Democrats: The Party of War

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It is an appropriate topic, I guess, but it’s not a very good issue any more than the war in Vietnam would be or World 11 or World I or the war in Korea—all Democrat wars, all in this century. I figured up the other day, if we added up the killed and wounded in Democrat wars in this century, it would be about 1.6 million Americans, enough to fill the city of Detroit.

– Vice-Presidential candidate Robert Dole, 1976

In 1976 U.S. Senator Robert Dole (R.-Kansas), a decorated and wounded hero of World War II, campaigning as President Gerald Ford’s running mate, told a debate audience that all the wars of the 20th Century were “Democrat wars.” Naturally, the media excoriated him, and when he ran for President in 1996 he walked the comment back. Why is a mystery. He was absolutely right, although he did not go far enough or look into the future, either. 

The simple fact – not an opinion but rather the well known thing that is know by people – is that historically, if a voter wishes to live in safety and security, he has one choice, which is to vote Republican.

Whether out of weakness, treachery or incompetence, at least since the Civil War, most of the wars fought by the United States – not to mention some fought by other nations – came about with a Democrat administration on the watch. This is no accident.

The latest example is found in today’s newspaper: Ukraine. Russia’s Vladimir Putin invaded Georgia (2008) only when Republican President George W. Bush was an unpopular “lame duck” and Barack Hussein Obama was about to be elected. He invaded Crimea in 2014 because Obama was weak and incompetent, having completely failed to stop the Islamic State from establishing a caliphate in Iraq that same year. Under President Donald Trump neither Islamic State, destroyed by Trump in a master stroke his first year, nor Putin dared advance, waiting until President Joseph Biden had stolen the office, to advance. Thus, Ukraine.

The Chinese are waiting until a Democrat steals the White House again, and that is when they will make their move on Taiwan. There is no chance they will do so with a strong Republican like Trump or Ron DeSantis in office. 

Civil War

The American South, from the 19th Century to the 1960s, was run 100 percent by the Democrat Party. Slavery, Jim Crow, the Ku Klux Klan, lynch mobs: all part and parcel of the Democrat Party. The old Confederacy? Democrats one and all. It was the newly found Republican Party that freed the slaves and preserved the Union from the treacherous Democrats. It was the Democrats who ruled the South for the next 100 years, until the Republicans under Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan husbanded the region into the mainstream of American politics.

World War I

Everybody know this war started with a Democrat, Woodrow Wilson, in office. After promising to keep the U.S. out of the war he reneged on his word and entered us in 1917. But there is a larger, maybe even cosmic story to all of these events.

The battle plans for World War I were written by Helmuth von Moltke the Younger under Count Alfred von Schlieffen of the German High Command in 1905, famously with the “right arm of the last German brushing the Atlantic” on their through Belgium. Why did it take nine years to put the plan into action? Theodore Roosevelt, that’s why. T.R. was a muscular Republican who believed in “speaking softly while carrying a big stick.” He turned the United States into a modern Industrial Age military power. This had been a competition between Germany, newly federated by Otto von Bismarck, Great Britain and the United States. Roosevelt’s election was a setback for the Germans. President Roosevelt was just itching to get America into a war that would establish us as a superpower, and the Germans knew it.

His V.P., William Howard Taft, succeeded him and carried out most of his military policies. But Roosevelt decided to run as an independent on the Bull Moose ticket in 1912, splitting the G.O.P. and throwing the election to Wilson.

1913 stands therefore us a pivotal turning point in the annals of man. The Victorian Age, or the 19th Century, did not end in 1900, but rather in 1913 when under the Democrats the income tax was instituted (it is ironic that the most pronounced sinners in the Holy Bible are the tax collectors, now known as IRS agents). The U.S. was by 1913 the wealthiest nation on Earth without it, but Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle created Socialist angst towards capitalism and wealth. Senators, previously chosen by Governors, were now subject to elections.  

The world did not know it, but the antiquated old world was about to be upended. The British Empire, the ruling power, the conquerors of Napoleon Bonaparte, were at the end of their road, but went merrily on their way completely unaware of what lay ahead. 

Had Taft or Roosevelt been elected in 1912, there is no way Kaiser’s Germany would have attacked. The Shakespearean mysticism surrounding this possibility is perhaps greater and more powerful than any act under God. No World War I? No Communism/Socialism/Marxism. No “big government,” at least for decades, as this notion came about at the Versailles Conference under John Maynard Keynes, whose essential principle relied on the idea that after something as cataclysmic as a world war, only governments – certainly not private enterprise and capitalism – could repair countries destroyed by modern weaponry. 

No Communism? That would mean no V.I. Lenin, no Joseph Stalin and no Mao Tse-tung. That would mean no Korean War, no Vietnam, and no Cold War. 

It also means no Naziism, no Adolf Hitler, and therefore no World War II. With no Communism to befriend and favor, it probably means the Democrats would eventually have become patriots, or faded away like the Whigs. 

As for the Japanese, this question is more difficult to answer. They opposed the U.S. because they felt they had been short-changed at Versailles, and had been modernizing as a Samurai war power since the 19th Century, having defeated the Czar’s Russian military in 1905. But absent alliance with Hitler’s Germany, they might have attacked China and established themselves as an Asian power, but not to the pitch of World War II.

Speaking of the Japanese . . .  

Manchuria, Nanking, China

It is true that Japan invaded Manchuria in 1931 when Republican President Herbert Hoover was in office. It is also true that they became drastically more adventurous and adversarial once Franklin Roosevelt was in power. This was when they established an alliance with Hitler’s Germany.

World War II

There is really no other war on this list that was more totally and completely caused by Democrats than this war of all wars. First, Germany was destroyed by the Versailles Treaty, partly written by President Wilson. Second, FDR failed to end the Great Depression. He completely failed to heed the warnings of such leaders as Doug MacArthur and “Vinegar Joe” Stilwell, who warned repeatedly of the prospect of war with Germany and most notably Japan. Many great American leaders lost hope and mustered out of the military. General George S. Patton barely stayed on board. The military was gutted. The Army Air Corps not only failed to modernize, but put one of its leaders, Billy Mitchell, on trial for warning the public of the dangers lying ahead. The German Luftwaffe in the mean time became drastically stronger. The Navy completely failed to keep up with Japan’s modernization of air craft carriers. The Army was a joke. Soldiers marched using sticks instead of guns. 

While it cannot be stated with certainty that Japan would not have started a war in answer to the oil embargo we instituted against them, there is no way Hitler would have attacked as quickly and as vociferously as he did if the U.S. had been stronger. The failure of the French, despite having the world’s largest standing army in 1938, must not be discounted, but every move Hitler made was calculated against American dithering, pacifism and incompetence. FDR then lied and broke his promise to voters in 1940 (as Wilson did in 1916) that he would keep America out of the war.

United Nations/Cold War

The original Charter of the U.N. in 1945 was written largely by a paid Soviet spy named Alger Hiss, a darling of the Left.. In it he declared Eastern Europe free for the taking of Joseph Stalin and the U.S.S.R. He was later convicted and the Venona Papers (early 1990s) confirmed everything, far too late to save 45 years of slavery under Soviet domination by the Czechs, the Poles, the Hungarians, and the rest of Russia’s “sphere of influence.”

Who Lost China?

This is equally damning against the Democrats, who somehow managed to win re-election when Harry Truman defeated Thomas Dewey in 1948 (read Robert Caro’s Master of the Senate how Lyndon Johnson stole the Texas Senate seat that year; it is not hard to imagine the same methods helped Truman eke out his “win”). 

China was an American ally during World War II. Their lead cheerleader was Time magazine magnate Henry Luce. His lead reporter was a liberal, Theodore White, who wrote shocking pieces about corruption in Chiang Kai-Shek’s regime. This caused support to dry up and Mao Tse-tung’s Communists captured Mainland China in 1949. Considering that 70 million Chinese died under Mao, White would do well to have considered whether his true mission was “journalism” or patriotism.

The Communists had a huge espionage operation going during these years, and undoubtedly Democrat treason (the Rosenbergs, the Hollywood Ten) played a huge role in the loss of China.

Korean War

This may be getting old, but here we go again. The main culprit was Truman’s Secretary of State Dean Acheson, who gave a speech declaring what territories the United States was prepared to defend against Communist aggression. Somehow, he forgot or did not list the Korean peninsula. Shortly thereafter the Communists invaded across the 38th Parallel. General MacArthur managed to turn things around with an amazing move at Inchon, capturing the northern capitol of Pyongyang, but his reward for this act of derring-do was to be fired by Truman. Red China, having been handed power largely by the Democrats a year earlier, entered the fray and 36,000 Americans died in a needless “police action.” 

Bay of Pigs

This action was planned by President Dwight Eisenhower’s CIA with the support of Vice-President Richard Nixon, who anticipated running the operation after his election. Instead it was stolen from him by John Kennedy, a mere “boy” and “rookie,” as the Communists saw him, whose utter lack of courage and leadership in failing to offer air support doomed the Cuban anti-Castro brigade.

Berlin Wall

Just as the Bay Pigs would have succeeded under Nixon, the Soviets never would have had the gumption to build a wall in Berlin (1961) with Nixon in office.

Cuban Missile Crisis

More of the same. While JFK earned plaudits for his leadership, had Nixon been President the crisis never would have occurred.


This is up there with World War II for Democrat ineptitude and lack of foresight. We go back to Acheson once again. He was approached by Ho Chi Minh, a freedom fighter who had fought alongside American airmen against the Japanese during their occupation of his country. He was taught the Declaration of Independence and vowed to remake post-war Indochina using that document. He approached Acheson at the U.N. but was rebuffed. The Americans were determined to give Indochina back to the French colonialists, despite a tremendous wave of anti-colonialism in the post-war era, resulting in the end of the British Empire. 

Ho threw in with the Communists, who defeated the French at Diem Bien Phu in 1954. Eisenhower kept U.S. involvement down to use of the CIA, advisors and special forces. When JFK took office the Communists became hugely aggressive. Kennedy made it clear he wanted out of Vietnam, which emboldened the Communist world. Then Kennedy gave the go to an ill-conceived coup d’etat resulting in the assassination of South Vietnamese leader Ngo Dinh Diem, his wife and his brother. When he heard what happened from Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge he “blanched,” according to David Halberstam in The Best and the Brightest.

Despite what apologists such as Oliver Stone say, once this event occurred, the war was a “creature,” an act of Shakespearean fate, with a life of its own. 

That said again, as in the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis, it is very, very possible that had Nixon been President the coup against Diem would not have happened; the war may well not have escalated; and if it did it might have been won early by an aggressive Nixon.

By the time he got control of it in 1969 those kinds of methods, the kinds he may have used in 1964-65, were not politically viable. An example of this was Henry Kissinger, who at the Paris Peace Talks said Nixon was “crazy,” a “wild man,” who could only be controlled by him. Otherwise, Kissinger said, he was bloodthirsty and likely to use nukes (as he had advised at Diem Bien Phu) in order secure victory. It was an exaggeration by Kissinger but helped end the Vietnam War. Such threats may well have ended it with a U.S. victory by 1966 under Nixon instead of Lyndon Johnson’s and Robert McNamara’s vacillations.

The rest of the “what if Nixon won in 1960?” scenario is again left to plays written by The Bard. Certainly if the Democrats were patriotic they would not have pressed Watergate, preferring instead to keep a President who was changing the world for the better (China, Russia SALT treaties). Watergate likely pushed the Cold War a decade or more. Without it Russia may not have invaded  Afghanistan and the Iranian Revolution probably would not have occurred.

Iranian Revolution

True, this event was blowback against Dwight Eisenhower’s CIA coup d’etat installing The Shah instead of Socialism in the 1950s, but the event came about largely due to the weakness of President Jimmy Carter, who showed deference to the Islamic world instead of coming down hard on terror as Nixon would have done had he not been done in by Watergate.


Just like Iran, Afghanistan went to the Soviets under a weak Jimmy Carter.

Eastern European, Baltic and “breakaway republics”

George H.W. Bush delivered a world in which “peace was breaking out all over,” but under President Bill Clinton there were numerous skirmishes after the fall of the Soviet Union. He even went so far as to illegally cover the markings of U.S. jets sent to bomb Christians, including medieval churches in Belgrade, in aid of Muslims in 1998-99. The Muslim world was so thankful that . . . 

World Trade Center I

Al Qaeda tried to blow up the World Trade Center on Clinton’s watch in 1993 then . . . 

World Trade Center II

They planned a second bombing of the building in response to Clinton’s weakness. After the bombing of the USS Cole Clinton sent a few missiles which, as George W. Bush said, “hit a camel in the ass.” The planning of 9/11 was done with a Democrat in the White House and strong belief that he would be succeeded by another weak one, Vice-President Al Gore. One of the great miscalculations in history was Osama Bin Laden’s notion that a Republican President would act as a Democrat did. He was wrong, and paid for it with his life, after watching ineptly while U.S. forces swept into Muslim countries, the opposite of his intention.

Islamic State

Obama dithered and squandered opportunities laid out for him by President Bush and General David Petraeus with the success of “the Surge” in 2007, withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq only to see the Islamic State, who he may have favored as Muslim (or at the very least they had no fear of Obama), set up a caliphate in Iraq (2014).


Vladimir Putin had no respect for President Barack Hussein Obama. Seeing him completely fail to stop the Islamic State, which Obama called Daesh because he did not want to remind people that most  terrorists were Islamic. Putin slid right in and is still there.

Afghanistan II

Essentially an American victory under Republican Presidents, Joe Biden “snatched defeat from the jaws of victory” while ceding billions of dollars worth of weapons, Bagram Air Base, and abandoning thousands of Americans and allies to the tender mercies of the Taliban, who had been told in no uncertain terms that if they broke their agreement with Presifent Donald Trump, individual leaders would be targeted. Trump told them he had their addresses and coordinates. They feared him and laid low, until Biden. Another weak Democrat.


When Donald Trump took office Putin made no attempt to invade Ukraine. He knew Trump would lay down the law if he tried. Under Biden, as soon as the Olympics were over in 2021 he made his move. 


On the other hand there are wars started by Republicans which resulted in victory or terms favorable to the U.S. These include:

Spanish-American War

Started by President William McKinley in 1898, this was the war in which Theodore Roosevelt made his fame with the “Rough Riders.” Cuba and the Philippines fell under the sphere of influence of the United States. The Philippines played a pivotal role in defeating the Japanese in the Pacific. Guantanamo Bay is a key U.S. spearhead in the Caribbean.

Yom Kippur War

In reading about the Yom Kippur War, it becomes more obvious with each turning of the page that Israel prevailed by virtue of an actual miracle in which God quite simply favored His Chosen People over the atheist-backed Muslim armies of Egypt and Syria. That said, with the U.S.S.R. heavily supplying their Arab allies, it was Presdient Nixon’s insistence on providing air transfer cargo planes on low-lying re-supply missions that made the difference after the first weeks appeared to favor an Arab blowout victory.


The last act of adventurism by the Communist world a decade after Vietnam was a massive victory for President Ronald Reagan in 1983. His CIA under Bill Casey managed to destroy the Soviets in Afghanistan by 1987. 

Persian Gulf War/Cold War

Victory in the Gulf War (1991) combined with the fall of the U.S.S.R after the Cold War, may have made the United States the single greatest, most powerful world empire in all of human history. 

9/11/War on Terror/Iraq and Afghanistan

Started by Al Qaeda, 9/11 finished by President Bush. When he left office Iraq and Afghanistan were allies of the United States. The Middle East was in America’s sphere of influence. The War on Terror was essentially won. In recent years terrorist attacks are way down. America and the West are relatively safe. When a Republican administration returns we will be much safer.

While Iraq was unpopular, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld ruminated, “There are known knowns. There are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we known we don’t know.”

The liberals of course blasted him but it was a brilliant summation, more at play now than ever. Had Bush not come in hot, the Muslim terrorist world would have been emboldened and likely killed far more people (mostly civilians) than U.S. soldiers who died in Iraq and Afghanistan. While some 100,000 “civilians”are said to have died in Iraq, most of them were probably terrorists drawn in to the country, a well laid plan by Bush. Most of the actual civilians were likely killed not by the U.S. but by Al Qaeda in Iraq.

Either way, the premise remains the same: if you want to sleep tight, vote for the Grand Ol’ Party.

Steven Travers is a former Hollywood screenwriter who has authored over 30 books including Coppola’s Monster Film: The Making of Apocalypse Now (2016). One Night, Two Teams: Alabama vs. USC and the Game That Changed a Nation (2007) is currently under film development. He is a USC graduate and attorney with a Ph.D who taught at USC and attended the UCLA Writers’ Program. He played professional baseball, served in the Army JAG corps in D.C., was in investment banking on Wall Street, worked in politics, lived in Europe, and was a sports agent before finding his calling as a writer. He has written for the San Francisco Examiner, L.A. Times, StreetZebra, Gentry magazine, Newsman and He lives in California and has one daughter, Elizabeth. He can be reached at or on Twitter @STWRITES.

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