Compassion, especially Mrs. Cameron's compassion for Libyan rebels destroyed Libya. Mrs Merkel's compassion is helping to destroy Europe. I prefer foreign policy to be driven by national interest - it seems to do much less harm than compassion. I wonder if women are especially prone to thinking of foreign policy in terms of compassion and if this is an
another example of the feminisation of politics.
I am in favour of compassion and idealism in foreign policy within limits but compassion should not dictate foreign policy. I am not against all idealistic wars - I wish the UK had intervened in Rwanda and NATO had done so much sooner in Bosnia, but idealism does more harm than pragmatism. Pragmatism would have avoided many unnecessary wars - from the US Civil War to the invasion of Iraq.
Had we intervened to help the Whites in Russia much good would have resulted but that would have been both idealistic and self-interested. It is best when the two go hand in hand.
The British people are compassionate and noble. Germans are too, much too noble, but it's the role of political leaders to resist the sentimentalists. The Syrian refugees could have been helped by Germany close to the Syrian border, though most of these people are not Syrians and all are economic migrants. Instead a very disastrous precedent has been set. It is because of the ideological mess the rich world is in regarding nationhood.