The former vice president lacks a consistent philosophy of when and how to use military force.
Joe Biden has been wrong a lot on foreign and defense policy. A lot. This year’s presumptive Democratic presidential nominee voted against the 1991 Gulf War, in which the United States and a broad multinational coalition quickly achieved their goals, and in favor of the 2003 Iraq War, and regretted both votes. Years into hostilities, he opposed the troop surges that brought some stability to both Iraq and Afghanistan and even insisted that “the Taliban per se is not our enemy.” He argued for carving Iraq into sectarian statelets even as Iraqis voted for cross-sectarian political lists. And he opposed the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. These stances suggest not only that he lacks a philosophy of how to use military force effectively, but also that his instincts on when to use it are often faulty.