I found this in Anthony Gregory’s piece at LRC, “The Persistence of Red-State Fascism“:
When Ann Coulter expresses skepticism toward Afghanistan, it is the function of a watered-down and vulgar America First sentiment. But America First is only a bulwark for peace when it’s radical, consistent and coupled with a concern for the dignity and humanity of foreign victims of the regime. If the only reason to oppose war is it’s a waste of American blood and money, there will be no stopping the next Republican president from unleashing even more death and destruction than did Bush, so long as it can be excused in the name of “national security.” For Americans to embrace peace, they must accept the notion that foreigners have all the natural rights Americans do, and dropping bombs on them while they sit peacefully in their homes and neighborhoods is every bit as barbaric, monstrous and murderous as 9/11 or any other terrorist act.
But those most skeptical of the notion of a sincere national security rationale typically link their arguments to the inherent wastefulness of government, its nominally private sector counterparts, and to some degree the dynamics of mass media and special interests. I also don’t agree that for Americans to embrace peace, they must attribute natural rights to foreigners. It seems this is part of what got us into this problem to begin with. It’s because Americans are so damned concerned about what is happening with women, gays, Christians or whomever in country X that they feel the need to intervene abroad. Three cheers for indifference. Unless Gregory has some good evidence that this other-oriented stance is going to transform in the particular Rothbardian direction he prefers, I suggest this empathy stance be downplayed. It’s too easy for its premise – the concern for the safety and freedoms of far off strangers – to be co-opted for pernicious, meddling ends.
Related material: Mondoweiss.