In Congress, Naomi will protect our country by making sure we always have the resources to defend our nation and honor our commitments. She will also support policies that seek to promote understanding and cooperation and conflict resolution. She believes foreign aid, diplomacy, and soft power are essential tools, and will support fully staffing and funding the State Department and its diplomatic efforts around the world. Defense Secretary James Mattis, while commander of US Central Command, was right when he remarked in 2013: “If you don't fully fund the State Department, then I need to buy more ammunition.”
To make our way safely and effectively in the current challenging threat environment, Naomi believes that we have to acknowledge that, while terrorism remains a serious threat, we have re-entered a world with hostile peer competitors like Russia and China, and we must be vigilant and prepared. What does this threat environment look like?
International security experts say that the threat environment today is complex, interconnected, and volatile. Russia has become a malign international actor that invaded Ukraine, annexed part of its territory (Crimea), and is trying to destabilize Ukraine militarily. It is attacking all the western democracies, trying to incite instability and to break up the NATO alliance and the European Union. China is the greater long-term strategic threat, and it basically claims the entire South China Sea, an essential sea lane, as its own, despite neighboring countries’ counter-claims and the fact that the UN Commission on the Law of the Sea found China’s claims invalid. China has no use for the rule-based international order that has been keeping us from world war since 1945. China's ultimate objective is to replace us as the dominant power first in the Asia-Pacific region and then the world. North Korea continues to be a wild card, with its unstable, unpredictable leader, nuclear arsenal, and long-range missiles. Now that President Trump has pulled the US out of the Iran deal, Iran could restart its nuclear program at any time. According to the Defense Department, climate change is also a national security threat and “may act as an accelerant of instability or conflict, placing a burden to respond on civilian institutions and militaries around the world” (2010 Quadrennial Defense Review).
Naomi is committed to our system of alliances and other global organizations and treaties, and our continuing leadership role in world affairs. US withdrawal and isolationism in the 1920s did not protect us from WWII, and that devastating war taught us the lesson that we must stay globally engaged to prevent conflicts and use diplomacy to defuse crises. The international structure of the UN, NATO, and other alliances that the US established after WWII has prevented another world war. It is more important than ever to preserve this rule-based international order to keep the peace. Finally, we need to sign and adhere to the Paris agreement on climate change and become a leader on fighting climate change, which is a different kind of national security threat.
Naomi favors tough sanctions against Russia, for deterrence. Our intelligence community found that Russia directed a cyber attack against the 2016 US election. When Russia interfered in our election, the basis of our republic, they crossed a line. It has taken time and many deliberate Russian provocations to get where we are—where US-Russia relations have degraded to the point that they are as bad as during the Cold War. Naomi believes we must hold Russia accountable for its malign actions and cyber/information warfare in Europe—e.g., its 2014 attack on Ukraine, which stole Crimea, and continuing support for violent insurgency in Ukraine, its threatening military maneuvers and posture, its support for a murderous dictator in Syria, which increases destabilizing refugee flows into Europe, and its efforts to promote fascist political parties in European nations and to sow dissension within NATO and the European Union. She supports the new, more far-reaching sanctions that will be imposed on Russia on Aug 22, triggered by treaty obligations in response to Russia’s use of chemical weapons in the attempted poisoning of a British resident and his daughter in the UK. She opposes President Trump's signing statement issued for the FY2019 National Defense Authorization Act, in which he refuses to carry out the provision that bans him from recognizing Russia’s sovereignty over Crimea.