Dying for the United Nations Why is John Kerry no Clinton-Lieberman Democrat? Easy. His obeisance to the U.N. by William Kristol 10/20/2004 11:45:00 AM http://www.weeklystandard.com/Utilities/printer_preview.asp?idArticle=4804&R=A03C22D26 WHO WOULD HAVE EXPECTED the Washington Post to inflict real damage on John Kerry's faltering presidential campaign? Yet they have. Here is the third paragraph from today's front-page article by Helen Dewar and Tom Ricks on Kerry's foreign policy record: Kerry's belief in working with allies runs so deep that he has maintained that the loss of American life can be better justified if it occurs in the course of a mission with international support. In 1994, discussing the possibility of U.S. troops being killed in Bosnia, he said, "If you mean dying in the course of the United Nations effort, yes, it is worth that. If you mean dying American troops unilaterally going in with some false presumption that we can affect the outcome, the answer is unequivocally no." When the Bush campaign talks about John Kerry's wanting a "permission slip" from the U.N., many commentators dismiss it as rhetorical excess. But Kerry really does believe that the United Nations is a fundamental, legitimizing body for the use of U.S. force. One hears this deference to the U.N. all the time in European capitals, but it is rare to hear it even among mainstream American liberals. In this respect, as in others, Kerry really is a throwback. He still shares the McGovernite distrust of U.S. force and suspicion of the judgments that are arrived at by the American body politic. John Kerry is not a Clinton-Lieberman Democrat. His near obsession with gaining the approval of the U.N., and for that matter of France and Germany, for the conduct of U.S. foreign policy would make him the riskiest commander in chief of any presidential candidate since George McGovern--and surely makes Kerry unsuitable to govern in a post-9/11 world. William Kristol is editor of The Weekly Standard.