceuticals.{4} There's still a problem though: we can't use our discretionary spending to support what we're gaining, and we aren't gaining enough to make up for the loss in finance.
On top of all of this, every implication points us in the direction of imperialist values, from being the aggressor, to claiming gains through force. The only real difference is, instead of outright claiming the land as ours, we place an embassy and call it "international relations." We've still invaded the nation, gone to war, placed officials in key areas as we remain in the area, steal the land's resources, and never gain the "consent of the governed."{5} Even when the times did not call for deception in this policy, it had become unsustainable, and the U.S. is already on the path of unsustainablility " the path of all imperial nations before it. Not only is this strategy evil in it's very nature, it's been unconstitutional since the very founding of this nation.







I have been researching a lot of the U.S."s policies involving interventionism and have come to a realization that without it this nation would be worse than it is today. As the world"s greatest military force, possibly ever, it is our duty to be cautious, and when the time comes, take action and intervene. If we know that someone is making military movements that could possibly put the U.S. in a place of strategic disadvantage or that goes against common moral beliefs, such as a genocide or chemical testing on civilians, we are obligated to look into, and if needed, stop these actions.

But, in some cases we simply should not get involved. Take Halliburton"s involvement in the Middle East. We should have never gotten involved over there. When that started we took the liberty of getting involved and supplying Iraq in the 80"s. We originally had no reason for involvement other than oil, but that"s a totally different discussion.

Take WW2 for example, when all of our allies were getting attacked and we were sitting by not wanting to get involved, for fear of further economical disaster. If we had bothered to get involved earlier we could have cut that war so much shorter. There are many places in American history where we should have gotten involved, but chose not to until it was too late or we just never did.

Bosnia was a great example of what we should do with interventionism. We realized something was going on that would affect the U.S. in the long run and stopped it as fast as possible.
Debate Round No. 1


U.S intervention has been incredibly destructive and feared by those we mean to help. Without it, we would be far better off than we are today. We would have more economic prosperity, and a true moral high ground over our enemies. The use of interventionist force is unwarranted and illegal according to both the U.N. and the U.S. constitution.
In discussing Iraq, it's important to recognize, in my opponents own words, "We originally had no reason for involvement." This is a constant trend in interventionist foreign policy. The idea that the U.S. should act as a world police simply because of the size of our military is a naive one. The U.S., as the most interventionist country in the world, came in at first place, in a gallop international poll, as the greatest threat to world peace.{1} Why is this? Interventionism. That idea that, because we have the most powerful military, we should intervene in conflicts outside of ourselves. This is what interventionism is, the idea of getting involved in confrontations whether or not directly involving us. What happens afterward? We stay in the region and "help" to place a government " a government that will abide by us. It's all done under the ruse that we have some kind of responsibility, that we're doing good for the world, and that we're the good guys. This is the same logic that Britain used when they were conquering half the world and colonizing India " the idea that "we're the good guy, and we're giving them democracy." U.S. intervention in foreign affairs is neither viewed as nor is helpful in the grand scheme of things.
I would not argue against acting against the Nazi"s earlier than we did, as that would be moronic, but arguing that WW2 has any relevance to this discussion is also moronic: Britain and the U.S., a decade before, were on the brink of another war; the U.S. was just coming out of the great depression; and, even with this in mind, getting involved in an instance such as WW2 would not be interventionism as it was a classified world war before the U.S. even got involved. This is an entirely different instance, and the comparison is not there. The only real comparison that could be made in the context of this debate is that the U.S. is acting similarly to the Nazi regime in the sense of Imperialistic tactics. WW2 is not relevant to this discussion.
Bosnia also holds a nuance the seems to disqualify it from this discussion. The fact that the U.S. did not seem to be in direct conflict. Rather, the U.S. appeared to be under U.N. obligation to aid and assist U.N. and NATO officials in their order of a no fly zone.{2} The U.S. had a minor role in assisting the U.N. In any case, considering my slight inability to understand this completely, as the only informative historical knowledge you can gain as to the effects of this war are propaganda and, as a consequence of being bias, are not reliable. So, let's assume this is a full on U.S. military intervention. Even if this intervention had gone well, there's an argument to be made that it had turned the U.S. into a larger target as we've now created an enemy who, before hand, had no reason to stand against us. For this one instance of possible good outcome, (and I should stress the world possible) there have been at least 3 that entirely contradict the implication of what my opponent has presented. The bad far outweigh the good, especially when the good is entirely objective. The best possible outcome is neutral at most, and we don't even get that most of the time.




True, our economy would be better but for all we know Bosnia, Vietnam, and Korea might still all be at war, which would be pointless. And I don"t think that the U.S. acting as a world police is na"ve. If we have the power to end, stop, or prevent an unnecessary conflict then why shouldn"t we? And when you say that the Bosnia crisis is irrelevant because the U.N. were the one"s that took action, but America was the primary country that urged the U.N. and NATO into action in 1994. And where your coming from with the opium economical value, the opium is not what grabbed America"s attention, what did that was oil and rising conflict in the Middle East.

If we backed out of that part of the world completely, how long would they last before ISIS took over completely and totally? And with your federal spending regiment, you act like the amount that the military is funded is unnecessary, but if we dropped funding and evened it out until the funding was more evened, then what would there be to keep other military superpowers from taking that away from us? It is unlikely, but it"s much better to be cautious and prepared than to let our guard down and end up like some of the counties currently going through wartime crisis.

And what you say involving the U.N. constitution it states, in chapter VII, article 51 "Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations", therefore stating that in a threat such as ISIS that intervention is allowable as collective defense. And it will continue being considered collective unless the host countries object, which they have not. The U.K., Poland, and Australia are also abiding countries and the U.N. has not made complaints involving any of these countries.
Debate Round No. 2
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Atheism_Debater 1 year ago
First Round:
-Intervention is unwanted in countries.
-Intervention is evil, immoral.
-Leads to failing economy.
-US uses intervention policy for deception to steal resources.
-Intervention is unconstitutional.

-Intervention helps US evade warfare in the future.
-Gives example in WW2 we should have gotten involved sooner.
-Another example Bosnia.

Second Round:

-US is a threat to world peace because of intervention.
-Defeats Pro"s WW2 argument intelligently by proving it irrelevant.
-Intervention makes more countries enemies of the US. (Also defeats Pro"s argument: "Intervention helps US evade warfare in the future.")

-Makes good argument by quoting constitution and defeating Con"s "Intervention is unconstitutional"
-Pro makes factual assertions but they are not backed by citation and therefore worthless.


Good debate overall to both sides. Con obviously gets the points for citations. Con also leans slightly ahead in arguments although Pro had great arguments as well. Good debate, but Con narrowly wins this one.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Atheism_Debater 1 year ago
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments :)