The Atlantic

Bernie Sanders Offers a Foreign Policy for the Common Man

The senator is reviving Henry Wallace’s vision for global democracy—but he hasn’t yet addressed its key flaws.
Source: Aaron Bernstein / Reuters

Last Tuesday, Bernie Sanders delivered a speech entitled “A Global Democratic Movement to Counter Authoritarianism.” In so doing, he resurrected the legacy of a man mostly forgotten by the makers of American foreign policy: Henry Wallace.

Wallace is best known for his renegade 1948 presidential run, in which he argued for cooperation—not cold war—with the Soviet Union. But his most significant statement on foreign policy came six years earlier in a debate with the publisher Henry Luce.

In February 1941, Luce penned an essay in magazine entitled “.” America, he argued, should not just enter World War II. It should enter the war with the goal of dominating the world that followed. It was time for “Americans to accept wholeheartedly our duty and opportunity as the most powerful and vital nation in the world and in consequence to exert upon the world the full impact of our influence, for such purposes as we see fit and by such means as we see fit.” By exerting its impact on the world, Luce argued, America—with its inherent goodness—would uplift the world, too. The

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