Paul D. Miller is a professor in the practice of international affairs at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, a contributing editor of Providence, a research fellow with the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, and a senior fellow with the Atlantic Council.
Assassinating Iranian Major General Qaseem Soleimani was a justified act. But it took place within the context of a largely unjust and strategically indefensible grand strategy, so it is unlikely to be a net positive in the long run.
There are two different conversations going on simultaneously from the right. One is an argument directed outward, toward the progressive left and “globalists.” The other is an argument directed inward, within the right, between nationalists and conservatives.
Liberalism, at least some version of it, remains the best option for organizing modern society. The real question is which version of liberalism is best. In this symposium, a variety of authors take up the idea of Augustinian liberalism.
We need a theological critique of American nationalism and the way it shapes the American foreign policy. Such a work must be theologically grounded but also historically informed and politically aware. Peter Leithart’s book BetweenBabel and Beast meets the first criterion but fails on the second.
I welcome the effort to give nationalism more depth because one of the more maddening features of political debate over the past few years is the difficulty in nailing down what exactly the nationalist side believes. In that spirit, I have some questions for the advocates of National Conservatism.
Paul Miller: I don’t want bureaucrats in Washington, DC, to develop a blueprint of the correct form of national culture we’re supposed to identify with. Any effort to do so will inevitably, and justifiably, backfire.