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Quote Author Cited
We Americans have no commission from God to police the world. Benjamin Harrison
The Gulf War was like teenage sex. We got in too soon and out too soon. Tom Harkin
The great nations have always acted like gangsters, and the small nations like prostitutes. Stanley Kubrick
We are the most powerful nation on earth. No external power, no terrorist organization, can defeat us. But we can defeat ourselves by getting caught in a quagmire. George Soros
A democracy is severely restricted in its use of armed forces as a weapon of peacetime foreign policy. It cannot manipulate them tactically on any extensive scale for the accomplishment of measures short of war. George F. Kennan
Any country whose people conduct themselves well can count our hearty friendship. If a nation shows that it knows how to act with reasonable efficiency and decency in social and political matters, if it keeps order and pays its obligations it need fear no interference from the United States. Theodore Roosevelt
From the very beginning, the American republic has never shrunk from foreign wars …. There has scarcely been a year since its founding that American soldiers haven’t been overseas … American foreign policy largely consists of doctrines about when and where to intervene in other people’s countries. Michael Ignatieff
There are, however, cases in which, while our own interests are not greatly involved, strong appeal is made to our sympathies.... in extreme cases action may be justifiable and proper. What form the action shall take must depend upon the circumstances of the case; that is, upon the degree of the atrocity and upon our power to remedy it. Theodore Roosevelt
No doubt I could do what is necessary the circumstances to enforce respect for our Government without recourse to the Congress, and yet not exceed my constitution powers as President; but I do not wish to a in a manner possibly of so grave consequence except in close conference and cooperation with both the Senate and House. I, therefore l come to ask your approval that I should use the armed forces of the United States in such ways and to such an extent as may be necessary to obtain from General Huerta and adherents the fullest recognition of the rights and dignity of the United States Woodrow Wilson
All right, come on in! We’ll meet you man to man. You will kill us, but you will pay for it. Bernado Arce
Government has a perfect right, indeed a duty, to intervene in the economy in the name of justice, ecology, strategic interests, full employment, or other public goods in which the market has and can have no interest. Benjamin R. Barber
Throughout history states have also used force to reform, restructure, or rebuild the domestic institutions of other countries Michael N. Barnett
Globalization has raised the strategic cost of indifference to local conflict …. Today we can choose not to act, but we can no longer choose not to know. Samuel R. Berger
The uniformed military are usually the last ones who want to intervene, because they're the ones who are going to get shot at and they're the ones who will get the blame. Harold Brown
Intimately concerned as we are with the system of Europe, it does not follow that we are therefore called upon to mix ourselves on every occasion, with a restless and meddling activity, in the concerns of the nations which surround us. George Canning
There is no reason why we should not have peaceful relations with the world if we cease playing the role of international Meddlesome Mattie. Arthur Capper
The [foreign] policy of the United States is modeled on interventionism and aggression. It is logical that we should always be very suspicious. Fidel Castro
Perhaps we have already intervened too much in the affairs of other peoples. Allen Welsh Dulles
The American nation cannot reach across the planet and pick the leadership of other countries. Newt Gingrich
Latinos in America are still part of the Latin American experience. To understand the Latin American presence in America you must understand the American presence in Latin America. Juan Gonzales
Let us keep clear of interfering with their [Egypt’s] internal affairs; let us leave reforms to them and their peoples. Charles George Chinese Gordon
Can nothing be done to waken our Christian land from its lethargy regarding the suffering and dreadful wrongs endured by our helpless fellow-Christians in Africa? Will you all allow them to continue to be murdered and tortured … merely because … it will cost a little diplomacy, a little effort, and perhaps a little expense to secure them the best rights due to humanity. Alexander Mackay
Military intervention is to be considered when all else fails. Ralph Maraj
The scorn of our formidable neighbor who does not know us is our America’s greatest danger …. Through ignorance it might even come to lay hands on us. Once it does know us, it will remove it’s hands out of respect. Jose Marti
Although no one likes a hegemon, America will be a better hegemon than others would be. Charles William Maynes
Such recognition is not necessary in order to enable the United States to intervene and pacify the Island. William McKinley
Our purpose is not to interfere with the laws and customs which are beneficial to your people. Nelson A. Miles
International law seeks to avoid the use of force but does not preclude it. Daniel P. Moynihan
The best American internationalists reject the idea that their nation holds a global copyright that gives it a mandate to churn out replicas dotting the world. Asad Latif
Both Republicans and Democrats want to use our children as cannon fodder in order to police the world. Libertarian Party
We do not have the God-given right to intervene in any country in which we feel like intervening. Charles M. Lichenstein
German pretensions will not bear examination for a moment if judged by any rule of truth or justice. John Kirk
... fluctuating emotions ... [lead] us to excesses of both intervention and abdication. Henry A. Kissinger
A neo conservative is someone who is against communism but will accept big government and socialism. John F. McManus
The United States is now, as the defunct Soviet Union was decades ago, the subversive agent of a world revolution. Stephen Schwartz
No community ever did or ever can emerge unassisted by external helps from a state of utter barbarism into anything that can be called civilization Richard Whately
Mr. Roosevelt. You perhaps believe that your intervention can be effective anywhere. Adolf Hitler
If American lives must end, and American treasure be spilled, in countries we barely know, that is the price that change has demanded of conviction and of our enduring covenant. Lyndon B. Johnson
Some in the West have long argued that because of the lack of a viable liberal alternative, supporting authoritarian regimes in Arab countries is the only political choice against the Islamists. Now, in Tunisia, as people flood into the streets demanding democracy, we see that this is not the case. It was not the case in Iran in 1979 either, but the West was so invested in the Shah that it failed to strongly back the liberal opposition. We don't have to repeat that error today. Khairi Abaza
Thus must we toil in other men's extremes, That know not how to remedy our own. Thomas Kyd
Nation building is a very daunting enterprise. John McCain
We all have to recognize, no matter how great our strength, we must deny ourselves the license to do always as we please. Harry S Truman
We have no desire to be the world's policeman. But America does want to be the world's peacemaker. Jimmy Carter
Why does every nation on earth move to change their conditions except us [Arabs]. Why do we always submit to the batons of the rulers and their repression. How long will Arabs wait for foreign saviors? Faisal Al Qassem
The next time some neocon, demanding whatever military intervention neocons are demanding that day, invokes Hitler or Munich or appeasement, lock up your silver. Alan Wolfe
An attitude of letting the rest of the world stew in their own juice, is rather a dangerous one, that perhaps in our own interest we may have to take the initiative and have sufficient interest in other people's affairs to really want to help them remain at peace. Eleanor Roosevelt
Democracy brought to others through the barrel of a gun is not democracy. Tzvetan Todorov
De Gaulle was more responsible with his troublesome interventions into our domestic politics, for unifying our country than we will ever give him credit for. Judy LaMarsh
There is every prospect that events arising out of our growing foreign investment will present us in the future with decisions involving war and peace, will bring us, whether we like it or not, to concern ourselves with distant causes. Herbert Feis
Bolshevism must live and die of itself, without pressure from abroad. Carlo Sforza
The Government of the United States has always maintained that it would not intervene forcibly in the domestic affairs of the Central and South American Republics, and particularly of the island republics in the Caribbean Sea. Nevertheless, both the preceding national Administration and the present have felt no difficulty in using the army and navy of the United States for armed intervention in the affairs of some of those republics; and neither of the two great political parties in the United States has thus far shown any disposition to make an issue with either Administration on this subject. Charles W. Eliot