In this heated election season, the two major party candidates for President of the United States offer very different views when it comes to a host of issues, and the candidates’ stances on foreign policy are no exception. Republican nominee Donald Trump has often criticized the foreign policy actions of current President Barack Obama, as well as the actions of the Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton when she served as Obama’s Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013. Clinton has expressed a desire to remain loyal to allies and defend them in their times of need, but Trump has said that he doesn’t want America to defend countries that don’t pay back the costs.
Trump has called Russian President Vladimir a strong leader, while Clinton has called him a dictator. Trump has expressed desire to work with Putin to reduce terrorism, while Clinton has pledged to work with allies and “stand up to” Putin.
In late 2015, Trump made headlines when he called for a ban of Muslims entering the United States, though he has now backtracked that stance to a process of “extreme vetting.” Trump’s concerns are that there are people of Muslim faith who are entering the country for the purpose of committing terrorist acts. Clinton, however, has said that this is dangerous language that empowers ISIS terrorists. She says we should not use language that can imply that America is at war with an entire religion, rather than a group of terrorists that don’t represent Islam as a whole. Clinton favors the welcoming of Syrian refugees into the United States, while Trump has said this poses possible threats to the nation’s security.
Trump again made headlines when he said, “I know more about ISIS than the generals do.” Trump contends that Obama has been weak on terrorism and that has caused ISIS to gain strength on the president’s watch. Trump promises to destroy ISIS and end the Iran nuclear deal. Clinton has said the Iran nuclear deal was essential to stopping their nuclear program and she vows to continue working with allies to fight terrorism.
Though many voters in the United States seem to put emphasis on domestic policies, like jobs, taxes and health care, the outcome of this election certainly will be felt worldwide. There are stark contrasts in the foreign policy of the two major party candidates and the world will be watching in the coming days.
Elie Hirschfeld is NY real estate developer.